At this point I think it is safe to assume that Sir Criston Cole is possibly one of the “worst” characters in this season of House of the Dragon. And by worst character I do not mean poorly written, I mean he is literally just the worst and I wish him great harm. And this got me thinking, why do I passionately hate this guy?
I mean in a series which has a kid jerking off out of a balcony, Matt Smith being an over confident prick and another character who seems obsessed with causing absolute chaos in the world, why is this guy someone I absolutely fucking despise beyond all others?
First off let’s discuss his origins.
Criston Cole was born to a very minor house, his father was the Steward to house Dondarrion, who themselves are not even the most significant house. But he was a skilled fighter, this was about all he had going for him, because not only was his father from a minor house, but he was also of mixed birth with one of his parents being from Dorne, which had not yet joined the Seven Kingdoms yet and remained its own separate entity.
Using his skills as a warrior, skills probably honed while fighting on the Dornish Marches, Criston was able to earn some renown mix this with his success on the tournament scene he would eventually be named to the Kingsguard, by Princess Rhaenyra, and would go onto becoming her sworn shield and one of her closest confident. (This is where the books and Tv series tend to differ but I will base the rest of my analysis on the Tv series as it is currently more prominent)
As the bond between Rhaenyra and Criston grows the two inevitably end up falling for each other. Criston who is a passionate hot head breaks his vows of celibacy. This leads to the two growing closer, but all that shatters when Rhaenyra chooses her duty over Criston and he becomes an angry bitter man child.
Briefly I will speak in his Défense but I will then rip all that away.
So he is angry, the only thing he had going for him was being a member of the Kingsguard and then in comes this Princess, one who hates her wealth and titles. Someone who wishes she where low born like him and she seduces him and leads him to breaking his vows, the vows which made him special, the only thing that made him significant.
After this Criston goes on to become one of the most toxic and abusive pricks in all of Westeros.
.Firstly after he becomes a sulky bitch he beats a man to death
.Secondly he shuns his former friend/lover and begins to gas light Rhaenyra at court
.Third acting as teacher to the males of the Royal family he actively plays favourites with his students making sure that Rhaenyra’s sons are given a second rate education.
.And finally Cole actively spreads rumours about Rhaenyra.
Even after over a decade he still acts like a giant rejected brat. He does all this while not ever thinking that maybe he did not need to sleep with her and just maybe her choosing duty of love is a truly admirable decision.
As you can see there really is not much to like here.
So is this why I hate him so much?
Well, no this is not why I hate him so much. I despise him because he in a way reminds me of who I was when I was a teenager. My less mature version of me. Ok I never did anything as bad as him but upon being rejected I never took it well and acted out in irrational and toxic ways. In fact like Cole my nice guy was gone and I would just become a prick, at least to the one who scorned me. I say this because personally I do not think Cole was ever honourable or nice, I think he acted that way because it is what was expected of him, at his core he was always a brutal violent man. Again I was never that bad and have done a lot of work on myself to make sure I never slip back into my more toxic personality traits. But Cole truly is some of the worst that my gender has to offer.
And personally I think seeing this on full display is a great reminder on why not to go down that dark path. If someone breaks your heart and rejects you, it is far better to move on and be positive and to prove my point, is there anyone out there rooting for Criston Cole?
The answer is probably no.
So yes that is why I dislike the guy, he reminds me of the worst parts of my past. And if you are going to be a toxic male, at least be like Daemon Targaryen and have the decency to do it with some swagger, peppered in with some genuinely kind sweet moments to remind us that you not everyone is that bad.
Categories: Nerd Bites