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Roose Bolton, is he actually evil?


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#1 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:38 PM

Now, I know that many people like at Roose with contempt due to the actions of the Red Wedding, and his association and seemingly indifferent attitude towards Ramsay and his actions, however if we look at the man himself, I don't see someone who is entirely evil.

When we first get to really meet the "Leech Lord" within the series, he does have a very creepy and cool demeanor, but he doesn't really DO anything to make him disliked. He was still on the side of the "good guy" and what not. Not until we see his interactions with Jaime and Brienne, that we kind of begin to question his motives.

But historically, we know that Bolton and Stark have not always been peaceful with each other. There have been many historical recounts, or hints, that suggest Bolton simply was the weaker of the two and always had to bow down to Stark rule. This would not develop in a very loving relationship. While Ned seemed to "trust" Roose, a trust that Robb also reflected, I think it might have been a little bit presumptuous of them to think that House Bolton would stay loyal no matter what.

From this, I point to the actions taken at the Red Wedding. Roose never seemed to harbor any hatred, and while the deeds were horrible, I don't think it should be surprising. He is and was an opportunist. The scion of a House who always lived in the shadow of the Starks, and may have been looking for their only chance to rise, outside of starting a rebellion in the North that would be fraught with doom.


Lastly, it's the philosophy of Roose that kind of shows that he isn't completely evil, just stern. He wants a quiet people, and he has shown that he can be fair. That doesn't really seem like the thoughts or philosophy of someone who is completely bad. Though Roose is devoid of emotion, his cunning and ambition I believe aren't from personal hatred, but more of living in a family that had a shadow cast upon it. In feudal society, there were only a few ways to gain the upper hand on someone who had a larger military force...

#2 Belisarius09

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:42 PM

If hed hadn't killed Robb with his own two hands...

If he didn't turn a blind eye to Ramsay's killing of his own son...

If he didn't turn a blind eye to Ramsay's torturing of Theon and Jeyne...

Then maybe.

#3 The Titan's Legitimate Son

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:45 PM

Cold and calculating... emotionless... almost un-human in his approach. Pragmatic, intelligent, opportunistic and keen on self-preservation. These are all words I would use to describe Roose. However 'Evil' is not one of them.

Edited by The Titan's Legitimate Son, 20 December 2012 - 07:46 PM.


#4 Florina Laufeyson

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:46 PM

Yes. Roose is one of the more unambiguously evil dudes in the series. Hes more of a schemer but he does get his hands dirty when necessary. He likes to flay people and do really gnarly things. Hes just more subdued about it than his son. Hes a nasty nasty piece of work.

Theres a difference of Evulz like Ramsay, and evil. Evil can be very very subtle, guys.

Edited by Florina Stark, 20 December 2012 - 07:47 PM.


#5 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:48 PM

If hed hadn't killed Robb with his own two hands...

If he didn't turn a blind eye to Ramsay's killing of his own son...

If he didn't turn a blind eye to Ramsay's torturing of Theon and Jeyne...

Then maybe.

Him killing Robb was an opportune moment, not something that he himself thought of, or necessarily wanted. However, it one upped the Starks, and to be honest, how many Boltons have probably fallen on the blades of Starks?


To his "turning a blind eye", I haven't and will never judge one person by another persons deeds. He NEEDS Ramsay to continue his line. He himself has told Ramsay to be more suitable, and to act accordingly....I don't see what else he could do.

#6 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:49 PM

Yes. Roose is one of the more unambiguously evil dudes in the series. Hes more of a schemer but he does get his hands dirty when necessary. He likes to flay people and do really gnarly things. Hes just more subdued about it than his son. Hes a nasty nasty piece of work.

Theres a difference of Evulz like Ramsay, and evil. Evil can be very very subtle, guys.


haha I think you are speaking from a biased. But it's ok, cuz it's you /tongue.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':P' />

#7 Myrish Swamp Thing

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:50 PM

"Don't make me rue the day I raped your mother"

Yep, i'd say he's pretty evil.

#8 The Dornishman's Wife

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:50 PM

To his "turning a blind eye", I haven't and will never judge one person by another persons deeds. He NEEDS Ramsay to continue his line. He himself has told Ramsay to be more suitable, and to act accordingly....I don't see what else he could do.


I sincerely hope you are joking here.

Edited by The Dornishman's Wife, 20 December 2012 - 07:52 PM.


#9 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:54 PM

WTF?


heh, I know it sounds callous, but Roose has admitted to others and himself that Ramsay is a monster. I know that him doing nothing is at times to people, equivalent of doing the acts themselves, but I guess I just want people to look outside the box and see Roose for whho/what he is and where he is coming from. I would never call him a GOOD guy at all, but I do see WHY he did the things he did, and would not call it necessarily evil.

#10 Flig

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:55 PM

Well...I mean the flaying, and then the rape, and then the Ramsay, and the purposefully leading Stark bannermen to their deaths, and the the stabbing Robb...

Yeah no he's pretty goddamn evil.

#11 David Selig

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:56 PM

You don't have to be really over the top sadist and psychopath like Ramsay who does terrible things "for the evulz" to be evil. Being a cold selfish and ruthless SOB is sometimes almost as bad and people like Roose are definitely evil. Rapist, mass murderer, fond of using torture - what more do you need to consider him evil?

#12 Summer is Ending

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:56 PM

Ned never trusted Bolton.

Don't misinterpret the line about a quiet people. He's not chiding Ramsay for hunting women like animals and then raping them and butchering them, he's chiding him for letting stories spread.

“You are mistaken. It is not good. No tales were ever told of me. Do you think I would be sitting here if it were otherwise? Your amusements are your own, I will not chide you on that count, but you must be more discreet. A peaceful land, a quiet people. That has always been my rule. Make it yours.”

Yeah. It reflects on a person when they describe the hunting, raping and butchering of women as amusements. It's clear Roose had his own amusements in his youth as well and raping a woman beneath the swinging corpse of her husband is likely the least of it.

#13 The Titan's Legitimate Son

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:56 PM

"Don't make me rue the day I raped your mother"

Yep, i'd say he's pretty evil.


This line is so nonchalant, I love it. I think it shows how emotionless he is, even to his own (mentally deranged) son.

#14 ServantOnIce

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:02 PM

Again, "evil" depends what your personal beliefs about what evil is. In my opinion Roose is the most evil character in the series. He is as blackhearted as the Crow's Eye, as Vile and as cruel as Ser Gregor and often likes to get his hands dirty. Roose likes to play with people as Lady Dustin said, he plays with people like they are a "Sims" video game.

He has no caring no concern for anything and likes having Ramsay as a made pit bull that keeps everyone in line. He pretty much knows that Ramsay was going to kill his beloved son but probably felt his beloved soon too gentile and polished to put the fear in people that The Boltons are historically known for.

The dude governs from a castle complex known as, "The Dreadfort." He is more cruel in Theon's opinion than ALL the Freys combined.

1. Once Lord Eddard got arrested Roose knew that Lord Eddard would be executed. Roose is a keen observer of human nature.

2. Roose and Ramsay then usurp Lady Hornwood's lands,

3. The Destruction of Winterfell and the planning with Tywin Lannister

4. Red Wedding where they massacred their own allies. Think about the story of the man of Piper getting mortally wounded by a Bolton Soldier.

5. He personally killed Rob Stark.

6. His men storming in and beheading the Small Jon

7. His farce with the Fake Arya

8. As mentioned allowing Ramsay to run free and torture and kill folks for sport.

He is evil . .. if he isn't what is and who is?

#15 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:02 PM

Ned never trusted Bolton.

Don't misinterpret the line about a quiet people. He's not chiding Ramsay for hunting women like animals and then raping them and butchering them, he's chiding him for letting stories spread.

“You are mistaken. It is not good. No tales were ever told of me. Do you think I would be sitting here if it were otherwise? Your amusements are your own, I will not chide you on that count, but you must be more discreet. A peaceful land, a quiet people. That has always been my rule. Make it yours.”

Yeah. It reflects on a person when they describe the hunting, raping and butchering of women as amusements. It's clear Roose had his own amusements in his youth as well and raping a woman beneath the swinging corpse of her husband is likely the least of it.


put in that perspective, I would have to say that doesn't prove Ned did NOT trust him, but that yes he himself did commit some very evil deeds....

I guess him emotionless demeanor (for me) just screams lack of any real motivation to do either evil or good. Things like evil or good I believe find their meanings in intent.

#16 OberynBlackfyre

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:05 PM

Again, "evil" depends what your personal beliefs about what evil is. In my opinion Roose is the most evil character in the series. He is as blackhearted as the Crow's Eye, as Vile and as cruel as Ser Gregor and often likes to get his hands dirty. Roose likes to play with people as Lady Dustin said, he plays with people like they are a "Sims" video game.

He has no caring no concern for anything and likes having Ramsay as a made pit bull that keeps everyone in line. He pretty much knows that Ramsay was going to kill his beloved son but probably felt his beloved soon too gentile and polished to put the fear in people that The Boltons are historically known for.

The dude governs from a castle complex known as, "The Dreadfort." He is more cruel in Theon's opinion than ALL the Freys combined.

1. Once Lord Eddard got arrested Roose knew that Lord Eddard would be executed. Roose is a keen observer of human nature.

2. Roose and Ramsay then usurp Lady Hornwood's lands,

3. The Destruction of Winterfell and the planning with Tywin Lannister

4. Red Wedding where they massacred their own allies. Think about the story of the man of Piper getting mortally wounded by a Bolton Soldier.

5. He personally killed Rob Stark.

6. His men storming in and beheading the Small Jon

7. His farce with the Fake Arya

8. As mentioned allowing Ramsay to run free and torture and kill folks for sport.

He is evil . .. if he isn't what is and who is?


See, I am saying that those things ARE bad. But that Roose himself had no real care of what went on. The Hornwood thing was more Ramsay than Roose, Tywin came to him with an opportunity , the betrayal and death of Robb Stark, like I said can I think be accounted for by years and generations of warring between the Boltons and Starks. I am not saying that this excuses him, I am just saying that to me evil has a lot to do with intent, having the malice behind the action, to where Roose is devoid of all emotion.

#17 Summer is Ending

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:07 PM

When I say we know Ned never trusted the Roose it's because it says it flat out in the books.

Eddard Stark had never had any reason to complain of the Lord of the Dreadfort, so far as Jon knew, but even so he had never trusted him, with his whispery voice and his pale, pale eyes.

#18 kissdbyfire

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:08 PM

“Taking him? Where? He’s mine. You cannot have him.”
Roose seemed amused by that. “All you have I gave you. You would do well to remember that, bastard. As for this … Reek … if you have not ruined him beyond redemption, he may yet be of some use to us. Get the keys and remove those chains from him, before you make me rue the day I raped your mother.”

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“This miller’s marriage had been performed without my leave or knowledge. The man had cheated me. So I had him hanged, and claimed my rights beneath the tree where he was swaying. If truth be told, the wench was hardly worth the rope. The fox escaped as well, and on our way back to the Dreadfort my favorite courser came up lame, so all in all it was a dismal day.”

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Yeah, Roose is a real peach...

Edited by kissdbyfire, 20 December 2012 - 08:08 PM.


#19 otherbeef

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:09 PM

i don't know about evil but ever since i saw his picture in A World of Ice and Fire i can no longer take him seriously

#20 Golden&Crimson

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 08:10 PM

Roose is evil.

Evil is, above all,a distortion of justice and of our word to the others.

Remember when he came to Winterfell, after the place was burned by his son and before the the weding of Ramsay and "Arya" and swore to the men that seeked refuge in the ruins of the castle, that he would not flay them if they work in the reconstruction of the castle?

And, after the men rebuild the castle to receive him and his guests, he hanged them.