Game Of Thrones star Charles Dance was shocked by the level of violence shown in an episode of the popular fantasy show, insisting he can understand the outraged response from loyal fans.

The veteran actor plays a ruthless lord in the series, based on the books by George R. R. Martin, and his character was involved in plotting a bloody massacre, known as The Red Wedding, in an installment which aired in the U.K. last week (ends10Jun13).

The episode, in which a number of key characters were killed off, evoked an uproar from fans, who expressed their outrage on social networking websites, and Dance admits he was stunned by the amount of gore depicted onscreen.

He tells the London Evening Standard, "I wasn't even in the scene, but I watched it, of course, and was absolutely shocked, actually. And I know the amount of tweeting that's gone on."