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[book spoilers] the gutting of Catelyn's motivation


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#141 Winter's Lion

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 02:05 PM

I have no problem defending it, yet I notice that you have yet to do the same. You have not cited book text in any of your arguments against me.

I never said that Catelyn was not a superior character in the books, nor did I say that the TV show is a superior product (but yes, there are little details that I sometimes like better in the show. These things happen). I said was not a fan of how GRRM shows Catelyn and Cersei as having compromised common sense because there are mothers. Catelyn with her mini-breakdown after Bran’s fall. The rest of the family keeps functioning, but she just can’t. And Cersei with…pretty much everything Joffrey does. But then again, Joffrey is his own brand of extra special.

I took offense at your remark about “…reflects more on those making that argument then it does on what Martin's writing.” There are several things you could have been implying with that, and none of them good. I understand that you are the founder and webmaster, and you have has these discussions a thousand times before. But that’s just it; you’re the face of this website – not just some random guy. There’s a way to point out that you think someone is wrong without implying that they don’t know how to read. I work in PR. I know what it’s like to discuss the same things over, and over, and over. It’s freaking annoying. But people in that position can’t let their disdain for the newbies show so plainly, or customers will go elsewhere. Your product is page views and a book, but it’s no different than what any other PR person does, really. You want people to have a positive image of your “company.” And right now I’m thinking “Wow, the first time I ever interacted with this guy, he questioned my intelligence. Huh.”

And so, my analysis:

I have the Nook version, so I won't bother with page numbers as they seem to be inconsistent depending on what size I have the display text zoomed in at. All quotes come from that Catelyn VII.

“I am become a sour woman, Catelyn thought. I take no joy in mead nor meat, and
song and laughter have become suspicious strangers to me. I am a creature of grief and dust and
bitter longings. There is an empty place within me where my heart was once.”

This is where she states that her grief is all consuming.

“But there’s no one to find me now, is there? This time I have to find our own way, and it is
hard, so hard.”
“I keep remembering the Stark words. Winter has come, Father. For me. For me. Robb must fight the Greyjoys now as well as the Lannisters, and for what? For a gold hat and an iron chair?
Surely the land has bled enough. I want my girls back, I want Robb to lay down his sword and
pick some homely daughter of Walder Frey to make him happy and give him sons. I want Bran
and Rickon back, I want...” Catelyn hung her head. “I want,” she said once more, and then her
words were gone.

This takes place while Catelyn is recounting her dream to her father. At this point, she has already made the arrangement to go down to see Jamie at midnight. The quote about how hard it is to find her own way, and the bit at the end where she is a loss for words don’t give me the impression of someone who has a plan firmly set in her mind. To me, it implies someone who is struggling to keep her head above water and is not really sure what she should do next.

“There is nothing here but arrogance and pride, and the empty courage of a madman. I am
wasting my breath with this one. If there was ever a spark of honor in him, it is long dead. “If
you will not speak with me, so be it. Drink the wine or piss in it, ser, it makes no matter to me.”
Her hand was at the door pull when he said, “Lady Stark.”

The internal thought “I’m wasting my time with this one” makes me believe that at this point she was truly ready to walk away from him, which leads to the impression that she was playing it by ear.

“As he laughed, she realized the wine had done its work; Jaime had drained most of the flagon,
and he was drunk.”

And then there’s the fact that she gave him wine, enough wine that he became visibly drunk. Why make him drunk if she was intending to release him? You would assume that he would need to be in full control of his mental facilities in order to make it out of the Stark camp alive and under cover. It’s obvious that he was able to do so despite being drunk, but why hurt his chances?

#142 Jaime's Wench

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 02:26 PM

Hmmm, it troubles me as both a 'newbie' to ASOIAF and as a writer that people can be criticised for criticising GRRM's writing. The man isn't infalliable, otherwise he would have made a better character of Catelyn. I really like her, and I LOVED this scene with Jaime, but others cannot stand her for many of her actions both big and small. The release of Jaime does seem more of a rash act than one that was thought through, imho. I believe she went in there only to question him.

#143 David Selig

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 03:18 PM

Hmmm, it troubles me as both a 'newbie' to ASOIAF and as a writer that people can be criticised for criticising GRRM's writing. The man isn't infalliable, otherwise he would have made a better character of Catelyn. I really like her, and I LOVED this scene with Jaime, but others cannot stand her for many of her actions both big and small. The release of Jaime does seem more of a rash act than one that was thought through, imho. I believe she went in there only to question him.

This is weird logic. People disliking a character doesn't mean the writer has failed. Especially when a huge part of this dislike is based on blatant misread of the text and/or sexism, as in this case.

#144 Jolene Brown

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 06:04 PM

I don't think those quotes indicate that she was unsure what to do - they indicate that she knew exactly what she wanted to do, but she was afraid that it was the wrong thing. She is scared of the consequences, scared that it won't work out the way she wants it to (for good reason). She may consider walking away from it because Jaime's behavior re-inforces those doubts, but it doesn't mean she was just sort of winging it. I would guess she has been considering this path ever since she sent Cleos to King's Landing in the first place, so I don't think it's even only Bran/Rickon's deaths that motivates her - that's just sort of the final catalyst for causing her to put her plan into action.

#145 Ran

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Posted 23 September 2012 - 08:01 PM

Precisely, Jolene. She has doubts about it being the right course, but she knows what she's doing. The point of talking to Jaime, beyond trying to understand, was to see if there was any point expecting oaths of any kind from him -- though as she notes (and as Jaime notes) she was really trusting in Tyrion having to follow through on a promise in open court.

So, here:

I am become a sour woman, Catelyn thought. I take no joy in mead nor meat, and song and laughter have become suspicious strangers to me. I am a creature of grief and dust and bitter longings. There is an empty place within me where my heart was once.


See, the funny thing is, we know what Catelyn is like when she's "consumed by grief". It's not this. It's more like this:

Lady Stark was there beside his bed. She had been there, day and night, for close on a fortnight. Not for a moment had she left Bran's side. She had her meals brought to her there, and chamber pots as well, and a small hard bed to sleep on, though it was said she had scarcely slept at all. She fed him herself, the honey and water and herb mixture that sustained life. Not once did she leave the room. So Jon had stayed away.
...

Lady Stark looked over. For a moment she did not seem to recognize him. Finally she blinked. "What are you doing here?" she asked in a voice strangely flat and emotionless...

Her face did not change. Her long auburn hair was dull and tangled. She looked as though she had aged twenty years. "You've said it. Now go away."
....

When she opened them again, they told her that she had slept four days. Catelyn nodded and sat up in bed. It all seemed like a nightmare to her now, everything since Bran's fall, a terrible dream of blood and grief, but she had the pain in her hands to remind her that it was real. She felt weak and light-headed, yet strangely resolute, as if a great weight had lifted from her.
...

Catelyn remembered the way she had been before, and she was ashamed.


So what we really have is Catelyn in AGoT briefly going well and truly mad with grief, until she comes out of it, versus her grieving deeply... but being quite fully rational and self-aware:

"I want them all dead, Brienne. Theon Greyjoy first, then Jaime Lannister and Cersei and the Imp, every one, every one. But my girls . . . my girls will . . ."


The "but" is that if the Lannisters start dying, so will her daughters. She's thought it through.

She stared at her scarred hands, opened and closed them, then slowly raised her eyes. "I've sent him wine."
"Wine?" Brienne was lost. "Robb? Or . . . Theon Greyjoy?"
"The Kingslayer." The ploy had served her well with Cleos Frey. I hope you're thirsty, Jaime. I hope your throat is dry and tight. "I would like you to come with me."
"I am yours to command, my lady."
"Good." Catelyn rose abruptly. "Stay, finish your meal in peace. I will send for you later. At midnight."


She's planned it out: she's going to use the same stratagem she used with Cleos, to loosen Jaime's tongue in hopes of discovering understanding, of what happened and of him, to try and secure her aims as best she can.

"But there's no one to find me now, is there? This time I have to find our own way, and it is hard, so hard.


And here she knows the path is difficult, she's thinking about the enormity of it, the costs, but also the potential benefit.


"I keep remembering the Stark words. Winter has come, Father. For me. For me. Robb must fight the Greyjoys now as well as the Lannisters, and for what? For a gold hat and an iron chair? Surely the land has bled enough. I want my girls back, I want Robb to lay down his sword and pick some homely daughter of Walder Frey to make him happy and give him sons. I want Bran and Rickon back, I want . . ." Catelyn hung her head. "I want," she said once more, and then her words were gone.


Well, that last is about wanting Ned, or things to be as they were, and she can't finish that sentence because that won't happen. But it's clear that she's recognizing both the futility of Robb's war (it _is_ futile at this stage) and the enormous amount she's lost.

And then, to show that Catelyn had thought this all through pretty well, look how smoothly her plan goes off:

He'd been very drunk by then, thanks to Catelyn Stark. Of their escape from Riverrun, he recalled only bits and pieces. There had been some trouble with the gaoler, but the big wench had overcome him.

After that they had climbed an endless stair, around and around. His legs were weak as grass, and he'd stumbled twice or thrice, until the wench lent him an arm to lean on. At some point he was bundled into a traveler's cloak and shoved into the bottom of a skiff. He remembered listening to Lady Catelyn command someone to raise the portcullis on the Water Gate. She was sending Ser Cleos Frey back to King's Landing with new terms for the queen, she'd declared in a tone that brooked no argument.


So she absconds with a chained Jaime, she puts off the gaoler, she secures an exit and a boat, she gets a hold of Cleos to provide cover for her plan, and so on. This isn't the stuff of a sudden decision. She's thought it through. She even thinks through to what will come afterward:

Ser Desmond nodded, plainly glad to be done with his distasteful task, but sad-eyed Utherydes Wayn lingered a moment after the castellan took his leave. "It was a grave thing you did, my lady, but for naught. Ser Desmond has sent Ser Robin Ryger after them, to bring back the Kingslayer ... or failing that, his head."
Catelyn had expected no less. May the Warrior give strength to your sword arm, Brienne, she prayed. She had done all she could; nothing remained but to hope.


She's not overcome with grief, unable to think rationally or sensibly -- far from it. The picture is very different from the truly driven-out-of-her-mind Catelyn shortly after Bran's fall. Indeed, she goes out of her way to note the fact that she was fully in command of herself, was entirely aware of what she was doing and its consequences:

"The news must have driven you mad," Ser Desmond broke in, "a madness of grief, a mother's madness, men will understand. You did not know..."

"I did," Catelyn said firmly. "I understood what I was doing and knew it was treasonous. If you fail to punish me, men will believe that we connived together to free Jaime Lannister. It was mine own act and mine alone, and I alone must answer for it. Put me in the Kingslayer's empty irons, and I will wear them proudly, if that is how it must be."

....

"... Love's not always wise, I've learned. It can lead us to great folly, but we follow our hearts ... wherever they take us. Don't we, Mother?"
Is that what I did?


So the two propositions -- that she was mad with grief, abandoning all common sense because this is (allegedly) some trope in the novels, and that she didn't really know what she was doing -- are wrong. The nearest you get is her stepping away, ignoring the fact that she didn't actually need to talk to him to execute her plan, and that it may all have been a bit of gamesmanship to try and prompt him to engage with her.

To go further, David's on the mark with the idea that criticizing a criticism of the text grounded on misreading in the text is somehow not allowing people to criticize the text. You just need to do a good job of it. Repeating shoddy readings of the character that fail to take into account all the evidence isn't the way to go about it.

Edited by Ran, 24 September 2012 - 02:05 PM.


#146 Jaime's Wench

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 11:34 AM

This is weird logic. People disliking a character doesn't mean the writer has failed. Especially when a huge part of this dislike is based on blatant misread of the text and/or sexism, as in this case.


What has been misread exactly?

There's characters made for people to purposely dislike (e,g. Ramsay, Roose, Cersei, Joffrey), there's characters made to purposely divide opinion (e.g. Jaime, Littlefinger, Dany, Arya), there's characters made as purposeful heroes (e.g. Ned, Jon...) and there's those you purposely feel sorry for (Bran, Sansa etc). I think Catelyn was meant as someone you feel sorry for. Instead, she annoys people. It's seldom a writer's purpose to annoy their reader through a character, at least not coming from my ten + years of writing experience.

#147 David Selig

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 12:07 PM

What has been misread exactly?

Well, where do I start? There's a zillion threads here blaming her for pretty much for everything wrong in Westeros, sometimes for contradicting things too. I remember one thread in which one of my opponents argued that Catelyn is too emotional and irrational and another that she's too cold and lacking in emotions.

There's characters made for people to purposely dislike (e,g. Ramsay, Roose, Cersei, Joffrey), there's characters made to purposely divide opinion (e.g. Jaime, Littlefinger, Dany, Arya), there's characters made as purposeful heroes (e.g. Ned, Jon...) and there's those you purposely feel sorry for (Bran, Sansa etc). I think Catelyn was meant as someone you feel sorry for. Instead, she annoys people. It's seldom a writer's purpose to annoy their reader through a character, at least not coming from my ten + years of writing experience.

I really don't think Martin's intentions were this simple and one-sided. He writes characters with certain characteristics, whether the readers like them or not is up to them.

Besides, you said you like Catelyn as a character. So it worked for you and for many others. Just because there's a vocal faction which has the opposite opinion, doesn't mean Martin failed as a writer with her. You can't please everyone.

Edited by David Selig, 24 September 2012 - 12:07 PM.


#148 Winter's Lion

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 09:40 PM

I think Cat’s grief takes a different form, because the two situations is different. As Tyrion said (I’m paraphrasing here) – “death is so final, life is full of possibilities.” In the first situation, she’s right beside Bran. There’s the possibility that he could have woken up at any moment, so she stayed with him night in day even to the detriment of her other children. In the second situation, she believes that her children are dead. There’s no possibility that they will ever wake up, no possibility that they will ever get better. She’s also in a completely different place, so it’s not like she can even stand vigil beside the bodies.

The reason I didn’t take anything from ASOS into account is that, timewise, it’s pretty far removed from the event. She’s had lots of time alone to go over the night’s events in her mind. It’s not uncommon for someone to do something foolish, then to spend time after the fact coming up with reasons to justify it to themselves. Cat’s no fool; she knows that she will be questioned, and she knows what the questions will be. She has plenty of time to think about what she will say when they come.

Catelyn had expected no less,” is the quote you used. I was once taught that a good writer is as careful with the words that he doesn’t use as with the ones that he does, that he is also aware of the things that he is not saying. What Martin chose to write was “Catelyn had expected no less.” What he didn’t choose to write was “Catelyn had expected no less when she came up with the plan right after she heard about the boys’ deaths, or even “Catelyn had expected no less when she sat and though about it while she was being confined.” I refuse to believe that he didn’t fully explain Cat’s thought because of some error of omission– he’s too good a writer for that. I believe he’s leaving these details open in order to make his readers really think, to consider his words and the characters that he has created.

I’m not trying to prove that my idea is the “correct” one. I don’t think there is a “correct” one. I’m trying to prove that Martin is a good enough writer that he can inspire this type of debate. Think about it – when was the last time you heard two people having an intelligent conversation about Bella’s motivations in Twilight? (No offense to anyone here who enjoys Stephenie Meyer. Different strokes for different folks).

Normally, I would very much enjoy a conversation like this. I like seeing other people’s points of views, and why they think what they do. But you feel the need to pepper the end of your post with yet another insult. I fail to see what is “shoddy” about my analysis, other than I’m not bowing down and saying that your interpretation is the ONLY possible one and that Cat is the BESTEST CHARACTER EVAR. I do like Cat, she’s very complex, and I do see the reasoning behind your interpretation of the writing. You’re the one that’s saying there’s only one possible interpretation, and I don’t think Martin writes like that.
I'd say that we will have to agree to disagree, but I can tell that's not your style. So I'm going to go ahead and bow out of this conversation, because I don't think it's going to go anwhere. You're going to be getting an influx of new members with the contined success of the third TV season as well as the release of your book. They will bring diversity and many a differing viewpoint. I wish you luck in dealing with them.


Edit because the format got all wonky.

Edited by Winter's Lion, 24 September 2012 - 09:41 PM.


#149 Winter's Lion

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Posted 24 September 2012 - 09:45 PM

Hmmm, it troubles me as both a 'newbie' to ASOIAF and as a writer that people can be criticised for criticising GRRM's writing. The man isn't infalliable, otherwise he would have made a better character of Catelyn. I really like her, and I LOVED this scene with Jaime, but others cannot stand her for many of her actions both big and small. The release of Jaime does seem more of a rash act than one that was thought through, imho. I believe she went in there only to question him.


I think she only went in there to question him too, hence the getting him drunk with the wine. I think she wanted to loosen his tongue with it. If she had wanted to get someone drunk, she could have just as easily tried to get the guard drunk. A passed out guard = someone else to blame for the escape. Didn't someone else use that ploy later in the books? I can't remeber off the top of my head, but it seems familiar.

#150 Ran

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 04:14 AM

Alas, Winter's Lion has departed us. But I'll be responding to her points here for the benefit of others, so they don't find themselves pulled into the same lack of rigor in their approach to discussing the series.

I think Cat’s grief takes a different form, because the two situations is different. As Tyrion said (I’m paraphrasing here) – “death is so final, life is full of possibilities.” In the first situation, she’s right beside Bran. There’s the possibility that he could have woken up at any moment, so she stayed with him night in day even to the detriment of her other children. In the second situation, she believes that her children are dead. There’s no possibility that they will ever wake up, no possibility that they will ever get better. She’s also in a completely different place, so it’s not like she can even stand vigil beside the bodies.


This makes very little sense. You see, the claim was made that she had lost all common sense, that she was overwhelmed by her grief, and therefore didn't act rationally. In all of this that follows, notice how the possibility of Catelyn being rational is never really engaged with, however. The argument takes as its guiding principle that Catelyn can't be rational, you see, so anything that flies in the face of that must be "open to interpretation".

The reason I didn’t take anything from ASOS into account is that, timewise, it’s pretty far removed from the event.


A few hours = "far removed"? And we have her, in her own head, being perfectly clear-eyed about it. Never wavering from the rational argument for what she did. Never accepting the narrative that "Oh, you're a woman, you were just emotional".

To read into those quotes above the idea that in fact she's truly being irrational and her self-justifications are simply driven from her being mad with grief is to read the text very badly indeed.

What Martin chose to write was “Catelyn had expected no less.” What he didn’t choose to write was “Catelyn had expected no less when she came up with the plan right after she heard about the boys’ deaths, or even “Catelyn had expected no less when she sat and though about it while she was being confined.” I refuse to believe that he didn’t fully explain Cat’s thought because of some error of omission– he’s too good a writer for that.


Catelyn Stark is, of all the characters in the series (excepting, perhaps, Davos), the most emotionally self-aware and honest. She doesn't have traumas in the past that lead her to allude to her feelings: she says what they are. She doesn't lie to herself about having emotions. She may pretend emotions to others that she doesn't feel, but she tells us this in her own thoughts. And yet this argument presented to us wants to convince us that, somehow, at the end of A Clash of Kings, she changes radically: she's a liar to herself about how she felt and how her emotions impacted her, in her own thoughts, having been driven mad with grief, irrational, lacking common sense.

It flies in the face of her characterization. Do we really need GRRM to spell things out for us to accept obvious truths? He basically has provided all the pieces to understand Catelyn here. Shifting the goal posts by deciding to eliminate from consideration evidence detrimental to one's argument, and then going and resting the whole of an argument on just the one chapter where for literary effect GRRM wants a surprise and a cliffhanger, so he reveals less of Catelyn's intentions than he normally would, is folly. The next chapter always explains what that cliffhanger was about... and the explanation we get is that Catelyn planned and executed Jaime's escape, and she did it with full awareness and understanding of what she was doing.

I’m trying to prove that Martin is a good enough writer that he can inspire this type of debate.


The debate Martin might have intended to inspire was surely whether it was the wrong or right choice. The argument that "she lost all common sense" is a belief that it was the wrong choice, because it was irrational and not thought out. It seems that if we are to argue the merits of the choice, the fact that it was rational -- right or wrong, it was rational -- seems to be a necessary prerequisite. Mad actions that make no rational sense aren't worth debating.

I fail to see what is “shoddy” about my analysis


"I refuse to look at any other evidence because it's so, so far removed". Shoddy, yes.

your interpretation is the ONLY possible one and that Cat is the BESTEST CHARACTER EVAR.


Eureka! The truth at last. I never justified her actions by saying she's the greatest character. I pointed out the facts, the text that anyone with eyes can read. But, "Oh, you think she's the best character ever, therefore your criticisms can't be right."

Take this as an object lesson, dear readers: don't do that if you want to be taken seriously. You've lost the argument at this point.

You’re the one that’s saying there’s only one possible interpretation, and I don’t think Martin writes like that.


Oh, he'd be a terrible author if that were true. Surely everyone agrees with that? No, there's plenty that's open to only one interpretation. And there's plenty that's open to multiple interpretations. But this particular thing you want to claim? That she was irrational in her last chapter, that everything she says about it has to be ignored because she's irrational and self-deluding for the rest of the series until her death? No.

I think she only went in there to question him too, hence the getting him drunk with the wine. I think she wanted to loosen his tongue with it.


Why did she need Brienne? She wasn't afraid of him hurting her -- he was in chains. If she wanted just to question him, she wasn't planning to kill him, so she doesn't need Brienne's sword. She's not the sort to rough people up, so she wasn't planning to tell Brienne to beat him up if he didn't answer her questions.

The obvious answer is the very thing we see: she meant to spirit Jaime away with Brienne's help. The questioning was, as I said way back when, merely to try and come to grips with him and what he did and why things had happened as they did, to try and get at the truth. But either way, she was sending him off. This was, after all, the best opportunity: much of the garrison drunk or passed out drunk from celebrating.

If she had wanted to get someone drunk, she could have just as easily tried to get the guard drunk. A passed out guard = someone else to blame for the escape.


But that's not Catelyn Stark. She doesn't make choices that involve leaving the blame on others. She doesn't foist the blame for how she acted after Bran's fall on anyone else. She doesn't say, "Oh, well, I was crazy then, lets forget about it" -- she goes and feels guilt and shame for it, she feels guilt long afterward when she's in Vale, she's driven by the need to make up for what, in this present day and age, would have been understood as a mental breakdown beyond her control. But for Catelyn, it was a failure, and she doesn't mean for it to happen again... and it doesn't.

She owns her actions. Those who argue otherwise are making a fundamental misreading of the character. Her actions may be the wrong choice, but they're rationally motivated, not driven by a lack of "common sense". She has more common sense in her pinkie than most characters do in the series, really.

Edited by Ran, 25 September 2012 - 06:38 AM.


#151 ckal

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Posted 25 September 2012 - 07:06 PM

My favorite chapter in CoK and perhaps the whole series is the Catelyn chapter in which she learns of the boys "death" and discusses it with Brienne. It is heartwrenching. It provides complete and unrefutable reasoning for releasing the Kingslayer. She then parlays with him and makes him swear an oath to return the girls.

Yet, in the show the boys are only captives. Robb even says there's no risk to them. Having only three children instead of 5, with two captives, and no male heir to her son the King is a lot different than having all five children with 4 captive. They've gutted her motivation. And, the parlay with Jaime while good, did not have him swear an oath. I'm sure it will be aluded to later, but they really made her a weak woman. Terrible. Terrible. A grieving mother is someone everyone can empathize with. A worried mother, not as much.

They could have at least had her stitting with a parchment telling Robb that the boys were dead and that's why she released them. But, Theon poisoned the Ravens and nobody even knows of his mummer's farce. And, Robb's motivation for having sex with "Jeyne" is weakened b/c he's neither injured nor grieving.

Very disappointed with this reinvention.


This is an utterly fantastic post and I couldn't agree more with it. I was disappointed in season 2 because of the changes that completely ruined characters' arcs, stories, and motivations. Cat, Robb, Dany, and Jon. All ruined, and the worst part is that on no level of story telling do these changes make any sense, and they didn't even need to be changed from the books! They were extremely easy to translate to the TV screen and should have been done so explicitly.

#152 DornishmansWife

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 03:10 PM

I kept waiting...kept waiting for "No man calls my lady of Winterfell a traitor in my hearing!" as well as another line in the 1st season when Catelyn asks Robb "Girls are not as important as boys are they?" which hurts and shames Robb...although not enough to have him trade for the girls

Catelyn is pegged as a "mother-type" by D&D and they write her like that. It's pretty unfortunate because she's a mother and more, as many of you have stated.

#153 NorthSouthEastWesteros

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 04:50 PM

My favorite chapter in CoK and perhaps the whole series is the Catelyn chapter in which she learns of the boys "death" and discusses it with Brienne. It is heartwrenching. It provides complete and unrefutable reasoning for releasing the Kingslayer. She then parlays with him and makes him swear an oath to return the girls.

Yet, in the show the boys are only captives. Robb even says there's no risk to them. Having only three children instead of 5, with two captives, and no male heir to her son the King is a lot different than having all five children with 4 captive. They've gutted her motivation. And, the parlay with Jaime while good, did not have him swear an oath. I'm sure it will be aluded to later, but they really made her a weak woman. Terrible. Terrible. A grieving mother is someone everyone can empathize with. A worried mother, not as much.

They could have at least had her stitting with a parchment telling Robb that the boys were dead and that's why she released them. But, Theon poisoned the Ravens and nobody even knows of his mummer's farce. And, Robb's motivation for having sex with "Jeyne" is weakened b/c he's neither injured nor grieving.

Very disappointed with this reinvention.


/agree.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':agree:' />

#154 Joyful Union

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 06:13 PM

This is an utterly fantastic post and I couldn't agree more with it. I was disappointed in season 2 because of the changes that completely ruined characters' arcs, stories, and motivations. Cat, Robb, Dany, and Jon. All ruined, and the worst part is that on no level of story telling do these changes make any sense, and they didn't even need to be changed from the books! They were extremely easy to translate to the TV screen and should have been done so explicitly.

Well, at least your staying positive.

#155 King of the Road

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 06:22 PM

Well, at least your staying positive.

/agree.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':agree:' />

It's hardly the end of the world is it?

#156 The Boar of Gore

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 02:36 AM

My favorite chapter in CoK and perhaps the whole series is the Catelyn chapter in which she learns of the boys "death" and discusses it with Brienne. It is heartwrenching. It provides complete and unrefutable reasoning for releasing the Kingslayer. She then parlays with him and makes him swear an oath to return the girls.


Yes. Because, as you can see, the girls are now safe and well thanks to Catelyn's genius plan.

Seriously, I think TV Cat's actions made much more sense than Book Cat's actions: in the show it was clear that Jaime would have been killed if she hadn't taken action, so she at least forestalled Sansa's murder in retaliation; in the book, releasing him was just a desperate gamble.