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Annoying TV Kid Bracket: Joffrey Baratheon and A.J. Soprano Square Off in the Finals

Will the child king of Westeros finally be stopped by the tournament’s no. 1 overall seed? Only one kid can be crowned the most annoying. Vote in the Finals!

HBO/Ringer illustration

We begged you not to do it, but you did it. You voted Joffrey of Houses Baratheon and Lannister, the abhorrently evil but not most annoying child king on Game of Thrones, into the Finals of the Annoying TV Kid Bracket. Somehow, Manny Delgado was felled, and now he’s out there in his bowling shirt without the much-earned ignominy of winning this competition. (Interestingly, Joffrey lost the website vote but dominated on social media; we should’ve screenshotted Claire McNear’s diatribe and put it on Instagram Stories.)

So now we have our final two: A.J. Soprano versus Joffrey Baratheon. The overall no. 1 seed versus the dark horse whose skin-crawling depravity has perhaps been misinterpreted as annoyingness. The kid who had his eyebrows shaved versus the kid who always kinda looked like he had his eyebrows shaved.

Both sons of portly, philandering, power-hungry fathers, neither A.J. nor Joffrey ever had a shot at normalcy. (Though at least A.J. isn’t a product of incest.) Learning Tony’s worst qualities rather than his best, A.J. began his evolution into an annoying turd very early, as too-long binges of Mario Kart gave way to breaking school rules with Lady Gaga, which gave way to trying to drum and growing the dumbest facial hair ever recorded in New Jersey (a very high bar to clear). Meanwhile, Joffrey was born with a broken heart and a broken brain. He had Bagel Boss Energy before the boss ever even bageled. And in a society that placed far too much import on his birth name, and surrounded by an equally black-hearted mother, a father who—because of the incest—couldn’t exactly be a father, and a bunch of yes-men, his horrible personality only grew worse. His uncle Tyrion was like, “Hey maybe this kid just needs to bang?” and then Joffrey BRUTALLY ASSAULTED THE SEX WORKERS TYRION SENT HIM.

I’d argue this behavior isn’t exactly annoying, but I do get why Joffrey advanced this far—and why he even has a shot at defeating the Michael Jordan of Annoying Kids (aside from the fact that Game of Thrones simply has the most internet fans of any show). He helped get Lady executed, he made Sansa look at the decapitated head of her father, he held court meetings that consisted only of him pointing crossbows at people, he made that one guy chug way too much wine, and he was a coward until the day he died. That dude’s wedding was so painful! Amid all of the blatantly evil stuff, Joffrey was pretty annoying.

So vote for who you want. Personally I feel that A.J. is the epitome of TV kid annoyingness and that if he doesn’t win this whole thing was a sham. But if you must, vote for Joffrey; far be it from me to tell you how to feel about the dumb wuss who named a sword Widow’s Wail.

You can vote right here on this website, on Twitter, and on Instagram until 5 p.m. ET on Friday.

The Championship

(1) A.J. Soprano, The Sopranos vs. (3) Joffrey Baratheon, Game of Thrones

1. A.J. Soprano: I’m getting mad just thinking about this doofus. He of the double meatball, pepperoni, sausage, peppers, onions, and extra mozzarella pizza (A.J. is the only human ever to get snitched on by a slice of pizza), Tony Soprano’s only son was endlessly whiny, entitled, and altogether incapable. The guy got fired from Blockbuster! Sure, A.J. was a product of Tony’s lackluster parenting, but at some point you gotta stop making excuses for people—and that point is usually when they grow awful facial hair.

3. Joffrey Baratheon: I have to admit I’m struggling with this one. Sure, Joffrey sucked. But he wasn’t annoying in a “man, I wish this show would stop focusing on this kid’s wild hormones and get back to the good stuff” kind of way; he was annoying in a “man, I really wish he’d stop murdering hookers with a crossbow” kind of way, which actually had some narrative value in Game of Thrones. It was extremely satisfying when he choked to death in Season 4, but it was also kind of sad, because no one was more fun to hate than Joffrey.


Which Annoying TV Kid Should Advance?

This poll is closed

  • 68%
    (1) A.J. Soprano, ‘The Sopranos’
    (3942 votes)
  • 31%
    (3) Joffrey Baratheon, ‘Game of Thrones’
    (1848 votes)
5790 votes total Vote Now
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