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About TheCasualObserver

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  1. Rant and Rave without Repercussions [S7 Leaks Edition]

    I knew you'd come back after such a great article. Loved the work as usual, you keep me sane in a GOT loving world. On to your points here - I would disagree about the point they were trying to make with Ramsay's downfall. In this case, all that mattered was that a bad guy was killed horribly by someone he had mistreated. I genuinely don't believe anything else was meant to be inferred, not a morality play, not a political thesis, nothing. Sansa killed the guy who raped her. Woo hoo. Even if we try to apply that kind of thinking to Ramsay's story, I still don't come away thinking that he's somehow been brought down by his behavior. The matter of his death is actually irrelevant - we don't judge Ned on being decapitated, because ultimately his principals of fair rule and personal responsibility have greater longevity post death than Tywin's high handed and brutal methods. (Or at least in the books) In Ramsay's case, his defeat comes not from abusing too many people, or failing to uphold the social contract or even just not being a psychotic bastard every once in a while. He dies because for plot reasons he ignores the fact that a foreign army invaded his land and occupied the lynchpin of northern defense for three months (or however long it takes for Sansa and Jon to fuck up getting any help from the North, then march south to fight). It's basically a plot hole. Ramsay fails because of a plot hole created for the dramatic tension of a single episode. And anyone who didn't know LF was going to show up with the Knights of the Vale is either an idiot or a liar, so it wasn't even a surprise. For this show image is everything; examine it even slightly (as you've done so wonderfully) and it crumbles, but no one seems to care. And in the end was Sansa even significant to all this really? I was confused by LF's behavior, because he basically sits and does nothing for four episodes, but ultimately he did march north to put his plan in motion. Presumably he was going to do this if Sansa escaped the Boltons or not, so does the plot actually need her at all?
  2. Rant and Rave without Repercussions [S7 Leaks Edition]

    So the painful experiences before season 5 just didn't matter then Mr Benioff? Seeing your father killed after being assured he would live? Being forced to look at his decapitated head? Being stripped and beaten in public? Being psychologically and physically abused for months by Joffrey? Being hit and almost raped in a crowd? Being married against your will? Learning your mother and brother died horribly to try to save you? Watching your psychotic aunt get killed by her husband? Nah. I guess a true feminist show proves that a woman can only become a player if she is violent from the start or following a rape. That feels like realism to me.
  3. Army Power of each house

    Why would Euron have more ships than Yara? He was planning on building some. Can he replace the entire fleet in the time it takes Yara to sail from the Iron Islands to Mereen to back again?
  4. The 3 Smartest Characters, In Order, Are...

    True, but Ramsay didn't know that at the time. We mustn't fall into the trap of presentism. Killing your father and his politically connected wife is a bad move and must inform on our assessment of his intelligence.
  5. The 3 Smartest Characters, In Order, Are...

    He also murdered his step-mother which would enrage the Freys, some of the only allies he has. But that had no payoff, so never mind.
  6. The 3 Smartest Characters, In Order, Are...

    Show Jon is a dumbass. He's reckless, commits to idiotic engagements, fails miserably to communicate with his men, indirectly causes the death of Rickon, fails to spot the most obvious incipient mutiny ever and fails to give a single order in the battle he commanded, costing the lives of thousands. Jon is not smart. I'm going for Varys, Tywin and Tyrion. Everybody else is susceptible to occasional stupidity syndrome.
  7. Rant and Rave without Repercussions [S7 Leaks Edition]

    As far as I can tell, TV-Dorne sucked because it didn't have Arriane as it's locus. She's the one with the plans, the plot, the emotional conflict with her father and is the primary POV. Look at it this way - AFFC and ADWD took flak for being substantially more character driven than plot driven like the earlier books (not that the earlier books had bad characterization, it just never felt like we had to choose one of the other before AFFC). The story of Dorne is contained entirely in the pages of AFFC and follows this trend of heavy characterization. So how can a plot based around characterization work in any medium if the character it's based on is cut?!
  8. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    If Aerys blew up KL and survived, would he still be King? Of course not, he would be considered a monster. Cersei is a woman who has been publicly paraded in front of vast crowds naked in a patriarchal society. She has blown up a holy place filled with women and children. She murdered the King's wife and her own uncle. She has laid claim to the throne when she has no lawful right to it. The suggestion that these actions have strengthened her position is ridiculous. This is a feudal army we are talking about, not the SS. You know full well that conflating the events of the war of the five kings (or pretty much anything in GOT canon) with what Cersei does to the sept is fundamentally inaccurate. The only comparable example is the near miss of Aerys using the wildfyre himself. This was an act of terrorism by a woman scorned. Public order would break down. The machinery of government would collapse. The entire population of KL, some 400,000 people, should be desperate to escape the city, to get away from a fiery death that could take them at any time and Cersei's soldiers would be doing the same. The public perception, both civilian and military, would be that Cersei has lost her mind. No alliances, no diplomacy, no major power status. This is a ludicrous situation if Cersei's reign is anything other than a descent into anarchy.
  9. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    The Lannister army has been loyal - but loyal to who? Tywin? Jaime? Cersei? Is it the person who spurs the loyalty, or total devotion to the Lannister cause no matter what? If Cersei is somehow still a power in seaosn 7 it seems to be the latter. Back in season 2 Varys asked Tyrion his famous question about power. In the case of the Lannister army this seems to have been ignored. Cersei cannot offer money because the Lannisters are skint. She cannot offer religon because she destroyed the largest place of worship in Westeros. She can offer her name, but even that is tarnished - she's a woman in a patriarchal society who has been publicly paraded naked through the streets and committed an act of terrorism which killed her son's wife, a religious leader and her own uncle. Does none of that matter? They are still willing to fight and die simply because Cersei is a Lannister. Less a real army, more stormtroopers or orcs. I wish the Starks could command such loyalty in their men.
  10. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    The point of this thread is to discuss the leaks... that's what I'm doing. The show is apparently going to present Cersei as the Queen of the Seven kingdoms in reality as well as her own head, and I'm questioning how that could even be possible for a person in her position.
  11. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    It should really be a case of Dany showing up at the city with her white hair and dragon and waiting for everyone to turf Cersei out. After the total failure of the Baratheon line, a living Targ complete with dragon should be enough to make everyone bend the knee. My issue with some of the arguments on this thread are simple - wherein lies the point in debating how sensible a wight hunt to get Cersei's help is if the premise that Cersei can even provide help is flawed?
  12. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    But why does Cersei have an army at all? Why do the Lannister men still follow her? Why does anyone follow her outside of Gregor and Qyburn? She would be Queen of a lawless KL as everyone tries to escape the mad bomber, so the premise that she needs to be treated with is flawed from the start.
  13. Speculations, news, theories for season 7. (includes leaks )

    Can someone, anyone, explain to me why Cersei has any power at all? Shouldn't she be trapped inside the city as her remaining soldiers abandon her and public order breaks down as people flee the terrorist queen? You can't project power with dragonfire because it's entirely situational. Why would anyone do what she says?
  14. Rant and Rave without Repercussions [S7 Leaks Edition]

    It's not specific to LF. One of the weaknesses of the scripts from pretty much every season is that no one can be intelligent in the same conversation. I think Varys and LF had a couple and Olenna and Tywin had one, but that's it. It's a problem that arises when every conversation is dictated by utility to the plot rather than naturally presenting characters as real people having a conversation. The writing doesn't allow for complexity, so it becomes necessary for each interaction to have a "winner", who usually espouses the benefits of being a violent bastard and not giving a shit about everybody else as a closing (and irrefutable) argument. Since this is the core of most "political" scenes, LF comes out on top more often than not because that's who he is and the show tacitly endorses his worldview.
  15. Rant and Rave without Repercussions [S7 Leaks Edition]

    That scene is Mole's town is just par for the course at this point when it comes to the show's idiocy in scripting, but what really irritated me was that some outlets used it as proof that Sansa was becoming a schemer by confronting the man who had betrayed her. The big problem with this (ignoring the overall problem that it addressed a stupid plot point by pointing out how stupid it was) is that it is a fundamentally terrible political move. Consider this; in early season 6, Sansa is convinced that LF is now her enemy and he is actively using her as a pawn to his own ends. She also knows that he usually travels with lots of hired men to protect him. With these two pieces of information, Sansa decides to confront LF directly in an isolated place. She once again places herself in his sphere of influence and potential control, only bringing Brienne with her. (Admittedly a good choice of bodyguard; Brienne is essentially the hulk at this point) If LF had brought lots of men with him, he could have killed Brienne, kidnapped Sansa and once again got to work making her life miserable. Sansa voluntarily going to mole's town with one person as backup is profoundly stupid, especially when Jon could bring the entire wildling army to protect her if she was nearer the wall. You might also spot that this mistake works in reverse; LF is extremely stupid for going alone into enemy territory to meet Sansa who has fled winterfell. It apparently never entered his head that she might be angry with him. But it's not just the situation which proves Sansa's stupidity; it's how she deals with the meeting as well. Machiavelli teaches us that "If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared". In this case Sansa explains: 1. That she knows he is conniving to his own ends. 2. That she now hates LF and wants nothing more to do with him. 3. That she will let him go after a brief moment of threatening. This is appalling strategic behavior. She makes an enemy of LF, threatens his life, informs him of her own plans and then simply lets him go to do whatever he wants. Sansa has done nothing for her own cause except make herself feel a little better by having a shout. In fact, her behavior here most resembles Ned when he approached Cersei in the garden, giving away information about her own position and doing nothing to improve it. So what should she have done? Two very simple, very easy solutions. 1. Cry, pretend to be glad that LF is here and embrace him and the help he offers. The Stark cause gets the Vale knights and LF is none the wiser that Sansa is now working against him, and can turn on him at her leisure. 2. If she can't hold her anger in, have LF killed there and then. Then travel to Moat Cailen, tell the Vale Lords that the Boltons killed LF, corroborate his abduction story and use the Vale Knights to wreak vengeance on Ramsay's head. These are extremely basic strategies in dealing with a situation, and they are ignored to create some false sense of tension in episoe 9.