Welcome once again to the Player of Thrones.
Player of Thrones posts will be utilized to highlight new characters from HBO’s Game of Thrones, and also return to some familiar faces.
I encourage you to discuss what role you think this character plays in the Game of Thrones. If you do choose to talk about the character with spoilers, please remember to use our spoiler veil of magic.
With that being said our second feature is focusing on a player that we are all familiar with. After hearing some of your comments on my twitter page @WiCThoros I have been enlightened to bring you a feature on The Red Priestess Melisandre.
For the night is dark and full of terror. The Great Other plagues our world and unleashes its evil amongst our lands. Beyond the wall the power of The Great Other grows, and should he win, the dawn will never rise again. He is the god of death, cold, and darkness, pulling you towards an eternal slumber.
Praise be to R’hllor, the Lord of Light, the God of Flame and Shadow, the Heart Fire who seeks to defeat this great evil. Praise be to R’hllor for he is the one who brings back the dawn. Praise be to R’hllor for gifting us with his finest priests who may help defeat The Great Other. Praise be to R’hllor for he has spoken through flame to one priestess, Melisandre, to help fight back The Great Other and save our world from darkness. For the night is dark and full of terror.
Lady Melisandre has devoted her life to serving the Lord of Light, casting out those who defy him and bringing forth the Azor Ahai, Stannis Baratheon. She travels long and far from the shadowlands of Asshai to advise Stannis of how to save the world from eternal darkness.
Asshai, known to be a port city amongst The Shadowlands of Essos (the eastern continent where Daenerys Targaryen is carrying out her campaign), holds to a lot of arcane power and mystery. Certain people from Asshai practice the magic of Shadowbinding, or manipulating shadows to do the will of the binder. As a young slave, Melisandre learned the ways of shadowbinding. She was then sold to the Red Temple to become a priestess of R’hllor.
As Melisandre spent many years developing and trusting in the power of R’hllor she has been given the honor of receiving visions in flame from him. One vision changed her sole mission of serving R’hllor, and that vision was of Stannis Baratheon pulling the burning sword Lightbringer from the flames thus convincing Melisandre that he was Azor Ahai reborn again.
Azor Ahai is a legendary hero who fought off the darkness of The Great Other during The Long Night and returned the light of dawn. He was chosen by R’hllor to fight off this great evil and preserve the light. Azor Ahai forged a sword named Light Bringer and crippled The Great Other and his darkness. Now that The Great Other has returned, according to prophecy so must Azor Ahai.
Melisandre sails to Dragonstone, where Stannis Baratheon has garrisoned, and thus begins her journey with us the reader and viewer. Melisandre converts Stannis and the majority of his following to The Lord of Light, thus burning the idols from The Faith of Seven. He removes Lightbringer from the fire and is now convinced that he is Azor Ahai as Melisandre had envisioned. Stannis is still not convinced of the Lord of Light’s power. With a few different attempts Melisandre finally convinces him that he is the Warrior of Light and the the power of R’hllor is real.
This is a summary of what it took to convince him:
- Avoiding death by poison from Maester Cressen
- Murdering Renly Baratheon with a shadow creature by Shadowbinding
- Not being present at the Battle of Blackwater and Stannis’ forces being heavily depleted by Wildfire. She convinces Stannis had she’d been there she could have saved them.
- Foreseeing Ser Davos’ attempt on her life in the Flames.
- Leeching Gendry and allowing Stannis to participate in casting them into the fire to represent the three false kings. (Robb Stark, Jofferey Baratheon, and Balon Greyjoy) Two of which now have perished.
Melisandre believes after the leeching that the real fight is not for the Iron Throne but for mankind. A raven is sent from the wall stating that they are under attack and need more men. She confirms for Stannis with a vision from R’hllor in the flames that this information is indeed correct. She convinces Stannis to put on hold his quest for the Throne and to focus on what is coming, Winter.
I love the fact that Melisandre is a big picture character. She is able to overlook the political battles of men and notice that there are greater dangers building. She is on a mission of faith to protect the realm and those she feels are there to save it. Her faith provides her with the tools to support Stannis in his quest. She becomes the closest advisor to him and does it with such ease. Although constantly doubted and questioned by many people she stays true to her visions from her god R’hllor.
For me as a reader and watcher, I feel she is one of the most important characters to the happenings in Westeros. She now has the full trust of Stannis and can advise him on how to use his host. With a strong army, a great lord with claim to the throne, and the Lord of Light at her back, she is a force to be reckoned within the Game of Thrones.
Done in the light of the Lord.
What do you think of Melisandre? Do you feel like she is manipulating or supporting Stannis? How do you feel about the Lord of Light and The Great Other? Do you feel she has what it takes to be on or advising the Throne? Let’s discuss in the name of the Lord of Light…