Anecdota

Laughter is the Best Medicine

How Tywin Lannister Commands Respect


Tywin Lannister is a beast — he effectively served as king for many years under Aerys and wielded massive influence over Robert and Joffrey. He would have continued to be the power behind the throne
had he not been so horrible to Tyrion — more on that later — but that’s not the point. In this video, I want to explore why Tywin was able to command so much respect breaking down everything from his body language to his strategies. But to start, let’s note where Tywin’s power does not come from. I am the king. I will punish you. Any man who must say, “I am the king,” is no true king. This is the most important sentence that Tywin ever says. According to Tywin, power does not come from telling other people that you have it it; comes from showing them. Tywin does that in many ways and I want to start with
some of the sub-communications of power — meaning the things that Tywin does with his body language and his voice. And I have to give Charles Dance here massive amounts of credit because he did a phenomenal job of acting these scenes out. So let’s explore how Tywin enters crowded conversations — first off, with a boom. I’m told we still have his sisters— The first order of business is ransoming Ser Jaime. No truces; we can’t afford to look weak. We should march at once. First, we must return to Casterly Rock to raise more— They have my son! Now, you may struggle to be heard
when there’s a lot of people speaking — many of us do. You might stop and start, try to find your way in politely,
and ultimately not get listened to at all but not Tywin — he startles people by going from silent to booming in an instant. That grabs attention immediately. But what’s interesting is that he often doesn’t stay booming for too long. Once he has attention, he quiets right back down. This makes his quiet mode of interaction just as frightening as his booming tone because you never know when he’s going to switch. They have my son! Get out — all of you. You don’t need to scream like Tywin does but the lesson
of entering with a slightly louder and deeper tone is one that applies just as well to modern-day interactions. Pay attention to any group and you’ll see that the person who is listened to when there’s a lot of people trying to speak is often the loudest when entering. Don’t stay loud forever though if you’re going to use this small piece of advice because that can just be obnoxious. You may also have noticed that Tywin is very comfortable with silence. This is a power move that I discussed in another video so I won’t spend too long on it and I’ll link to it here if you want to click the little white button in the corner. But Tywin likes to use silence right after people have said something to provoke him. It gives them a few extra seconds to regret their decision to stand up to him and to sit in fear of what he might do next. My father won the real war. He killed Prince Rhaegar. He took the crown while you hid in Casterly Rock. The king is tired. See him to his chambers. The silence that Tywin makes creates a stare down
like you might see from boxing or UFC promotions. The first person to flinch or look away loses which is why fighters go to such great lengths to not give an inch of ground and this isn’t just an arbitrary rule that was made up for boxing. Flinching and breaking eye contact are built in evolutionary tells that communicate fear which is why they can sometimes matter even more
than raw strength when it comes to a confrontation because when one animal isn’t afraid, that’s a good sign
that it has an advantage that needs to be respected. Just watch this charging gorilla back off when a puny little human doesn’t flinch even though the gorilla could obviously tear him limb from limb. …charged and charged and charged again. And I think… and I’m sure, if I would have even flinched one— But Tywin’s sub-communications of power go beyond the ape realm. His word choice is a distinctly human way of using power. He doesn’t ask people what to do or make threats by saying, “If you do this then I’m going to respond like this.” He tells people what they are going to do using the word “will.” It conveys absolute certainty that they will do as they are told and again, the certainty that Tywin will be listened to adds to the sense that he should be listened to. Just watch. You will go to King’s Landing. And do what? Rule. You will serve as hand of the King in my stead. You’ll bring that boy King to heel and his mother too if needs be. …for one more thing — you will not take that whore to court. Do you understand? The circular logic of sub-communications is kind of how they work because when people signal through sub-communications that they have power, we assume they ought to and respond accordingly
which elicits more sub-communications of power. A similar thing occurs with Tywin’s inflection at the end of sentences; it’s always downward emphasizing that this isn’t a question — like this. Listen to Joffrey do the reverse asking Tywin a question with an upward tone kind of like this — this is great acting which mirrors real life. When people feel nervous or lacking in power, they will naturally begin to ask questions and flip their intonation upward like in this scene. …the council meetings in the Tower of the Hand instead of the small council chamber. I have, yes. May I ask why? Don’t get me wrong. There are times when you will want
to ask questions and speak with an upward inflection. For instance, players like Tyrion and Littlefinger use more subtle lines of questioning to make someone act and feel like it was their idea to do what Tyrion or Littlefinger wanted. That strategy tends to work better in modern times as well. For instance, when speaking to employees, you may prefer to say, “Could you please do this for me?” rather than demand it of them. That way, they feel less put upon and happier to help you. But Tywin doesn’t care if people are happy to help. His strategy is to create fear. …might have been the lowest of the Lannisters but he’s one of us. And every day that he remains a prisoner, the less our name command respect. So the Lion does concern himself of the opinions of— No, that’s not an opinion; it’s a fact. If another House can seize one of our own and hold him captive with impunity, we are no longer a House to be feared. We’ll come back to that in a minute but for now, let’s look at how Tywin manipulates situations to further take the people he interacts with out of a confident state. First, he often makes people wait before he speaks to them. This is a tactic that is still used today in negotiations and its purpose is the same. Making someone wait is a power signal — a circular one. It says, “We will do things on my time,” and before the negotiation has even started, both parties have subtly agreed
that the person who controls the time that the negotiation begins is more important. And that has lasting effects on your subconscious which, if you’re on
the receiving end of this tactic, makes you more likely to negotiate a bad deal. Dealing with this is a topic for another video but if you’re interested in more techniques to remain confident in situations where you normally clam up or hesitate or negotiate a bad deal, you might want to check out our online course, Charisma University. It covers everything from first impressions to leadership and of course, there’s a hefty chunk on staying confident in those clutch moments. I’ve thrown a link in the description if you want to take a look. Also, it’s got a section on body language
which is something that Tywin Lannister uses as a weapon. Check out how he stands over Tyrion when wielding power over him. You are an ill-made spiteful little creature full of envy, lust, and low cunning. Tywin is literally looking down on Tyrion and if you’ve ever held a conversation
while someone stood over you and threatening you, you know how much more powerful this can make them seem. But people aren’t always sitting and they aren’t always dwarves
so another way that Tywin makes them feel his domineering presence is by invading their personal space and he does this specifically at the exact moment that he’s making his big point so that they’re more likely to react to his commands rather than resist them. Check out how he does it with Jaime here. The future of our family will be determined in these next few months. We could establish a dynasty that will last a thousand years. I need you to become the man you were always meant to be — not next year, not tomorrow — now. With regards to changing the scenario, lastly and crucially, Tywin almost always creates a situation where he gets the last word. This means that the conversation is closed on his terms. He does this either by commanding people to leave once he’s made his point… Speak no more of your rights to Casterly Rock. Go. …or he does it by leaving the room as soon as he’s made his point.
He leaves no time or space for argument. You can drink, you can joke, you can engage in juvenile attempts to make your father uncomfortable — but you will do your duty. If you remember last week’s video on Littlefinger — link, in the corner right now — he does the same thing — just more gently. In either case, the discussion ends on the terms that
Tywin and Littlefinger wanted to end on. So remember, speaking last creates a lot of authority and has tremendous power. It’s also likely to direct the other person’s thoughts long after you’ve left though, of course, there are advantages to speaking first in terms of framing a situation so maybe this is a topic that I need to dive deeper in on another video to uncover all the nuances but for now, remember that speaking last conveys a lot of power and authority. So, to wrap this section on body language up, check out this next clip and see how many of the specific sub-communications of power that you can count. There are a lot. Here we go. You’re still fertile. You need to marry again and breed. I am Queen Regent, not some broodmare. You’re my daughter! You will do as I command and you will marry Loras Tyrell. And put an end to the disgusting rumors about you once and for all. Father, dont’ make me do this again, plea— Not another word, my children. You disgraced the Lannister name for far too long. Crazy how much is going on, right? Credit to Charles Dance here for nailing this portrayal but I want to make clear. Tywin’s character is not just about brute force or physical bullying. He is about strategic shows of force to keep people in line. And if you look back on the big event of the books, you’ll know that things like the red wedding were brutal but it left the entire realm in fear of what Tywin
would do next should anyone cross him. Heck, the Martells waited nearly 20 years after Elia’s death
before enacting their plot for revenge — that is the power of fear and Tywin knows it. The northerners will never forget. Good. Let them remember what happens when they march on the south. I could go on and on about Tywin’s strategic genius but others have already covered this topic really well so I’m just going to link to some fascinating theories in the description. For you Game of Thrones superfans, here are some teasers
for what you can see in those videos. First, Tywin may have covertly planned Aerys’ capture
at Duskendale way before the books and planned for his assassination by proxy. Second, Tywin also likely turned Roose Bolton against Robb Stark as early as Book 1 which just shows how many steps ahead he was thinking. If those points meant nothing to you, it’s okay; it means you’re just a regular Game of Thrones nerd and not a complete super nerd like me. Anyway, Tywin is obviously dead at this point which shows his only real flaw as a player in the Game of Thrones — his blind hatred of Tyrion which may not be so blind, given the paternity, but leave that aside. If Tywin had been able to see Tyrion’s talents and use them for his own ends, I think that the Lannisters would still be totally dominating with Tywin as the power behind Joffrey’s throne just as he was with Aerys — only this time, Tywin probably would have removed the Mad King much sooner. So I hope that you enjoyed learning why Tywin is such a beast. A special thanks for this episode goes out to our sponsor, Blue Apron. If you’re like me, you’ve probably spent far more time than you would like thinking about what to make for dinner waiting in line at the grocery store and lugging grocery bags home, Blue Apron cuts those steps out and save you time by delivering fresh ingredients to your doorstep in exactly the amount that you need to cook a great meal. It all comes in a refrigerated box so it’s good to go whenever you get home from work plus Blue Apron sends the exact recipe for how to cook the ingredients so you look like a lot better of a chef than you actually might be which could make date night go a lot better. So if you want an affordable option that tastes great
and saves you time, give Blue Apron a try. You can order for two people or for an entire family and the first 100 people who signed up through the link in the description below will get their first three meals totally for free. So if you want to check it out and cut back on grocery store trips go ahead and click that link in the description. I hope that you enjoyed this video, hope that you decide to subscribe to the channel because we will have much more Game of Thrones coming in the future weeks — I’m so excited for their premiere tonight, technically, tomorrow if you’re watching this video on Monday — and I will see you in the next video.

100 thoughts on “How Tywin Lannister Commands Respect

  1. Tywin was the got such a big influence over two kings not because he was charismatic or because he commanded respect, simply because he was the richest man in the kingdom. He didnt need to "command power", he simply had it.

  2. I liked Tywin he was a really good character, sure he was an asshole but in all honesty he was only trying to protect his family and keep there house alive through all the chaos.

  3. Mmmm…sure, but if you really want to know how Tywin commands respect, just read the story behind the 'Rains of Castamere' song.

  4. I cannot believe you left out rhe scene where Tywin arrives to Joffrey’s coronation on horseback. The scene opens with his horse taking a dump right in the royal court, signifying how insignificant everyone was compared to Tywin that even his horse was of more importance. What’s more, rather than looking at Joffrey when he entered, he looked around the room as if telling all of the attendees, “Just remember who is REALLY in charge”. Also consider, at least on a political level, that Tywin sends Tyrion to King’s Landing for a few reasons: To assert his power over the king from a distance, showing that he is in charge no matter where he is, as well as showing Joffrey that he is too busy to even tell him himself. Plus, if Joffrey becomes angry and unpredictable again, maybe he will execute Tyrion and Tywin will be rid of him. All under the premise that he is showing begrudging respect for Tyrion by entrusting him with such a duty AND being discreet enough as to not make an appearance for every little thing. When he makes an appearance or an entrance, it is an important one.. whether it be in court on horseback or on a hilltop before a battle.

  5. Something else I enjoy is how Tywin doesn't waste words. Tyrion is great but he talks in great detail.
    Also Tywin randomly rewards but always swiftly and harshly punishes anyone who crosses him, even if its just verbal.

  6. @Charisma on Command: Is Tywin's way truly "brilliant"? The actor is brilliant with his acting, but the character – Tywin – is an absolutely ruthless person. As much as I enjoy Charles Dance's acting, I would never want to be under Tywin's influence or any person of his type. Yes, he is charismatic, but it is one of his tools to manipulate people. I've met too many manipulative people and to be honest I don't have a lot of respect for them. I'd much prefer your video if it was on a more neutral tone.

  7. All of these strategies are completely contingent on the fact that Tywin is already in a position of power. The fact is acting like this only works when you actually have the capacity to follow through and act when things don't go your way.

  8. Why was he never casted as dumbedore? From the twinking yet fierce eyes to the silent yet commanding charisma, the use of his voice to even the broken nose, this man was the perfect dumbledore!

  9. “THEY HAVE MY SON” is the only time he raised his voice in the entire series. That is the only time he “switched”

  10. Video: How Tywin Lannister Commands Respect
    Add before video: How to invest without paying commisions
    Me: OMG I KNEW IT

  11. Going from silent to booming is only effective when it's rare. Being careful because you don't know when it happens does not come from a sense of authority or respect, it's apprehension.

  12. Not really related to this way of portraying power but i`v noticed a particular pattern in the way mafia bosses and bad guys act in very dramatic situations. This is a more modern way than in GOT but if you look at most of the movies with thugs or very dangerous villains in a dialogue with a much more harmless and fragile character, they always digress from the main subject of conversation. For example they say a little side story or notice something apparently unrelated with the moment. Like kind of doing a small talk. This is to show how they are in control of the situation.

  13. Tyrian is soooo much like his father, so much more than his other children. There is no way he is not Tywins son.

  14. I think of Charles Dance as Tywin, I think of Richard Pryor and this quote.

    "You ever seen a face just turn to stone?… And somebody was over here, talking about something that pissed him off that he was going to deal with… A stone thing came over his face and a chill went through my fuckin' body. I said "This Motherfucker's dead. I'm looking at a dead man that walks around."

    When someone pisses off Tywin, that's what happens to his eyes. The light leaves them. I love Charles Dance's acting.

  15. This is cheap fantasy. Tywiin is allowed to conduct himself in this manner BECAUSE of his power and not vice versa…

  16. My EU Club Nintendo rewards over the years were:
    – Zelda OoT OST Part 2
    – Mario Galaxy OST Platinum something
    – a bunch of Wii shop points
    – that sweet "Thank you"-coin when the service shut down

    Good memories. It sucked when the coins/stars you got from buying games started having expiration dates.

  17. I hated that Tywin was the enemy but I loved him as a character because he was just a genius I loved but hated his death cuz he wouldn’t start problems for the people I loved now but I wouldn’t be able to see his geniusness anymore

  18. In ancient China, there was a powerful king who bullied even other kings, but he was stunned when a lowly body guard of one of the bullied kings came up to him and whispered to the powerful king that he could break his neck before all his guards can get to them.
    It's like Joker said, powerful people rely on their power to impose order, but when a single man can cast chaos into the order, they are stumped.

  19. You forgot to add Season 1, Episode 7 scene followed a conversation between Jaime and Tywin, discussing what it means to be a Lannister and how to keep the family name at the top of the food chain. It’s pretty impressive to see Dance capably butcher an animal while having a heated conversation with his son that was quite a powerful scene.

  20. There is a person stealing your videos, posting it in spanish word by word, and selling courses. The chanel is call "carisma al instante".

  21. i want to hear a conversation between Tywin and heath ledger's Joker. Tywin says "will" but Joker can't be "bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with"

  22. Tywin Lannister was already a legend in the books. Then Charles Dance played him. No words whatsoever to describe just how incredible he was.

  23. My family starts arguing over a vacation
    Dad: I say we go to the mountains
    Mom: I want to go to the beach
    Sister: We should out of state

    Me: THEY HAVE MY SON!!!
    Long story short we had it my way

  24. Tywin himself was terrified on the inside. Otherwise, he would have led more like John Snow. The ego and worldly power are illusions that cause blindness to spiritual reality, but this is educational. One can learn how to feel a balance in any situation, from wisdom beyond thought or analysis. It's not a binary choice between being a doormat and being a monster.

  25. The narrator of this video talks about GoT like it's an actual documentary of real history. Talking about Tywin's mannerism's and then saying "People STILL do this in modern day situations!". Like human conversation tactics would be any different. There never was a GoT time in history! It's fantasy / fiction! 🙂

  26. Speaking of eye contact, a wolf or pack of wolves will not have the instinct to kill you as long as you stand your ground and keep eye contact. Same works for tigers – there's a little village boy who's alive because he walked backwards for three hours to his village while making eye contact with the tiger. Also, the more eyes on a shark, the better. Similar reasons.

  27. If you read the books you would know that Tywin didn't get respect until he killed an entire house.
    They respect him out of fear because he will have you killed.

  28. Sitting or saying nothing not always make poeple scared Let poeple think they got power thats power shoot you in the chest taking a dump

  29. But how many times do u have the privilege to dominate ur family only… It doesn't work until and unless u r the head of a family

  30. Well, tv are shown twyin is controlling alone and he is such perfect, but in books kevan is instead supporting twyin with his pragmatic and logical value to make twyin perfect genius. Without kevan, twyin is just prick assholes

  31. Charisma on Command: The YouTube-channel that tells you how to become a complete psychopath and that shows you how to act like a moron.

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