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Asshole Victim / A Song of Ice and Fire

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George R. R. Martin is fond of this trope, although the sheer number of both victims and assholes or assholes being assholes to other assholes thus creating bigger or more broken assholes... means that it is somewhat inevitablenote :

All spoilers are unmarked.

  • Viserys Targaryen spent much of his backstory psychologically (and it's implied, physically) abusing his sister Daenerys during their exile. When Dany marries Khal Drogo and journeys with him to the Dothraki Sea, Viserys spends all of his time complaining and making threats against everyone for not getting what he wanted immediately, eventually being humiliated by Drogo in front of his khalasar. This led to him getting himself drunk and threatening Daenerys' unborn child in front of Drogo as yet another threat to do what he wanted. Drogo responded by dumping a pot of molten gold on him, and it is described in all of its grisly glory.
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  • Ramsay brutally tortures Theon, turning him into The Woobie. Regardless, Theon did a lot of awful stuff upon taking Winterfell. Including (but not restricted to) allowing two children to be killed to both try to cover his own ass and intimidate everybody into backing down when the Stark children actually escaped. Worse, these weren't two random boys; he actually knew them both, because he regularly *cough* visited *cough* their mother at their home, and he knew they were about the right ages to pass. Do some of the mathematics that Theon shys away from thinking about, particularly for the younger one...
  • In A Storm of Swords, Craster is killed in a mutiny when the starving men of the Night's Watch believe he's hoarding food and not sharing enough with them. Whether or not that's true or a sufficient reason to kill him, readers aren't likely to care, given Craster's penchant for raping his daughters and killing his infant sons.
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  • After spending several books of being an asshat of a king, Joffrey is soon poisoned in the Purple Wedding. Needless to say, not many people mourn him, even though he was only a teenager, as he was one of the most hated characters in the series.
  • Tyrion Lannister killing his father Tywin at the end of A Storm of Swords. Tywin had it coming in general. The specific thing that sent Tyrion after him? Orchestrating the gang-rape of Tyrion's first wife, just because she was a commoner.
  • The Brotherhood without Banners' victims were generally this, the Brotherhood having their mission to protect the smallfolk who were being worst hit by the war and punish those who oppressed them. However, after their original leader Beric Dondarrion dies, they are taken over by Lady Stoneheart, and though their victims generally have it coming, their attempt to hang the honorable and kind-hearted Brienne shows their changing motivations...
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  • Most of the Freys who wind up dead in the story (with the exception of the decent Ser Stevron Frey and his disabled son Aegon "Jinglebell" Frey), especially after the Red Wedding.
  • In A Feast for Crows Sansa and Littlefinger frame the singer Marillion for a murder Littlefinger committed. It's hard for the reader to feel too bad since Marillion previously tried to rape Sansa. Said murder victim also helped Littlefinger poison her husband and manipulate her sister, eventually starting a war, and was threatening to kill a young girl, her niece, whom she thought was seducing her husband, so she's pretty hard to sympathize with as well.
  • The fate of Ser Gregor Clegane, a.k.a. The Mountain that Rides, at the hands of Oberyn Martell is absolutely horrific, with his agony lasting for weeks. It is also an extremely fitting one for a mass-murdering rapist and monster who did nothing in his life but spread untold cruelty, misery and death, including raping and murdering Oberyn Martell's sister. Or is he dead...
  • The Mountain's Men, such as the Tickler, Chiswyck, who laughingly talks of how he, some of the other men, and the Mountain gang raped a girl, and Raff the Sweetling.
  • Another of the Lannisters Knights Ser Amory Lorch, basically a miniature Mountain who also engages in Rape, Pillage, and Burn across the Riverlands, even attacking a group of the Night's Watch, who are sworn to take no part in the conflicts of the realm, as well as having stabbed the four-year old Princess Rhaenys dead in a manner even Tywin found unnecessarily brutal. He ends up getting thrown to a bear by the Brave Companions.
  • Similar to the Mountain's Men, the Brave Companions, a particularly vile sellsword company, nicknamed the Bloody Mummers, where every member shows themselves to be utterly evil, however they are getting picked off as they are hunted down for their war crimes. Their leader Vargo Hoat is an Axe-Crazy Sadist who enjoys cutting off limbs, and ends up having pieces cut off over days by the Mountain. One of the nastiest appears to be Rorge, a pedophile rapist who takes part in the Sack of Saltpans, where a town's population is massacred and raped by a group of the Mummers. He ends up being killed by Brienne when he threatens a group of war orphans, ironic for a He-Man Woman Hater.
  • Balon Greyjoy, the brutal ruler of the Iron Islands who have a culture of cruel piracy, attacks the North when its ruler Robb Stark offers an alliance with him and sends back his only surviving son Theon. Balon shows no affection to the son who he hadn't seen in nine years and acts horribly towards him, thinking him too weak to inherit rule. Balon ends up falling from a bridge during a storm, though it is widely believed the nastiest of the Greyjoy brothers Euron may have been responsible.
  • Renly Baratheon, who gives off the image of The Good King, but seems a Deconstruction of it, showing himself to be more The Evil Prince, being vain and mockingly unpleasant to unattractive people such as the loyal but unattractive woman Brienne of Tarth and his disfigured niece Shireen Baratheon, and trying to usurp the Iron Throne after his eldest brother's death basically just because he is arrogant and can put on a good image. It's even implied Renly may be aware of the illegitimacy of the Queen's children, meaning he knows his brother Stannis is the rightful heir. When Stannis offers to make an alliance with him, saying he'll make him his heir until he has a son (which is unlikely meaning Renly will probably become King anyway), along with letting him keep his positions as Lord of Storm's End and Master of Laws on the Small Council, Renly sneeringly mocks Stannis for not being as charismatic and insults Stannis' daughter because of her unattractive appearance, basically saying he'll take the throne as he has the bigger army, talking of killing Stannis while showing little remorse. He ends up getting murdered the night before the battle by a shadow assassin birthed by his brother's sorceress Melisandre.
  • Rattleshirt, a particularly unpleasant Wildling raider and rapist, ends up getting burnt by Melisandre while wearing a glamour that makes it look like Mance Rayder was burnt.
  • After Euron Greyjoy conquers the castle of House Hewett in A Feast for Crows, Falia Flowers laughs to see her trueborn half-sisters degraded and raped in front of their parents. Not too long afterwards, she herself is the victim of Euron's cruelty: she has her tongue cut out and is stripped naked and strapped to the figurehead of the Silence, and left to die of exposure and starvation. And, for most people, nothing much of value was lost (except for her unborn child: mind you, with the likely alternative of "getting born, getting your tongue ripped out and then serving your own dad as pretty much a galley slave for the rest of your tortured life" on the cards if born a boy and "we don't want to know" if a girl...). Sure, you can feel a little sorry for the shit her father and stepmother pulled on her that allowed her to become easily groomed by Euron "So Not Prince Charming" Greyjoy into considering the horribly squicky retribution something that became a possibility, but... still. Disproportionate Retribution is disproportionate, broken and groomed... or not.
  • Almost every Frey killed that we've seen has been an asshole in some way. Little Walder bullied Bran and Rickon, and was later killed by someone during Dance (possibly by his cousin Big Walder, who is actually one of the most likeable Freys); Petyr and Merrett Frey, who participated in the Red Wedding, are captured and hung by Lady Stoneheart and the Brotherhood Without Banners at the end of Storm; Rhaegar, Jared, and Symond Frey belittle Davos Seaworth and feed the lie about how the Starks were all shapeshifting wargs and the Red Wedding was all a misunderstanding, and they are killed and cooked into meat pies that Lord Wyman Manderly feeds to the guests of Ramsay Bolton's and "Arya Stark"'s wedding in Dance; and Aenys Frey, who is no shortage of abusive to everyone who looks down on them for the Red Wedding, is caught in a trap by Mors Umber and is slain in a POV preview chapter from Winds.


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