Maybe Tamlin isn’t that bad. Peace out and let’s just understand him#ACOMAF [Discussion]

Needless to say, this post will contain spoilers of A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas. If you haven’t still read that book, I’d much rather you do not read this and ruin your life.

However! If you’re not that interested in reading the book/series, please do go ahead with this post :D

Also, a short glossary (in case you haven’t read the books but are still interested in the discussion)

Feyre – main female lead

Tamlin – the guy who suddenly turned all bad in ACOMAF

Rhysand – Feyre’s love interest

Amarantha – the witch or the villain of the first book

Under the Mountain – Amarantha’s ‘den’

So let’s recap what we know till now.

Tamlin is a bad guy.

Tamlin is heartless.

Tamlin is a control-freak.

Tamlin is bad.

We hate Tamlin.


So, basically, almost 99% of the people who’ve read the books are all completely against Tamlin now, and more or less everybody is Team Rhysand. When I read ACOMAF in a frenzy, I too completely shifted over from my love for Tamlin to my obsession with Rhysand. I had sworn my love to Tamlin in the first book, and the second book saw me completely changing and Rhysand happened. I too, like almost everybody, hated Tamlin for the things he did. But, that was all in a frenzy.

Today I started rereading ACOMAF (because I want to annotate this time and take it in slowly, not all in a rush) and this sudden discussion post struck me. Why not see things from Tamlin’s POV?

So, Tamlin did some questionable things in this book. Let’s list them out?

  • stole Feyre’s freedom, basically
  • would not allow her to go out of the house
  • locked her up
  • entered into that stupid deal with King of Hybern (or Heybern? I forgot :P)

Now let’s see what all happened to him.

  • had to live with Amarantha’s curse for fifty (was it fifty?) years
  • set his love free even though she was the only one who could save him from the curse
  • watch Amarantha break Feyre Under the Mountain

Clearly, after the events of Under the Mountain, both Feyre and Tamlin suffered from PTSD. They were broken, hurt, and just shattered after what all happened there. Tamlin, thus, being a control-freak, forbid Feyre from leaving the house, at one instance even locked her up, and why? All because he loved her and was afraid to lose her yet over again.

He did horrible things. Basically abused her. And thus began the whole #Let’sHateTamlin journey on the internet. Everyone hates him now, and by this time I’ve just heard such bad things about him that I have to make myself stop from lashing out. What really pushed me to this post was about how I read someone’s views that Tamlin is an ‘evil, bad person.’

I just feel, that in spite of all that hate, we should see reason behind his behavior. Instead of straight-out hating him, maybe we could try to understand why he did the things he did? While reading the book, we were all so ready to sympathize and understand and support Feyre that no one even thought that maybe Tamlin did everything because he was affected Under the Mountain too. Each bad/wrong thing he did, we all just assumed that he’s a naturally evil and bad person, but we never stopped to think of how the events with Amarantha may have affected him?

I don’t like how as readers ( me too) we sympathize so much with Feyre, but completely block out Tamlin. Bad guy. Evil. Heartless. Hello? He saw the girl he loved tortured to death in front of his eyes? Doesn’t that have to have an effect on him? His people were under a curse for years. Wouldn’t that affect a good person? I don’t like how we were all so ready to jump to conclusions about his character while we never even thought to consider what might have made him do all that horrible stuff.

(I keep saying ‘we’ because I did the same and now I realize enough to reconsider him. He’s not a bad guy. Nah. He’s a troubled guy.)

I’m not saying what he did was right. And understanding the reasons behing his acts won’t make those acts any less horrible. But, they will definitely help in bringing down all the unnecessary hate.

The Under the Mountain incident broke him and troubled him and maybe all that hurt just made it’s way into his actions and pushed him to extreme limits. But, since the book is written in Feyre’s veiwpoint, and since the book basically glorifies Rhysand and his court, no one cares to give a second thought to Tam and everyone jumps onto the #TamlinSucks bandwagon. Well? Tamlin’s actions sucked. But I feel that there is a hint of reason behind them. And mainly, if I can sympathize with Feyre, then I can definitely sympathize with Tamlin, because the trauma Tam went through was NO less than what Feyre went through.  I think he was just horribly misunderstood and overlooked and we, as readers were too eager to jump to conclusions about his character, ALL BECAUSE the book is from Feyre’s point and her thoughts are our thoughts.

So, do I hate Tam anymore? Nope.

Am I still Team Rhysand? Yes. But I feel sorry for Tam.



25 thoughts on “Maybe Tamlin isn’t that bad. Peace out and let’s just understand him#ACOMAF [Discussion]

  1. I never hated Tamlin when reading ACOMAF, I always pitied him. I hated the things he had done but I realised from the get go just how broken he had become. Even in the end when he sided with the King and demanded Feyre return to him, I still pitied him. If anything, I’m a little mad at Feyre for just flat out seeing him as the bad guy when she knows what he went through.
    I’m most certainly team Rhys, how could I not be?!
    But I never vilified Tamlin either. He does, in the end still care for Feyre, even if he’s bad at showing it for now. They did mention in the book how love can also be a poison and that’s what’s happening to Tam, he loves and cares for her too much, to the point he’s become obsessed with her safety, even if that means locking her in a tower.
    I can only hope that in the next book, between Feyre and Lucian they can make him see the error of his ways and he’ll redeem himself.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yeah exactly. Feyre always made him put to be the bad guy. Whereas by the end of the book, I just felt sorry for him and was really kinda ashamed of him. I mean, this was the guy I had really loved, and he’s doing such things?
      I just feel SJM totally killed his character to glorify Rhys. Like she did in the ToG series. Tam’s character did not have to become THIS.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This is such an interesting post! I never really liked Tamlin in the first book, so I was pretty quick to jump on the ‘Let’s all hate Tamlin’ train, but after reading this I do agree that really he should be pitied. He went through everything that Feyre went through (aside from dying) and obviously that affected him. Especially as the girl he loved then essentially ran off with his enemy afterwards. Feyre and we as readers know that Rhysand isn’t who everyone thinks he is, but we maybe have to remember that Tamlin doesn’t know that, and probably still thinks he’s mind controlling Feyre, which makes him the controlling one in his eyes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes exactly. Tamlin still Rhys as evil and his stupid deal with the king can be justified by his fear that Rhys might be hurting Feyre. Thus, he went to extreme measures.


  3. I am SOOOOOO glad that there are other people in this fandom who don’t think Tamlin is a evil guy. Everyone in my friend group is one the #IhateTamlin #gfyTamlin bandwagon, so I’m the odd one out all the time. This article was fabulous and your arguments are VERY valid that even the Tamlin haters can’t ignore.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Have you forgotten that Rhysans actually endured the horrors under the mountain for 50 years while Tamlin did nothing in the Spring Court?
    Or worst long before Amarantha, Tamlin sold out his friend Rhysand who taught him how to fight and was kind to him to his father’s and brothers and stood by while they butchered Rhysand’s mother and sister. Have you forgotten that he actually went with his father and brothers to kill his friend Rhysand?
    Screw Tamlin!


    1. Nope, haven’t forgotten. And if it isn’t clear, I like Rhysand more too. I love Rhysand, in fact. I’m not saying whatever Tamlin did was correct or right, I’m just trying to put across that he had bad things happen to him too. He too suffered at the hands of Amarantha and was terribly treated. That doesn’t make his actions right at all, but it definitely make me be at least a little sympathetic towards him, instead of flat out hating him.


  5. Basically, Tamlin is abusive. He was in ACOTAR as well, but we didn’t see it. When you reread ACOTAR you see the abuse.


    1. I don’t understand how you can assume that I’m supporting Tamlin? Because I’m NOT. I agree that he is abusive, and I HAVE stated that in the discussion. I am NOT supporting his behavior in any way, please get that. I am just trying to reason WHY he became abusive. A person cannot be born with a tendency to abuse, it gets integrated into his system and that’s what happened to Tamlin too. I am NOT trying to say that I support his abusive behavior, I am simply saying that bad things happened to him too. Yes he was abusive, and cynical but I’m just trying to UNDERSTAND how he became that way.


  6. I needed this so much.For some people to understand what I thought.I went into ACOTAR blindly.I loved Tamlin as much as Feyre.He protected her,took care of her just what she needed then.He knelt down to Rhysand for her.He let her go for her safety.He watched Rhys play with her but didn’t risk to react to keep her safe.He loved her.With thorns and all.After under the mountain he got more protective and he couldn’t change the way Feyre needed.But I do not see Feyre trying to make it work.She just shut him out.I read Acomaf right after ACOTAR and I wasn’t ready to change ships and definitely not ready to hate Tamlin and Lucien…but they are the bad guys now…and I still can’t hate them.Tamlin has made a lot of mistakes in the name of protecting Feyre and keeper her…but I just don’t think he is bad…He still loves Feyre and I can’t but feel bad about him?I also fail to see Feyre’s feelings developing for Rhysand.I love Rhys of course but a part of me still loves Tamlin.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes. He really loved her. Yes he’s done horrible things and no one is supporting that but bad things happened to him too. He had to deal with a lot too and though that isn’t an excuse to be a bad person, I definitely sympathise with him.


    2. There’s many of us who feel this way and with great reason. I don’t understand these readers who simply jump to the new ship when the author presents a new idea. Ppl it’s not that we hate Rhys, we actually Iove him but we are not going to simply trash Tamlin and disregard the obvious. Sorry, but Tam is not the bad guy in this story.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve always felt bad for Tamlin and by the end of A Court of Mist and Fury, I was heartbroken. I never saw Tamlin as a bad guy but instead, a broken one. I know what he did was off-limits. He was blinded by fear of losing Feyre. I just… Tamlin deserves better and every time I see bad posts about Tamlin, I get really upset.


  8. I just finished the first two books and I’m so glad I found this because I felt heartbroken for how Tamlin has been vilified. I also think he is broken and has made horrible choices out of fear and grief. Feyre was never the right one for him. I feel they fell for each other out of necessity more so than true love. I think his purest action was letting her go back to her family instead of forcing her to stay, or trying to make her fall in love to break the curse. He is not a cruel man, never has been. There is good in him, but there is also everything he has learned from his father, and from being High fae. Rhys had his friends to bring him to Earth, and he and Tamlin had very different upbringings. Tamlin has never intended to hurt Feyre, his being overprotective smothered her, and almost broke her because she is a free, independent spirit. I’m about to start the third book, and I’m hoping we see some redemption for Tamlin, even though he and Feyre aren’t meant to be together, I don’t think it’s fair to make him the villain of the story.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. is it bad that i nearly cried of happiness when i read this? you’re the first person i’ve ever seen to not hate Tam with every fibre in your body. He is SO misunderstood and is surrounded by such unnecessary hate. He had a few redeeming moments in ACOWAR, yet everyone chose to ignore every single one of them. Rhysand and Feyre would both be dead without him. I loved Tamlin deeply in ACOTAR, so i was really disappointed by his actions in ACOMAF but i understand why he did everything he did. He’s broken, and it hurts my heart to see him like that. I love Rhys more than him and probably will forever, but Tam will always hold a special place in my heart. I adored Feylin while it lasted. I see multiple posts hating on him every single day which is upsetting, an article like this is really refreshing. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha it’s not bad at all xD
      Yes, his redeeming moments were kinda overlooked by everyone in ACOWAR. I was very disappointed by what all he did too but I don’t think he’s evil in the core. He’s just stupid and really, deeply hurt and scarred. Gives an insight into why he probably behaved in that manner.


  10. Reasons why I still like Tamlin

    He gave Feyre’s family all the gold, even before he got to know her. He saved the lives of all of them and cured her father’s leg

    He treated her, the best he could.

    His father was cruel, but he still was a decent man. He didn’t have friend who would work with him, he always did everything by himself, that’s why he was so secretive.

    I believe he just didn’t want to burden others with his problems.

    He was always willing to risk his live for others.

    Rhys blamed him for not freeing Feyre, when he had a chance. Tamlin wasn’t stupid. They were a few days away from breaking the course, why would he just save his ass, when they could save everyone. He trusted Feyre, that she can do it. If they run, what they would achieve, and how long it would take, before they would be captured again??

    In book 2

    He knew his army is not big enough to stop Hybern, that’s why he wanted to get him from inside.

    I never doubted he has a plan and he didn’t betray.

    He had to watch what has happened Under the Mountain and didn’t want to put Fayre in danger again. Besides, he was used to fight his fights alone.

    I believe he has rights to be furious, when Feyre was taken from him. He never got any explanation.

    After all this he still helped Feyre and Rhys. (book 3)

    There is probably more reasons than those, He should get his happy ending and so should Lucien.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!! I just finished ACOTOR and found out what happens to Tamlin in the rest of the books and my heart was SHATTERED. His character in book 2 was nothing like the 1st book and I couldn’t believe that a love so deep between he and Feyre could just be instantly broken. That ending battle scene in ACOTOR, I play it out in my mind: Feyre, with her last breaths, realizing her love for Tamlin is what triggers her to realize the answer to the riddle – Love. Then Amarantha, in her wrath, kills her, and Lucien CRIES for Feyre and joy of a curse broken as he takes his mask off, after nearly 50 years of wearing it, and Tamlin, with his power back, kills Amarantha, then does what? Goes to Feyre’s corpse, cradles it, and sobs uncontrollably in front of EVERYONE and says “I love you.” That love. The love that was willing to live eternity enslaved to the most evil person, and the love that was willing to die, and did die for the other. You’re telling me that THAT love is incapable of talking it out and getting through the PTSD together??? I don’t think so. Maas made Tamlin and overprotective jerk so that the reader would despise him. He didn’t deserve that. Not at all.


    1. I too felt that Maas tweeked his character in book 2 to make Rhys the real hero and make her readers prefer him and IT WORKED. There’s no way you can read book 2 and not deeply dislike Tamlin for whatever he does. I just felt sorry for Tamlin about how people started hating him so much after book 2; it’s just sad.


  12. Thank you for this post, and giving me a safe space to rant lol. I just finished ACOWAR and was disappointed that there was not a scene where Tamlin and Feyre got to talk/apologize/explain themselves.

    Also, Tamlin screwed up big time, but I don’t think what he did warranted Feyre destroying his court… It also wasn’t Tamlin’s fault that Nesta and Elain got turned into fae in ACOMAF, it was Iaenthe, so I was confused on why Feyre was suddenly so hellbent on revenge on the Spring Court at the end of ACOMAF. But in Feyre’s defense, Tamlin should have just told her that he was spying on Hybern and not working with them. Sigh… I feel like a lot of conflict could have been avoided if people just talked to each other honestly >.<

    And in regards to Tamlin having a part in Rhys's mom and sister dying, I have a hard time believing that Tamlin wanted them dead and killed them in cold blood, we never got to hear his side of the story. I am hoping for these explanations and more of a resolution between Tamlin/Feyre and Tamlin/Rhys in ACOFAS or the next books :') I just want everyone to get along :')


    1. I think Rhys’ sister was his partner, that is why his father killed her in front of him, and why he was in his bedroom while his family was murdered. He regrets not protecting her and then not protecting his own family. That is why he freaks about Feyre. And his lost love made him so unable to try and find someone to break the curse and then to try and made her love him.


  13. I think Rhys os the gay for Feyre. But Tamlin isn’r that bad. He is younger than Rhys and saw people he cared about being murdered in front of him and could not protect them. Rhys family murdered his own family in his own house and he could not or refused to avoid this. I think his father murdered Rhys family in front of him to show his power. He was raised in an abusive home with no contact with women. Rhys had his mother, his sister and Mor. Team was raised among males and then became a soldier. His communicative skills wrre not developed. Hd was unanke to flert with Feyre. He was happy to be far from home. Rhys was maybe his only friend, and taught him to be with ladies as much as to fight. What if his father killed Rhys ‘ sister because she was Tam’s partner?
    Well, I like him a lot and I hope he finds happiness and learns to control his temper and respect other people’s choices, but he is not bad. He helped Lucien when no one could. He avoided to let his men die to find Feyre until the last moment. He fought for the good ones even when no one believed him and saved Feyre, he gave his power to save Rhys and he didn’t go to the calainmam so he is not a addicted to sex. He has issues. But I like him. Enenthough Rhys is RHYS


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