On Game of Thrones, Jack Gleeson portrays sadistic boy-king Joffrey Baratheon, a character most fans consider to be pure evil. So it was pretty shocking to hear Jack say he actually empathizes with Joffrey in an interview with University College Dublin.
That his reasons for doing so actually make a lot of sense.
“First of all, I think on a neuro-scientific level, I don’t think incest is great for the frontal lobe and moral centers. It’s not his fault, in that sense, that he’s kind of this malevolent king, I think it’s partly a genetic thing,” says Jack, starting his defense of Joffrey from a scholarly viewpoint.
He goes on to say, “Then also it’s a contextual thing, in the sense that his father didn’t love him, and his mother was overprotective, and he was told from day one that he could do whatever he wanted.”
So essentially, Jack’s saying that his combination of bad genetics mixed with his terrible upbringing caused Joffrey to be the way that he is, adding, “I wouldn’t say he’s inherently amoral or evil, but simply a product of his setting and context.”
Basically, when it comes to Joffrey, nature versus nurture doesn’t apply; Joff is a product of both nature and nurture gone wrong in conjunction together.
Jack also adds a disclaimer, stating that anyone with Joffrey’s background would be just as maladjusted, present company included: “Anyone here put in that context would turn out like Joffrey, I think, myself included.” Yikes, does that mean there are some Joffreys running around in the real world? And Jack Gleeson is possibly one of them?! Excuse us while we go hide.
You can watch Jack’s entire enlightening interview here.
Source: University College Dublin