Spoiler Alert: Please do not read if you have not watched Sunday’s episode of “Game of Thrones.”
In the latest episode, the most hated man on television reached new lows with a bloody power move that turned him from House Bolton’s illegitimate son to the new Lord of the North.
In an attempt to secure his shaky status as the heir to Winterfell, Ramsay impulsively decided to indulge his murderous tendencies in the worst way possible. He knifed his father, Roose Bolton, right in the heart. It’s the first major death of this season, and it would have been enough to get fans talking.
Instead, Ramsay took things even further, killing his stepmother Walda and her newborn child, thereby eliminating the only challenger to his birthright.
When Walda begged to be spared, Ramsay coldly responded, “I prefer to be an only child” before setting his hounds on what’s left of his family.
After that moment, fans began yearning for those idyllic days when Joffrey was the most vile person in Westeros.
The online reaction came swiftly.
I’m in the middle so no spoilers please but I never thought what I’m about to say is possible. I hate a character more than Joffrey!
When Joffrey died it seemed like no death could be as satisfying but now I’m praying Ramsay goes in an even more extreme way #GameofThrones
– teresa (@belonginglwt) May 2, 2016
Lots of people are complaining about Ramsey Bolton right now. Someone should probably make a ‘Miss me yet?’ macro of Joffrey.
– Diamanda Hagan (@Diamandahagan) May 2, 2016
But some fans are feeling disgust not towards Ramsay, but toward the writers’ room. “GoT” Twitter was sprinkled with complaints that the show was overdoing it with Ramsay’s scumbag antics, turning him more into a caricature rather than a well-rounded villain like Cersei and some of the other characters people love to hate.
Fans also complained that the show was relying too much on shock value, using the violent death of a newborn child to get viewers to hate Ramsay when he had long ago been established as an irredeemable scumbag.
D&D are realizing now they can’t write long term plot lines. Shock value week after week now #GameofThrones
– Tribune of the Plebs (@Handsome_Jake_) May 2, 2016
“Did u know Ramsay is a monster?”
“Got it, #GameofThrones.”
“Did u know RAMSAY IS A HORRIBLE MONSTER?”
“DID U KNOW…”
– Todd VanDerWerff (@tvoti) May 2, 2016
– B.W.C. (@beedubyousee) May 2, 2016
-Sansa and Ramsay
-Walda and baby
We get it. It’s violent. And awful. You don’t have to be disgusting. #GameofThrones
- Kelly Lawler (@klawls) May 2, 2016
Honestly ramsay is a boring character. No dynamic, no motivation. Just evil.
- JR (@Joshua_Macks) May 2, 2016
It seems that the “GoT” team may have anticipated such a reaction to Ramsay. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, episode writer Dave Hill insisted that this kill is different than the others Ramsay committed in past seasons.
“Ramsay’s sad, he’s not a complete psychotic madman,” said Hill. “He regrets having to kill his father. He’s actually trying to live up to this father’s standards and become the man his father wanted him to be — in his own sociopathic killer way.”