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The Joffrey Baratheon Scene In Game Of Thrones That Went Way Too Far

In the world of the hit HBO fantasy series "Game of Thrones," there is no shortage of betrayals. Throughout the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros, those craving power — by holding the Iron Throne or forming connections to the royals — did not think twice before committing atrocious deeds to prove themselves. From 2011 to 2019, audiences were left stunned week after week as babies were left to White Walkers, a man conjured a shadow to murder his brother, and an entire city was reduced to ashes.

Most of the characters in the series are far from innocent, and it is because of this that many have been extremely hated. Many fans agree that Joffrey Baratheon (Jack Gleeson) is one of the worst. Though he is not much older than Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) and her sister, Arya (Maisie Williams), he quickly shows that he is not like other children. He is very proud and immature, and it is due to these traits that he lashes out when things don't go his way.

Joffrey has many marks against him — from not offering condolences to the Starks after Bran (Isaac Hempstead Wright) is injured to having Arya's friend killed — but his most shocking deed comes a little later on in the series.

Joffrey orders Ned Stark's death

After learning that Joffrey is not Robert Baratheon's (Mark Addy) legitimate son, Ned Stark (Sean Bean) composes his friend's will and a plan to make Renly Baratheon (Gethin Anthony) the new king. However, Ned is betrayed by Littlefinger (Aidan Gillen) and imprisoned for treason. Sansa Stark begs for her father to be spared, which Joffrey agrees to.

In Season 1, Episode 9, "Baelor," Ned is brought in front of an audience to swear fealty to Joffrey and accept him as king; afterward, he would be sent to the Night's Watch. Joffrey doesn't follow this plan, though, and instead orders royal executioner Ser Ilyn Payne (Wilko Johnson) to "bring me his head." Joffrey has no regrets, even when his equally prideful mother, Cersei (Lena Headey), tries to stop him.

Joffrey's decision is his and his alone, and it shows that he cares little for his kingdom. Ned's execution catapults Westeros into war, causing Robb Stark (Richard Madden) to seek revenge; this eventually leads to the murders of him and Catelyn Stark (Michelle Fairley) during the Red Wedding, as well as several other tragedies. To make matters worse, Joffrey's attitude does not change; he remains apathetic to his people's needs and continues to become furious whenever his leadership is questioned.

Fans hated him for it

With everything Joffrey Baratheon has done during his time as prince and king, it raises the question as to why Ned Stark's execution is considered the worst. On a Reddit thread, user ThatDamonGuy99 needed help convincing their friend why Joffrey is horrible. Other viewers were quick to provide proof, with many citing his part in Ned's beheading. User Calikola points out that Sansa "was forced to witness her father's execution," a scene that takes place after Joffrey first agrees to spare Ned's life. Another commenter points out that by killing Ned — who agrees to be sent to the Night's Watch — Joffrey's cruelty is intensified. By going against his word so callously, he shows his true self, and it is no surprise his kingdom suffers.

User Ripper52, however, chooses to talk about a specific moment that took place because of Ned's death. Joffrey brings Sansa, now under Lannister rule, to see her father's head on a pike. Though she tries to run, he demands she look at it and even forces her to agree that Ned deserved his fate. This is just one instance that shows how Joffrey's one-sided decision forces Sansa to undergo numerous situations of mental and physical torture that turn her skin "to porcelain, to ivory, to steel."