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Renly Baratheon is a fictional character in the A Song of Ice and Fire series of fantasy novels by American author George R. R. Martin, and its television adaptation Game of Thrones.

Renly Baratheon
A Song of Ice and Fire character
Game of Thrones
character
Renly Baratheon Profile Gethin Anthony.jpg
Gethin Anthony as Renly Baratheon
First appearance
Last appearance
Created byGeorge R. R. Martin
Portrayed byGethin Anthony
(Game of Thrones)
Information
Alias
  • The King in Highgarden
  • The King in the South
GenderMale
Title
  • Lord Paramount of the Stormlands
  • Lord of Storm's End
  • Master of Laws
  • Lord of the Seven Kingdoms (claimant)
FamilyHouse Baratheon
SpouseMargaery Tyrell (unconsummated)
Significant otherLoras Tyrell
Relatives

Introduced in 1996's A Game of Thrones, Renly is the youngest of the three sons of Lord Steffon Baratheon and Cassana Estermont, and the younger brother of Robert and Stannis Baratheon. He is Lord of Storm's End and Lord Paramount of the Stormlands. He served as master of laws in his eldest brother's small council, before crowning himself king in the wake of Robert's death with the support of the Reach and the Stormlands, an act that helps kick off the War of Five Kings. This brings him into conflict with his older brother Stannis, whose claim is greater.

Renly's homosexual relationship with Loras Tyrell is alluded to in the books and is made clearly evident in the television show. Both men are among Martin's most prominent LGBTQ characters, although Renly and Loras' adapted relationship and the show's portrayal of the latter has received mixed criticism.[1][2][3][4]

Renly Baratheon is portrayed by Gethin Anthony in the HBO television adaptation.[5][6][7]

Contents

Character descriptionEdit

Renly Baratheon is the younger brother of King Robert and of King Stannis.[8] He is a handsome and charismatic man that wins friends easily, which makes him popular with the smallfolk. He is thought to look extremely similar to his older brother Robert, albeit smaller and slimmer, inheriting the Baratheon height and long black hair. Although he is well-liked and charismatic, many powerful lords at court secretly consider him to be vain and frivolous. He is described as disdainful of reading, although he enjoys hunting and jousting. Renly is also a closeted homosexual engaged in a relationship with Loras Tyrell.

Renly is not a point of view character in the novels, so his actions are witnessed and interpreted through the eyes of other people, such as Ned and Catelyn Stark. He is also often mentioned and remembered by Brienne of Tarth, who had fallen in love with him at a young age. Renly is mostly a background character in the novels.[9]

StorylinesEdit

 
Banner of arms of King Renly Baratheon in the books

Renly Baratheon is the youngest of the Baratheon brothers and Lord of Storm's End. He is described as handsome and charismatic, winning friends easily. Renly serves on Robert's council as Master of Laws. After Robert dies, Renly declares himself King of the Seven Kingdoms in A Clash of Kings, wins the support of the Baratheon bannermen as he is their Lord Paramount, and seals an alliance with House Tyrell by marrying Margaery Tyrell. Before he can march on the capital though, he hears Stannis is besieging Storm's End. Renly marches there, intending to kill his brother in battle, and turning down an offer to become Stannis' heir. Before the battle he is assassinated by a shadow conjured by Melisandre, though it is unclear if Stannis is aware of this or not.

TV adaptationEdit

 
Banner of arms of King Renly Baratheon in Game of Thrones

Renly Baratheon is played by the British actor Gethin Anthony in the television adaption of the series of books.[10]

Gethin Anthony on his character: "The reason why I like playing him is I think he's a fantastic man who believes in Westeros being a cultured and enlightened place. His major advantage -- and why he gets on well in the world -- is that he gets on well with people."[11]

Season 1Edit

Renly Baratheon, Lord of Storm's End, is the youngest brother of King Robert and Master of Laws in the Small Council. He is popular with the people because he is handsome, jovial, and throws extravagant balls and masquerades. He is not fond of fighting or bloodshed, and would rather make friends than kill enemies. He is secretly the lover of Ser Loras Tyrell, the Knight of the Flowers, who convinces him that those qualities make him better ruling material than either of his older brothers. While Robert lies dying, Renly attempts to convince Ned of this, and that the two of them should kidnap Joffrey and rule the realm themselves. However, Ned refuses, so Renly, Loras, and their followers flee south. Once Joffrey becomes King and has Ned executed, Renly challenges his alleged nephew's claim to the throne.

Season 2Edit

Renly declares himself King of the Seven Kingdoms during Season 2 and wins the support of the Baratheon bannermen and the support of other houses, despite Stannis' better claim. He also seals an alliance with the powerful House Tyrell and its bannermen (including Randyll Tarly, father of Samwell Tarly) by marrying Margaery Tyrell. He leads his massive army slowly through southern Westeros, biding his time. Catelyn Stark tries to convince Renly and Stannis to put aside their differences and unite against the Lannisters but it fails as both brothers refuse to give their claim for the throne. On the night before a battle between his and Stannis's forces, Renly agrees to Catelyn to allow Robb Stark to keep the title "King in the North" and rule the North and Riverlands, but on the condition that he swear fealty to Renly as King on the Iron Throne. Before Catelyn can offer a real negotiation, Renly is assassinated by Melisandre, who gives birth to a shadow demon and sends it to kill Renly in order to remove him from Stannis' path. Stannis is initially unaware of the exact nature of Melisandre's crime, and is later visibly shocked and saddened of the role he played in his brother's death, which he visibly regrets.

Season 5Edit

Renly is later avenged in the Season 5 finale when Brienne of Tarth executes his brother Stannis after the battle outside Winterfell against the Boltons, spitefully telling Stannis that Renly was the rightful King.

Family tree of House BaratheonEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Moylan, Brian (June 28, 2016). "Game of Thrones has a gay problem". Vulture. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  2. ^ "Loras Tyrell deserved better". The Fandomentals. September 28, 2016. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  3. ^ Harris, David (May 2015). "Razor's Rant: The Loras Conundrum". FanSided. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  4. ^ Attewell, Steven (May 18, 2015). "How "Game of Thrones" ruined Loras Tyrell: HBO's "gay cartoon" is so much more in the books". Salon. Retrieved May 25, 2019.
  5. ^ "Game of Thrones Cast and Crew: Renly Baratheon played by Gethin Anthony". HBO. Retrieved December 29, 2015.
  6. ^ "The Official Website for the HBO Series Game of Thrones". HBO.
  7. ^ "From HBO". Archived from the original on 2016-03-07.
  8. ^ A Game of Thrones, Appendix.
  9. ^ "Game of Thrones Viewer's Guide". HBO.
  10. ^ "Gethin Anthony on Going from Game of Thrones to the Mind of Charles Manson". Vanityfair.
  11. ^ Nguyen, Hanh (April 26, 2012). "Game of Thrones' Gethin Anthony Discusses Renly's Rise, Relationships and Shaving Scene". TVGuide. Retrieved March 25, 2016.