MBTI: Tywin Lannister- ENTJ
Spoilers! You’ve been warned!
It’s not easy being king, as Tywin Lannister and ENTJs know. While neither are actually kings, they know where real power lies and they use it to the best of their ability. Lead, follow, or get out of the way means that they lead, and everyone else get out of their way so that they can follow.
Tywin’s presence throughout the show is so powerful that every decision he makes creates a resounding impact. And not one that he influences before stepping back into the shadows and watching the dominoes fall, but one he slowly moves along, making sure everything goes the way he wants it to.
From the first time we meet Tywin, skinning a friggin’ elk, we know that this guy isn’t somebody to mess around with. Aside from his animal skinning, he’s also talking down to Jaime Lannister, the cockiest guy we’d met up until that point. And on top of all this, he’s in his tent on a battlefield. So it goes without saying that this guy is the man.
You know the scene.
While there’s no reason to generalize so much that we speak cartoonishly of them, ENTJs, similar to ESTPs, are alpha-type personalities of the highest order. We can speak on the negatives of this in a minute but this is the type people aspire to be like in any power fantasy they might have. While ENTPs have great people skills and INTJs have a quiet drive about them, ENTJs combine the best of those worlds that create a type whose purpose in life is to be on top. They don’t know how not to be.
And people around them don’t mind, as their not just a type to see what they can achieve but to actually run things like a well oiled machine. Tywin himself thrives in business and politics alike making sure that his family is going to remain the family in charge far beyond how long he plans to live. In short, they know what they’re doing. Their dominant Te is what coerces them to act, act, act. Strong Te users don’t want to hear what you have to say, they just want things done.
The difference between an ENTJ and an ESTJ however, is that ENTJs know that help is essential to whatever it is they need done, so they may listen to what you have to say, regardless of whether or not they follow your advice. ESTJs don’t have the same tact and might even tell you to your face what you said was stupid. Much of the reason for this is their auxiliary function.
While the ESTJ has Si telling them what they know is right, ENTJs go off of Ni, which helps them to piece together what will be most helpful to their goal. When Tywin is faced with his son Tyrion appearing with savages, Tywin sends Tyrion and his merry band of murderers out on the battlefield seeing many ways this could serve his own purposes. Either Tyrion dies and it was a noble death so that Tywin’s most embarrassing son at least went out “cleanly”, or we have what happened, Tyrion survives and Tywin’s added forces helped preserve his own soldiers’ lives.
That’s a small example compared to his life goals, which mostly consist of making sure that the Lannisters continue ruling King’s Landing and everywhere else they can get their paws.
But as we see with Tywin, even though he’s doing everything he can to ensure his family’s legacy, he’s forgetting the actual family in the process. In between “advising” Joffrey, he constantly orders his other children on what they should and shouldn’t do. This is only natural for a parent to do, but Tywin seems to forget the actual reason for keeping your family royal and in charge. He’s so focused on the actual task that his loved ones are possibly the most screwed up in the series.
ENTJs’ inferior function is Fi. You already know where this is going. “ENTJs forget about people’s feelings, blah blah blah.” How this actually affects them can be seen in the many arguments Tywin gets into with his kids to show them that he’s right, and they’re wrong. While ENTJs can be good listeners, they also tend to get involved with “win/lost” conversations. The discussion didn’t start as an argument, but by God, the ENTJ is going to make sure it goes that direction and that they win. It can be a bit taxing for anyone, but especially those that aren’t interested in winning and losing but simply wanted to converse.
Plus he was discussing how great a king Tommen would be over his grandson’s body. And seeing as how Jaime and Cersei had sex in the same spot, we can conclude that Lannisters are all selfish no matter what their functions are.
As likable as Tywin was, his death could have been seen a mile away. Not by his own son and certainly not on the “royal throne” but a death all the same. With the series’ penchant for killing characters at unexpected times, a character with the ENTJ personality in Game of Thrones is bound to make waves living by the sword and bound to die by it too.