As anyone watching WWE on a regular basis will tell you, Lana ranks second only to Stephanie McMahon as the organisation’s toughest female character.
A regular on RAW, the 31-year-old is perhaps most famous for accompanying the Russian-themed wrestler Rusev to the ring on a regular basis.
What many fans may not realise, however, is that the pairing of Lana and Rusev was actually inspired by another notable twosome from the world of Game of Thrones.
Lana, real name Catherine Joy C.J. Barnyashev, revealed as much during a recent interview on The Tomorrow Show with Keven Undergaro.
Speaking on the programme, which has since been shared on YouTube, Lana revealed that her controlling Russian diva persona was inspired by Daenerys Targaryen and her relationship with on-screen husband Khal Drogo.
Well, along with a little help from the late wrestling legend Dusty Rhodes.
“The whole idea of me controlling the brute was Dusty’s idea, which is an interesting spin, so it becomes not just like Russian, but it was like I was in charge of the brute, and the more conniving character, was Dusty’s idea from Khaleesi — she controls the dragons,” she told.
Khaleesi wasn’t the only Game of Thrones inspiration behind the heel though, with Lana revealing that the storyline that saw Rusev turn against her was also prompted by the HBO series.
“He [Dusty] was like, ‘You are going to control the brute. Control him, control him, but at one point, if you push him too far, he will turn on you.’ And that’s exactly what we ended up doing. I was always the intense one, and then at one point, I pushed him too far, and he tried to kick me back to Russia…Vince [ McMahon] got that whole idea from [Cersei Lannister].
“I remember having that whole conversation with him and saying, ‘What about her, being conniving?’ He was like, ‘Yes!’ And that whole Dolph Ziggler story came from her, from Game of Thrones!”
Here’s hoping that WWE doesn’t draw inspiration from the series in other areas.
Earlier this week, it was revealed that Linda McMahon, a former WWE executive and Vince McMahon’s wife, had landed a role in the US Senate.
We can only hope they haven’t seen the Red Wedding episode.
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Loaded staff writer Jack Beresford has produced content for Lad Bible, Axonn Media and a variety of online sports and news media outlets.