Was Jaime's 'Game of Thrones' Character Arc Ruined in 'The Bells'? (POLL)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 8, Episode 5 of Game of Thrones, "The Bells."]
Game of Thrones axed a lot of characters from its roster in the series' penultimate episode, "The Bells."
Among the many were the Lannister twins Jaime (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Cersei (Lena Headey) — or so it would seem after they were apparently crushed by falling debris beneath the Red Keep. Apart from the anti-climactic nature of their deaths — I mean, I can't be the only one who wanted to see someone kill Cersei — the event ultimately wrapped their stories, and it's leaving fans conflicted.
Since the series' premiere, it was known that the Lannisters weren't that great, at least apart from Tyrion (Peter Dinklage), who was markedly better than his incestuous siblings. After throwing Bran Stark (Isaac Hempstead Wright) from the tower at Winterfell and crippling the boy, Jaime was bad guy number one.
But after seasons of development in his character arc, he slowly became one of the most likable characters... at least until the fourth and fifth episodes of the current eighth and final season. Abiding by the Lannister sentiment that they always pay their debts, Jaime kept to his word when making promises ... for the most part.
When he was taken prisoner by Robb Stark (Richard Madden) and ultimately released by family matriarch Catelyn (Michelle Fairley) with the promise that he would exchange himself for her daughters Arya (Maisie Williams) and Sansa (Sophie Turner), who were believed to be held captive in King's Landing, his "redemption" began. During that journey with Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) to King's Landing, Jaime's knocked down, mutilated and treated as less than the King's Guard member he is.
In a way, that experience and bond with Brienne made him a better person, and slowly, over time, his decisions — including the release Tyrion after he was awaiting execution for killing their father Tywin (Charles Dance) — it was clear he wasn't always on his sister's side. When it came to the fight between the dead and the living, he also turned away from Cersei to help fight at Winterfell — a place he was clearly not welcome.
He atoned for his actions with Bran in the beginning of the season and knighted Brienne. His path was heading in a positive direction, but when he decided to leave Winterfell in Episode 4 — also after taking Brienne's virginity, no less — the promising character arc began to crumble.
At the beginning of "The Bells," viewers learn that Jaime's been captured by Daenerys' (Emilia Clarke) soldiers and imprisoned from being able to reach Cersei. While some may have believed that Cersei was going to meet her end at Jaime's hands — which would have made the most sense for his character arc — he instead intended to reason with her after Tyrion released him.
Despite sending Bronn (Jerome Flynn) to execute him, Cersei wasn't met by fury from Jaime but instead comfort... What? She did everything he would have advised against and still he approached her with love and it doesn't make any sense. Sure, King's Landing was being decimated by Daenerys' dragon Drogon, but Cersei's killing was meant to be one of the most satisfying moments of this season and we never got it.
Instead, they were buried in ruble together as Cersei cried that she didn't want to die. While the moment did fulfill Jaime's previously voiced wish to die in the arms of the woman he loves — which ended up being Cersei and not Brienne — the closing of his story was extremely disappointing.
At this point, Jaime's story has no further impact, unless, of course, his time spent with Brienne at Winterfell actually resulted in pregnancy — which at this point seems extremely unlikely.
After seasons of creating a somewhat redeemed character, the moment he left Winterfell, all of that character development was essentially thrown in the trash, and plenty of fans are voicing the same sentiments online following "The Bells."
— Row 🦁🌞 (@RowiePop) May 13, 2019
my favourite character died and i didnt even shed a tear. thats how much they ruined him. i cant believe this
— evie | JAIME DESERVED BETTER (@endgamebraime) May 13, 2019
Thanks for ruining Jaime’s character d&d pic.twitter.com/4y8zGL6URM
— ashley | GOT Spoilers (@ashleyedits) May 13, 2019
THIS is how it ends for them?! THIS!? 8 seasons of character development. Jaime sleeping with Brienne. Cersei levels the Sept of Baelor. And THIS is how it ends for of televisions most popular characters...
— Jesse Bickers (@jessebickers) May 13, 2019
You mean to tell me Jaime Lannister, holder of the best character arc in the entire series, goes out undoing it all? No thanks, I’ll wait for GRRM.
— Victoria Aveyard (@VictoriaAveyard) May 13, 2019
— Allan Mach (@llan_mach) May 13, 2019
I’m not sad for jaime’s death I’m sad for jaime’s character development assassination
— lucia ۞ (@lokiscrawley) May 13, 2019
— GoFundMe for a Cersei Death Do-Over (@SupDre) May 13, 2019
So what did you think about Jaime Lannister's story? Was it fulfilling, or were you left upset over his ending? Let us know in the poll below, and see how it all concludes when the Game of Thrones finale airs Sunday, May 19, on HBO.
Game of Thrones, Series Finale, Sunday, May 19, 9/8c, HBO