You didn’t really think we’d let the final season pass us without referencing Game of Thrones at all did you? It’s the TV sensation that has the entire world on the edge of their seats in agony waiting to see the epic conclusion. So many questions are still left unanswered, and hopefully the last few episodes will give fans the answers we so desperately need. Who will end up on the Iron Throne? Will the Night King and the White Walkers win and eradicate humanity? (Bit bleak, but with this show, anything is possible). And most importantly, will we finally get the Hound-Mountain battle we’ve been craving since Day 1?
Unfortunately, I can give you none of these answers. I have no connection to HBO, no secret insight to reveal or hidden gems of knowledge to impart about the world of Fire and Ice. What I can do though is make the torturous wait till next week’s episode (which we all know will be epic) slightly easier with a light-hearted look at how the different personalities you see in your social work department, are all actually Game of Thrones characters.
Before we get into this though, be warned, if you’re not up to date, slight spoilers are coming. But to be honest, if you’re not caught up on the latest episodes, stop wasting time reading this, go watch it and then come back here. You’ll thank me for it.
Seeing as there’s no one blueprint for what a social worker is like, it means that practitioners come in all shapes and sizes. This therefore means that in any given social work office, there will be a spectrum of personalities who we all have to learn to work alongside. But what if we were social worker-ing in the Seven Kingdoms? Which of the personalities below would we find in your office?
The Passive Aggressive One = Cersei Lannister
Now, there’s no denying Cersei does her fair share of direct aggressing, but her inherent nature to smile and lie to your face makes her the ideal candidate for that colleague we all have who is just slightly too passive aggressive. This person is usually ever so slightly senior to you in some way but not enough so to actually get away with ordering you around. They’ll leave passive aggressive notes hinting at their displeasure, make sassy comments and have a resting face of someone who’s just eaten a lemon. Sound like a certain Queen? I concede this is probably more accurate for pre-Shame Walk Cersei but even when she starts actively taking no prisoners (did someone mention Wildfire?) there’s a constant two-faced nature to her which we all see around the office in some form.
The Gossip = Varys (“The Spider”)
They know *everything*. No secret is safe with them in the office because somehow, they will inevitably find out and then share it at the water cooler whenever they get the chance. This colleague will take great pleasure in being the one who knows all the intricate details of someone else’s relationship, who is getting fired, what was said in a supervision… You name it, they know it. Every office has a Spider, and we all inevitably go to them when we’re in need of insider intel to brighten our day.
The Chatterbox = Tyrion Lannister
I mean, obviously. He drinks and he knows things. And most importantly, he’ll let us all know what things he knows. As Jorah put it in the most recent episode “his mouth hardly stopped moving between Volantis and Mereen, it was all I could do not to throw him in the sea.” Tyrion is the epitome of that one colleague who will never shut up. Whether they’re pestering you with questions about a particular case, thinking out-loud or merely filling the office with mindless chatter and jokes – every social worker knows their office has a Tyrion.
The Office “Bae” = Jon Snow
Every office, social work or not, has that one attractive employee who everyone seems to have a crush on. Or at least will swoon slightly when they walk in first thing in the morning. They won’t be big talkers but craft their pitches to sound impactful and to put their point across well but succinctly, building that strong-silent mystique which we can all agree our Lord Commander / King in the North / Warden of the North has by the bucketload.
The Delegator = Lord Baelish (“Littlefinger”)
Before one of the most satisfying comeuppances to date in the show, good old Littlefinger was the master of manipulating other people (underlings or rulers) to do his bidding for him. This translates directly to that one practitioner in an office who will ask you for particular bits of research, who will pass off certain tasks “because you’re just so much better at it” or will somehow always find a way to have the lightest caseload and finish on time every day. You don’t quite know how they’ve done it, but they get away with it. All. The. Time. And unfortunately, every office doesn’t have a set of Stark sisters to deal with them.
The Obsessive = Daenerys Targaryen
Okay don’t jump down my throat here, I’m not going after Daeny. She’s an impressive leader and super cool because of the whole dragon thing. BUT it can’t be denied she’s got a bit of tunnel vision when it comes to the Iron Throne. It seems like every conversation links back to her drive for the throne and how it’s her lifelong path; which does get a bit old. Which is always what that one colleague is like. Social work is a vocational career yes, but some people do take it a little far. Their practice is their entire existence and will only ever talk about their cases, new theories or how much they love social work. They take the term “workaholic” to a new extreme and our Mother of Dragons is in danger of embodying this particular office persona.
The Grouch = Sandor Clegane (“The Hound”)
I really shouldn’t need to explain this one.
The Slob = Tormund
The Hound is a very strong contender for this title too, but after that infamous scene where he seductively ate a chicken at poor old Brienne (can we call that seductive?), our favourite ginger wildling takes the cake. He’s the one who never stacks the dishwasher, will stink out the microwave and just generally make a mess of the shared kitchen. Their desks are overflowing with stacks of papers, books and junk. But overall, they’re loveable in their own way, so you can never get too annoyed at them. If only they’d learn what deodorant was…
The Teacher’s Pet = Samwell Tarly
I’m putting it out there, I love Sam. His adorable little face and love of books and knowledge is endearing to no end. In the context of Game of Thrones, he’s great. If he was in an office though, Sam would get on everyone’s nerves. He’s just too eager to know the answer. His puppy dog expression is an asset in a show of such angry people, but in the real world it would be like nails to a chalkboard. He’d be constantly doing extra research to help the team manager, which inevitably makes you look bad. He’s not malicious, but dear god he’d make you want to throw a stapler at his head.
The Dictator = The Night King
He’s the boss everyone hates. While you may have different opinions about all the other personalities on this list, *everyone* has that one supervisor that unites the whole team in common disdain and loathing. They’re tyrannical and completely unavoidable. The Dictator is everywhere, inserting themselves into every case and just generally making life difficult. It’s a bit of an understatement for the leader of the army of the dead, but my point stands. He’s the worst and we all hate him.
Do you have these office personas in your social work department? Are there any Game of Thrones characters you can see in your office that we’ve left off the list? Do you have a Red Woman who is out to seduce her way round the office? Or perhaps a Bran who unnerves everyone a bit with unusual comments, constant daydreaming and a John Lennon haircut? Famous television and film characters will always remind us of people in our lives, and workplaces are such conglomerates of conflicting personalities it can feel a bit like Winterfell or King’s Landing.
By Elena Jones, One Stop Social Team.
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