This post contains spoilers through A Storm of Swords or season four!
On Sunday, I discussed whether or not there are any truly good characters in A Song of Ice and Fire and realized that… there are. I also promised to write about the other side of the spectrum, the truly evil characters. Well, here it is. As with last time, everything in this post is just my personal opinion – but I’d love to hear yours. Let’s debate who is the most evil character in the series!
Note: The characters of A Song of Ice and Fire often do horrible things to one another and to discuss them properly, I will have to mention some of those things. I won’t go into much detail because then I’ll get grossed out, but I’m just letting you know. Don’t like violence? Don’t read this post. Watch this adorable cat video instead – it’s even another top ten list!
10. Melisandre. Lovely name. Shame that she killed one of my favorite characters. For that reason – and for how thoroughly she has manipulated Stannis Baratheon, and for her use of shadow-assassin-things – she makes this list, but only just. She simply doesn’t have enough influence in the series to rank any higher in my book.
9. Viserys Targaryen. One of my favorite villains in the entire series. However, the reason I like him is the very reason he can be only number nine: He’s all talk and no action. Viserys is deranged and cruel, yes, but he also lacks the power / charisma to make any of his plans work. He’s a fascinatingly arrogant-yet-weak character.
8. Qyburn. He’s an ex-maester (kind of a cross between a scholar and a monk), and with good reason. He was kicked out of his duties as a healer after he performed experiments on living people instead of cutting open the dead. No wonder Cersei likes him. She says he looks grandfatherly, actually. Eugh.
7. Tywin Lannister. I’ll get a lot of criticism for placing him here, won’t I? But to me, while Tywin is definitely scary, his evilness has always seemed rather abstract. He is involved in a lot of brutality – the Red Wedding, for a start – and treats his younger son terribly, but he tends not to be out there in the thick of it. Tywin works behind the scenes.
6. Walder Frey. Definitely the creepiest character listed here, Walder controls an important river crossing using an army of his hundred (or so) descendants. His forces carried out the Red Wedding, killing a would-be king and several thousand of House Stark’s soldiers. Like I said – a creepy guy.
5. Gregor Clegane. What he lacks in intelligence, Clegane makes up for in cruelty and sheer size. He’s called The Mountain That Rides for a reason. This photo of his actor and Cersei’s actress should make it really clear why you don’t want him coming after you. I never thought I would feel sorry for Sandor (his brother) but whoa. Sticking your sibling into a fire doesn’t do wonders for your relationship.
4. Cersei Lannister. Cersei is utterly gorgeous. Too bad that she’s vicious. And paranoid. And literally insane. And she killed her own husband, the king. I find her terrifying and yet fascinating. It’s like watching a train wreck. I never know what she’s going to do next, if she’ll treat someone nicely or send them to Qyburn.
3. Ramsay Snow. I never thought I would feel sorry for Theon Greyjoy, either. But the symbol of Ramsay’s House is a flayed man. And I’ll leave it at that, because I’m getting grossed out.
2. Joffrey Baratheon. I suppose he can’t help being horrid. With a grandfather like Tyrion and a mother like Cersei, he was raised around evil. Due to inbreeding – his parents were siblings – he’s also crazy. (Are you noticing a theme here? He’s actually a Lannister. Don’t trust Lannisters.) Thirteen years old and already a mad king…
In Sunday’s post, I included an unusual version of a song from A Song of Ice and Fire, so I thought I’d do that here too. Following is an a capella rendition of “The Rains of Castamere” – a famous Lannister song.
…am I keeping you in suspense or something? Oh, all right. Number one.
1. Petyr Baelish. He was born to a small, insignificant House and that matters more than I ever imagined it would. It means that A) Petyr wants power and B) others underestimate him. He is calm and calculated, with none of the insanity that affects just about everyone else on this list. Although Ned Stark was instrumental in starting a battle for the Iron Throne, ultimately he was only investigating what Baelish started. I’ll never forget the moment when I realized the extent of this man’s actions. He’s just one guy and the other factions are made up of entire Houses, but I’d say Petyr Baelish’s chances of winning the game of thrones are very good indeed.
And what about you, readers? Which A Song of Ice and Fire character terrifies you the most? Is there anyone you wish I had included?