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Rhondinella

Joffrey Baratheon: Royally Purple

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Can't think of a quippy descriptor for the thread title.  Or not one I can print here.  Open to suggestions.

Given his parentage, and his mental state, there's always the Cuckoo King

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Guest Nova

Oh, Joffery, that smug, self-satisfied smirk, just makes me quiver.

How I wish_ you_ were pinned to a giant X.

That's so hot.

Until the day we may part, I'll remember the good times.

Head-lopping, beatings, and the occasional whore-ka-bobs, you'd whip up for us...

<sniffle>

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Sure, Joffrey's killed a few people, but who hasn't?

Is he really that bad for the Iron Throne?

Consider the other applicants

1. Daenerys: Committed numerous acts of business fraud. She also likes to burn people alive or lock them up until they die of some combination of hunger, thirst or possibly, lack of oxygen. She lacks focus, and is starting to get a touch self-righteous.

2. Stannis: Like Daenerys, he's fond of burning people alive, and he doesn't mind using magic, like the really creepy kind of magic where your "son" is some kind of demon smoke monster assassin.

3. Renly (if he were still alive): Renly's claim is that he's the "best", which is nice and all, but selecting the "best" every time a king or a lord dies would lead to anarchy.

Robb & Balon: Neither are seeking the Iron Throne, but if Robb had succeeded, or if Balon succeeds, that would lead to the break-up of the Seven Kingdoms. Ordinarily, no big deal, but with White Walkers on the horizon, the last thing the realm needs is a fragmented chain of command.

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Nobody's the perfect choice, but I'd say Joffrey is almost unambiguously the worst out of the current contenders (Stannis, Joffrey, Dany).

In terms of his claim based on lineage, he has none. By the law of the land Stannis is the rightful king if you recognize the war, Dany if you don't.

In terms of whether he'd be a good ruler: has he made a single good decision, ever? He lets his grandfather manipulate stuff for personal gain, occasionally intervening to make things worse, and doesn't show any concern ever for regular people. Dany actually cares about the welfare of people other than herself, though she's had some growing pains. Stannis is all about law / ethics and would probably be a non-terrible though definitely non-great ruler; in his obsession with getting the kingship that he feels he's due (and he actually is due), he's definitely done some bad things, but it's not like Joffrey is any better.

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Nobody's the perfect choice, but I'd say Joffrey is almost unambiguously the worst out of the current contenders (Stannis, Joffrey, Dany).

In terms of his claim based on lineage, he has none. By the law of the land Stannis is the rightful king if you recognize the war, Dany if you don't.

In the opening credits, there's a Baratheon sigil in King's Landing, so Joffrey is the "rightful" king, insofar as lineage or Lannister PR confers rights.

Though as Jorah told Dany, Aegon had no right to the Seven Kingdoms, therefore Dany's "right" is only as good as Aegon's. Stannis is to Robert as Daenerys is to Aegon.

 

In terms of whether he'd be a good ruler: has he made a single good decision, ever?

Joffrey has shown more concern about the dragon reports, and more interest in following-up on them than anyone else except, perhaps, for Varys.

 

He lets his grandfather manipulate stuff for personal gain, occasionally intervening to make things worse, and doesn't show any concern ever for regular people. Dany actually cares about the welfare of people other than herself, though she's had some growing pains.

A good king delegates.

If Dany cared about the welfare of people other than herself, she wouldn't have egged her husband on about attacking the Seven Kingdoms. If Daenerys attacks the Seven Kingdoms, win, lose or draw, a bunch of people will be killed. And just how does conquering Yunkai and freeing its slaves help the Seven Kingdoms?

As for growing pains, why shouldn't Joffrey be allowed growing pains especially since he has much more responsibility on his shoulders? Executing Ned Stark was dumb, but no dumber than Robb Stark executing Karstark, and no one goes around saying how evil Robb was.

 

Stannis is all about law / ethics and would probably be a non-terrible though definitely non-great ruler; in his obsession with getting the kingship that he feels he's due (and he actually is due), he's definitely done some bad things, but it's not like Joffrey is any better.

If Joffrey isn't better or worse than Stannis, then there's no need to replace Joffrey. All that will do is get a bunch of people killed.

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Joffrey is a terrible little shit. His penchant for cruelty alone makes him a terrible king. His first kingly decision was to behead Ned Stark, ensuring a long and bloody war. The only reason the kingdom is functioning and Stannis hasn't taken the throne is because of Tyrion and Tywin.

The only thing he has going for him is his concern for Dany and the dragons.

Stannis, vagina smoke assassin babies are a problem. Terrible candidate.

Dany, with her bubbling below the surface crazy and unassailable self-righteousness, is also a terrible candidate for the throne.

I don't know if there is anyone currently with a claim to the throne that would be good at it. Tywin or Tyrion could run the kingdom, but I'm not sure either wants to be King. Being King is a lot of work. One of the Stark children, probably Sansa, could take the throne although they only seem to want the North. No to the Tullys, the Boltons, the Greyjoys. Margery wants to be Queen and she'd probably be damned good at it, but without a marriage, she has no claim.

Westeros is an absolute political nightmare. That makes it so fun.

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I guess it's true that Dany is as obsessed with getting what she thinks is her birthright as Stannis is. Going around freeing slaves is going to put you in a better place in my book than going around shadow-assassinating your brother, though.

Also, good point that not recognizing the war doesn't really make sense since the original Aegon only took the 7K by war himself.

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I give Jack Gleeson mega props for the role; he gives Joffrey that specific touch of smugness, that highly encourages slapping as much as despise.

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I consider ImpSlap the best corrective action one can deliver to someone like Joff other than outright imprisonment or worse! It's just so appropriately wicked. So I approve of the title.

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Going around freeing slaves is going to put you in a better place in my book than going around shadow-assassinating your brother, though.

What's so bad about it (in Westerosi terms, of course)? Renly should've stayed in line, not jump ahead. The method was scary and I very much question Stannis' blind following of the Red Woman, but what was he about to do? Watch his younger brother take the throne away from him? 

Back to topic: *slap*

Edited by Conan Troutman

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I think neither Stannis nor Dany would be into murdering prostitutes or having women beaten for the lulz the way Joffrey is. Even if you argue that a terrible person can be a reasonably good king, I still think Joffrey is the worst option. He basically seems like the Mad King Part 2 - nobody likes him, nobody respects him, and I feel like even if he won the war, it would only be a matter of time before another Robert Baratheon or Ned Stark type leads a rebellion to get rid of him. So Joffrey wouldn't really lead to political stability. And can you see anyone being particularly eager to follow Joffrey into battle against the white walkers (or whatever other threat comes along)? When he had his big chance to be a leader and defend the city, he ran and hid, and would've lost everything. 

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I was just about absolutely ready for Jaime to follow in his brother's footsteps re: Joffrey, and given his new upgrade, so much the better. It was galling to hear Joffrey talking about his father in that manner in this past ep, even if he believed it was just his uncle. It's like, why would you need to rub it in like that against your own family? This guy is at least the twin of his mother and, given the massacre in S2, Joffrey has to at least suspect that Jaime might be more. Jaime needed to give him a golden backhand.

Freaking monster. Jack Gleeson needs all the awards.

Edited by DigitalCount

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Had to laugh when they showed the statue of Joffrey standing proud over a dead wolf (s04e01). What a tool!

Edited by sev

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Aw, it's come full curcle from when Cersei told her darling boy that he killed the dirrewolf that attacked him like a warrior, because being a king meant the truth was what he made it.

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I don't know if there is anyone currently with a claim to the throne that would be good at it. Tywin or Tyrion could run the kingdom, but I'm not sure either wants to be King.

It really does seem like all the people who want the crown are the only people who would kind of suck at it, IMO.

But IMO, Joffrey sucks most of all because he is young, immature, entitled, delusional, sadistic, cruel, arrogant, and a bully. He gives zero fucks about his subjects or his family.

His one redeeming quality is that he's worried about Dany's dragons but I can't even give him much credit there because he only gives a shit because her dragons might fuck up his ability to stay on the throne.

He's just....such an unpardonable douchebag. And by all accounts, the actor is a total sweetheart, so kudos to his acting skills, I guess. :)

I find it curious that his family hates him and thinks he's a tool as well. I half wonder if they couldn't just re-locate the Iron Throne to, like, the basement, and just sit him there while they go about actually running the damned kingdom. Just send him a political prisoner now and then to torture/kill and Joffrey will be the happiest non-king ever.

Cersei is self-absorbed but I'd have thought that Tywin, who at least is in possession of a strategic brain, would have tried to figure out a way to have Joffrey basically just be a figurehead type of king. Because if Joffrey is left to his own devices, KL will fall. Joffrey wants power but has no interest in what's actually required to RUN a kingdom. He can't ignore his subjects or their problems. He has to play nice with others (both high and low-born).

If he lets his support system (farmers, soldiers etc) down, he won't have anything left to rule.

Frankly I'm surprised that Joffrey was allowed to ascend to the throne considering his age. Shouldn't someone have been appointed as interim ruler? I guess Disney's Frozen was not available in King's Landing for reference. ;)

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Joffrey sucks most of all because he is...entitled

Pretty much everyone is King, Queen, Prince, Lord, Lady or Ser Whatever.

 

...delusional...

Stannis claims "he didn't ask for this" as if the Lord of Light pointed a gun to his head and forced him to attack King's Landing

Daenerys is going Colonel Kurtz on us.

 

...sadistic, cruel...

Stannis and Daenerys burn people alive.

 

...arrogant...

The alleged military genius Tywin repeatedly had his ass kicked on the battlefield until he hooked-up with Joffrey.

 

...a bully...

Many years ago- oh, before you were born, we all went through the terrible agony of Civil War. Westeros tottered and shook and nearly fell. I'm afraid that may happen again...I'm sure of one thing- only a single hand at the helm will keep this ship on course. The question is, whose hand will it be? If there is any doubt, the rivalry will plunge us into Civil War again.

 

He gives zero fucks about his subjects or his family.

Treating people equally, regardless of their socioeconomic status, is now a character flaw?

 

...young, immature...

You can't hold a king responsible for being young.

For if you do, then shouldn't we blame the whole system of hereditary monarchy?

And if the whole hereditary monarchy system is guilty, then isn't this an indictment of our familial institutions in general?

I put it to you, Greg - isn't this an indictment of our entire Westerosi society?

Well, you can do whatever you want to us,

But we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth

The Seven Kingdoms of Westeros!

Gentlemen!

Edited by Constantinople
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Treating people equally, regardless of their socioeconomic status, is now a character flaw?

When the treatment is piss-poor, yes, I'd say it is. I can't really applaud the likelihood that Joffrey would be as entertained by arrowing to death a Prince as he would a prostitute because he's still killing someone FOR HIS OWN AMUSEMENT.

The larger problem, I suppose, is that Stannis and Dany are being judged on their actions while they are attempting to get ON the throne. Joffrey doesn't have to do anything to get there because his mother lied to the king. I suppose the only fair comparison can be made if/when one of the others becomes Regent and then compare their rule with Joffrey's.

But I say this with all sincerity: Joffrey is a terrible fucking king. How anyone else behaves is irrelevant, IMO. His awful behaviour shouldn't get a pass just because X also does bad shit. It reminds me of that saying about US presidents: anyone who successfully gets to be President should not be allowed to BE president. Heh.

 

shouldn't we blame the whole system of hereditary monarchy?

I think hereditary monarchy is ridiculous (assuming the monarchy has actual power). Bloodlines don't make one fit to lead/rule. But this is the fictional world of Westeros, so there's not much I can do about that. :)

It makes me feel bad for Jaime insofar as he took out a king who was going to kill a bunch of his people, yet Jaime is the villain. Well, Joffrey is MALEVOLENT on the throne, so maybe I'll get lucky and Jaime will strike again...

Edited by NoWillToResist
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I always find it interesting that Joffrey seems to predominantly wear Lannister colors when he is a "Baratheon" and I fall into that category of people who believe that Joffrey doesn't believe that he is Jaime's son.  He truly thinks he is the rightful heir to the throne.

All I can say is poor Margery, her future husband is...well...refer to the above pictures..

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I fall into that category too, bluvelvet. Actually seeing him with uncle-father just confirms he's in denial even deeper than Tywin. For all his many faults, he doesn't want to be an incestuous abomination, he was born to be the one true king and fuck any indications to the contrary. The king can do as he likes! I doubt he puts much thought into his wardrobe scheme, but gold is a color of both families (and the Tyrells as well, for that matter).

I took using a boar's head as target practice in 3.02 scene with Margaery as a subtle indication of Joff still trying to be Bobby B's boy.

I looked for a gif of the above on tumblr but found this instead:
tumblr_m4lmnjDLfI1rvbqjzo1_500.jpg

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Let's have a slow clap for Jack Gleeson, who is almost unanimously described as a very sweet, intelligent young man, and managed to turn in an absolutely phenomenal performance as the Good King Joffrey.

My favorite thing about his portrayal is the way he manages to portray Joffrey as not just evil, but to also play him as rather weak and pathetic. He did an unusual thing by adding depth to a character while also managing to make him less sympathetic in doing so. Bravo.

Edited by Independent George
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*Slow clap*

You know as much as I have disliked the character and have wanted him dead since season 1, I think I am going to miss him. Or I should clarify and say I am going to miss Jack's portrayal of him. Excellent job.

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Oh, I know I'm going to miss the golden shitnugget. This is the death that really changes the show, imo. What do we do without our favorite psychopath? Hating Ramsay is just not the same fun.

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Oh, I know I'm going to miss the golden shitnugget. This is the death that really changes the show, imo. What do we do without our favorite psychopath? Hating Ramsay is just not the same fun.

The interesting thing about tonight's episode is that Ramsay is basically Joffrey all grown up, and Roose is basically playing Tywin's role relative to him.

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If there are seven hells, I imagine Joffery is getting slapped in every one of them.

The actor was brilliant. Almost makes me wish Joff had a soap opera style long lost identical twin brother, but I'd sure hope Joff was the evil one.

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Holy fuck. I honestly thought Joffrey was faking until he actually looked genuinely panicked and confused. I...don't even know what to say. It's not even my birthday!

I lost count of how many people watched Joffrey's behaviour at the wedding with utter disgust. Whoever had the gumption to actually murder that little shit deserves all the gold. ALL OF IT.

There are so many suspects...too bad they went with the truly idiotic scapegoat of Tyrion. He couldn't have planned that sequence of events if he wanted to.

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I lost count of how many people watched Joffrey's behaviour at the wedding with utter disgust. Whoever had the gumption to actually murder that little shit deserves all the gold. ALL OF IT.

And a chicken! Two chickens, even!

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Another slow clap.   Jack Gleeson's portrayal was pitch perfect.  I don't remember when I've hated a character so much (perhaps Cersei); there were no glimpses of redeeming qualities (well, maybe a bit of insecurity and the fact that he was a product of that effed up family) that made him seem even remotely human to me.  I couldn't wait for Joffrey to die yet I think I'll miss seeing his disgusting sneer on the screen. A perfect villain.

Edited by TooMuchCoffee
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Posted in the episode thread but really belongs here.....

He was truly great as Joffrey. We all hated him. I read he did an interview though and stated he may not act again, states he has other interests besides acting and does not enjoy it as much as he once did. I also recall reading he was pretty uncomfortable having to be so evil. In EW it was mentioned he would do a scene as evil Joffrey, then after it was over, apologize to everyone afterwards for what had just happened. I hope this role didn't ruin him an acting in the future. He has great talent, thats for sure

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Good riddance to Joffrey, and good journeys to Gleeson.  I hear he wants to be a philosopher, which is awesome. 

I also recall reading he was pretty uncomfortable having to be so evil. In EW it was mentioned he would do a scene as evil Joffrey, then after it was over, apologize to everyone afterwards for what had just happened. I hope this role didn't ruin him an acting in the future. He has great talent, thats for sure

I could totally envision him doing that.  I got to play a really skeezy villain in a tabletop roleplay once, and it was hard seeing how uncomfortable the other players got at times; I apologized afterwards even as we all celebrated how well it went.  He really brought so much to the role despite being the youngest person in the room most of the time.

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Question for the brits/irish (or anyone really): how would you characterize Gleeson's performance accent?  Can't quite place it.  Thanks.

I wouldn't say that he's using a recognisable British accent, really. It's a very precise, pompous manner of speaking, but still with slight twinges of Jack Gleeson's Irish accent. I could fanwank that Joffrey has cultivated this accent and manner of speaking, through trying to emulate his mother and maybe Uncle Jaime as well. 

The Tyrells, Tullys, Lannisters and other Southrons all seem to be using some variation of what I'd call a Home Counties accent. The Northerners are all definitely using various accents from the north of England. Davos, despite being from Kings Landing, sounds like a Geordie, so I guess that city is more of a melting pot than a distinct cultural entity.

Hmm. Perhaps a thread on accents might be an idea....

Anyway, Joffrey. I agree with everyone that Jack Gleeson was tremendous in this role, and I really can't think of another TV character who has almost transcended his own show, and become an object of pop culture hatred like Joffrey. He was an odious little turd in the books, but because he was a few years younger, his behaviour was a little less extreme, and you got an impression of the monster he would become. In the show, we saw that monster in full flight.

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So Tywin thinks Joffrey wasn't a wise king?

Joffrey was concerned about the dragons last season when Tywin was all "Like, whatevs".

That bitter old fraud.

And no one rocks a pair of eye stones like Joffrey. Made Jon Arryn look like an amateur.

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Sadly, we may have seen the last of the King Joffrey, the first of his name, King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms and Protector of the Realm, whom the common folk called "Good King Joff".

Also as sad, it's come to my attention that several people who should know better have made slanderous statements against the late King.  Unfortunately, despite how obviously untrue these lies are, over time the vile aspersions of one's political enemies tend to be accepted as fact, regardless of their absurdity.  Therefore I've taken it upon myself to set the record straight, both so that we can better appreciate Joffrey, and better understand that tragedy that befell Westeros upon his death.

Here, in no particular order, are a dozen reasons why people the world over are debating the question

Joffrey: Great King or Greatest King?

 

  1. Wisdom & foresight: Despite what bitter, old Grampy "Get Off My Lawn" said, Joffrey was a model of wisdom and foresight. Who else worried about the dragons across the sea? Who, when only a prince, suggested a standing royal army, the value of which insight was proven by the unreliability of bannermen in the dark days of war. Hint: Not some cranky old turd who's far too constipated to ever shit gold.
     
  2. Mercy: Of course Joffrey executed traitors, but Joffrey granted them the mercy of a quick, clean death at the hands of a professional executioner. The false claimants burn their political enemies alive, or crucify them or lock them in airtight vaults with no food or water. Those barbarous animals should be fighting to be King of the Wildlings, not the ruler of a civilized land.
     
  3. Dedication: Remember when, from across the room, Joffrey shot a bolt through the eye of a stag's head mounted high on the wall? You don't become a crack shot with a crossbow without a lot of hard work and practice.
     
  4. Student of History: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. Joffrey knew this, and had a keen understanding of the shortcomings of the Targaryens who preceded him. "Don't drink wildfire" is almost Zen like in its simplicity and insight. In his spare time, Joffrey gave private tours of the Westminster Abbey of King's Landing so that others could benefit from his knowledge. True, Joffrey was upset when his uncle gave him the book "The Four Kings" as a wedding present, but no one is perfect. You'd be upset too if an alcoholic sex addict, whose only "contribution" to society has been to discover what happens when you take a jackass and a honeycomb into a brothel, saw fit to lecture you on your field of expertise.
     
  5. Coaches Up: Too often sports team fail because the ordinary players rely on the superstar to do everything. Joffrey understood that, and knew he couldn't win the Battle of Blackwater single handedly. So after seeing his drunken uncle's plan fall apart at the seams, Joffrey devised a battle plan, on the fly, that enabled the men to get the best out of one another, including said uncle. There is no I in team, just as there is no I in Joffrey. Note also that Grandpa Know-It-All never won a battle until reuniting with his grandson.
     
  6. Equality: Despite the love he had for his mother, Joffrey didn't hesitate to point out that she too was as much subject to the law as anyone else. Nor, after executing the Stark retainers for their vile treasons, would Joffrey permit the Lord of Winterfell to spend this rest of his days at the Castle Black Retirement Community. Joffrey treats everyone equally. The King wasn't even above knighting a common sellsword for actions in defense of the realm.
     
  7. Creative / Music Lover: What do you do with a "professional" troubadour who can't carry a tune in a bucket, writes banal lyics, has the barest grasp of melody and none at all of harmony? Too often people waste their lives in occupations for which they are not suited.  Joffrey devised a solution that guided the man to another career choice while sparing the realm his caterwauling.
     
  8. Supports women: Joffrey wasn't afraid of marrying a strong woman, and supported then Lady Margaery's charitable interests, even going so far as to chide his mother for her lack of enthusiasm in his fiancee's work. In fact Joffrey took his wife's interests so much to heart that he ordered the poor be served that exact same food that was served to the guests.
     
  9. Generosity: Joffrey granted the lordship of Harrenhal to Commander of the Gold Cloaks for his role in suppressing the Stark treason.  Later, when the lordship unexpectedly became available again, Joffrey didn't selfishly keep Harrenhal for himself. Instead, he granted it to a long standing family retainer so that the man's position would be secure enough so that he might marry.
     
  10. Breaking Bad Fan: Remember when Mike recounted his days in law enforcement with Walter, and ended by saying "The moral of the story is I chose a half measure when I should have gone all the way"? Joffrey did, which is why he felt compelled to execute Eddard Stark, regardless of his personal feelings. Sending the Lord of Winterfell to the Night's Watch was a short-term fix to a long-term problem.
     
  11. Sense of humor & humility: When have Stannis or Daenerys ever laughed at themselves? Joffrey isn't self-important, and laughed several times at the actor who portrayed himself in the reenactment of the War of the Five Kings at his wedding feast. Joffrey's master stroke, however, was devising the reenactment so that it would be a subtle, yet entertaining way to point out how small even kings are before the forces of history.
     
  12. Devout: Though the benefits of breaking off his engagement to treasonspawn were clear to all, and urged by his councilors, Joffrey refused to follow his own personal inclination and forsake his promise to marry, unlike a certain traitor whose name is best left unsaid (ObbRay Arkstay).  It was only when the High Septon assured Joffrey, via Grand Maester Pycell, that the Gods had released Joffrey from his holy vow that Joffrey agreed to wed Lady Margaery.

 

By now, of course, the answer to the question is obvious.

Note: This is an update of a post that previously appeared in another thread. For those who read the original, I apologize, but as you well know, it is impossible to overstate the greatness that was King Joffrey.

Edited by Constantinople
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It's Istanbul not Constantinople. My dad had that album.  The original, not the Giants.

A single thumb up for your post about good ole Joff is insufficient.  Bravo.

 

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