The impressive young actress Sophie Turner plays Sansa with the thousand-yard stare and flat-affect voice of an abuse victim living from beating to beating. Sansa gets a lot of grief from fans of the show and the books alike – she’s stupid, she’s insipid, she’s prissy, she’s gutless. Bullshit. She’s doing what she needs to do to survive, as the episode’s opening scene demonstrates. She instinctively plays to Joffrey’s narcissism and cruelty, convincing him to spare a drunken knight’s life while dropping enough “Your Grace”s on him to make him think it was his idea. If she’d been less courteous, like the other Starks would have been, she’d be dead.

Sean Collins - Rolling Stones “Game of Thrones Recap: No Man Should Have All That Power” (via fystarks)

Though let’s at least acknowledge that she (specifically in the books) compounds quite a few of her own problems of circumstance with her refusal to acknowledge the realities around her. The benefit and drawback of the books is that you get explicit understanding of the character’s thoughts and emotions.