Littlefinger is probably the single best player in the Game of Thrones.
He’s indirectly led to the downfall of at least three major houses
and has advanced his own station at every opportunity.
In this video, we’re going to explore what it is that he does that makes him win
and how deviating from his strategy may lead to the end of his winning streak.
Two caveats before we begin —
first, spoilers through season six and some speculation into season seven.
And two, don’t do the things that Littlefinger does —
it’s fun to analyze Littlefinger’s manipulations and learn how you can avoid them in your own life
but don’t be a liar or a backstabber — it’s just not cool.
So, let’s begin.
Game of Thrones is all about power.
有些人 例如瑟曦 利用自己的位置命令别人
Some people like Cersei use their position to command others.
Cut his throat.
I’ve changed my mind; let him go.
Power is power.
…then there’s people like The Mountain
who literally just dominate through physical brute force.
But in the long run, it’s those who wield power more subtly that excel in the game
and perhaps no one is more subtle than Petyr.
He is the ultimate player in the game because he gets other people to do exactly what he wants
without them even knowing that he has influenced them.
他是怎么做到的 首先 培提尓能够隐藏影响力
How does he do this? Well, first off, Petyr is able to hide his influence
because he doesn’t try to convince anyone of anything.
He may make a few persuasive points but he very quickly drops the discussion
when he senses that someone is digging in their heels.
Watch how quickly he allows Sansa to stay in King’s Landing
after offering her help escaping and having her deny him.
I can say so much of her in you.
She was like a sister to me.
For her sake, I’ll help get you home.
King’s Landing is my home now.
Look around you; we’re all liars here.
Every one of us is better than you.
Instead of insisting, he just plants the seed of doubt in Sansa’s head
让她自行思考 后来 她真的寻求他的帮助
and then lets her ponder it until later on, she literally begs for his help.
You said you’d take me home.
You said King’s Landing was your home.
你属于皇家 如果任何一位大臣得知 带你离开就等于叛国
With the property of the crown, stealing you would be treason if you were to tell just one advisor.
I won’t tell anyone.
How do I know?
Because I’m a terrible liar; you said so yourself.
求你了 贝里席大人 告诉我该怎么做 通知我离开的时间
Please, Lord Baelish, tell me what to do — tell me when.
In addition, once Littlefinger has made his case to persuade someone,
he will immediately make it clear that the decision is theirs.
在告知珊莎 准备将她嫁入波顿家 听听他是怎么说的
Listen to what he says to Sansa after informing her that he plans to wed her to the Bolton’s.
Side note — I know that book Littlefinger probably never would have made this move
because it’s kind of ridiculous to give Sansa up. Sansa sounds, who knows.
but this conversation is still indicative of Petyr’s general strategy
of not being pushy when trying to persuade someone.
不 不要逼我 我会饿死 到波顿家前我会自杀
No, you can’t make me. I will starve myself. I will die before I have to go there.
I won’t force you to do anything.
Don’t you know by now how much I care for you?
只要你说不 我们立刻调转马头 但是听我说 听着
Say the word and we turn the horses around but listen to me. Listen.
You’ve been running all your life.
So why does Littlefinger do this?
Wouldn’t it just be faster to tell people what to do?
Now it might seem that way
but when people agree to what you want out of pressure, they don’t own the decision.
And when they don’t own the decision, they might go along with it for a bit
but they’re unlikely to stick with it in the long run.
That’s because one of the fundamental drivers of all human action
is the need to feel in control.
When people feel like they’ve made a decision on their own,
they’re much more likely to stick with it.
So as counterintuitive as it may seem, when you try to talk someone into something and are non-stop persistent,
you decrease the odds that they’ll do that thing even if it’s good for them
simply because they want to feel in control.
Littlefinger gets this so everything that he does
is intended to make other people feel like their decisions are their own
when in reality, he’s pulling the strings behind the scenes.
顺便一提 如果你想看更多 比如提利昂 丹妮莉丝和史塔克权力运用的不同
By the way, if you want to see more on how people like Tyrion and Daenerys and the Starks differ in their use of power,
I set up a Game of Thrones playlist that analyzes each of them;
just click the link in the description or the white button in the upper right hand corner to watch.
回到培提尓的话题 关于运用权力的微妙性 在下一场景
But back to Petyr, with regards to his subtlety, in the next scene,
he’s dealing with Robin who is simple-minded
and he can get him to focus on the fact that Sansa isn’t safe
which lets him come to his own obvious conclusion.
…runs to the north telling Sansa has escaped Winterfell.
I expect he’s headed to Castle Black where her brother serves as Lord Commander
but she won’t be safe there — not with the Boltons after her.
She’s my cousin.
We should help her.
That was my instinct as well.
This is very similar to what Littlefinger does with Ned
when it comes to convincing him to pursue Jon Arryn’s path of inquiry.
If Littlefinger were to insist that Ned stay in King’s Landing and play detective,
Ned probably would have dug in his heels,
become suspicious of Littlefinger’s motives, and then refused him.
但为了激发奈德的好奇心 小指头说只需一个小时去探寻 然后就开始走出房间
but instead, by piquing Ned’s curiosity, telling him it would only take an hour to explore and then stepping out of the room,
Little Finger gets Ned to own this decision which ultimately leads to his death.
When do you return to Winterfell?
Why? What do you care?
If you’re still here come nightfall, I’ll take you to see the last person Jon Arryn spoke with before falling ill
if that sort of thing still interests you.
I don’t have the time.
It won’t take more than an hour but as you please.
Round the pool of men we have.
There is another benefit to influencing in this subtle way
which is that people don’t ever know what you want as Littlefinger says.
A man with no motive is a man no one suspects.
Always keep your fools confused.
If they don’t know who you are or what you want,
they can’t know what you plan to do next.
So that’s the first and biggest lesson of Littlefinger’s influence —
when people sense that someone is wielding power over them,
they can feel the ulterior motive and they resist.
But when they feel that they’ve come to their own conclusions, they’re more likely to move forward.
So Littlefinger is always careful to make sure that people with status
never feel that he is wielding power over them.
The second big thing is that Littlefinger does not let his ego get in the way of his goals.
人们一直侮辱他 贬低他 看不起他
People insult him, talk down to him, and underestimate him all the time
but Littlefinger and, especially, book Littlefinger do not rise to these taunts.
他知道 最终他会胜利 敌人会失败
He knows that it’s going to eventually just raise his profile and create an enemy down the line
so instead he shows no signs of outward animosity when people slide him.
…flooded the gutters with wine,
smashed the false idols, and sent the goddess on the run.
I’m here on urgent business for the Queen Mother.
Should I send word that I’ve been delayed?
This turn-the-other-cheek-at-least-outwardly mentality is the opposite of what Cersei does.
She makes situations worse for herself by running her mouth to protect her ego.
例如 在其他人面前辱骂狱卒 毫无策略可言
For instance, there is no strategic play to insulting your jailer in front of other people.
If anything, it’s just going to get you worse treatment.
But Cersei lets her ego get in the way of her interests
and winds up running her mouth as soon as she is taken by the faith militant.
Look at me.
Look at my face.
It’s the last thing you see before you die.
说到瑟曦 我考虑做个关于她的视频 所以请告诉我你是否感兴趣
Speaking of Cersei, I’m thinking of doing a video on her in the future so let me know if you’re interested
or if there’s another character that you prefer in the comments.
Back to Littlefinger though, he also does a good job of keeping his ego in check
when it comes to allowing others to think that they control him.
Listen how Lysa discusses Littlefinger’s plans to capture Sansa
as if it’s something that she let him do.
Now we know better; clearly, he was the mastermind
but most people of status wouldn’t tolerate that sleight.
Littlefinger though stays silent — happy to have Lysa thinking that she is in charge of decisions.
Don’t you think I know who you are?
Don’t you think I’d let my attendant leave the Eyrie on urgent business
without knowing what that business was?
I let him go because he could bring you here… to me.
It’s’ true in our own lives too; people don’t necessarily want to be in charge —
they want to feel like they’re in charge and they want others to recognize them as being the leader.
In the same vein, Petyr Baelish has no problem
letting other people take credit for his hard work.
He leaks information to people around him, always leaving them grateful
and proud that they get to sit in the limelight and receive praise.
When in reality, they only get the information that he wants them to have
because he knows what they’re going to do with it.
In the case of telling Cersei about the Tyrell’s plans to marry Sansa to Loras,
Littlefinger correctly predicts that the Lannisters will respond with sneaky marriages of their own.
Stop that; you’re making me uncomfortable.
Your sister has known that your new friends, the Tyrells,
are plotting to marry Sansa Stark to Ser Loras so we find Sansa Stark a different husband.
Yes, it is.
You should be thanking the gods for this; this is more than you deserve.
Tyrion will do as he’s bid… as will you.
What do you mean?
You’ll marry Ser Loras.
I will not.
起初 瑟曦感觉良好 因为得到泰温的赞扬
So Cersei feels good initially because she gets the praise from Tywin
and she gets to tell him all this new information but ultimately, she doesn’t get what she wants.
And this is what makes Littlefinger unique
其他人都在追逐权力的象征——例如尊重 头衔 赞扬
because while everyone else is pursuing the trappings of power — like respect, titles, praise,
and the ability to mouth off and not worry about the consequences,
Petyr only wants the big wins.
He has one singular goal in mind and everything else, including his ego, is just a distraction.
There is a lesson here to be applied in your own life
which is that if you prioritize your ego and you prioritize being shown respect,
you deprioritize your other goals.
Like the person who gets in a verbal altercation because someone called him a name —
rather than realizing they’d be much better off to just let it go
and continue to enjoy their day.
Serving your ego might seem like a good idea in the moment
but it usually takes you farther away from the things that you really want in life.
And that brings us to the third major piece of Littlefinger’s game
which is that he has a complete lack of sentimentality.
For instance, he has absolutely no issue lying.
I swear on my life.
I swear to all of the gods.
Let her go, Lysa.
He also doesn’t feel any obligation to keep pawns in his game alive
once they’ve served their purpose and he is especially willing to kill people
when they know enough about his plans and that they could undermine him
if they spoke to the wrong person.
Just look at what he did to Dontos after he delivered Sansa.
I should get back. They’ll be looking for me.
首先 你要报酬 一万对吧
First, you want your pay. Ten thousand, was it?
For Littlefinger, nothing is sacred
and that means that he’s even more able to focus on his goals
without being distracted by honor or moral goodness
so in some, Littlefinger doesn’t try to convince people.
He allows his ego to be bruised in service of his goals
and he has no notions of sentimentality that would distract him from his aims.
All of those things make Littlefinger a patient master player of the game
that has won nonstop through season six and book five
but at least one of those pillars is getting wobbly —
specifically, his sentimentality when it comes to Sansa.
Not only has he done his best to train her to become a player,
he’s encouraged her to acquire power and basically laid out his deepest desires to her.
…a picture of me… on the iron throne… with you by my side.
Never before had Littlefinger let someone with so much power
know so much about his ultimate goal
and that seems to me to be a massive tactical error that will cost him in the end
but that doesn’t mean that his strategies have completely fallen apart;
he still doesn’t insist or try to convince Sansa
and he’s still dropping subtle hints to drive a rift between her and Jon.
…the time may come when you need an army loyal to you.
I have an army.
Your brother’s army.
…you, I love. I have the future of the House Stark.
Who should the north rally behind?
Trueborn daughter of Ned and Catelyn Stark born here at Winterfell
or a motherless bastard born in the south?
[Music playing] The king of the north.
北境之王 北境之王 北境之王
The king of the north. The king of the north. The king of the north.
[Music and cheering continues]
So it seems that Littlefinger isn’t quite out of the game
and may even be successful at turning Sansa against Jon for a time,
but I think that he has sown the seeds of his own destruction
in making Sansa such a knowledgeable player especially as to his own ambitions
and given how it looks like the Starks are about to collide back in the north,
my guess is that some combination of Sansa, Arya, and Jon will finish him off by the end of season seven
and I, for one, cannot wait to watch that happen.
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If you want to see other Game of Thrones character breakdowns,
I created a special playlist that you can go ahead and watch now;
有提利昂 丹妮莉丝 还有史塔克家族
it’s got Tyrion and Daenerys and the Starks.
Also, you may want to subscribe to the channel since I am doing another video on Game of Thrones next week
and I’m very excited for that one.
不管怎样 希望你喜欢这个视频 下期见
Anyways, hope you enjoyed this video and I will see you in the next one.