After so many years, we are nearing the end of Game of Thrones. It is probably clear by now that the most villainous of characters would include Cersei, and probably Tywin.

On the other hand we have characters who seem to be in flux and actually re-examining themselves, such as Jaime.

Some mostly follow in character, and no matter how thoughtful, fall astray from time to time, such as Tyrion and still others have the stamp of greatness, such as Daenerys, however flawed they might be.

Has GRRM expressed an opinion about which of his characters are the "most noble"?

  • 5
    Depending on how you define Nobility Eddard Stark is probably up there but I kinda doubt GRRM has said much officially
    – Revenant
    Apr 11, 2019 at 23:56
  • 4
    IMHO the one of the main themes of Game of Thrones is that nobody is really all good or all bad. Cersei might appear villainous, but from her perspective she's looking out for her family, or getting revenge for somebody hurting her family. From her perspective, she is noble. By the same token, the "good guys" aren't perfect, and have their own flaws. I think this question misses one of the main points GoT makes. Apr 12, 2019 at 1:33
  • 6
    I don't think it's all that clear that Cersei is supposed to be "villainous." I think that the point is that she is obsessively overprotective of her family, and this makes her a terrible ruler. Tywin is similarly obsessed with family, but in a different way. GRRM does this a lot - pairs of characters whose similarities and differences allow for interesting juxtaposition. Varys and Petyr, Robb and Jon, Arya and Sansa, etc. I would argue that the unambiguously honorable and evil characters were Eddard and Joffrey, and the fact that both are long dead is part of the point.
    – Misha R
    Apr 12, 2019 at 5:22
  • 4
    I'm going to say Hot Pie. Apr 13, 2019 at 8:47
  • 3
    Honestly have to go with Hodor. If you want someone who says more than one word, Shireen. If you want someone who is still alive, Sam.
    – Skooba
    Apr 15, 2019 at 20:39

1 Answer 1


Maybe none of them, or maybe all of them... with George everything is gray.

A few of his own quotes on the struggle between good and evil:

  • My reading of history has shown me that simply 'being a good man' is not enough. That there are many kings who are good men and yet bad kings. And even good kings sometimes make disastrous decisions. So government is complex, politics is complex.

    Panel with R. Scott Bakker in Semana Negra, Spain (2008)

  • Nobody is a villain in their own story. We're all the heroes of our own stories.

    "George R. R. Martin Interview GAME OF THRONES" by Christina Radish, Collider (17 April 2011)

  • The battle between Good and Evil is a theme of much of fantasy. But I think the battle between Good and Evil is fought largely within the individual human heart, by the decisions that we make. It’s not like evil dresses up in black clothing and you know, they’re really ugly.

    "GRRM Interview Part 2: Fantasy and History", interview with TIME Entertainment (18 April 2011)

  • We all have good in us and we all have evil in us, and we may do a wonderful good act on Tuesday and a horrible, selfish, bad act on Wednesday, and to me, that’s the great human drama of fiction. I believe in gray characters, as I’ve said before. We all have good and evil in us and there are very few pure paragons and there are very few orcs. A villain is a hero of the other side, as someone said once, and I think there’s a great deal of truth to that, and that’s the interesting thing. In the case of war, that kind of situation, so I think some of that is definitely what I’m aiming at.

    AssignmentX interview (June 2011)

  • These are the correct quotes.
    – Möoz
    Apr 24, 2019 at 22:02
  • 1
    If I were to take a guess though, I'd say that based on the portrayal from the books, it would be Ser Barristan the Bold!
    – Möoz
    Apr 24, 2019 at 22:04

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.