Follow TV Tropes

Following

Characters / Game of Thrones - Jaime Lannister

Go To

Advertisement:

Only spoilers from the current season will be hidden, so beware spoilers if you're not up to date on the episodes.


Ser Jaime Lannister

https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/jaime_lannister_s7.png

Played By: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

"There it is. There's the look. I've seen it for seventeen years on face after face. You all despise me. Kingslayer. Oathbreaker. A man without honor."

Twin brother of Cersei, and older brother of Tyrion. A member of the Kingsguard, and known across the lands as one of the finest swordsmen who ever lived, Jaime served under the "Mad King" Aerys II Targaryen for several years. Jaime quickly became infamous amongst the Seven Kingdoms however for murdering the Mad King near the end of Robert's Rebellion, an action that led to him becoming known as The Kingslayer. While Jaime initially seems arrogant and aloof about his infamous action the truth is that, unbeknownst to the rest of the world, Jaime was saving the rest of King's Landing from the Mad King who intended to destroy the city with hidden caches of Wildfire. After losing his sword hand Jaime becomes humble and is now trying to live his life for his own sense of honour even if the rest of the world continues to despise him. After the forced retirement of Ser Barristan from the Kingsguard Jaime is named the Lord Commander of the Kingsguard. He later becomes the commander-in-chief of the Lannister armies once Cersei becomes the Queen Regent of the Seven Kingdoms. Unfortunately for Jaime, once Cersei becomes Queen, he is left torn in his loyalties between the sister that he loves and his own sense of right and wrong.

Advertisement:

    open/close all folders 

    A-F 
  • Abled in the Adaptation: In the books, Jaime had difficulty of using the left hand as his sword hand after his right hand was chopped off and despite his efforts to learn in using his left hand, it actually takes a lot of time to get use to it because he was right-handed in his lifetime. In the show, he initially had difficulty of using his left hand and while he is able to fight with his left hand, he used his golden right hand for pragmatic means.
  • The Ace: Generally considered to be one of the greatest swordsmen in Westeros, if not the greatest. Subtly combined with Brilliant, but Lazy: When he tries he's almost as cunning, charismatic, and socially dominating as his father and little brother, but he's personally unambitious and is only ever recognized in-universe for his sublime swordsmanship and pretty face.
    Littlefinger: I bet on Ser Jaime in the jousting, as any sane man would...
  • Action Dad: The biological father of Joffrey, Tommen, and Myrcella and is a renowned badass.
  • Adapted Out:
    • His confession to Tyrion about Tysha at the end of A Storm of Swords, which caused them to part on a very sour note. Instead, since Jaime doesn't tell him this, their parting is much more heartwarming.
    • His arc in the books after Tywin's death involves reforming the Kingsguard, beefing up security, trying and failing to offer Cersei good advice, this is instead traded for a trip to show Dorne.
  • Adaptational Badass: While it takes a lot of training to adapt, Jaime becomes a somewhat able swordsman with his left hand following losing the right. Not so much in the books. On the other hand, in the books Jaime compensated by becoming more of a general and politician; Jaime does this in the show as well, but it's downplayed.
  • Adaptation Distillation: His arc in Season 4 has him taking over for Kevan Lannister as Tyrion's quasi-lawyer and Go-Between between him and Tywin. In the books he comes far too late to King's Landing, well after Joffrey's death, and doesn't get much chance to interact with his little brother, though the crucial climactic conversation between them, despite additional time to be built up in the season, is Adapted Out.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy:
    • Jaime in the books even after the beginning of his Redemption Quest is quite blunt and jerkish, and after the loss of his hand tries to cultivate a more distant and intimidating demeanour, whereas Jaime in Season 4 barring one or two interactions is often quite nice. The scene where he asks Tywin to spare his brother for instance is quite far apart from Book Jaime at least in levels of earnestness and sincerity.
    • His interactions with Brienne (with whom he already has a fair bit of Ship Tease in the novels) tend to be warmer in the show than in the books, especially later on.
  • Adaptational Villainy:
    • In the book when Bran is spotted watching Jaime and Cersei having sex he falls from the window and is saved by Jaime, and when Jaime shoves him he says "the things I do for love" with loathing, indicating that he is still decent enough not only to save a child's life but to hate himself for killing him. In the show the moment where he rescues Bran is cut and he says his line with glibness rather than loathing, painting Jaime to be a truly callous person.
    • He murders his young cousin Alton Lannister, who idolised him, as part of an escape attempt, which incidentally makes him a kinslayer, the only thing worse than a kingslayer.
    • In the book, the sex scene with Cersei in front of Joffrey's corpse was consensual; in "Breaker Of Chains", it is at best grudging, at worst forced by Jaime. The context change doesn't help either: In the books, Jaime has only just returned to King's Landing after spending most of the war a prisoner and losing his hand and son and is so starved for intimacy that he ignores Cersei's initial protestations. In the show, he's been around for a few weeks, making his actions a lot less seemingly impulsive.
    • In Season 7 following Cersei's coup to take the throne, he still supports her as her field commander and remains her lover. This is a sharp contrast to the books where following his Character Development he realizes how terrible Cersei is and begins to turn his back to her. In the Season 7 finale, after realizing that she never intended to make good on her promise of support for Jon and Dany, and failing to convince her otherwise, he leaves King's Landing ostensibly for Winterfell.... only to return to her side after the Dead are dealt with, throwing years of Character Development away.
  • Adaptational Wimp: Thanks to Brienne being given the Adaptational Badass treatment, Jaime's fight with her is more pathetic than it was in the books, where Brienne being as good as she was being "all she could do to keep his blade at bay". In the show, it's a Curb-Stomp Battle in Brienne's favor.
  • Age Lift: Is 40 in "Two Swords", making him older than his book counterpart at the same point in the story (though also three years younger than his actor).
  • Affably Evil: It's kind of hard to remember to hate the guy when he's joking with Tyrion or trading war stories with Jory Cassel... and then he brutally stabs the latter through the eye. Quite the turnaround to further remind the audience of the "evil" part.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Locke chops off his hand out of spite.
  • All for Nothing: He pushed Bran out of a window to keep Cersei and their children safe. By the end of Season 7, all their children are dead anyway, mostly because of the feud he started with the Starks in the first place as a result of Bran's fall, which allowed other parties like the Tyrells and Ellaria Sand to make their move. To add irony, Bran survives a lot to become the Three-Eyed Raven and reveals that he knows who pushed him, but didn't tell his siblings because he's no longer angry and Jaime is needed to fight the Night King. Jaime knows that Bran would only have to open his mouth, and all his siblings would execute Jaime for what he did.
    • After a Redemption Rejection, breaking his own and Breiene’s hearts, getting mortally wounded by Euron Greyjoy, and searching as hard as he can for Cersei to try to save her, all he accomplishes is dying with her when the Red Keep collapses.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: In Season 2, Tywin says that Jaime has an affliction where he "switched the letters in his brain" when he tries to read, implying that he's dyslexic. This is taken from the books as well.
  • Anti-Hero: In the third season, the reveal of his heroic Hidden Depths and the selfless deeds he commits establish him firmly in this category. As it stands, he's somewhere between a Pragmatic Hero and an Unscrupulous Hero by virtue of the murkier things he's done in the name of family.
  • Anti-Villain: His characterization in the first two seasons. A man who doesn't hesitate to kill a child or a kin for his own benefit but who possesses some sympathetic traits and standards.
  • Armor-Piercing Question:
    • To Brienne.
      Jaime: Tell me, if your precious Renly commanded you to kill your own father and stand by while thousands of men, women, and children burned alive, would you have done it? Would you have kept your oath then?
    • Delivers one to Walder Frey in "The Winds of Winter".
      Jaime: We gave you the Riverlands to hold the Riverlands. If we have to ride North and take them back every time you lose them...why do we need you?
    • He also delivers one to Brienne when she insists he try to convince Cersei to fight in the Great War.
    Jaime: And tell her what?
  • Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy: A gifted man full of hubris because he's one of the best swordsmen in the Seven Kingdoms and a Lannister. His smugness starts to wear off in Season 3, slowly at first, what with getting his ass kicked by Brienne, and dramatically after "Walk of Punishment", a turning point where most of the arrogance is well and truly gone. While he still tries to reassure his lord father that not being as good with his left hand doesn't matter as long as he's better than anyone else, an honest conversation with Tyrion shows that most of his self-confidence is gone.
  • Artificial Limbs: He is fitted with a golden hand in Season 4 when he returns to King's Landing. Subverted in that it doesn't function as anything but a display and Jaime remarks that a hook would be more practical, but much to his luck, he does manages to use it as a life-saving improvised shield. It's also an effective tool for slapping, as the Freys learned the hard way during Season 6.
  • The Atoner: Jaime is trying his best to reform. He saved Brienne, sent her on a quest to try and save the Stark girls in order to fulfill Catelyn's vow, saved Tyrion from death, and once again aspires to be a dutiful Kingsguard no matter how soiled his reputation... and after Tywin's death and Tyrion's abandoning the city, Jaime sails to Dorne in an attempt to protect his 'niece' Myrcella from retaliation for the death of Oberyn Martell.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Jaime comments that despite how flashy his golden hand is, a hook would've been more practical in the long run, considering the golden hand just sits there and can't be really controlled while a hook could actually be used as a weapon.
  • Badass Boast
    [To Jory] I'm going to open your lord up from balls to brains and see what Starks are made of.
    [To Lady Stark] There are no men like me. Only me.
  • Badass Decay: Goes through this in-universe as from the beginning of the series onwards as we see him captured, beaten by a woman, and finally having his hand cut off and with it all of his prodigious prowess as a swordsman. He is regarded as this in Season 4, with his own father and Cersei regarding his career as a Knight as over and Joffrey essentially calling him a has-been.
  • Badass in Charge: As Lord Commander of the Kingsguard and one of the best fighters in the show, prior to losing his sword fight he only struggled against Ned Stark due to the latter being an Adaptational Badass whilst he's pretty average in the books.
  • Badass Longcoat: He attires while not in his Kingsguard armor are mostly this.
  • Bait the Dog: Two humanizing scenes have him bonding with Jory and his young cousin, Alton. Jory gets a callous answer in the end and before long, both of them are rather casually killed by Jaime.
  • Barehanded Blade Block: In Season 5, he discovers the one real advantage a fake hand gives him in a sword fight.
  • Be All My Sins Remembered: In Season 8 Jaime chooses to travel south to save Cersei from Daenerys. When Brienne confronts him, begging him to stay and telling him he's a good man, Jaime lists the terrible things he's done for Cersei, and believes he can never truly make amends for them.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Brienne. They finally sleep together in "The Last of the Starks."
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: With Cersei in Season 1. The two of them are the seasons primary threats and antagonists.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Towards Tyrion. Cersei notes that he was always the one to defend his little brother from the abuses of his father, sister, and society. This even extended to setting up the Meet Cute with Tysha, which is part of why the two of them get along so well (in the book, Tyrion explicitly narrates that his Undying Loyalty to Jaime is in thanks for giving him a taste of love). In Season 4, he's probably the only major figure to publicly support Tyrion's innocence and it's implied that he would have dueled on his behalf if he had both hands. He finally defies both his father and sister and arranges with Varys to break Tyrion out of prison, giving one final, loving hug before they part ways. Despite brief hostilities upon their reunion due to Tyrion killing Tywin on his way out, the two eventually rekindle their relationship and have one more loving goodbye before they part for the last time. It's explicitly stated by Tyrion that he wouldn't have survived his childhood if it wasn't for Jaime because he was the only one who didn't think he was a monster.
  • Big Damn Heroes: He returns to Harrenhal just in time to rescue Brienne from a live bear.
  • Bodyguard Betrayal: The source of his infamous nickname Kingslayer. Even worse for him, in that it was Aerys that he killed, and while almost everyone is happy for such a monstrous man to be dead, they still dislike Jaime for having broken his oath to protect the king, and it has no small part in his resentment towards Ned Stark. Somewhat justified by the high premium that is (at least publicly) placed on honorFrom the books... .
  • Blood Knight: Loves a good fight, but is also courageous and (in most cases) honorable, as demonstrated by him sparing Ned after one of his men "taints" the victory by stabbing Ned in the leg.
  • Brass Balls: You require a pair of them to charge head on to the dragon that has been burning alive half of your army minutes ago.
  • Break the Haughty: Despite numerous forces attempting to break him down (see Humiliation Conga), Jaime remains as smug and arrogant as ever right up until the moment where he loses his hand.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy:
    • Shows no greater ambition than to be a member of the Kingsguard. This contrasts with his father who remade the Lannisters as the strongest house (and seems to consider Jaime a Jaded Washout), his sister who tried to make herself the power behind the throne, and his brother who ruled King's Landing (and wants Casterly Rock). Jaime displays cunning with his manipulation of Steelshanks and Locke, but rarely uses it.
      Lord Tywin: You're blessed with abilities that few men possess. You're blessed to belong to the most powerful family in the Kingdoms, and you're still blessed with youth. And what have you done with these blessings? You've served as a glorified bodyguard for two kings, one a madman, the other a drunk [...] I need you to become the man you were always meant to be. Not next year, not tomorrow...now.
    • It's also a deconstruction in that Jaime's laziness leads to him having few real accomplishments. Moreover, in the book describing the achievements of each member of the Kingsguard, his page is ridiculously small and the only notability compared to other members is his killing of Aerys... so as a swordsman he's practically a Living Legend, but as a member of the Kingsguard he is a Butt-Monkey.
    • Come Season 6 and he is growing out of it. Jaime confronts the High Sparrow, immediately tries to approach the small council to do something about the situation in Dorne and then when it's clear that unity is needed to take on the Faith Militant he not only convinces Kevan and Olenna to work with Cersei again, but it's clear from Olenna's face that she's thinking "This boy knows his shit".
  • Broken Ace: It is shown that he is incredibly bitter about his reputation as the 'Kingslayer', and that no matter what he does, he'll always be remembered as someone who will change sides at the drop of a hat.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: With Cersei.
  • Butt-Monkey: By Season 4, he has this status among his family, having sat out of the war as a captive and Noble Fugitive, getting his hand chopped off in the process while the war was won without him doing anything significant. His relationship with Cersei is cold, his father is disappointed in his continual insistence to serve in the Kingsguard, and even his "nephew" King Joffrey mocks him for being a Failure Hero. Not as much as Tyrion, but a drastic comedown from being his father's favourite. Even Loras, his future brother-in-law, easily defeats him in Passive-Aggressive Kombat which Jaime himself had initiated.
  • Byronic Hero: The darker end of this trope. Killing the Mad King was the best thing he ever did, but doing so cost him his integrity and everyone hates Jaime for it. This has made him an outcast in Westeros society. He continues to be haunted by the Mad King's last words (the king came very close to torching all of King's Landing), and his true reasons for Kingslaying are a closely-guarded secret very few other people know. As a consequence, Jaime decided to embrace his amoral image by doing dark things in the name of self-preservation — such as pushing Bran off the tower and killing his cousin — although he is trying his best to reform. Jaime is also handsome, a prodigy with a sword, both proud and self-loathing, cynical, and has a very sharp wit. Oh, and he's had an incestuous affair with his own sister for several years.
  • Child Prodigy: On the one hand, his dyslexia made him a slow learner in some aspects, but on the other hand, he was already a brilliant swordsman during his childhood. He tells Bronn that he hasn't used sparring swords since he was nine. He became the youngest Kingsguard in history, joining the order at the age of 16.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Zigzagged trope. This is his reputation. In reality, his killing of King Aerys is far more complex: Aerys told him to kill his own father and was also planning on burning down and killing everyone in King's Landing. Unfortunately, Jaime's pride and pessimism discouraged him from revealing that true reason for killing Aerys. On the other hand, if word were to ever get out that Jaime had brutally killed his younger cousin, Alton Lannister, then he would be known as a kinslayer, the only thing worse than being a kingslayer in Westeros, as well.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: Jaime is oblivious to the attention he gets from women because he's only interested in Cersei (or Brienne), which Bronn points out with considerable irritation.
  • Composite Character: Jaime takes over for Balon Swann, a Kingsguard knight sent by Cersei to return Myrcella to the Capital. Jaime did not go to Dorne in the books.
  • Conflicting Loyalty: A recurring theme for him all through the series:
    • The Kingslayer delivers a trope-defining remark to Lady Catelyn Stark pointing out that the oaths about honoring your family and honoring your King are forced to be helplessly contradictory sooner or later.
      Jaime: So many vows. They make you swear and swear. Defend the king. Obey the king. Obey your father. Defend the innocent. Protect the weak. But what if your father despises the king? What if the king massacres the innocent? It's too much. No matter what, you're forsaking one vow or the other."
    • As he revealed to Brienne, Jaime broke his oath and killed the Mad King when he decided to explode huge quantities of wildfire hidden beneath King's Landing. This action saved 500,000 lives but came at the price of his honor and universal contempt for soiling his office.
    • On his return to King's Landing, Jaime is once again torn between family and duty. His oath to Catelyn Stark to safeguard Sansa and Arya are complicated by her death and changed political landscape. When Joffrey dies and Tyrion is arrested and Sansa is suspected, Jaime is caught between his father, sister and his little brother, his promise to Catelyn Stark and his decision to honor his vows to the Kingsguard as best as possible. No easy task. He eventually decides to go against his family in secret, giving Brienne help to rescue Sansa, and working with Varys to rescue Tyrion.
  • Conscience Makes You Go Back: He was willing to leave Brienne to her fate at first, but couldn't go through with it and managed to convince his escorts to go back to Harrenhal for her. Although to be fair he did initially think she was going to be ransomed and went back to force the issue at once when he heard that Locke had refused the ransom offer.
  • Cool Big Bro: Undoubtedly to Tyrion — he's even seen bringing him some extra prostitutes before the feast in the first episode!
  • Cool Sword: Oathkeeper, the Valyrian steel sword Lord Tywin gives him, made from House Stark's Ice, at the beginning of Season 4. It lacks some of the more spectacular elements of its book counterpart (namely its highly distinctive rippling red-and-black blade), but its handle is still ludicrously baroque. Eventually, he gives it to Brienne, who names it. Following the death of Tommen in the aftermath of the Green Trial, he takes up the other Valyrian sword reforged from Ice, Widow's Wail.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: While he's perfectly cunning and intelligent for a warrior, Jaime has built his entire life, career, reputation, and self-respect around being one of the best swordsmen in the kingdom... who then loses his sword hand early in Season 3.
    Jaime: It's a good thing I am who I am. I'd have been useless at anything else.
  • Cuckold: Jaime is completely oblivious that Cersei slept with their cousin Lancel even when he returned to King's Landing after Cersei was arrested and punished by the Faith Militant. Granted that Cersei never told him the true reason why she got arrested as it would open more skeletons in the closet. From the books 
  • Cynicism Catalyst:
    • The death of the Mad King Aerys Targaryen II at his hands: Turns out that instead of switching sides at the last minute like his father did, the real reason he killed Aerys was to prevent Aerys from using wildfire to annihilate everyone in King's Landing as a final act of spite against his enemies. One of his most truly noble and selfless acts resulted in everyone derisively referring to him as "Kingslayer". That's part of the reason he's become so bitter and lacking in empathy towards others.
    • Watching his daughter die from a slow poison in his arms just after she told him how perfectly happy she was with her fiance has turned him into The Dragon for the Mad King's rightful successor.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Confesses this problem to Tyrion, noting that his instincts with his left hand are nowhere near the skills of his perfectly-trained right hand.
  • Deadpan Snarker: It's extremely prominent in season 2. When he was held captive by the Starks and during his early interactions with Brienne, he snarks pretty much every time he talks. This is toned down after he Took a Level in Kindness.
    Jaime: King in the North! or another for safekeeping but you just drag me along camp to camp. Have you grown fond of me Stark, is that it? I've never seen you with a girl.
  • Death Equals Redemption: In-Universe he is treated as such posthumously in "The Iron Throne", his acts of valour are recorded in the White Book by Brienne. Most poignantly for this notorious Kingslayer, the last one: "He died defending his queen".
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Towards Brienne.
  • Determinator: Makes no less than five escape attempts throughout his captivity. At one point, gasping for breath in the mud after having one of his hands chopped off, he still disarms a Bolton soldier with his left and tries to fight a group of others.
  • Did Not Think This Through: Jaime is incredibly impulsive. The problem being that many of his spur-of-the-moment actions either don't further his cause or outright make his problems worse. To wit:
    • Attacking Ned Stark and his men did nothing to free Tyrion from Catelyn Stark.
    • His murder of Rickard Karstark's son in a poorly thought out escape attempt only made many Stark bannerman all too eager to kill him.
    • He freed Tyrion, only for the latter to use the newfound freedom to murder their father.
    • His attempt to bring Myrcella back from Dorne wasn't well thought through either, and ends in failure.
    • He's called out on his impulsiveness In-Universe more than once. Noteably by Cersei and Bronn.
      Cersei: You're a man of action, aren't you? When it occurs to you to do something you do it. Never mind the consequences.
      Jaime: I like to improvise.
      Bronn: That explains the golden hand.
    • He charges at Daenerys, who is protected by an actual dragon.
    Tyrion: Flee, you idiot.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight:
    • Tells Bronn he wants to go out in the arms of the woman he loves. This turns out to be prophetic: he dies in the penultimate episode of the series, sharing one last loving embrace with Cersei before the crypts cave in and crush them both to death under tons of rock.
    • Myrcella collapses and dies in Jaime's arms after they have their very first, and very sweet, father-daughter conversation.
  • The Dog Bites Back: It's been implied that his murder of Aerys was a case of this. From the books... 
  • The Dragon:
    • He's trusted by Lord Tywin with half of the Lannister forces and attains some glory in the field, but his war days are quickly ended when he gets ensnared by Robb Stark.
    • Tries to be this for Cersei in Seasons 5 and 6 when aiming to rescue Myrcella, taking on the High Sparrow and then sorting out the Riverlands.
    • After Cersei becomes Queen, Jaime and Euron become her Co-Dragons, in terms of military, with Euron leading the navy and Jaime the armies of the crown.
  • Establishing Character Moment:
    • Not his first scene, but being able to shove a child out a window with only a flippant little comment about "The things I do for love" is a pretty big moment.
    • Gets a second one in "The Kingsroad" while talking to Jon Snow.
    • His first scene where he gets a significant number of lines to himself, onscreen, in fact, is the scene where he's joking around with Tyrion in the brothel. That episode is Jaime in a nutshell, really — dangerous, doesn't mind killing children, loves his family.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones:
    • He and Cersei are clearly very much in love, and he's very protective of his brother Tyrion, not to mention he's the only member of his immediate family who doesn't blame Tyrion for the death of their mother Joanna Lannister.
    • Despite not approving of Joffrey's rudeness and general attitude, he loves him enough to shove several people out of his way and rush to his side, desperately trying to help him. Tragically (sort of), it doesn't work.
    • Though he's not really close to them (as he had to pretend to be their 'uncle' for most of their lives), he does care about Myrcella and Tommen.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • Knocks down a soldier who unceremoniously stabs Ned in the leg during his duel with the latter. When talking with his father in "You Win or You Die", he comments that this act made him spare Ned's life as killing him in this situation wouldn't be "clean."
    • He also feels contempt for rapists. So what the fuck was that in "Breaker of Chains"?
    • The reason he killed Aerys — he wanted to burn down King's Landing with wildfire.
    • Unlike his father, sister, and his son, he has no problem with homosexuality and even sympathises with them, given his own affection.
    • Defies Cersei's wishes by having Brienne find Sansa and take her to safety so that Cersei can't harm her, and giving up his sword Oathkeeper to her for that purpose.
    • The Season 6 finale implies he's horrified to see the mass murder and destruction Cersei has wreaked upon King's Landing and their own family.
    • The Season 7 finale shows that he's not a fan of Cersei's wish to sacrifice everyone in Westeros to the White Walkers just so she can hold onto her power for a bit longer, choosing to storm out of King's Landing and head up to the North to join up with Daenerys' and Jon's forces to prepare for the counteroffensive against the Army of the Dead.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Ser Loras Tyrell. They're both arrogant, highly-skilled warriors, Lords Commander of a family member's Kingsguard, brothers to a queen, and have a socially unacceptable romantic relationship, but the Knight of Flowers has yet to do anything as heinous as pushing a kid out of a window or murdering his own cousin in cold blood. Loras and Margaery are a Brother–Sister Team, whereas Jaime and Cersei are engaged in Brother–Sister Incest. Although Loras is jealous of Brienne, he doesn't actually want to harm her, and even comes to her defense when Margaery accuses her of murdering Renly, whereas Jaime attempts to kill Brienne (who was merely trying to escort him safely to King's Landing, albeit in chains) in "Dark Wings, Dark Words". Loras tries to engage in polite small talk with Jaime in "The Lion and the Rose", and the older knight suddenly escalates it to a verbal confrontation by threatening his life.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Grows an appropriately leonine one while in Northern captivity in Season 2 and keeps it thick into the rest of Season 3. He chops it all off in Season 4, wearing his hair short again once he returns to the luxury of King's Landing.
  • Face Death with Dignity: In the penultimate episode, with the way out of the crypt collapsed and the rest of the crypts collapsing around them, Jaime is quietly dignified and stoic. He takes his sister in her arms, holds her close, and simply waits for the inevitable before the roof gives way over his head.
  • Facial Dialogue:
    • After losing his hand, whenever someone starts to bring up the subject of his incest and parenthood, even if indirectly, Jaime usually produces a begging "Please don't." wounded gaze.
    • In the second episode of Season 8, when Jamie is standing before Daenerys as she speaks of him murdering her father, he clearly wants to give his side, but knows from long experience that it won't do him any good, and visibly stops himself from defending himself.
  • Failure Hero: How the Lannisters see him after he returns; King Joffrey and Cersei both note that they survived a siege without him and the war was won without him playing a major role and he for his part, sat out of it as a captive and returned as a cripple. This is amplified furthermore when Joffrey gets poisoned at his own wedding in full view of everyone, with Jaime not able to do nothing but watch. It's worse in the TV show because his book counterpart wasn't even present at King's Landing at the time. And then his actions directly lead to Tywin's death. Harshly, but accurately summed up by Cersei:
    Cersei: Tyrion may be a monster, but at least he killed our father on purpose. You killed him by mistake.
  • Fatal Flaw: Whilst he has his own brand of cunning like his father and brother, his impulsive behaviour makes him say 'fuck you' to patience and gets him captured by Robb Stark.
  • A Father to His Men: For all his flaws, Jaime cares for the soldiers under his command, and tries to offer emotional support to Dickon after he has seen his first true battle. When Daenerys starts raining fire on his army, he is horrified at the sight of his soldiers being burned alive.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Brienne, eventually.
  • Foil: To Ned and, later, Brienne; his code of flexible morality contrasts their strict adherence to their own code of honor. The insults and disrespect he gets when returning to his family, are very similar to what Theon experienced when returning to Pyke.
    • He relentlessly mocks the laws of gods and men. Is known for being a pretty bad guy but has a far more cruel older sibling (Cersei is the older twin). Is a very skilled swordsman and while he claims to not care about others he risks his life for a female companion. Jaime Lannister or Sandor 'The Hound' Clegane? Oddly they've never interacted on screen apart from being in the same room when Robert comes to Winterfell.
    • Jaime has everything Tyrion lacks. Handsome, tall, a dashing duelist adored by the smallfolk and by his family and even treated with some consideration by his father. Jaime could commit all kinds of follies and still be the golden son. And then the twist comes in with that Tyrion craves many of these things and spends most of the series trying to get them, while Jaime takes his blessings for granted.
  • Forgiveness: Despite the terrible things he's done for his family, and the whole pushing Bran out of the window, in season 8 Brienne forgives him for giving Riverrun to the Freys and enabling Cersei, because he came to the North alone to fight and abandon his toxic family. Jon doesn't care about personal grudges because the Night King is coming, and while Bran knows who pushed him, Bran doesn't tell anyone because he's no longer angry and Jaime is needed for the battle. Averted with Sansa and Dany; Dany makes it clear that she would like to act out the revenge plots that she and Viserys contacted for the man that killed her father, and Sansa glares at him when she recounts how he killed Jory and attacked Ned. The only reason they agree to pardon him for now is because he came to fight, and because Brienne assures them Jaime is too honorable to go Fake Defector.
  • Front Line General: A bold field commander with the spirit and élan of a rank soldier. It's clear he revels in the front line aspects rather than in the generalship per-se, putting himself In Harm's Way without a second thought.

    G-L 
  • Gaydar: He claims to have known that Renly was a "tulip" from the moment the boy first arrived at court.
  • Glorified Sperm Donor: He sired all of Cersei's children, but wasn't a father figure to them from fear that people might get suspicious about their paternity. As of Season 5, he begins to regret this. Cersei tells him he has no right to call Myrcella his daughter, and Myrcella herself says he doesn't really know her.
  • Glove Slap: He gets a rough version of this during his training, when Bronn yanks his golden hand off and then slaps him to the ground with it. He also gets to do this to Black Walder when the odious Frey mouths off too much.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Even though he is fully aware that Tywin had arranged the forced betrothal between Cersei and Loras, and that the latter is a gay man, he is very jealous that Loras will marry Cersei while he himself cannot. Jaime threatens Loras' life over this issue when they meet at the Purple Wedding (although it backfires spectacularly).
  • Guile Hero: After losing his sword hand, he's forced to rely on his wits and cunning to accomplish tasks, such as playing on Steelshanks' sense of self-preservation to help him save Brienne from the bear pit.
  • Handicapped Badass: Deconstructed Character Archetype. He still manages to be a fairly competent fighter after having his right hand cut off, but he's understandably perturbed about losing most of his physical prowess, his only noticeable trait to the outside world (he is the Kingslayer after all) and skilled fighters like Bronn can easily knock him down, forcing Jaime to learn how to improvise. Though he does take out a Dornishman with the help of his golden hand, so there's that.
  • The Heart: Subtle, but there. He's the only Lannister who likes all the other Lannisters, and the only Lannister all the other Lannisters like. When he's captured by Robb and imprisoned for a season and a half, the rest of his family start tearing each other to pieces. Indeed in Season 4, during the course of Tyrion's trial, he's become the go-between between Tywin, Cersei and Tyrion, though his public support for Tyrion rankles his father and Cersei. And once he's forced to choose loyalties between different family members, things really fall apart.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Jaime's morality has been a roller-coaster over the course of the series. He finally settles on face in the Season 7 finale when he abandons Cersei to go assist Jon and Dany in fighting the Night King's invasion. He ends up dying as a neutral party in Season 8, caring for nothing but Cersei.
  • Heel Realization: He gets one when Bran reveals via Ironic Echo that he remembers who pushed him, but didn't tell his siblings. Previous Starks had threatened any Lannister who could have committed the crime. In the Godswood, Jaime swallows awkwardly before apologizing to Bran, who's placidly sitting. When Bran points out Jaime did it to protect his family, Jaime protests he's not that person anymore.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: He considers himself this. Shown to be at least partially true in Season 3, when he reveals that he murdered Aerys Targaryen to prevent him burning King's Landing to the ground.
  • Heroic BSoD: After losing his hand, he completely shuts off from the world and refuses to eat until Brienne snaps him out of it.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • On rare occasions, he has demonstrated considerable empathy with others, much like Tyrion. He sympathises with Renly and Brienne for suffering for their love, and is genuinely distraught that he is so hated and held in contempt by the entire realm, including by men he admires and likes, for what he (with good reason) considers to have been a selfless and noble act.
    • He demonstrates that he can come up with decent plots if he really needs to, such as his attempt to deal with the High Sparrow in Season 6. That plan fell through, but in fairness even Lady Olenna was blindsided by the High Sparrow's scheming in that instance.
  • Hollywood Atheist: He seems to hold no faith for the Old Gods nor the New and seems to be disdainful of religious people, if his exchange with Catelyn is an indication. He even uses the old 'Problem of Evil' thing.
    Jaime: If your gods are real, and if they're just, why is the world so full of injustice?
  • Honor Before Reason:
    • Why he spared Ned Stark, as defeating him after being stabbed from behind "wouldn't have been clean."
    • He finds Bronn's Combat Pragmatist tactics in poor taste.
  • How the Mighty Have Fallen: After he loses his hand, this happens to him both figuratively and literally.
  • History Repeats: Jaime was a minion of Aerys II who was obedient to his king right up until he planned to cross the Moral Event Horizon in the form of nuking King's Landing, at which point Jaime turns on him. Fast forward to Season 7's finale, and Jaime turns against Cersei after she outright speaks her plan on crossing the line via selling everyone in Westeros out to die to the White Walkers.
  • Humiliation Conga: After his fight with Eddard Stark, he's berated by his father for being rash and stupid, and then subsequently defeated in the field and captured by Robb Stark. He then spends the next year or so as a prisoner trotted from camp to camp and kept in a grubby pen, covered in his own filth. When he's finally freed from captivity, he's escorted, in chains, by a stoic woman whom he's constantly at odds with. His attempted escape ends with him losing a sword fight to said woman, being recaptured by the enemy, and, finally, losing his sword hand. This continues when he returns to King's Landing where his family openly mocks him for sitting out for most of the war as a captive and losing his hand in the process, his own sister turns him away from her because of his loss of limb.
  • Hypocrite:
    • Jamie reminding Randyll Tarly that he had sworn an oath to the crown is kind of this, considering that Jaime killed the king he sworn to defend (while he was right to do it, it doesn't change the fact he betrayed his oath) and is persuading him to serve a woman that murdered a king (Robert) and a queen (Margaery) and is responsible for the death of another (Tommen).
    • Claims to Brienne that he was proud of killing the Mad King before he unleashed wildfire on the people of King's Landing; come Season 7, he serves Cersei, a Queen who unleashed wildfire on the people of King's Landing, yet he still willingly follows her around like a minion. That is, until she decides to sit out the war with the White Walkers so as to regain the Seven Kingdoms while her opponents are too weakened to resist.
    • He also claims to have a disdain for rapists. Take a good guess at what he does to Cersei in "Breaker of Chains".
  • I Am a Monster: In the episode "The Last of the Starks" Jamie tells Brienne this when she tries to convince him to stay in Winterfell with her rather then go to King's Landing and die for Cersei.
    Jamie: You think I'm a good man? I pushed a boy out a tower window. Crippled him for life. For Cersei. I strangled my cousin with my bare hands just to get back to Cersei. I would have murdered every man, woman and child in Riverrun for Cersei. She's hateful… and so am I.
  • I Did What I Had to Do:
    • His rationale for killing Aerys.
    • He also justifies this as his reason for throwing Bran out the window, since it risked exposing him and Cersei, which could lead to their deaths and that of their children. Given that his failure to keep their relationship secret kicked off the War of Five Kings, he may have had a point. Except that all his children died anyway, and after he and Cersei could live openly, he found out Cersei was willing to let millions die to keep her throne for a few more months at best when the Starks and Dany asked for an alliance against the Night King. What's more, when Bran parrots back his words about Jaime "protecting your family," a remorseful Jaime protests he's not that person anymore after he arrives to Winterfell alone.
  • I Hate Past Me: In Season 8, Jaime discusses with Tyrion the last time they came to Winterfell, when Tyrion was a whoremongering drunk and Jaime was a haughty Jerkass. When he speaks to Bran he sincerely apologises for throwing him out of the window and when Bran says Jaime did it for his family, Jaime protests that he isn't that person anymore.
  • I Have Your Wife: Has been captured by the Starks, who plan to use him as a hostage against Cersei. From the books... 
  • Ignored Expert: Jaime repeatedly tells Cersei why the Lannisters can't win the war, whatever the scenario. Cersei ignores him all the same.
  • In-Series Nickname: The Kingslayer. He really doesn't like it. He assassinated Aerys, the last Targaryen king, which emptied the throne for Robert. However, it also gave him a really bad reputation because he was a member of the Kingsguard, who were supposed to defend the king with their lives. This has made the people see him as a man who will quickly change his loyalty when it suits him. From the books... 
  • Insult Backfire: He underestimates Loras in "The Lion and the Rose", believing that the young man would be an easy victim for his snark and threats, but the Knight of Flowers can fight with words just as well as he fights with swords. Jaime is even a little stunned by how easily Loras is able to hurt his feelings with a single, biting line.
    Jaime: Luckily for you, none of this will happen, because you will never marry her [Cersei].
    Loras: (smiles smugly) And neither will you. (pats Jaime on the arm)
  • Interservice Rivalry: Jaime has nothing but contempt for the Night's Watch. He subtly mocks Jon Snow's decision to join it in the first episode. Then there's this quote from the Season 5 Blu-ray lore.
    Jaime: (The Kingsguard) holds no lands, take no wives and father no children like the Night's Watch except with a real job to do.
  • Irony:
    • He killed one insane, inbred king rather than let him burn the capital of Westeros to the ground with Wildfire. He and his twin sister produced the insane idiot whose earliest acts upon taking the Iron Throne started the War of Five Kings. And now said sister has become just as insane and murderous as the king Jaime killed twenty years ago.
    • He instigated the events of the series by throwing Bran out a window to protect Cersei and their children, ensuring that his firstborn Joffrey becomes king. In the series finale, his children, Cersei, and Jaime himself are all dead, while Bran becomes the King of Westeros in the wake of Daenerys' death.
  • Jerkass Has a Point:
    • When Catelyn tries to insult him by calling him 'Kingslayer', Jaime points out that the king in question was an insane monster who killed innocent people based on his own cruel, petty whims. Catelyn calls him out on taking vows as a knight and Jaime counters by saying that several of his vows clashed. Then Jaime points out that Ned Stark, while honourable, was not without his flaws either and Catelyn herself hardly fulfills the ideals of "Family, Duty, Honor" either, since she was never able to love Jon Snow, her husband's illegitimate son and an innocent child, and resented him. Of course, this loses effect once it turned out that Ned never broke his vows.
    • During his encounter with Ned in the throne room, Jaime manages to successfully counter two of Ned’s points:
      • When Ned claims that Jaime did nothing when the Mad King killed his father and brother, Jaime points out that there were five hundred people in that room who didn’t so much as say a word, meaning the entire blame can’t fall on Jaime’s shoulders.
      • Ned also makes a point to mention that he stabbed Aerys Targaryen in the back, prompting Jaime to ask if he would admire him more if he’d stabbed the Mad King in the belly instead.
    • When Robb confronts Jaime about Stannis' accusations that "Robert's" children with Cersei are bastards born of her incest with Jaime, Jaime notes that if such an accusation were true, that would make Stannis the rightful heir to the Iron Throne, "how convenient for him." He also notes Robb has no proof of this, nor does Stannis, so it might as well just be gossip.
    • When Robert demands to know what the Mad King's last words where when Jaime betrayed him, Jaime responds, "He said the same thing he'd been saying for hours. Burn them all.," which tells the viewers that the death of this King was by no means a tragedy.
  • Jerk Jock: A relatively smooth talking version though he mellows out by Season 3.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: In the first two seasons he's a consistently arrogant and cocky jerk, and has a knack for causing the audience to want to see him killed. Then his Hidden Depths start coming to light, and we see in his interactions with Tyrion and Brienne that he truly is a good person deep down, but it's complicated with his love for Cersei, Conflicting Loyalty and disillusionment with the world. Interestingly, the "heart of gold" part only starts to be evident after he loses his hand.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: In the third season, right after performing a more-or-less selfless act of good, he resumes being cocky and overconfident and karma catches up with him in the form of having his right hand chopped off.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • His unnecessary murder of Alton Lannister is rather cruel.
    • Him threatening to kill Edmure's son and every Tully in Riverrun to make him comply is pretty cruel, too.
      • This stands out especially because, in the book, Jaime admitted to himself that he wouldn't go through with it. In the show, no such confession was made.
  • Kick the Morality Pet: On his return to King's Landing, he goes so low as to force himself on Cersei, when they are right next to their son's corpse in the sept.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: A literal knight in literally shining armor, he certainly looks the part. His actions, on the other hand....
  • Knight In Sour Armor: He's much closer to this as of Season 4. For a long time, he was scornful of the double standards of chivalry as far as how Westeros regards his "kingslaying" and how in their eyes, he's dishonored himself for all time. Despite this, Jaime does value the Kingsguard and does aspire to the example of the likes of Ser Barristan. He tells his father, Tywin, that while he has soured his honor for killing a king, he won't sour it by abandoning the Kingsguard altogether.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother:
    • He seems to be one of the very few people who genuinely loves and cares for Tyrion, and he thus reacts badly when Tyrion's safety is threatened. Cersei also mentions that he would have killed Robert if he found out about the Domestic Abuse in "You Win or You Die". He also refuses to kill Tyrion when Cersei asks him to after Joffrey's death.
      Jaime: He's my brother. He's our brother.
    • It doesn't appear to apply to anyone who's not his immediate blood relative, for his younger, (and admittedly distant) cousin, the worshipful and friendly Alton Lannister, was cruelly killed by Jaime, in order to escape captivity.
  • The Knights Who Say "Squee!": He admits to having made a fool out of himself as a boy when he got to be the squire of his hero Ser Barristan Selmy for a day.
    • His facial expressions indicate he's quite impressed by Oberyn's fighting skills when he duels the Mountain.
  • "L" Is for "Dyslexia": When he was a boy. Lord Tywin was undeterred, however, by the Maester's diagnosis and sat him down for four hours every day until he learned. For this, Jaime resented his father for a long time.
    • If you listen closely enough in "You Win or You Die", Jaime has a slight bit of trouble reading Ned Stark's letter to Tywin summoning him to court; he pauses at certain words and sounds out every syllable as a child would, an interesting and realistic contrast to his spoken eloquence. As he points out to Locke, he learned a lot of fancy words during those sessions with his father, but it doesn't mean reading's necessarily easy.
  • Lack of Empathy: Aside from his immediate family, Jaime has a lot of trouble understanding the emotional state of other people. Or at least taking such into account when thinking. This is either because he's genuinely an idiot in regards to this, or much like his brother, he can't resist a snark.
    • Though it turns out he does have a Hidden Heart of Gold, the same thing which led him to make his life-defining choice of killing Aerys. It was hidden so well, even he's forgotten about it. Brienne brings it out in him and he has trouble adjusting to his post-douchebag life in King's Landing, populated as it is by his family.
  • Lady and Knight:
    • The Black Knight to Cersei's Dark Lady. He admits he would do just about anything (including murder) to keep Cersei safe and his devotion and fidelity to her is almost honourable in a twisted way. It's eventually subverted, as he turns on her after she reneges on her pledge to fight the army of the dead.
    • Played with in the case of him and Brienne. She's technically a noble lady, but she would prefer to be a knight and acts the part. She's also sworn to protect Jaime and get him safely back to King's Landing, though not out of any personal affection for him but rather duty to Catelyn Stark. Jaime, however, grows fond of Brienne and comes to her rescue on a number of occasions, informally acting as her protector although she is capable of defending herself.
  • Laser-Guided Karma:
    • The first action committed by him is throwing Bran Stark off the Tower, crippling him for life and shattering the little boy's dreams of being a knight. In the course of the war which this action triggers, he's captured and kept inactive, doing very little heavy fighting and then when he mouths off too much, becomes a cripple himself by losing his hand, shortening his future as a knight and damaging any dreams he might have had of being mentioned alongside the likes of Ser Barristan, Ser Arthur Dayne, and Ser Duncan the Tall.
    • To add to this irony, he tried to kill someone else's child to protect his family. Thanks to the feud that ensued from Bran's fall, Jaime caused the war he was trying to prevent, and several seasons later Bran lives while all his children are dead and he's walked out on his sister. He seems to be aware of this when he apologizes to Bran in private for what happened. As Bran tells Jaime, while he's no longer angry and they aren't the same people they were, the main reason Bran spared him was that he needs to be alive for the battle.
    • For the final finishing touch, the series ends with Bran becoming King of the now-Six Kingdoms. That one action not only led to the downfall of House Lannister, but also saw the very boy he tried to kill supplanting Jaime's family as the continent's ruler.
  • Last of His Kind: With the death of Ser Barristan Selmy in Season 5, Jaime is now the last remaining member of the Kingsguard of Aerys II.
  • The Law of Diminishing Defensive Effort: Can be seen in his sword-fighting strategies, before and after his maiming. Before his sudden limb removal, Jaimie fought very aggressively, always putting his opponent on the defensive and never letting them even consider attacking him. After he loses the ability to kill most men with a flick of his wrist, he fights completely defensively, relying on his still-perfect footwork and maneuvers where his lackluster hand can't win.
  • Like an Old Married Couple: His interaction with Brienne, particularly near the end of Season 3.
  • Like Father, Like Son: Come Season 6 and he sounds exactly like Tywin, what with his new mentality of exacting retribution, taking back everything that is theirs and only the Lannisters being important. As head of the Lannister armies, he shows some of the ruthless competence and cunning of his Lord father, taking Riverrun by threatening to execute the Tully hostages and convincing Lord Tarly to support the crown against his immediate liege lords.
  • Love Makes You Evil: He throws Bran out of a window to conceal his forbidden affair with Cersei, and later assures her that he would kill everyone in the world if that's what it took for them to be together.
  • Love Martyr: For Cersei at her cruelest. Even when she emulates Aerys by blowing people up with wildfire, he still loves her and remains by her side, which he was called out by Olenna during their last meeting when she says Cersei will be the end of him. Jaime eventually wakes up when he sees how insanely selfish his sister has become that she is willing to let the land be consumed by darkness so long as she gets to watch her enemies die from her throne, that he decides to walk out on her and do the right thing.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Admits to Myrcella he is her father, embracing her properly for the first time. She then almost immediately dies of poison.

    M-R 
  • Manipulative Bastard:
    • Tries his hand at this with Locke and loses it. Afterwards, he edges more towards Guile Hero territory.
    • He goads Randyll Tarly to go against Olenna Tyrell by pointing out that she is siding Daenerys, who has a Dothraki horde in her army, and promises Tarly the Wardenship of the South if he remains loyal to the Crown. Of course, Jaime omits the real reason of Olenna's decision to join Daenerys: avenging her family who had been burned to death by Cersei.
  • Master Swordsman: Ironically, one of the few remaining knights of the Kingsguard who actually earned that position and isn't just a Lannister political appointee. However, after the loss of his hand, he's no longer as competent a swordsman as he once was.
  • Meaningful Name: J'aime is a French expression for 'I love'. Considering he is the only Lannister to be on good terms with all the others and that he is motivated by his genuine love for his family (each as individuals, unlike Tywin), this is probably not a coincidence.
    • Also, "Jaime" comes from the Hebrew "Jacob," meaning "one who supplants," referencing how Tywin still considered him his true heir despite his other children being more suitable. Interestingly, the Biblical Jacob (literally, "one who holds the heel") came into the world holding his twin's heel, which is exactly what Jaime did.
  • Memetic Badass: In-universe; everyone knows he's an accomplished fighter on the same level as Barristan Selmy more or less.
  • Misery Builds Character: His period of suffering after losing his hand, what Brienne calls "one taste of the real world where people have important things taken from them", has made him far more introspective, kinder and restrained for the most part.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Seen naked quite a few times. Although on some of those occasions, he's screwing Cersei or suffering from debilitating injuries.
  • Morality Pet:
    • He isn't nice at all on his return to King's Landing, as evident when he forces himself on Cersei but Tyrion and Brienne bring out the best in him, and he's incredibly nice and generous to them.
    • Myrcella is his in Season 5, going all the way to Dorne with only Bronn for backup specifically to rescue her, showing subtle disapproval at seeing her kissing Trystane and generally worrying a lot about her wellbeing. Sadly, she dies just after he admits he's her real father.
  • My Greatest Failure: It’s never outright stated, but judging by how often he mentions it, Jaime clearly regrets his decision to kill Alton Lannister and never forgives himself for it, whether it’s in conversation with Tyrion or Brienne. He even mentions this act as one of the many ways that he’s as evil as Cersei when he justifies returning to her, showing that he never forgot it.
  • Never Live It Down: Derogatorily known and addressed as "Kingslayer" by everyone in-universe, even his allies. Even those who rebelled against the Mad King and knew that he was insane criticize Jaime for it and are very wary of him. Jaime insists that people should be grateful for it. And, once we learn the rest of the story, it turns out he's right. Still, people despise him less because he killed the king and more because he broke his oath as a member of the Kingsguard. So, properly, he should simply be known as Oathbreaker, but that's not as punchy or specific as Kingslayer, so he's stuck with the latter.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
    • In his youth, Jaime engineered a Rescue Sex scenario in the benefit of Tyrion. His younger brother, unaccustomed to kindness, fell in love and married the girl, who was actually a sex worker. Tywin put an end to it; he pimped her out to his whole guard and forced Tyrion to watch, leaving him mentally scarred for life. note 
    • On the way back to King's Landing, he hears that Locke rejected Brienne's father's offer of a ransom, since he found a mere 300 gold dragons an insult coming from an island full of sapphires. Now where did he get that idea? Oh Wait!. (In fairness, he then turns right around and rescues her.)
    • He uses Edmure Tully to return Riverrun to the Freys, by threatening to kill Roslin and Edmure's son without actually harming either, justifying that his bluff is okay because the Freys are allies and it is war. Cue Arya wiping out all the Frey men, leaving Edmure locked up in a dungeon and still separated from his wife and child in the middle of a power vacuum. It also ruins his relationship with his ally Brienne, since she has to flee and the next time they meet they are enemies.
    • He impregnated Cersei with their fourth child together, since it no longer matters who knows if their children are legitimate or not. She uses the pregnancy to hint to Tyrion that she'll send forces to deal with the Night King because she wants a future for the baby. Jaime is rocked that Cersei went back on the deal, and used him in turn to deceive Tyrion.
  • Noble Top Enforcer: He tries to serve as this while serving his sister as the new Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, making attempts to find more reasonable middle ground to her more bloodthirsty tendencies. Her decision to not provide any aid to The North, even after seeing a wight and pledging her forces to them, disgusts him enough that he decides to leave her for good.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Anytime Jaime tries to do something good, it only causes him trouble:
    • His first truly selfless act, convincing Locke to not rape Brienne, eventually results in his hand being chopped off.
    • His murder of The Mad King when he was about to burn King's Landing and all its people in his backstory got him a reputation for Chronic Backstabbing Disorder that haunts him to this day.
    • Buying a whore to give his little brother some experience ended with her being gang raped on his father's orders to psychologically torture Tyrion.
    • Turns out this led to the fight between Brienne and Sandor Clegane, if Jaime hadn't given her that Oathkeeper sword which screams 'VALYRIAN STEEL', the Hound wouldn't have freaked out and picked a fight with Brienne to protect Arya.
    • Freeing his little brother who was falsely accused of a crime he didn't commit. Problem is Tyrion has become so embittered by betrayal from his friends and family that after being released, he takes a detour and kills his father, making Jaime an unwitting accomplice in said crime.
    • Jaime insistence on leading an army to kill the High Sparrow for retribution of Cersei's torture at his hands. Because Tommen ended up pledging his allegance to him, Jaime ends up getting his title stripped and exiled from King's Landing.
    • Prior to the attack on Highgarden in Season 7, Cersei apparently had several ideas about torturing and murdering Olenna Tyrell; Jaime talks her out of it and instead suggests poison. When he actually gives it to Olenna, she confirms that the poison will be painless, downs it in one long drink, and then calmly tells him that she was the one who murdered Joffrey, and to make sure that Cersei knows the truth.
  • Not Helping Your Case: In season 8, Jaime tries to defend his attacking Sansa's father and killing Jory, and killing Dany's father by saying that he was protecting his family and they were at war. Sansa and Dany aren't impressed. Sansa has confiscated Widow's Wail, a blade that was made from her father's ancestral sword, and a reminder that Joffrey killed Ned and abused her. Dany reminds Jaime that his father has orchestrated Fake Defector plots before and that Jaime may be using Tyrion to slit her throat in her sleep. Which, Twywin has done such things, and Jaime did coerce Edmure Tully into surrendering Riverrun to the Freys a few seasons before. Sansa and Jon don't even know why Bran says, "The things we do for love," which causes Jaime to go Oh, Crap!. If not for Brienne and Jon vouching for Jaime, he wouldn't have gotten permission to fight because at best he'd have been locked up under suspicion.
  • Not What It Looks Like: The other reason his killing of Aerys ruined his reputation is the fact that not only did he break his vows to protect him, but he did so when his father's army was in King's Landing. As a result, everyone thinks he did it to help Daddy and/or save his own skin. This is decidedly not the case.
  • The Oath-Breaker: Breaking the oath of the Kingsguard makes many see him as the lowest of the low, it being a literal backstabbing made it even worse. He makes it clear that his oaths were inherently contradictory, but few people pay heed to his side of the story. His refusal to go public with the depths of Aerys' madness didn't help matters much.
  • Odd Friendship: Seems to be slowly developing one with Bronn from Season 4 onwards.
  • Off with His Head!: In “Lord Snow”, it’s mentioned that Jaime’s first kill was a member of the Kingswood Brotherhood whom he decapitated. As a result, the man had no last words.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • When Robb interrogates him and brings out Grey Wind, where he's literally seeming as if he's about to piss himself when the wolf's snapping fangs are an inch from his face. So much for 'not fearing death'.
    • When Brienne curbstomps the three Northmen, he's open-mouthed, having twigged that, yeah, she probably could beat him; a suspicion that's confirmed when he actually does fight her and she damn near ruins him.
    • When Locke presses his knife right into his eyeball, he starts crying. Then, after a second or two of pure shock, he screams his guts out when Locke cuts off his hand with a giant "OH FUCK!" look on his face.
    • Perhaps the biggest one yet appears in "The Spoils of War" when Jaime hears a monstrous roar and then sees Drogon flying straight towards his army with a swarm of Dothraki beneath him. There's also the one he gives when his attempt to kill Daenerys ends with the black dragon's head between him and her, fanged mouth agape, and then Jaime catches sight of the orange glow at the back of Drogon's throat...
    • He gets three in "The Dragon and the Wolf": first when the wight bursts out of its crate and heads straight for Cersei, a second when Daenerys tells him an army of more such monsters numbering at least 100,000 strong is heading south and thirdly when Gregor Clegane blocks his path to stop him leaving after Cersei threatens him with treason.
    • He has this reaction upon meeting Bran again at Winterfell, and again at his trial when Bran reveals he knows who pushed him out of the window.
  • Only Sane Man: In Season 7, he's the only Lannister in King's Landing that pays the threat of the Night's King and his forces the attention deserving of such a threat, and when Cersei makes it just how clear she is on letting the rest of Westeros hang just to maintain her grip on power, he walks out on her and sets to the North himself.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: In Season 3, after losing his hand there are subtle signs that Jaime is changing, as he rants about why he hates being called Kingslayer after years of silence and shows hints of sexual attraction to a woman other than Cersei.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: Two of his children, Joffrey and Myrcella, die by his side, poisoned, with poor Jaime being powerless to do anything about it. His last child, Tommen, was Driven to Suicide by Cersei's actions while Jaime was out of King's Landing.
  • Papa Wolf:
    • In "The Lion and the Rose", he shows these tendencies for the first time in the series. When Joffrey is poisoned and dying, Jaime shoves several people out of the way and runs right to his side in order to try and save him, shouting his first name. Somewhat tragically, it's no use. He also has a small but quite sweet moment with Tommen when he crosses paths with him in Joffrey's crypt, telling him he'll make sure he's all right. Of course, Tommen is unaware Jaime is his father, but still.
    • Perhaps his biggest Papa Wolf moment has come in Season 5 when Jaime personally travels to Dorne with only Bronn for backup to rescue Myrcella from the wrathful Sand Snakes, even if he is doing it partly to appease Cersei and is still calling himself Myrcella's "uncle", it's obvious he'll do whatever it takes to get his daughter back.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: He stabbed the Mad King in the back. It helps that the Mad King was trying to blow up the city.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Despite the clear animosity between them, he tells Ned that his father and brother were very brave and genuinely means it.
      Jaime: He was very brave, your brother. And your father too. They didn't deserve to die like that.
    • Even though he was quite happy to mock Renly's sexual orientation just to get a rise out of Brienne, he shortly afterward expresses some very genuine empathy for them, with a subtle implication that he had his own relationship with Cersei in mind.
      Jaime: I don't blame him. And I don't blame you. We don't get to choose who we love.
    • After he and Brienne are captured by Locke, he warns her that they most likely intend to rape her and then attempts to persuade her not to fight back so she doesn't get herself killed as well. When that fails, he ends up saving her himself by persuading Locke that she'd be much more valuable to him if she's alive and un-raped. Later, he jumps into a freaking bear pit, unarmed, to try and save her.
    • In "The Lion and the Rose", he gets an odd one in the sense that the dog is an utter asshole. When Joffrey is poisoned and dying, Jaime shoves several people out of the way and runs right to his side in order to try and save him. Somewhat tragically, it's no use. Granted, he's a member of the Kingsguard, so it could just as easily have been a matter of duty.
    • In Season 5, he sticks his neck out to prevent Bronn from being executed for striking Prince Trystane while they were trying to secretly rescue Myrcella, insisting that he, being Bronn's superior, was at fault and should be the one punished.
    • In Season 6, his first action upon arriving at the Riverlands (after taking Black Walder down a peg) is to order Edmure Tully bathed and fed. In the next episode, when Brienne offers him back the sword that he gave her, Oathkeeper; he gently declines, affirming that it's hers and always will be.
    • In Season 7, he has the decency to give Olenna Tyrell a vial of poison to kill herself instead of bringing her to Cersei to suffer a Fate Worse than Death. Desconstructed when she reveals with her last words she was the one who killed his son and not Tyrion, making Jaime regret giving her a merciful death to begin with.
    • In Season 8, he throws tradition to the winds and knights Brienne and the smile on her face afterwards makes it clear just how much it meant to her.
  • Pretty Boy: In the very first episode, Ser Jaime Lannister, queen's twin, is introduced as the most handsome man in the Seven Kingdoms. Jaime's younger brother Tyrion, a dwarf, says that the queen has two brothers, the pretty one and the clever one (himself). As Jaime gets older, his looks get considerably rougher, but his mercenary Bronn says all the ladies still look at him with lust, and Bronn snarks that in that regard, he preferred tagging along with the dwarf.
  • Pride: Often comes across as very arrogant and uncaring of others. However his father Tywin points out this is merely how he wants to be viewed.
    Jaime: I could care less what anyone thinks of me.
    Tywin: No, that's what you want people to think of you.
  • Quizzical Tilt: Jaime's reaction after seeing Brienne slay three soldiers without any effort.
  • Reality Ensues: After snatching a sword from Brienne and freeing himself, Jaime challenges her to a sword fight. Being malnourished and weakened from his time as a prisoner of war, the battle goes decidedly in Brienne's favour.
  • Red Baron: The Kingslayer.
  • Redemption Quest: After returning to King's Landing, he's making more of an effort to live up to his vows and duties as a Knight, telling people who consider him a failure and has-been that he still has time left.
    • More specifically, while Catelyn didn't intend for it to be his redemption quest, seeing him as beyond redemption, after losing his hand and growing close with Brienne, Jaime shows a sincere desire to want to return Catelyn's daughters back to her. After Catelyn's death, he sends Brienne to keep them protected from Cersei and anyone who might hurt them.
  • Reformed, but Rejected: Subverted. When he shows up alone in Winterfell, the Starks and Targaryens put him on trial for his crimes and Cersei's broken word. Dany and Sansa understandably don't trust Jaime after he led to their loved ones being killed — and if Sansa knew he tried to kill Bran that his life would be forfeit. Brienne convinces the women, however, that Jaime's word can be trusted because he saved her life, and Jon points out regardless of what's happened, they need as many men on the battlefield as possible.
  • The Rival: He is Ned's constant antagonist for much of Season 1. Their animosity stems from Ned being vocal against the Lannisters' Sack of King's Landing and Jaime stabbing King Aerys In the Back.

    S-Z 
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Breaks Tyrion out of the dungeons and helps him escape being executed for a crime he did not commit. In Season 7, he walks out on the Queen that he loves and pledged to serve after she decides to leave Westeros to die in order to go aid the North.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: At the end of Season 7, after learning that Cersei has no intention to help the Starks and Targaryens fight off the Night King's army and is planning to let them destroy each other while she uses the Golden Company to reassert the Lannisters control over the Seven Kingdoms, Jaime finally has enough and leaves her to go north and assist Jon and Dany.
  • Ship Tease: Between him and Brienne in Seasons 3 and 4. It's much less subtle than in the books. In "The Last of the Starks" they consummate their now-mutual feelings.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog: His Season 5 story arc. After spending most of the season traveling to Dorne and infiltrating the city to rescue Myrcella, he fails to save her and she dies in his arms.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: In Season 6, he gives one to Walder Frey in the season finale about how Walder Frey is no conqueror and would amount to nothing without relying on the Lannisters, as well as threatening that the Lannisters will stop bailing the Freys out if they can't keep control of their lands. Walder can only splutter in response.
    Walder Frey: Fear is a marvelous thing.
    Jaime Lannister: They don't fear the Freys, though. They fear the Lannisters. We gave you the Riverlands to hold the Riverlands. If we have to ride north and take them back for you every time you lose them, why do we need you?
  • Shut Up, Kirk!: Gives two of these to Catelyn when she tries to give him a "The Reason You Suck" Speech. First when she calls him out for being the "Kingslayer", he retorts that Aerys was a terrible king and the oaths he took were contradictory. Then, when she confronts him for being a man without honour, he points out Ned wasn't entirely honourable by fathering an illegitimate son out of wedlock and then explains she failed to uphold the Tully words because of her resentment of her husband's illegitimate son, Jon Snow.
  • Significant Wardrobe Shift: His casual outfit during his command of the Second Siege of Riverrun in Season 6 is a curious composite of Tyrion and Tywin's outfits (the color scheme mostly harkening Tyrion's suit as Acting Hand of the King, while the design of the upper garment is more Tywin's). Quite appropriate, considering his turn into the capable commander and politician Tywin and Tyrion probably wanted him to be. He does this again in the finale of Season 7. He no longer wears Lannister armour when he goes off to help fight the White Walkers.
  • Sincerity Mode: Seems to go into this as he's trying to explain what's going to happen to Brienne when they are captured by Stark bannermen. One of his heart of gold moments.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: He tells Catelyn Stark that he has only ever been with Cersei and no-one else. Before using that little fact to point out her husband Ned did not show her any such loyalty when he fathered a bastard. Subverted ever so slightly in the episode "Kissed By Fire", where he checks out Brienne in the bath for a second when feverish. Subverted a hell of a lot harder in "The Last of the Starks" when they sleep together.
  • Smug Snake: Until losing his sword hand, he is smug and arrogant about his sword abilities. To be fair, he has more to be smug about than Cersei and Joffrey.
  • The Southpaw: A situational variation, out of necessity after he loses his dominant (right) hand.
  • Stranger in a Familiar Land: Upon his return to King's Landing, he immediately feels out of place after everything he's been through. On top of that, while his return would have been huge news, no one even recognizes him due to how different he looks. Cersei almost immediately notices his less cocky, more contemplative demeanor (along with his missing hand).
  • Sympathetic Murderer: He killed King Aerys, thereby damning him as dishonourable scum in the eyes of the whole kingdom, in order to save the whole of King's Landing and his father from a wildfire trap that the Mad King had laid beneath the city.
  • Sympathetic P.O.V.: The focus on his character in Season 3 got him a large number of sympathy points, painting him as a Tragic Villain and showing off his heroic Hidden Depths.
  • Sympathy for the Hero: Shows some for Ned, as well as Ned's father and brother.
  • Talk to the Fist: Jaime's way of shutting up the obnoxious Black Walder Rivers when he scoffs at his accurate criticism and disregards his warning? A backhanded slap. With his golden hand.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: After Myrcella's death in Season 5, Jaime backslides into this rationale. In his own words: "fuck everyone in the world who isn't us."
  • This Is Unforgivable!:
    • Many people, including Ned Stark, consider Jaime, the Kingslayer, a vile knight beyond redemption after his Bodyguard Betrayal of Aerys. In reality, it was the polar opposite to this trope, but no one other than Brienne knows nor cares at this point.
    • This is Jaime's reaction to Tyrion's murder of Tywin, even telling Bronn he will kill Tyrion if he ever sees him again. When the two reunite in Season 7, he doesn't do it.
    • This is also his reaction to Cersei's decision to renege on her pledge to help the Starks and Targaryens against the living dead, and when she blithely dismisses his concern that whoever wins will come south for them (either the White Walkers just to kill them, or Daenerys and Jon seeking revenge over the fact Cersei betrayed them).
    • Invoked; he know that if any living Stark discovers that he pushed Bran out of the window, especially now that the Lannisters no longer have any viable hostages to exchange, then his life would be forfeit. When Dany, Sansa, and Jon put him on trial for arriving at the North alone and Cersei breaking her words, he goes Oh, Crap! when Bran reveals via Ironic Echo that he remembers who pushed him. As Bran puts it, if his siblings knew the truth, Jaime would have been executed.
  • Thousand-Yard Stare: He has one when recalling the Mad King's last words: "Burn them all."
  • Token Good Teammate: Goes back and forth as this for House Lannister after Tyrion's exile, finally culminating in a permanent Heel–Face Turn at the end of Season 7.
  • Too Clever by Half: Gifted, influential, casually manipulative, and smart-mouthed, he loves to contemptuously upstage chivalric foes but eventually goes too far and overplays his hand. Then he loses it.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Not as a fighter, obviously, but as a commander. Jaime learns from is earlier mistakes and succesfully takes Riverrun from the remaining Tully loyalists and Highgarden from the Tyrells. He also seemed to have recovered from his lost hand as he can best Dothraki in mounted combat.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Especially in his interactions with Brienne, and in Season 4, his more introspective and softer demeanour takes people by surprise. Indeed, when he lapses back into his former swagger, as demonstrated by his confrontation with Loras in "The Lion and the Rose", he fails miserably. He gets a shade kinder in Season 8 when he sincerely apologizes to Bran for pushing him out of the window when they have a private moment alone.
  • Toxic Friend Influence: Or more Toxic Incestual Twin Sister Influence. Cersei tends to bring out the worst in him. Cersei's wildfire plot seems to slowly wake him up to this, but he's more afraid of her than hateful of her.
    • Throughout Season 7, he gradually comes to a better understanding of this, which culminates in the finale, when he finds out that Cersei intends to let the Starks and Targaryens fight the Night King alone, and he leaves her for real.
  • Tragic Villain: He knows that he's detested by society, all for a single act that he considered heroic and which saved countless lives.
  • Troll: Jaime gets a kick out of verbally taunting Catelyn, and doesn't seem to mind whether he gets beaten with a rock or bound in a dozen chains so long as he can piss Catelyn off. And when Catelyn decides to free Jaime and have Brienne escort him to King's Landing, he taunts Brienne non-stop through an endless stream of insults. It's amazing that Brienne hasn't strangled him yet. Probably because she swore to get him to King's Landing safely (for a given value of safe) but still, Jaime cannot shut up.
    Brienne: I will NOT let you provoke me.
    Jaime: I already have!
  • Trying Not to Cry: When he abandons Brienne after the Long Night, she cries and begs Jaime not to go to and Jaime himself looks like he wants to break down in tears for doing this to her.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: By mid-Season 3, his relationship with Brienne approaches that of an old married couple, and when they eventually have a quite affectionate reunion on Season 6, Bronn wonders if they are fucking. In Season 8, the tension is conclusively resolved.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom:
    • By never going public with the Mad King's plan to destroy King's Landing with wildfire, Jaime left the door open for Cersei to eventually find and employ it herself. Hundreds if not thousands of people died along with a good chunk of the city, all because he kept silent.
    • It was also technically his fault the feud between the Starks and Lannisters started and led to all his children dying. For one, he sired Joffrey, who executed Ned back in Season 1 against everyone telling him to spare the Stark. He pushed Bran out of the window, which allowed Littlefinger a chance to frame the Lannisters for the assassin that showed up to finish the job; that in turn nearly cost Tyrion's life when Catelyn accused the dwarf. Myrcella died because Oberyn Martell died defending Tyrion in a trial by combat, and Tyrion was accused for Joffrey's murder. Cersei found the cache of wildfire Aerys was going to use, which she used to kill Tommen's wife and enable his suicide.
  • Villain Respect: Rivals and peers may usually mock or deride him as a kinslaying, incestuous cripple, but will also genuinely praise or esteem the combat prowess of his Glory Days.
    Euron Greyjoy: When you rushed through the breach and started cutting people down, it was glorious. Like a dance.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Becomes this with Brienne eventually. When he makes fun of her looks in Season 4, it comes across more like friendly ribbing, at least coming from Jaime.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Killed his king to save a city and his father. Crippled a boy to protect his sister. Threatened to kill a man's newborn to end a siege. What's sad is that the consequences of these acts always come back to haunt him.
  • What You Are in the Dark: Jaime's most compassionate acts in his life are known only to Brienne. In the first case, he killed the Mad King to save King's Landing from a wildfire explosion that would have murdered hundreds of thousands of innocents, and in the second, he lied to Locke to spare Brienne's life. The third is when he rides off to assist the North alone, to admit that his sister lied about sending an army, to put himself at the mercy of at least three houses that want him dead for his crimes.
  • The Worf Effect: Is defeated with almost contemptuous ease by Brienne in the second episode of Season 3, demonstrating just how incredibly good she is.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Mostly because he'd been chained up with inadequate food and exercise prior to his journey with Brienne, making him completely out of practice, and he still has chains on his wrists and ankles when he instigates the fight. In the books... 
  • Worthy Opponent:
    • He seems to regard Lord Eddard Stark as one, especially after Eddard was capable of holding his own in a fight against Jaime.
      Jaime: Brave man that Ned Stark, but terrible judgment.
    • However, he also clearly has a lot of resentment for the "Honorable Ned Stark" for how he thinks he wouldn't even give him a chance to explain why he killed Aerys, and judging him as being a dishonorable wretch for this genuinely well intentioned and heroic action, despite Ned not being as squeaky clean as others believed.
  • Would Hurt a Child:
    • Throws Bran Stark out of a window in the first episode after the boy witnesses the twincest. He "hoped the fall would kill him".
    • During the siege of Riverrun, he threatens to kill Edmure Tully's son if Edmure doesn't get Riverrun to surrender.
  • You Wouldn't Shoot Me: When Cersei threatens to have him killed as a traitor if he leaves to aid Jon and Daenerys, Jaime flatly calls her bluff, saying "I don't believe you" and storming out past Gregor Clegane. All Cersei can do is stare forlornly after him.
  • Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: When Walder Frey gloats about retaking Riverrun and refers to himself and Jaime as "two Kingslayers", Jaime is visibly disgusted and lashes out at him with a Shut Up, Hannibal!.
  • Zero-Approval Gambit: Killed King Aerys, sacrificing his good name and honor in the eyes of the people, to prevent him killing every single person in King's Landing.
Advertisement:

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report