tze, on 22 March 2012 - 07:32 PM, said:
Honestly, I don't think Dany understands the wild, unpredictable nature of sorcery. Look at how big of a deal she makes of the pyre, to the point where she tries telling herself that the events in the pyre were repeated in the pit. I think she's mistaking a unique, miraculous magical event (the pyre) for a magical ability, which is not actually the same thing, and which is problematic if/when she meets people who can rely on actual (developed) magical abilities (like the Starks).
I couldn't agree more with this (and the rest of your) assessment. I don't find her all that magical, which isn't in and itself a problem for me, but there's something about magic's affinity for her
that, perhaps unfairly, rubs me the wrong way. I concede some of that to the way Martin sets the rules in terms of magic in the novels, i.e. going back to the input of fire sacrifice = output of dragons, even when the person performing the fire sacrifice doesn't intend/ realize this act will yield dragons. So I suppose you could say I don't like the rules of the game as it pertains to dragon magic, perhaps in part, because the ability to raise dragons has little to do with how well you can handle such a dangerous entity (And I guess this speaks to (was it Val) who said magic = "a sword without a handle")
Teasing out some of my own admitted hypocrisy, I'm a lot more generous in terms of warging/ greenseeing, both in relation to the Starks and as "magical abilities" generally (if it can be called that). Maybe part of that is due to the fact that people other than the Starks can also have these innate abilities. I think another part is that despite some ethical rules about not skin-changing humans and not communicating with the dead, these abilities don't seem to have the same scale of devastating potential as dragons. That could also be something of a fallacy, though-- skin-changing seems to let you prolong life unnaturally (a la Varamyr's prologue), allows a kind of subterfuge/ deception and the greenseeing weirnet is really a kind of spy-network. I suppose that in order to turn these abilities into something more large- scale destructive/ sinister requires a lot of commitment to honing these skills, whereas it seems dragons are just widely dangerous at the outset. I also concede my acceptance of the Starks in particular having these abilities because "they're the good guys," and we haven't seen too much of the dark side as yet (though I can see Bran's use become more questionable, and we don't know how Jon will be moving forward).
Ghost714, on 23 March 2012 - 12:00 AM, said:
I personally don't hold it against Dany at all for locking up her dragons, if she didn't have enough time to train them. That's much better than allowing them to eat children, and I don't see how people can hold it against Dany, that she was trying to rule Meereen, instead of trying to get her dragons to play fetch.
I actually agree with you on this, but think it is an issue of priorities. Given how uncontrolled they were, I don't think it was wrong for her to lock them up, but I find it problematic that they do not even register on her "to do" list. I suppose I might prefer her dragon-related activities if she assumed more responsibility for them in terms of training, trying to learn as much as possible about them (which I don't think would have been that difficult in Essos- there's probably more resources on dragonlore there than in Westeros), or honestly reflecting on their purpose to her (are they her children, or are they her weapons?).
Plus, not for nothing, in Dance she is not tremendously busy with matters of state-- she stops holding court sessions and spends a good deal of time at leisure. It's not so much I was annoyed at her having locked them up, but more because she became very escapist about both issues of state and dragon responsibilities. I realize that it was probably very overwhelming for her, but it made me disappointed because she took on so much responsibility in the first place.