We'll never forgive him for Prince Oberyn, but we must give credit where credit is due: The Mountain is a strong, strong man.
If you need further proof of his strength than what you saw on Sunday’s episode of Game of Thrones, you might want to check out this video of Hafthor 'Thor' Bjornsson—the actor who portrays Gregor “The Mountain” Clegane—deadlifting nearly 1,000 pounds at a strongman competition.
Pete Blackburn of NextImpulseSports.com spotted the video, which has been making the rounds on the Internet.
The footage shows Bjornsson at the 2014 Arnold Strongman Classic in late February using and abusing an Olympic bar loaded with weight. He prepares his grip, glances at some onlookers and proceeds to deadlift 994 pounds. The scariest part is he lost. Finished fifth, actually.
Prior to landing his role as the nastiest brute on GoT, the Icelandic giant even caught the eye of Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay. In a few tweets from 2013, Irsay hinted at signing the 6'9", 419-bound behemoth to play for the Colts in the trenches.
According to Bjornsson's strongman profile, he also comes from a basketball pedigree, but a 2009 ankle injury forced him off the hardcourt.
Bjornsson, 25, has won seven Arnold Strongman competitions since 2009. He is currently the second strongest man in the world, losing this year's competition by just a half point.
As you may have noticed in the video, Bjornsson sports an abundance of tattoos on both arms, markings that are covered with cosmetics before he goes on camera as The Mountain (As scary as it would be, a medieval knight with modern ink might look a touch incongruous).
Fans of the series might be interested to know that Bjornsson is having Game of Thrones-inspired work done on his left arm. The actor posted a picture of the tattoo in progress to his Instagram account on Wednesday.
Is that…the Red Viper of Dorne? A dragon?
Bjornsson says it’s a dragon, and I sincerely hope he’s telling the truth. He’s already scary enough. He doesn’t need to be the guy who digs the images of felled enemies into his flesh.
We’ll keep a look out for more of Bjornsson’s feats of strength. Something tells me that this mountain isn’t done showing Thrones viewers just how strong he is.
Pop goes the Viper.