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With the announcement of a Jon Snow sequel series and the upcoming House of the Dragonnow is a great time to rewatch the cultural phenomenon turned bitter-taste that is Game Of Thrones. For at least five seasons, the show about white walkers, dragons, and people fighting for the Iron Throne produced some of the most magnificent TV ever with help from its many complex and often genius characters. But, not everyone in Game of Thrones was competent enough to succeed, with there being a good handful of incompetent villains.
Game of Thrones introduced brutal villains like Ramsey Bolton, who knew how to play the games, but others were not as slick about putting down the chess pieces. From Viserys to the High Sparrow, their ambitions distracted them from seeing the real threats, and their incompetency led to their eventual demise.
9 Karl Tanner
A supremely unlikable individual from the show’s third and fourth seasons, Karl Tanner led the mutineers at Craster’s Keep who killed Craster and Jeor Mormont – alongside the equally as incompetent and unlikable Rast. But, beyond that, he would always fail in his leadership.
Tanner was a skilled, scrappy fighter, but ultimately was nothing more than a thug and bully, not fit to lead anything. While he used a shock factor and fear from his admittedly pathetic fellow mutineers to take over Craster’s Keep, he was never going to defend it when the Night’s Watch came to attack. He did not have that much skill despite arrogantly believing himself a legend. His death was not only satisfying but inevitable.
8 Meryn Trant
Knight of the Kingsguard and all-around awful person, Meryn Trant, is always a sickening sight, especially with his added backstory near the end of his life. He is exactly what a knight of the Kingsguard should not be, cruel and blindly following all orders no matter who they hurt.
Trant is rarely shown fighting, which is where his incompetence shines. He is happy to beat on those who cannot fight back, such as young girls and children, all while he is said to be a pretty awful fighter by the likes of the Hound. On top of that, the fact he is the opposite of what a knight of the Kingsguard should be shows that he is not meant to be one.
7 Janos Slynt
Another man who holds a position that should demand honor and respect is Janos Slynt, a former Commander of the City Watch and overall leech who would do anything asked of him by anyone in power. How he got a seat on the small council is baffling.
Props do need to go to Slynt for being able to weasel his way into positions no matter where he is. Still, ultimately he does not deserve them and cannot do a thing himself, needing to be ordered around by individuals with higher authority than him. A hypocrite, a child murderer, and an overall deplorable person, Slynt is one of the stupidest and most unlikable minor villains.
6 Viserys Targaryen
One of the most disliked villains in season 1 and the main antagonist of Daenerys’ story that season, Viserys Targaryen thought himself the true king of Westeros but was just a petulant, entitled child.
Not only was Viserys well out of his depth in dealing with the Dothraki, but his ambitions of ruling Westeros would have crashed and burned had he made it across the Narrow Sea. He would have been one of the worst rulers in the show but was so incompetent and arrogant that he did not even make it over there.
5 Theon Greyjoy
Theon Greyjoy has one of the best arcs in Game Of Thrones, being one of the few characters in season 8 to get a genuinely fitting end. But, for a brief time, Theon’s intolerable and incompetent nature in the earlier seasons resulted in him losing his dignity and becoming Reek.
He simply did not have the respect and was far too arrogant to make any dents as a villain and traitor to the Starks. He got laughed at and betrayed by his own men and was looked down upon by most, all while having delusions of grandeur. He did not do much as a villain compared to others in the show and certainly did not deserve what Ramsay put him through. Still, he was incapable of even ruling a Winterfell that was Stark-less, which says a lot about his competence back then.
4 Cersei Lannister
Cersei Lannister is one of the greatest villains in TV history and one of Game Of Thrones’ evilest. She was so often able to dismantle her enemies, despite them underestimating her. Despite all that, though, she still tended to be deeply incompetent.
As a ruler, her incompetence is clear; she is utterly cruel and hungry for power, yet the more she gets, the less she knows how to use it. She fails to see the consequences of her actions and also fails to see how wrong she is at times. Her high opinion of herself, her ruthlessness, and her arrogance so often stand in her way; she is, quite simply, unfit to rule, despite being such an excellent villain.
3 Balon Greyjoy
In the War of the Five Kings, nobody was as hopeless, with such little chance of doing anything of significance in Westeros, than Balon Greyjoy, Lord Reaper of the Pyke.
This is the man who failed spectacularly in his uprising and acted as if he had any claim to Westeros. Totally incapable of seeing past his own ambitions, Balon was not only a bad person but intensely annoying and stubborn. As a military man, he was also hopeless, too focused on small victories and stroking his own ego, incapable of seeing the big picture or anticipating his enemy’s moves. Overall, he was one of the worst.
2 The High Sparrow
Few villains were capable of reaching Cersei Lannister’s level of unlikability, but in the short term, the intolerable and abhorrent High Sparrow manages to achieve just that, even making some root for Cersei.
Cersei herself – despite having been humiliated by him – highlights the High Sparrow’s incompetence, being far too devoted to his own ideals and not seeing the threat of his enemies. The High Sparrow was so arrogant towards Cersei and the material world that he could not comprehend their potential power against him, costing him and the Faith Militant their lives.
1 The Night King
The biggest threat to life itself in Westeros was built up for seven seasons in the Night King and his army. After finally breaching the wall, though, he met his demise almost instantly.
His death was not bad; In fact, it was pretty badass from Arya. Still, he spent so long gathering forces to breach the wall and take over Westeros, built up to be almost unstoppable. So, seeing him die instantly without doing much damage led fans to conclude that the character simply was not competent enough for his vague, ambitious goals.
NEXT: Saddest Side-Character Deaths In Game Of Thrones
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