Game of Thrones: Not the Women They Were Before

One of the strengths of A Song of Ice and Fire is its willingness to play with and subvert fantasy narrative tropes, especially with its female characters. The warrior woman is also a naive romantic who has never killed a soul. The scrappy young girl becomes an emotionally damaged child hell-bent on revenge. Cersei and Catelyn […]

The Misogyny of Tyrion Lannister

Pretty much everyone loves Tyrion Lannister, at least at first. In a series full of ruthless trope subversions, Tyrion-as-hero (or at least as sympathetic underdog) is a plot that’s easy to get behind. He’s highly intelligent and well-read, he speaks bluntly about how things “really are,” he’s constantly making sarcastic comments, and, unlike most powerful […]

Power is Power: Cersei Lannister

This post contains spoilers through A Dance with Dragons. There’s no getting around it: Cersei Lannister is a horrible person. Although, thanks to the extreme cruelty of some of the series’ villains, she isn’t the worst character in A Song of Ice and Fire, she is ruthless and petty and cruel, and she appears willing […]

Arya Stark: To Bend or to Break?

Arya Stark is one of the most popular characters in A Song of Ice and Fire. She’s certainly one of my favorites. Brave, quick-witted, fierce and determined, Arya survives in a world that kills many older and more experienced players using courage, adaptability, intelligence, and, of course, a whole lot of luck. But she’s also, […]