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Mr Smith

Aiden Gillen and the Butchery of Littlefinger (Book Spoilers)

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There's a reason for that I posted this in the other LF thread: People should ask themselves why he picked a mockingbird for his sigil, his family Coat of arms has a giant as far as i can remember.

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I don't see a reason why they should not have portrayed Littlefinger in a sympathetic, non-threatening way after season 1. In the book, Littlefinger's betrayal of Ned comes off more funny then evil 'I told you not to trust me, you know' is no threatening line. What did Ned expect? Installing Stannis as king would have meant the end of his career and/or his head. Pretty much any ambitious politician would have behaved like Littlefinger in this situation.



It would have been easy enough to portray Littlefinger as a funny, non-threatening guy who is mostly friends with good and bad guys alike. He should only become really threatening this season, when people begin to realize what this guy can pull off while feigning to be non-threatening and likable.



They pretty much butchered the whole character:



1. Littlefinger is no pimp, he is a businessman investing in brothels. He does not spend his leisure/work hours there, his brothel is not the treasury, and he does not personally train, educate, or oversee his whores.



2. Littlefinger does not appear threatening or allow anyone to realize/deduce where his true interests lie. He acts carefully through agents (Dontos, Lothor Brune, the Kettleblacks), and does not approach his targets directly (Sansa!).



3. Littlefinger never threatens or antagonizes anyone openly. If he is humiliated or fooled, he swallows and secretly plots murder, but he does not threaten anyone with a higher political standing directly (Tyrion, Cersei).



4. Littlefinger does not explain or discuss his motivations or goals with Varys. They may talk to each other occasionally, but I very much doubt that they would do this in the manner the show presents it. Littlefinger and Varys are not chaos vs. order, but two political schemers who are trying to achieve different goals. But they do use pretty much the same means, when they deem them necessary. Varys is also an agent of chaos - in favor of his Aegon plans, which are not ready at this point. He most certainly is not principally opposed to the means Littlefinger uses.



In conclusion one can say that there is nothing left from GRRM's Littlefinger in this show, and if the show was imagining the 'realistic Westeros' GRRM has invented, the TV version of Littlefinger would not survive a day in this world. The core of the character is that he is non-threatening, friends with everyone, who is smart enough to move up the ladder when no one is looking (or caring).


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I don't see a reason why they should not have portrayed Littlefinger in a sympathetic, non-threatening way after season 1. In the book, Littlefinger's betrayal of Ned comes off more funny then evil 'I told you not to trust me, you know' is no threatening line. What did Ned expect? Installing Stannis as king would have meant the end of his career and/or his head. Pretty much any ambitious politician would have behaved like Littlefinger in this situation.

It would have been easy enough to portray Littlefinger as a funny, non-threatening guy who is mostly friends with good and bad guys alike. He should only become really threatening this season, when people begin to realize what this guy can pull off while feigning to be non-threatening and likable.

They pretty much butchered the whole character:

1. Littlefinger is no pimp, he is a businessman investing in brothels. He does not spend his leisure/work hours there, his brothel is not the treasury, and he does not personally train, educate, or oversee his whores.

2. Littlefinger does not appear threatening or allow anyone to realize/deduce where his true interests lie. He acts carefully through agents (Dontos, Lothor Brune, the Kettleblacks), and does not approach his targets directly (Sansa!).

3. Littlefinger never threatens or antagonizes anyone openly. If he is humiliated or fooled, he swallows and secretly plots murder, but he does not threaten anyone with a higher political standing directly (Tyrion, Cersei).

4. Littlefinger does not explain or discuss his motivations or goals with Varys. They may talk to each other occasionally, but I very much doubt that they would do this in the manner the show presents it. Littlefinger and Varys are not chaos vs. order, but two political schemers who are trying to achieve different goals. But they do use pretty much the same means, when they deem them necessary. Varys is also an agent of chaos - in favor of his Aegon plans, which are not ready at this point. He most certainly is not principally opposed to the means Littlefinger uses.

In conclusion one can say that there is nothing left from GRRM's Littlefinger in this show, and if the show was imagining the 'realistic Westeros' GRRM has invented, the TV version of Littlefinger would not survive a day in this world. The core of the character is that he is non-threatening, friends with everyone, who is smart enough to move up the ladder when no one is looking (or caring).

But on TV this would present an even worse character - a boring one! This would leave him sod all to do for three Seasons apart from count his money and whisper to a minor character in a corridor somewhere!

Noone would care if he is revealed as the grand manipulator as noone would remember who he was!

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Nonsense. Littlefinger has quite a lot to do in both ACoK and ASoS that makes him interesting and memorable. He has great lines, one of them is in my signature, as it happens. People always remember the comic relief, and Littlefinger is actually a poisonous comic relief.



He would be remembered for betraying Ned, messing with Tyrion and the dagger, for his ambition regarding Harrenhal, and for successful brokering the Tyrell marriage.



I never said they could not invent additional scenes with him. Why not? All they needed to do was distort the character in those scenes. Season 3 portrays him as sort of loser, since it's evident that he does not thwart the Varys/Tyrell plot on his own design, he is recruited to do this by Cersei (just as Olenna is recruited by Varys).



If I had adapted this whole story, I'd have made it clear that Littlefinger was manipulating the other guys - that he was telling Tywin about the Tyrell plot to pursue his own agenda, and that he was suggesting to make Tyrion as match for Sansa and Master of Coin to ensure that he remains in KL for the royal wedding.


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As much as the voice and accent issue does bother the hell out of me, it's the Overt Creepfinger act that he has going on that is the problem. I was totally taken out of the whole scene just hoping that Aiden chewed mint and had fresh breath like the real LF because he was breathing in Sophie's face entirely too close. There's something wrong if I can't enjoy a scene because I'm stopping to think: OMG he is just about breathing in her mouth and that may be worse than the acting. Sophie did beautifully, she may deserve an emmy just for not breaking character during that breathe in her face fest full of mustache twirling type acting.

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As much as the voice and accent issue does bother the hell out of me, it's the Overt Creepfinger act that he has going on that is the problem. I was totally taken out of the whole scene just hoping that Aiden chewed mint and had fresh breath like the real LF because he was breathing in Sophie's face entirely too close. There's something wrong if I can't enjoy a scene because I'm stopping to think: OMG he is just about breathing in her mouth and that may be worse than the acting. Sophie did beautifully, she may deserve an emmy just for not breaking character during that breathe in her face fest full of mustache twirling type acting.

The scene was great for me, though. Was weird, but it was GREAT!!!

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The scene was great for me, though. Was weird, but it was GREAT!!!

If he would have backed up just a hair from almost having his tongue in her mouth while he talked, I might have liked it a bit better. I really did do a: STOP THE PRESSES, what the hell is he doing so close to her and acting so obviously creepy. I find it very distracting. Too distracting.

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If he would have backed up just a hair from almost having his tongue in her mouth while he talked, I might have liked it a bit better. I really did do a: STOP THE PRESSES, what the hell is he doing so close to her and acting so obviously creepy. I find it very distracting. Too distracting.

It's just a way to display dominance.

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Littlefinger is a creep though.

When he has Shansha on his lap in AFFC... Surely that deserves another kiss?

He creeps all over her constantly.

Yes he does, but there are also times that he's not so obviously, to Sansa, creeping all over. He needs to be the friendly, not so threatening guy to her.....to lure her in and then try the creeping moves. I can't imagine this LF ever being thought by Sansa to tell lies kindly. Not if he's going to act as if his tongue might wind up in her mouth during every conversation.

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Gillian is more to blame for LF then D n D. Whereas Stannis' butchery is directly attributed to D n D depicting him as a villan, not Dillanes acting, which has been superb.

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I met the actor twice at a music festival called Electric Picnic, he has a pretty soft voice, he is a pretty chill cucumber, a nice guy. I like his performance in Season 1 a lot, the voice does throw me but I think that we are judging the character solely based off of the odd meeting with him in the books.


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I don't really have an issue with the way they're portraying Littlefinger. The character came across as extremely devious and untrustworthy to me fairly early on in the novels, even if actor does overdo it a little.



Overall I think it's one of the better portrayals. Not quite as flawless as Varys, but a thousand times better than what they've done with the Boltons and Daario Naharis.


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I don't really have an issue with the way they're portraying Littlefinger. The character came across as extremely devious and untrustworthy to me fairly early on in the novels, even if actor does overdo it a little.

Overall I think it's one of the better portrayals. Not quite as flawless as Varys, but a thousand times better than what they've done with the Boltons and Daario Naharis.

What don't you like about the Boltons? I thought they have been one of the better ones so far

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Aiden Gillen gave an interview recently where it was said he does not like to give interviews.

Tho I think he has more interviews about the show than Conleth Hill (who, as far as I know, has given only one, and that one , Red Carpet, had a pretty shallow interviewer!).

Is Gillen happy with his role , I have seen this kind of acting perturbation when an actor , got into it, didn't like it or didn't understand it.

I got the impression , season 2, that Carice van Houten was a bit confused or badly directed , but she came around.

"The night is dark and full of terrors" no longer has a falling inflection but is punctuated.

She was on her marks season 3 too.

Since I know Gillen is a good actor (like van Houten) could be some dissonance going on with the show and his character.

(Seems to be just fine the first season.)

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What don't you like about the Boltons? I thought they have been one of the better ones so far

The actors just seem so wrong for the roles. Roose had one of the most distinct descriptions of any character in the books. I pictured him having an eerie, almost ageless appearance. The guy they picked just looks like a thousand middle aged men i've seen walking down the street... and he just doesn't have that quiet yet intimidating presence he should have, going by quotes like this: "Bolton's silence was a hundred times more threatening than Vargo Hoat's slobbering malevolence. Pale as morning mist, his eyes concealed more than they told."

As for Ramsay, I pictured looking like this. The actor they chose looks like he should be in a boy band, and i'm not convinced at all that he can play a truly sinister character. Almost all of his performances thus far have been more comical than disturbing.

I really hate how they changed Ramsay's storyline too. He's supposed to be in Winterfell before Theon captures it, posing as Reek.

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The actors just seem so wrong for the roles. Roose had one of the most distinct descriptions of any character in the books. I pictured him having an eerie, almost ageless appearance. The guy they picked just looks like a thousand middle aged men i've seen walking down the street... and he just doesn't have that quiet yet intimidating presence he should have, going by quotes like this: "Bolton's silence was a hundred times more threatening than Vargo Hoat's slobbering malevolence. Pale as morning mist, his eyes concealed more than they told."

As for Ramsay, I pictured looking like this. The actor they chose looks like he should be in a boy band, and i'm not convinced at all that he can play a truly sinister character. Almost all of his performances thus far have been more comical than disturbing.

I really hate how they changed Ramsay's storyline too. He's supposed to be in Winterfell before Theon captures it, posing as Reek.

I can see what you mean about Ramsay, but I think Roose is pretty perfect.

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