Season two of Game of Thrones is three episodes in, and as is par for the course for the series new characters are rolling in. In my opinion the strongest and most memorable ones so far are all ladies. Westeros is interesting in that women often get the short end of the stick. The world has a medieval setting, and many are forced into brothels or traditional female roles like... kitchen wenches. Others break out of the mold and forge different paths. Or crazy ones.
Spoilers through episode three (What Is Dead May Never Die) of season two but not for the book.
The redheaded priestess for the Lord of Light has Stannis Baratheon wrapped around her little finger. Melisandre has convinced him and most of his followers to abandon the old gods in favor of this new deity. She claims she has seen victory over Westeros for Stannis in the flames. Is she legit? In a world of dragons and Others, it's not so hard to believe. You have to keep in mind that it is a world all about power though. Everyone seems to be playing the game to win the Iron Throne, and perhaps she's just stringing people along to get to that spot. As she cautions, “the night is dark and full of terrors.”
Brienne of Tarth
Brienne the Beauty or the Maid of Tarth is a fierce fighter, good enough to take down Loras Tyrell in hand to hand combat. She is far from typical. She is tall, ungainly, awkward, and plain (described as ugly in the books – and if you call that a spoiler, I'll make fun of you). She wants nothing more than to serve King Renly as a member of his Kingsguard. She's incredibly protective of him and not afraid to take Catelyn Stark to task for neglecting to address him properly. I wouldn't want to get on her wrong side.
At the opposite end of the spectrum is Margaery Tyrell. She is beautiful, and she is obviously aware of it and not afraid to use her beauty to her advantage (not unlike Cersei Lannister). In the series, she very much wants to be Queen and wants the power and benefit that go with the title. She's willing to do anything, including a threesome with her brother and Renly (hmm, another Cersei parallel), to secure her place.
Yara (Asha) Greyjoy
I'm going to keep calling her Asha, and you can't stop me. (If you haven't read the books, her name was changed to Yara for the TV series because someone thought Asha sounded too much like Osha – the wildling captive of the Starks). Titles and lands almost always pass through the men in Westeros, but in the Iron Islands, a person gets what she earns. With Theon gone in the North, the Greyjoy mantle fell to Asha. She stepped up, learned to fight and to lead. Balon Greyjoy recognizes her as his heir instead of Theon. As much as I like Asha, I'm not thrilled that she let Theon paw at her so much on the way to the Pyke. Ick.
Not a bad showing of kick-ass ladies so far, and there's even more to come yet this season. Stay tuned.
Two Years Ago
One Year Ago