Having spent my last Game of Thrones blogpost talking about Daenerys Targaryen (Queen of the Andals and the First Men, Protector of the Seven Kingdoms, Khaleesi of the Great Grass Sea, Breaker of Chains, Mother of Dragons, and last but not least, Queen of Meereen) and Jon Snow (King of the North, Bastard), now I will be having a look at the Lannisters.
How did Cersei manage to outsmart Tyrion? Whose side is Jaime on anyway? Let’s go through the surviving Lannisters: one-by-one.
Everyone’s undoubted favourite, Tyrion was excellent at outwitting Cersei throughout his time serving as the Hand of the King (season 2), so you would think he would easily be able to outmanoeuvre her at war. But all his military advice to Daenerys so far has gone awry.
But perhaps an assumption that Tyrion is a good military strategist is a mistake? Tyrion is undoubtedly a genius of court politics and he is excellent at reading people (and forcing them to co-operate, as we saw with Jon Snow and Dany this week). But ultimately the great battle against Stannis and his allies ended well for the Lannisters mainly because of Lord Tywin Lannister’s intervention.
Tyrion is not naturally an aggressive man and he is unhappy to shed blood unneccessarily. He showed mercy to Janos Slynt by not having him executed and send him to the Wall… Slynt caused no end of trouble at the Wall, and Jon Snow eventually had to execute him himself.
Perhaps Lady Olena Tyrell was right to tell Daenerys to ignore Tyrion’s military advice?
Hope this doesn’t mean he loses his position as the Hand of the Queen, as he is definitely my favourite character in the TV show.
I have a problem with Cersei, due to the fact that I really hate her character in the books, whereas in the TV series I do think she makes a very convincing villain. It’s not that she isn’t an awful human being in the books – she is. But she’s just not very smart- all the people in her council are chosen basically because of their flattery rather than their actual skill. Cersei in the TV series comes across as far more cunning and similar to her father. How much this is due to the script and how much to Lena Headey’s fantastic acting, I don’t really know.
To be fair to Tyrion, Cersei’s successes might not be due to his lack of military prowess. The Cersei he was used to fighting in Season 2 was a completely different woman. She was far more predictable – her main interest was protecting their children and they were her chief weakness. Now that they are gone, there is basically nothing one can threaten her with. We have seen how adeptly she has dealt with all her adversaries at the Sept of Baelor (although that move might have cost her Tommen’s life).
All the same, it is strange that Tyrion decided to attack both King’s Landing and Casterly Rock at the same time – it is a manoeuvre anyone would have expected of him. Perhaps his ploy would have been successful if Cersei were acting on her own, but she now has Euron Greyjoy as her ally.
That might change, however as she has decided to take her relationship with her twin brother public…
One of the most controversial characters on the show, Jaime Lannister is still fighting on behalf of his sister, much to the disappointment of those who believed that his friendship with Brienne of Tarth truly changed him. Many of the blogs I read are convinced that he will finally snap and kill Cersei. Or that Cersei will kill him. One was even suggesting she had already poisoned him by accident, with a poisonous kiss…
At the moment, however, he is a truly valuable ally of hers – an experienced military commander who has clearly learned his lessons from Robb Stark.
Be where no-one expects you to be. Take advantage of your enemies’ weakness. Cough. Tyrion, are you listening?