Today, I wanted to highlight a character I've been thinking about a lot lately--Daenerys Targaryen from George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones. As much as it pains me, I haven't yet read the books, though I did buy the first book yesterday (with Sean Bean on the cover--YUM), so I'm basing this entirely on the TV adaptation, which may or may not stray from the book.
The first scene with Daenerys just weirded me out. It seems the brother-sister relationships are just effed up. We see Daenerys' brother Viserys basically sizing her up, ensuring she'll be just perfect for the Dothraki leader Khal Drogo (AKA Mr. Crazy McSexypants). Daenerys' value is based solely on her beauty and whether Khal Drogo will want her, and really, Viserys is putting a lot of pressure on his little sister. At first, I wondered if Daenerys was going to be one of those pitiful, whiny girls whose life is determined by those around her. Oh man, was I pleasantly surprised.
Daenerys quickly became one of my favorite characters. She's AWESOME. First, yes, she's shy and nervous and scared, and who wouldn't be? Drogo is INTIMIDATING AS HELL. Plus, she doesn't really speak the language. The Dothraki are a barbaric, violent tribe, and they prefer doggy-style. Daenerys doesn't just lay down and take it, though. She learns how to please her husband the way she wants to (girl on top FTW), and thereby earns Drogo's respect.
Through the rest of the season, Daenerys and Drogo perform this delicate dance of cultivating respect and affection, eventually falling in love with each other. Apart from Ned and Catelyn Stark, they have the most stable loving relationship.