Kings have no friends.


The Gilded Lion

Every once in a very long while, Lord Tywin Lannister would actually threaten to smile; he never did, but the threat alone was terrible to behold.

As a continuation of my original Tywin ramble, I’d like to examine Tywin as a young man, heir to the Rock. He lost his mother, and his father married a woman of ill-repute. He was open-handed with his bannermen, and almost bankrupted House Lannister through his charity.

In contrast, Tywin is close-fisted and merciless. When the Lord of House Tarbeck was captured by Lannister forces, his wife captured three Lannisters, and told Tytos that any harm done to them would be inflicted upon her captives.

Tywin advised returning her husband to her in three pieces. Tytos didn’t listen, and an exchange was eventually worked out.

A few years later, when the Tarbecks again rose against House Lannister, Tytos unleashed Tywin on them and the Reynes. Not only did Tywin defeat them, but he destroyed their homes and exterminated the House to a member. When Tytos died, and his new wife presumed to continue living in the Rock, Tywin had her stripped naked and marched through Lannisport for a week.

He has only been described as smiling thrice, I think: When he met Joanna, when the Reynes were destroyed, and when his (pretty) children were born. After Joanna’s death, all the smiles fled him. And his vengeance streak extends even unto his children. Tyrion took Joanna from him, so he took Tysha from Tyrion.

And, to readdress the point I made in my previous ramble on him: Tywin is only a villain from our perspective because we were introduced to the Starks first. If Tywin were on the Stark’s side, he’d be the Token Evil Teammate, not the Big Bad of the first half of the series. His justification for the Red Wedding, that it prevents more war butchering the realm, is a pretty altruistic excuse for a horrible event. For that, the ‘Good Guy’ would rage, and the Evil Teammate would get frustrated and try to leave, only to come back at a key moment and save the day.

If this were your typical series, anyway.