All of Grrm's characters are bent, twisted, ignorant, brilliant, sadistic, etc. essentially because they've lived horrible lives. The Starks are archetypes that shouldn't exist in this world. They are there so we will have someone to root for. What Grrm does with them is despicable. That said, The Imp, shaped by pain, smarter than most and the only character with a sense of humor, is easily the most attractive character to follow. Dinklage is a fine actor and hates playing a dwarf. He want's to be an actor that can play any role, whether supporting or a leading one. This is the best he's going to get...and he's taking advantage. Garrick Davis from Life's Too Short is also talented enough to do this role, but PD is prettier (even though the character is written to be ugly and deformed) and more like a Lannister (dwarf version). Since PD was the first casting choice and didn't turn it down (a good career move), we'll never know how GD would have turned out. However, I'll bet if he had gotten the role, he'd still be the most popular character in the series. Check out Life's Too Short and tell me he doesn't have the chops.