Curtain Call: Jack Gleeson
By Fire And Blood on in Editorial.

Jack Gleeson was always one of those guys you’d hear great things about, but couldn’t quite imagine. He didn’t do too many interviews, or even big splashy premieres; he was always just a bit removed from the usual frenetic Game of Thrones hubbub.

jack-gleesonStill, we can say we know more about him now than we did back when the casting was first announced. Back then he was just “That kid from Batman Begins.” (Touting a cute face and a pretty darned good American accent but not much else, really.)

(In fact, one early casting mention affixed a picture of deceased American Hollywood icon Jackie Gleason, if you can believe that!)

He had done some smaller stuff; A Shine of Rainbows with Aidan Quinn and Connie Nielsen, as well as a starring role in All Good Children, but he was virtually unknown.

Of course once he strutted onto the screen in his Joffrey boots, well, there was little doubt that this kid was Joffrey Baratheon.

joffrey01He was, at the very least, the Boy Who Launched a Thousand Memes, and the YouTube video of Tyrion slapping him for ten minutes straight (to the jolly tune of Led Zeppelin’s Achilles Last Stand) basically went viral.

Certainly, Joffrey could seem two-dimensional to some. He had few, if any, redeeming qualities. It was easy to hate him.

But I’ll say this for Jack: he played the role with vicious relish. And just when you thought he was coming close to caricature, he’d throw us a performance like in The North Remembers, playing so brilliantly off of Lena Headey’s Cersei, or in Dark Wings, Dark Words, where you see Joffrey’s cautious but burgeoning attraction to Margaery. Gleeson and Dormer had very interesting chemistry.

Game-of-Thrones-Season-3-Joffrey-and-TywinMy absolute favorite, however, was his throne room scene with Charles Dance in The Bear and the Maiden Fair. Jack plays Joffrey at first in control and looking to gain a little traction on ol’ grand-dad… but as Tywin slowly ascends those stairs, you see Joffrey slowly shrink away; Jack’s shoulders squeeze in, his body looking almost tortured. He’d rather be any place but here. It’s a fantastic midstream physical transformation that, for me, was the telling scene in Jack’s gloriously portrayal of this narcissistic psychopath.

I know, we say it so often it’s rote: In Nina Gold we Trust. But it’s remarkable, isn’t it? She finds the perfect pieces, and in Jack she grabbed for us the perfect actor to portray the one we most loved to hate.

Of course the rumor mill is rife with word that Jack does’t intend to act any more–at least not onscreen. Some people are fine with this. I am, if it makes him happy. It can be an empty career choice if the obvious rewards aren’t what pull a man’s heart. In the interviews I’ve seen and read, Jack seems like he’s got a good head on his shoulders. He’s still pursuing an academic career. Our loss would be his students’ gain, and really… isn’t that a better way to impact young lives?

Whatever his road, I wish him the best. It’s been a five year journey, and he’s helped to tell a tale that I think will be seen as one of the hallmarks of the early 21st century. He owes us nothing else.

But if he ever does decide to wander back onto our screens, be they silver or otherwise, you can bet I’ll be in line to see what Jack Gleeson has in store for us.

Jack-Gleeson-Joffrey-Baratheon-Sac-Modelleri-Sac-Rengi-13

From the bottom of our bottom-supporting hearts–Thank You, Jack.


114 Comments

  1. rodoh
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    Rodoh

  2. JasonLobo
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:03 am | Permalink

    The King is dead… Long live HODOR!!

  3. ClickClack
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    In the UK, Joffrey is still trending. Jack Gleeson was trending all night. Seriously, what a fantastic Joffrey he made. Westeros may not miss Joffrey but we’ll certainly miss you, Jack!

    He seems a great guy. Smart, level-headed. And wanting to move away from acting and recognising it’s not what would make him happy at the moment, I think is pretty gutsy. I have a lot of respect for him.

  4. Laurentius
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    The King is dead – long live the Jack!

  5. Patchy Face
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Best to you, Jack! I, for one, always thought you should have been nominated for an Emmy because you were more than excellent in your role throughout the years. Hope you find every happiness in your life -

  6. Growing Strong
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    Father Above, judge our good King Joffrey justly

  7. WeicheWotan
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    Sad to see one of the finest characters and actors on the show go. It wasn’t for nothing that Rolling Stone (?) voted him the second best character on GoT (although I didn’t agree on the entire list, I could definitely abide to this choice). I hope his academical career will be rewarding, but I can’t help but hope to see him again somewhere sometimes.

  8. K26dp
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Thanks to Jack Gleeson for being “that little shit” so well, and best of luck wherever his intellectual pursuits take him.

  9. Koi No Yokan
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    Jack is one of those actors who managed to pull a character straight off the page, but still breathed a bit more life into the role as well.

    Everything from his vigorous “Ser Ilyn! Bring me his head!” to his nonchalant “Busy getting captured” will be missed. That gleeful smirk you just wanted to smack, his petulance that made you laugh, and the acts of cruelty that had you grinding your teeth; Jack embodied a character that could have easily come across as annoyingly one-dimensional, but instead had such an impact that I think it’s fair to say a hole will be left behind in KL with his absence.

    Thank you for the wonderful portrayal Jack, and I hope you succeed in all your future endeavours! Know that should you return to film, theatre or the like, you’ll have many fans to support you.

  10. mpn1010
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    One thing that I noted throughout the series is that Jack valiantly tried to play up those VERY brief onscreen moments where one could have sympathy for Joffrey: his concern when the Hound and the Mountain clash; his devastation at Robert’s deathbed; his helplessness during the Battle of the Blackwater when Tyrion demands he lead; his death scene. It must have been somewhat frustrating for Jack to play such a purely evil character on a show that prides itself on moral ambiguity, but the fact that he so embraced the aforementioned moments hints toward his determination to create the slightest shred of sympathy for an irredeemable character. In some ways, he deserves more credit for his success in this regard than for his success in making the GoT fan-base loathe him!

  11. Arkash
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Thank you a thousandfold, Jack !

    You brought some much subtelity and shades to Joff !

    All hail the king !

  12. Harry
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    All hail King Joffrey!

    Jack Gleeson, for me you have really not only enriched the character in the series, but also the book character.

  13. Veltigar
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Thanks a million Jack! You were a marvel to behold!

    I do hope some day, someone writes a script that is so good that it tempts him to return to acting (preferably a role as a Saint, in the true meaning of the word)

  14. Abyss
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    mpn1010: It must have been somewhat frustrating for Jack to play such a purely evil character on a show that prides itself on moral ambiguity, but the fact that he so embraced the aforementioned moments hints toward his determination to create the slightest shred of sympathy for an irredeemable character. In some ways, he deserves more credit for his success in this regard than for his success in making the GoT fan-base loathe him!

    Sympathy with a character isn’t all that important, all things considered. Empathy is, and Jack Gleeson definitely pulled that off.

  15. Hizdar for President
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Jacks performance was awesome all through the series. Great curtain call Fire and Blood. Very well written.

  16. jennyofoldstones
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Wonderful tribute to a wonderful actor. His Joffrey will be missed if only for Jack’s astonishing portrayal of the character.

  17. H. Stark
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    Muchas gracias Jack!

  18. Morna the Witch
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    I agree with many of the words of those above, especially with regards to mpn1010. Now I’d like to add my own. On behalf of me and my friends, who have loyally watched the show since the first season, thank you Jack, for making our lives hell, in a good way.

    I enjoyed every moment of seeing Jack on screen, not because I enjoyed his character’s cruelty, but because his embodiment of Joff’s evil was so convincing. Added to that were the other subtle layers of naivity and insecurity.

    I am a post-graduate student, so I hope he finds his own field of choice enriching and enjoyable, whichever that may be. And if he decides to return to acting later in his life, I look forward to seeing him again.

    All the best.

  19. Azzy Mahmood
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    It’s astonishing that Jack was able to portray Joffrey so perfectly. For a young man to grapple with such a complex and stunningly offensive character on the page, and to bring that character with all his flaws and mannerisms to the screen, it is one of TV’s greatest performances. He truly deserves all the accolades available to him – as much as I hated Joffrey, I will miss Jack Gleeson more than Sean Bean, Richard Madden, Ron Donachie or James Cosmo.

    Fare thee well Jack. You have a place for life in all our Thrones-loving hearts.

  20. Jared
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    In an enormous cast of internationally acclaimed actors, Jack Gleeson was among the very best. Hated onscreen but beloved off it, he brought one of the most despicable characters that modern fiction has ever given us to life in a way that revealed Joffrey Baratheon to be both grand and malevolent, petty and scared, but never anything less than human. Other actors might have been able to play Joffrey, but no one else could have played him quite the way that Jack did. To borrow (perhaps somewhat ironically) Lady Olenna’s words, he was “marvelous – absolutely singular.”

    In his last episode, Gleeson was typically excellent as he played the King at his worst. But in Joffrey’s final moments, he managed to evoke a pang of sympathy for a monster facing his own death – a fate that he had been so eager to deal out to so many others. It was in that moment that the magnitude of his achievement truly hit home for me. If he is truly finished with acting, it’s hard to imagine a more memorable way to go out. People will be talking about that scene, and his entire performance on this show, for years to come.

    Thank you for four great years, Jack, and good luck to you in whatever venture you decide to pursue next!

  21. Dorne tootin
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    All hail Jack Gleeson! Well done, your Grace.

  22. Turncloak
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    Thank you Jack Gleeson! Amazing performance.

  23. Siobhán Mooney
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Thanks, Jack, for an amazing performance. Whether your future is in academia or elsewhere, I wish you all the best!

  24. Brandon
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    Growing Strong,

    Now there’s a scary thought.

  25. Billybob
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    What an absolute hero, best of luck to Jack in his future and I hope he sees this post. Bryan maybe you could direct him this way when everyone has had a chance to comment?

  26. Hear Me Roar
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Clap clap clap, hats off, and thank you! FaB, as always, put it to words beautifully, so I can only second his sentiments.

    We will see you in one more episode, though admittedly with little acting going on. Thanks for the ride, Jack.

  27. Mister Stonheart
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    I’m a professional actor myself and I never had the natural talent and incredible chops this young man had at his age. Or even my age. He is a mesmerizing performer, and seems like a really nice guy on the outside. Job seriously well done.

  28. Ours is the Fury
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    I have similar feelings now to when Viserys died in the first season. Both are characters that in the books I completely loathed and was glad to see killed off finally, but in the show there’s a confusion of feelings after they die. (I did always feel sorry for Joff in the moment of his death, and Jack pulled that off too.) Gleeson’s done such a great job of bringing Joffrey to life with boyish glee and petulance that I will miss him being on the show. Good luck to Jack in everything he chooses to do from here on out. :)

  29. Tori Targaryen
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    *goes out, buys a hat, dons the hat, then takes it off*

    Well done, Sir. We’ll miss you!

  30. Ashara D
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    Great write up, as always, FaB!

    Best wishes to you, Jack! That was a phenomenal exit. I applaud you for sticking with your academics in a world where young people often do not take this kind of long view of their lives. Enjoy those pursuits knowing that your fans are still out here if you decide to ride the fame coaster again in the future. Slainte!

  31. serum
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Im at a loss for words. He was just fantastic! I hated him so much that I loved him and couldnt wait for him to appear on my tv again! He will be missed but never forgotten!

  32. NomadicDirewolf
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    jack did a great job in bringing joffrey to life. He was able to inspire the same feelings Joffrey had in the book, without making him look too much like a caricature, and by the time I had finished watching the first series (at which point I still was unsullied) I already loathed Joffrey, but I since the first season I have always held Jack Gleeson in great regard as an actor.
    I wish him luck in whatever he decides to pursue in life, would be great to see him on our screens again, but I hope he just does what he is happy doing

  33. Simon van Rijssen
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Won’t miss Joffrey, but will miss Jack’s brilliant performance. Job well done.

  34. Chris
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Bravo!

  35. moonlightof1982
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    I’m glad Joffrey is gone, make no mistake, but I hope we will see Jack Gleeson in a another role in the future! Good luck to him in his life and other future endeavors! A wonderful actor to the end!

  36. Mercy
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    “Ser ilyn, bring me his head!”

    And so began the legend of the Jack.

  37. Jeff O'Connor
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    And Now His Reign Is Ended.

    This was my favorite write-up you’ve done, FaB. :)

  38. BeautyBrienne
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Kudos Jack! I hope he reads these. I really, really do.

  39. persephone88
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    In the beginning, Jack was not at all how I pictured book Joffrey, who had long blonde curls and wormy fat lips. He was an older, better looking and ultimately more harrowing version. He became Joffrey so completely that now it is hard to consider anyone BUT him in the role.

    From that early scene where he is exchanging flirty glances with very young Sansa at Winterfell to that awful scene on the castle walls where he makes her stare at her father’s head on a pike, all the way through his attempts to boss around his grandfather, mother and uncle, to his final scene, Jack was just terrific.

    One scene that really stood out for me was the one in Season One where King Robert is dying – Jack showed such a range of emotions before this man who was his legal, if not biological father: fear, disappointment, hope, dismay etc. – a whole muddle of conflicting feelings passed across his face as Robert was saying his last to the boy who was never really his son. Terrific job for a such a young man!

    For as hated as Joffrey Baratheon was, Jack himself is so very admired by the whole of GOT fans – he was a terrific villain, one who will be so very missed, and Jack as an actor was among the top in a cast full of terrific actors. Well done, sir!

  40. John W
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:14 am | Permalink

    Good luck to him. He deserves Emmy consideration IMO.

  41. The Kingshaver
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Jack didn’t just nail the role of Joffrey, he added to it. It would have been so easy to let Joffrey be completely one-dimensional – even in the books, he’s not exactly multi-layered – but Jack voraciously mined him for every bit of depth available.

    FaB is spot on in highlighting his fantastic mixture of arrogance and uncertainty. One of the pleasures of Jack’s performance was watching Joff switch between carefully weighing just what he could get away with one minute and excitedly giving rein to his rampant sadism the next. He has to go down as one of the all-time great TV villains.

    Seven Blessings your Grace!

  42. A Golden Haired Baratheon
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    “I am THE KING!!”

    All Hail Jack Gleeson. A great young actor who really brought the despicable, sniveling Joffrey to life.

  43. Varamyr Fourskins
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Jack was great. He really did the character justice, and was far from two-dimensional. I think he was best when he softened up a bit, like the scenes in which he professed his love for Margaery. He was so perfectly manic, he nailed Joffrey down to a tee. People may have hated his character, but they loved to hate him. So he will be missed.

    I suppose Ramsay is now the biggest villain on the show, but he’s not nearly so fun to hate. Just creepy and disturbed. He’s the type of guy you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley. But Joffrey’s the opposite. His power came from those who gave it to him. Ramsay takes it for himself.

  44. Caravaggio
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    Jack Gleeson deserves this so much. The first Curtain Call of the season!

    I remember when I first got into the series. It was hilarious seeing this preening entitled twat get smacked by his uncle. That scene truly cemented to me that Tyrion didn’t take shit from anyone, but what I’ve come to realize then is just how hatable Joffrey’s character was.

    Then he cut Arya’s friend Mycah with a sword, and pit Sansa against her sister, then I knew that Joffrey was more than your fairy-tale spoiled brat. He was that fucking brat realized with all the implications of what that character would be in the real world.

    So here’s to Jack. A monumental actor, who could not have landed a more thankless job than bringing vile King Joffrey to life. But is it really so thankless, in the wake of all the accolades his character is receiving now?

    I raise my wine glass to Jack. He ruled.

  45. Rickard Greyjoy
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    What’s up with all the “happy Joffrey is dead” comments? Is that any way to mourn your king? Traitors the lot of you…
    Hehe seriously though If I lived in Westeros I’d surely be happy Joffrey’s dead. However the show-watcher/book-reader in me likes to be entertained and he is deeply saddened at the passing of our king. Having the little dick in the most powerful position in Westeros was one of the best elements of both the tv and book series and so I can’t help but feel both lost a little something with the death of Joffrey.
    Anyways kudos to an amazing portrayal by Jack Gleeson. Prior to watching the first season I was Unsullied but after watching S1 I immediately bought the first 4 books. So in my mind’s eye while reading Jack has always been Joffrey and I’ve become quite fond of the little shit. Best of luck in your future endeavors Jack!

  46. UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:41 am | Permalink

    *tips fedora* well done good sir! You will be missed

  47. Tatters
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    Fuck the king
    Hail Jack

  48. Oz of Thrones
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    In the off-season Looking Forward series discussing the future of Joff, I wrote this and meant it: “Joffrey adds a dynamic to the battle of the Seven Kingdoms that would be difficult to replace. Disliked characters are sometimes so perfect that their absence takes away from the production.

    I will miss King Crossbow. All hail Jack. Great tribute FaB!

  49. The Bastard
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    1 out of 10 Million people could pull off that character without seeming cartoonish. Jack is one of those people.

  50. Fatio Corcyn
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    Thanks Jack! Best of luck!

    Of course he’s reading this.

  51. umuckurlife
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    As a reader, I sat there anticipating this death and hoping to get a feeling of satisfaction from it. All I got was the sad realization that Jack Gleeson is no longer on Game of Thrones. All I can say is: Thank You Jack. You played this character to perfection and kept us all thoroughly entertained. Westeros is far better without Joffery, but I can’t say the same of Game of Thrones without Jack. Cheers!

  52. utherwolf
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    Now that Joffrey is dead, Ramsay will take the title of the best villain in the series. He shall surpass Joffrey in everything :)

  53. Nagga's Kin
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    It is unfortunate the writers never gave us more insight into the source of Joffrey’s almost cartoonish villainy. Clearly, he was a deeply insecure teenager who ascended to a position of absolute power long before he was mature enough to handle the responsibility that came with it. His subsequent actions appear to have been, at least in part, a coping mechanism.

    Nevertheless, we never got to see if he himself ever harbored any private doubts regarding his true parentage. Even subconscious torment could have manifested psychosomatically, e.g. as chronic insomnia, night terrors or a peptic ulcer. We never got to see Joffrey as a victim of inbreeding, one who could not afford to show any vulnerability on that score. IMHO, even a brief scene in that vein would have rendered him a more complex and tragic figure.

    However, we did get one pivotal conversation with Cersei in which he raised the issue of the rumors of her incest with Jaime. Surrounded by craftsmen, she of course denied them but tellingly, only in reference to Joffrey’s claim to the throne and to not her son’s emotional welfare. By omission, she revealed her priorities.

    He asserted the throne wasn’t up for grabs anyhow but then brought up Robert’s bastards, who he surely knew had no legal claim on it to begin with. Impertinently, he implied that Cersei had been unable to satisfy Robert’s carnal desires. Insulted, she instinctively slapped her son. The craftsmen noticed, so he resorted to threatening her life if she ever did that again. In an instant, she lost not only her parental authority but also whatever political influence she still had as the queen regent. He lost the last relationship that just might have helped him grow – eventually – into a man actually fit to be king. Just like that, the gloves had come off, as had the wheels.

    Jack Gleeson obviously relished portraying the sociopath Joffrey precisely because he knew viewers would develop a visceral hatred for the character and delight in his ultimate murder, perhaps to a degree that ought to give them pause. As he lay there croaking and bleeding from every orifice in his final moments, you could not help but feel some measure of pity for him as a human being, as a dying child, no matter how awful he had been in life.

    It is a testament to Jack’s acting chops that he managed to make us care, however fleetingly, for a character that never had a chance to progress much beyond a single dimension. Good luck to him in his academic pursuits!

  54. Juarp
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Best actor on the show in my opinion, all his scenes were amazing and he really nailed Joffrey. Ned’s execution in particular was absolutely perfect.

    Shame that we won’t see him more.

  55. Rillion
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    Thank Jack for bring Joff to life. He will be missed because of your performance.

  56. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    Fare thee well, oh mad spawn of the Gemini twins, Cersei & Jaime. May your death reignite such inspirational passion between them!

    As you walk the valley of death, may you be joined and welcomed by the shadows of Ned and Ros. They’ve been expecting you.

    Jack truly was awesome.

  57. Greatjon of Slumber
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Bravo. A thousand times over. That swagger of his was the worst, the little bounce in his step when he was about to say something awful. Like when he appears by Sansa’s side to give her away, the ultimate horrible insult. He did a fantastic job on this show for sure.

  58. marta
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Jack did a brilliant, fantastic and perfect job performing Joffrey, hats off to him, best of lucks!!

  59. JRR Tzolkin
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Reminds me of Natalie Portman. After the Star Wars prequels, I remember reading that she had also decided to quit acting to go to college. Then she changed her mind and boom! Ends up winning an Oscar.

    I wouldn’t be surprised in the very least to see Jack Gleeson following Portman’s footsteps, should he decide to continue (or come back to) acting. He’s obviously that good.

  60. Jen@House Stark
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Dear Jack, the boy King we love to hate. Mayhaps you will reconsider down the road your uber talented acting career. It has been an awful wonderful ride and I wish you all the best, your Grace. FaB, as always, well done article, Ser Chucker :smile:

  61. WeirwoodTreeHugger
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    I don’t miss Joffrey in the books but I will miss him on the show thanks to Jack. The character never would have worked if you couldn’t see the insecurity and fear beneath the surface. I watched The Lion and the Rose for the third time last night and still got a little teary. Partially because of Lena Headey’s performance, but partially because I’m going to miss Jack.

    Hopefully he changes his mind and acts again someday. Even if he doesn’t, he’s made an indelible mark on TV history as one of the all time greatest villains.

  62. The Dragon Demands
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    utherwolf,

    I will miss Gleeson.

    Ramsay is worse than Joffrey in some ways but they have their differences. Ramsay knows, and fully acknowledges, that the ability he has to torment people…isn’t “lawful”. He’s raping and flaying innocent people on a “might makes right” mentality, but he never thinks he has any right to it.

    Joffrey meanwhile, is the height of arrogance, like the Milgram Experiment…his whole theme was “why do people follow bad leaders?” — and by “bad”, I mean even the other Lannisters think he’s simply “impractical”, hilariously incompetent. Killing Ned Stark wasn’t just amoral but politically, the height of stupidity. It made the entire North rebel.

    Joffrey thinks…thought…he had the “right” to do all of this, he’s this walking sense of entitlement in human shape, because “I’m the son of the last king, that means I’m the king!”…..the irony of course being that he’s NOT really Robert’s son. So it isn’t even “hereditary monarchy isn’t a viable system of rule”, but “you’re not the real heir, and you sit on a stolen throne”.

    As Bronn says in the books, after the food riots Joffrey started, he HAS a younger brother! Why not just kill Joffrey and use Tommen as their puppet?! The Lannisters pretend he’s the real heir because they need a puppet, but he’s too unwieldy to make a good puppet.

  63. Balerion
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Jack did one hell of a job!

  64. Tabes
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    I think Jack Gleeson’s portrayal of King Joffrey will go down as one of the best villain performances in the history of television, or movies for that matter. He brought that character to life like no one else could have. Thank you Jack, you helped make this great show into an epic show that people will be watching for a long, long, long time.

  65. CM Punk
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

    I’ll miss you Jack :-(

    Please reconsider your stance on acting!

    #InRygarWeTrust

  66. Igor Veloso
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    The fact of choosing to lead a more private acting and following an academic career to the masses of holywood not only makes it refreshing but gives him another value as a professional and person. I’ll miss him on thrones and it will be great to see how he fares from time to time, maybe even come ocasionally for roles on TV, but still keeping it “normal” but special…I think he’s doing it right and maybe set an example to the “celebrety culture” he speaks against but respecting the people in it nonetheless.

    I think Conleth Hill is pretty much identical. Does lots of plays, comes ocasionally to TV, but is private and knows to be the funniest and one of the great persons on set without feeling the need to tell everyone about it. An inner respect that is aknowledged and gives closure to the audience.

    Again, I find it refreshing in this times, specialy in my generation. Jack’s generation.

    Kudos and best wishes.

    EDIT PS: Might be an Irish thing, lol

  67. Red Viper 9
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

    Brava!

    One of the great strengths of the show is the young actors, many of whom have proved to be an absolute revelation and have more than held their own with the veteran actors (e.g., Maisie Williams and Charles Dance in season 2). Jack Gleeson was one of those revelations, and the show won’t be quite the same now that his character is dead. His performance gave depth to a character who could have easily been portrayed as a two-dimensional, almost cartoonish, villain; for that, we should all be thankful.

  68. Haiku Hodor
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Good luck to you Jack
    You brought depth to a cartoon
    We’ll miss hating you

  69. Lex
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I hated Joffrey SO much in the books, when I read them 13 years ago. Couldn’t wait for him to die.

    But it’s a testament to Jack Gleeson that I actually enjoyed him in the show and am sad to see him go. From the first moment he rode into Winterfell beside the Hound, to his last moments of tormenting Tyrion right before choking, I loved every moment of Jack’s performance.

    Some personal favorites:
    -Season 1, when he bullies Micah then fights with Arya. “You’re not a knight. Only a butcher’s boy…”
    -Season 2 when he makes Sansa kiss Heart Eater, and when he threatens to give Stannis “a red smile.” LOL.
    -Season 3, “I’m not tired!”
    -Season 4, flipping through the white book and mocking Jaime.

    Farewell Jack, and good luck in whatever you do! The show will go on, but something will be missing.

  70. GeekFurious
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Never have I hated a character more, wanted him dead more, and missed him more once he was gone.

    Jack Gleeson, you will be missed.

  71. Thoros
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Jofferey is one of the most talked about characters through GoT, however he is not a POV character. I am impressed how Jack made us all care so much about Jofferey that we outwardly hated Jofferey. As an actor I know that it is very satisfying to have the audience bought into who you are portraying. He was successful at making Joff very dynamic but honest at the same time. I am highly impressed and hope he finds a way to get back to performing in one way or another.

  72. 3eyes
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    Well done Jack Gleason you really worked that last scene! Thank you for your excellent work – Wishing you much success and satisfaction in future.

  73. ATG
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    “The people love their King”, while this can come into question when referring to Joffrey, it is certainly true when said in regards to Jack Gleeson. Out of all the astonishing actors and actresses in GoT he has always been one of my top favourites. I wish him all the best in life no matter what he decides to do next.

    All Hail the King.

  74. Zack
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    Lex:

    -Season 3, “I’m not tired!”

    Bwah!

    He really did bring a lot to the show. I’m gonna miss him.

    Thanks, Jack, for being so compellingly hateful. It won’t be the same show any more :/

    Good luck in the future. I’m hoping this was not the last we see of you, that your itch for acting returns at some point. In the meantime, enjoy yourself.

  75. Lord Of The Waters
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for a fantastic job in bringing one of the greatest on screen villains to life Jack. I have loved to hate Joff ever since episode 1 and will miss the brilliant work put into this character. Best of luck in whatever path you decide to take.

    Excellent piece as always FaB!

  76. Nancy
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    Bravo on job well done, Jack! I wish him all the best in whatever he decides to pursue for his future.

  77. Kevin
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:16 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know why everyone hates Joffrey so much. All he ever did was try to bring people together. Was the North ever more united than after he cut off Ned’s head? He even got that bitch Catelyn Stark to regret being so cold to Jon. Name one other person who could have accomplished that? He got the Baratheon brothers to meet together to work out their differences. It’s not his fault they were both idiots. Even his final act was to introduce his uncle to five people who could potentially be friends with him in the lonely capital.

    But most of all, he absorbed all the horrible parenting from Cersei and Robert, so that his brother and sister could grow up to have normal lives.

    He was a hero.

  78. LordStarkington
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    Everyone else has covered it so well, but Jack did an amazing job in making me hate Joffrey even more than I expected to, to the point of having a visceral reaction to seeing him on screen. Best of luck to him!

  79. WildSeed
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    The sociopath bastard king Joffrey is dead, long live Jack Gleeson !
    Intelligent, talented actor and full of life. May he live long and prosper. *>*

  80. Restore The Day
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Now to be fair, ‘pure evil’ and ‘spoiled brat’ are an easier act to pull than layered, conflicted and ever-growing characters.
    But Jack Gleeson did it with such abandon and gusto, and with such a range of physical acting both in face and body, that you have to respect the level of talent that went into what could have been a rather moustache-twirly (sans la moustache) typical affair.
    Also, on top of ‘cruel’, he pulled off ‘full-on idiot’ PERFECTLY and to the end. “It wasn’t meant as an honor!”, OMG.

  81. Jen@House Stark
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Kevin,

    I feel a beatdown coming in 3, 2, 1…

  82. KG
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Mr. Gleeson, you did a terrific job with a difficult role. The show is much poorer for your loss, as is the acting world in general.

    Best of luck, and well done :D

  83. WildSeed
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard,

    lol, are you implying that Ned went to a dark place, waiting still to have a word with the bastard sociopathic king Joffrey ? Surely you jest ser ! An entire contingent of Northmen AND Lannister supporters from the Blackwater battle will greet him, with spears at the ready ! Eddard Stark, of course sends his regards from where he sits, somewhere in the Godswood. *>*

    Nice sendoff, though ( :

  84. mariamb
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    KG:
    Mr. Gleeson, you did a terrific job with a difficult role. The show is much poorer for your loss, as is the acting world in general.

    Best of luck, and well done :D

    My feelings exactly. He was marvelous and he will be missed. Wishing good things for this intelligent, poised young man.

    FaB – a lovely send-off for this actor. I also loved his throne room scene with Charles Dance.

  85. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed,

    What is dead may never die…
    :)

  86. axia777
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    I want to thank Jack Gleeson for bringing such a hateful and insane character to life. If Joff did not have such a strong actor behind the character it would have come off in a very bad way. Gleeson KILLED it, see what I did there?. LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

    But really, he was awesome and deserves at least an Emmy nod. He will be missed even though his character will not be. I hope his career is long and bountiful!

    Kevin:
    I don’t know why everyone hates Joffrey so much.All he ever did was try to bring people together.Was the North ever more united than after he cut off Ned’s head?He even got that bitch Catelyn Stark to regret being so cold to Jon.Name one other person who could have accomplished that?He got the Baratheon brothers to meet together to work out their differences.It’s not his fault they were both idiots.Even his final act was to introduce his uncle to five people who could potentially be friends with him in the lonely capital.

    But most of all, he absorbed all the horrible parenting from Cersei and Robert, so that his brother and sister could grow up to have normal lives.

    He was a hero.

    Joff was a born psychopath like the a Targ. He was a hero? Yeah, a hero for psychos.

  87. jentario
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Perfect episode. Perfect death. Perfect Joffrey.

    Thank you, Jack. You are one of the things that made this show so amazing, and we can only hope that the remaining villains in the show will amount to half of what you were able to do.

  88. NotAFanofJon
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Jack for all your work! You did an awesome job with the role – without you I wouldn’t have hated HBO joffrey as much as I did Book Joffrey!

  89. MX
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    As I said before, Jack restored my faith in acting, after some 20 years of mostly garbage performances by young actors (people my own age, mostly incredibly shallow).

    I admire his eloquence, his modesty and his capacity for transformation.

    Best of luck to you, Jack!

  90. Raluca
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    Feeling pretty sad right now, just like it happened when Joffrey died in the books, despite his many flaws. Jack was exquisite and amazing, and he will be missed.

  91. Tar Kidho
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

    I personally hate Batman-style villains, and Joffrey could easily have been portrayed as such. However, Jack managed so much more, he took a rather 2-D character from the books and gave him a couple more dimensions. I remember seeing a seminar he gave last year, which clearly showed his great wits and sense of humour. Many actors shine when they play roles close to their own personality, but Jack appears to be one of the few who could really become someone else entirely. Hence, I salute thee Mr. Gleeson, and thank you for years of terrific work!

  92. KingJon
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Congrats to Jack Gleeson on an excellent performance. I just wish Arya had a chance to kill you.

  93. David The Grey
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    Greatjon of Slumber: That swagger of his was the worst, the little bounce in his step when he was about to say something awful.

    Yes, that was perfect! And when he’s standing there, posed (with only Meryn Trant and Jaime to see him), ignoring their talk of security while thinking thoughts (kingly, I’m sure) of his own – his stance was perfectly, wickedly, regal.

    Farewell Jack Gleeson – for 4 seasons you helped sell us on a powerful boy who really just wanted eliminate the things that made him afraid, a list that grew and grew each season rather than dwindle. Your performances were stellar, thank you for giving so much to us, your rapt audience.

  94. Theon's dick-in-a-box
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

    Growing Strong:

    There isn’t a fire hot enough to purify Joffrey’s poor soul before moving on. R’hollor would send him back for fear of taking over! Well played Ser Jack, well played indeed

  95. Alan Lovejoy
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 5:01 pm | Permalink

    My strong impression is that Jack Gleeson is a very intelligent, talented and gifted human being. And that his acting ability in general, and his historic performance in the role of King Joffrey in particular, is but a reflection of who he is.

    I can well believe that he could contribute more to the world in some pursuit or profession other than acting–not because he isn’t a great actor (he is)–but because his intelligence and talents are not limited simply to acting.

    Our culture glorifies great actors, but there are other professions that are more important and have a greater positive impact on humanity. And if that’s where Jack’s heart leads him, that’s where he should go.

  96. Theon's dick-in-a-box
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    Speaking of casting, I know Madds is everyone’s pick for Euron but I think Sean Harris should get it. He was great in the Red Riding trilogy and as the Assassin in the Borgias.. If not Euron and if Lucius Vorenus is serious about not accepting then perhaps Harris could be Jon Connington.

    Thoughts??

  97. Summer is Coming
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    just *bow*

    Incredible performance from one end to the other! You will be missed Jack! 4 years of loving hating a character so brilliantly portrayed.. that’s an achievement not many actors would gain!

    Have a wonderful life Jack!

    *kudos FaB for the article ;)

  98. Tereeza 777
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    Great job Jack. Hope you return to acting someday – the North remembers and so will we :)

  99. Arya Dunyett
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

    Such a loss! I’ve been anticipating Joffery’s death with much glee, only to be left with an empty victory now that he’s gone.

    One of the primary threads in this story has been torn and left drifting in the wind. Where is our evil focus now? The Bastard of Bolton is as rotten as they come, but he isn’t central to the plot as Joffery was. He isn’t a king.

    Of course, the reason I’ll miss this integral player is because of Jack’s skillful performance in the role. His successful morph into the callow, hateful brastard was a primary attraction to the books and the series. He is seriously missed.

    If you get the chance to compare Jack’s delivery of his lecture on celebrity culture to his performance in GoT, you’ll understand the depth of his acting chops.

    So farewell, Jack, and thanks. Live long and prosper.

  100. Dave
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    My favorite moment was his “fight” with Micah and Arya. Instantly turned from an abusive, cocksure blueblood into a mewling, cowardly boy, it was just great fun to watch scenes like that play out(“one more word and I’ll hit you again”), with Jack expertly showing how shallow and cruel Joffrey was. Poor Sansa.

    It’s a rare talent to create a loathsome character that people can’t wait to see every week. Jack made Joffrey evil, petty, cruel and still childishly human without turning him into a caricature. Like Harry Lloyd before him, he made every scene great with his contribution. There was always another rock he could turn over to find yet one more repulsive character flaw in this broken boy king. And Sunday’s episode was almost a “greatest hits” collection of moral offenses, any one of which would have ended a lesser wedding.

    Thank you, Jack. You made Joffrey fun, you made him horrifying, you made him unforgettable.

    -Slow Clap-

  101. dreamlife
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    I couldn’t have said it better. Very nice write up. I’m not ashamed that I was happy to see Joffrey go, both in the books and on screen. Reading the books I expected him to stick around until the very end, and I was very much dreading that. It really shakes things up to off him so soon after Robb and Catelyn die.

    Jack Gleeson gave a great performance that will be remembered for a long, long time.

  102. Shane
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

    I know a lot of love always goes to the likes of Peter Dinkalage in this show, but Jack Gleeson deserves a lot of credit for his work. I was both looking forward to and dreading this episode. The on-screen death of Joffrey Baratheon was all I’d wanted and more, but when it happened, we got the realization that his time in one fantastic role was finally over. When teaching aspiring actors/actresses on how to play a role in which you have to make EVERYONE hate you, this will be a character/actor that they ask people to look at for years to come.

  103. John-Michael Lelievre
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    So been looking forward to this curtain call, and dreading it at the same time. Gonna miss seeing that shit-eating smirk that he had down so well. Fantastic job.

  104. Hexonx
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

    You know, pretty much every actor on GoT has had some criticism* leveled at them on this site, some more than others. However, I can not remember reading one comment criticizing Jack’s portrayal of Joffrey. He was the perfect Joffrey. In the EW interview with D&D they said they already had the part of Joffrey cast to another actor but had one last audition. I guess they didn’t cancel out of respect and apparently Jack blew them away. They even said that Joffrey originally wasn’t going to be as big of a part of the TV Show that he ended up becoming. Jack really did have a profound effect on the direction of the show. He will be missed.

    Cheers

    *warranted or not

  105. Khal-A-Bunga
    Posted April 15, 2014 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

    Quite possibly the best cast actor in the entire show, to be honest. If they had messed up early on with the role of Joffrey, I think the show – as a whole – would have lost a lot. Luckily they didn’t (and that they didn’t end up being forced to re-cast the part), and Jack Gleeson got the part. From early on, he’s been consistently great. I’ve also enjoyed and respected his eloquence, humility, and wit in all of the interviews I’ve seen with him. Best of luck to him on all future endeavors, and congratulations and thanks for bringing one of the most memorable television villains of all-time to life.

  106. LordDavos12
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 2:26 am | Permalink

    We shall miss you Jack!

  107. Monica
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 2:27 am | Permalink

    Jack Gleeson nailed that role, somehow managing to be evil and pathetic at the same time. Well done!

  108. Shock Me
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 7:51 am | Permalink

    Well done, Jack!

  109. The Winter Rose
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the brilliant work, Jack. You did such an amazing job bringing Joffrey to life. You are clearly a very gifted and talented young man and I’m sure whatever career you decide to go into to, be it acting or otherwise, you will succeed in spades. We will all miss you. Best of luck in your future academic career.

  110. Illuminatus
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

    Three huzzahs and Hodor to you, Jack!

    You took incredible written source material and created an even more incredible and memorable character for the screen.

    May good luck and fortune follow whatever you turn your hand to in the future.

  111. John
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    All hail the king!

    He played brillantly!
    The sitting on the iron throne
    the lip-biting when he was excited
    the buckling-up his belt when he got up

    It were the little things that made his performance great!

  112. Helen Tran
    Posted April 16, 2014 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

    Never thought I’d say this… but I will miss Joffrey!

    http://tiny-tran.blogspot.ca/2014/04/crystal-clay-game-of-thrones-part-7.html

  113. loco73
    Posted April 18, 2014 at 1:33 am | Permalink

    A big thank you to Jack Gleeson for his fantastic portrayal of one of the most reviled characters in pop culture today (not just literature). It truly is a thankless job for an actor to play such a purely spiteful creature as Joffrey Baratheon was! And as if that was not enough, being a self-loving, arrogant and selfish psychopathic murderer only added to his dark and bleak mistique!!! I would have really hated to see what Joffrey would have become as an adult! Thankfully we were spared that possibility!

    Jack Gleeson was another one of those select few actors that was with the show since it’s very beginning, so on that note it will be really weird not seeing him on screen! He made Joffrey from what could have been a two-dimensional evil caricature, into a fully fleshed out tyrant and all around despicable SOB! Kudos on that tremendous achievement and on a job more than well done!

    I wish Jack Gleeson all the best in whatever he decides to do, professionally and personally! And one last time in the Hound’s immortal words “FUCK THE KING!”.

  114. conlu
    Posted April 19, 2014 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    Jack Gleeson deserves some sort of medal for that role!!!


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