Iron Mother

Arya V Brienne!!!!!!! Appreciation Thread

50 posts in this topic

11 minutes ago, Tagganaro said:

I think this was a fantastic scene but it did come across as so fan-servicey that it maybe even was fan-fiction?  That being said, I won't let that ruin my enjoyment of what I thought was a really cool and well-choreographed fight between two way differently-sized combatants.

Hell yeah. Fun scene and Maisey (sp?) definitely sells the unexpected badass who clearly enjoys a fight.  

Her smile was infectious. 

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Definitely enjoyed it, particularly the way Brienne's respect for Arya grew as the bout went on.  Too much twirling of weapons and attempted blocking of Brienne's sword from Arya for realism (parry don't block!), but well choreographed and fun to watch.  Good to see Arya using Needle again, though there would have been more continuity if we had seen her practising with it (or some sort of sword) in the HoB&W.  It's set up that Arya can fight pretty decently with a sword; while she has killed several people with Needle, none were in equal combat. 

Incidentally, Needle is a smallsword (right down to the detail of the hilt), which was a popular weapon in 18th-century Europe for mainly for dress, (civilian) self-defence and duelling (a rapier is a much longer, heavier weapon that could easily be used full-on against a longsword).  A fast, small (and very good) smallsworder might well get the better of a bigger opponent with an arming sword or longsword, but the lack of reach and flimsy hand protection is a serious disadvantage. 

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The part where it sheds fan-service fight into what I call full on Arya porn is where she switches from using her water dancer moves into parrying a sparring sword in a two-handed swing from one of the strongest warriors in the realms with Needle.  The smirk also pushed it too far, Arya was showing off by humiliating Brianne for no reason other than ego.

Show Arya is just better at everything, always. You know she'll last to the end because if anything bad happened to her half the audience would riot.

If they had left her to dodging and had her take the spar seriously, it would have been a great fight.

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I think we need to look at what she was doing. She wasn't fighting Brienne with strength. She was being awkward, making sure Brienne never landed a full blow. Danced around to put Brienne off balance. Brienne is so heavy with the sword her movements are laboured and broad. She's really the perfect opponent for someone fast. Arya has time to see the blow coming, move into a position Brienne can't get to and make a move. 

 

We also see when Brienne can land a blow, the kick and when Arya loses her sword. 

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She out-Brienned Brienne! Dancing around and letting her stronger and over-confident opponent tire themselves out is exactly the tactic young Brienne used (in the books, don't remember if that conversation ever happened on the show).

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50 minutes ago, Inigo Sand said:

Definitely enjoyed it, particularly the way Brienne's respect for Arya grew as the bout went on.  Too much twirling of weapons and attempted blocking of Brienne's sword from Arya for realism (parry don't block!), but well choreographed and fun to watch.  Good to see Arya using Needle again, though there would have been more continuity if we had seen her practising with it (or some sort of sword) in the HoB&W.  It's set up that Arya can fight pretty decently with a sword; while she has killed several people with Needle, none were in equal combat. 

Incidentally, Needle is a smallsword (right down to the detail of the hilt), which was a popular weapon in 18th-century Europe for mainly for dress, (civilian) self-defence and duelling (a rapier is a much longer, heavier weapon that could easily be used full-on against a longsword).  A fast, small (and very good) smallsworder might well get the better of a bigger opponent with an arming sword or longsword, but the lack of reach and flimsy hand protection is a serious disadvantage. 

I'm happy to be corrected. Thank you.

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Posted (edited)

Arya has essentially been molded by some of the greatest killers in this world since she got to Kings Landing.  They may not have taught her duel save Syrio, but they taught her how to kill.  The rest she taught herself.  She is a survivor.  

Edited by SerJeremiahLouistark

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20 hours ago, Andrés Garcia said:

The scene was anime bullshit, but I wasn't too bothered by it. It may have to do with my brain being very good at adjusting stories as they move along. I saw a little girl do an overhead block with a thin rapier against a heavy two-handed sword from a strong and seasoned warrior, but, in a sense, that's not what my brain chose to include as part of what was actually happening.

Arya sparred with Brienne and did well. She impressed the castle. That's it.

That is a great interpretation.  You reminded me how some people are not able to "suspend disbelief" and that is why they cannot deal with certain types of entertainment/books/whatever.  I happen to have a super suspension of disbelief BUT as many people say, the core story must lure you in for the disbelief to be possible.

If a person does not believe the story or characters, or are wholly uninterested in them, all you have left is to focus on how crappy the animation is or how incredulous the story narrative is.  I've found myself within the first 5 minutes of something knowing "I can't watch this" because I'll be bitching in my head the whole time.

I watched a youtube rant how Arya is NOT that seasoned and trained at all.  But they wanted her to come back as Xena and the "kick ass chick" of the Starks... because they all have to have their "role".  Lady Sansa, King Jon, Prophet Bran, Warrior Arya.  On paper, I don't know how the writers live with themselves.  If you think about it, we as the viewer are spared having to see these things in their RAW form.  We can at least gaze into Drogon's mouth and fire while being distracted from one-handed Jaime slaying Bloodriders.

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I think we are meant to assume that Arya did some training with swords in HoB&W (or maybe with the Hound), but it would have been nice to have seen some of it rather than have her suddenly appear as an uber-swordswoman now.   

For anyone interested in the realism of the fight there's an excellent review by Matt Easton on his Scholagladiatoria youtube channel.  The only thing I'd take him up on is that he assumes Needle doesn't have an edge because it's a smallsword and therefore has a triangular, point-only blade, a bit like a sharpened fencing epee.  I don't think that's exactly the case - the close-up when Jon gave it to her suggests that it flattens out and becomes sharp towards the end (I think he warns her how sharp it is), also supported by her beheading the pigeon and slicing through the candle.  However, as Jon said it won't hack a man's head off, and at best it might just make a painful gash or sever a finger or two - so why make lots of cuts with something designed for thrusting?

Having said that I can happily ignore the technicalities and enjoy the fight, and how it fitted into the wider story of Arya coming home and getting Sansa (and Brienne) to realise that she is someone to be reckoned with.  I particularly liked Sansa's expression at the end, a sort of 'what the hell do I make of this?' (I see there's another thread about that). 

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6 hours ago, Inigo Sand said:

I think we are meant to assume that Arya did some training with swords in HoB&W (or maybe with the Hound), but it would have been nice to have seen some of it rather than have her suddenly appear as an uber-swordswoman now.   

For anyone interested in the realism of the fight there's an excellent review by Matt Easton on his Scholagladiatoria youtube channel.  The only thing I'd take him up on is that he assumes Needle doesn't have an edge because it's a smallsword and therefore has a triangular, point-only blade, a bit like a sharpened fencing epee.  I don't think that's exactly the case - the close-up when Jon gave it to her suggests that it flattens out and becomes sharp towards the end (I think he warns her how sharp it is), also supported by her beheading the pigeon and slicing through the candle.  However, as Jon said it won't hack a man's head off, and at best it might just make a painful gash or sever a finger or two - so why make lots of cuts with something designed for thrusting?

Having said that I can happily ignore the technicalities and enjoy the fight, and how it fitted into the wider story of Arya coming home and getting Sansa (and Brienne) to realise that she is someone to be reckoned with.  I particularly liked Sansa's expression at the end, a sort of 'what the hell do I make of this?' (I see there's another thread about that). 

 

Hey, thanks for pointing to that video.  It's fun to watch and useful.  As to the cutting, I think whether it has an edge or not isn't super relevant as what it doesn't have its inertia, which means even if it can cut it can't do so dangerously.  There is now a follow up video on the same site that also addresses my first reaction to his criticism of her attacks -- I'd have said that we can just assume it's training and Arya is using needle, the sword at hand, as a substitute for a training blade and attacking as though she had a cut/thrust weapon. But he argues that makes Arya's demonstration of skill unimpressive because anyone can land a cut with a light blade.  As a decidedly not brilliant saber fencer I'd quibble with that a little but certainly he's right that there's no great need for brilliance if you can score by cutting using a light blade even your opponent has a heavy one. 

He is a little but not completely skeptical of Arya's ability to dodge but accepts it allowing that's the fundamental thing we're asked to accept about Arya -- she's unnaturally quick.  But I'd also add that we're also asked to accept that she's an extremely astute observer who is good at detecting deception (Forel emphasized observation and so very much time was spent on the lying game in the house of black and white).  

Dodging is recognizing what line an attack is being made to and removing yourself from that line and, especially as Brienne at least starts out doing some feinting (and the inertia of her blade limits her ability to quickly change lines) the bout is suggesting talents that we've already been given a basis for believing. 

But I take his primary point to be that Arya's attack is far more fanciful and silly than Arya's defense and he's definitely right there.  The people who harp on the strength differential just don't understand the way leverage works in swordplay or the fact that the defender's job is not to arrest the movement of the attacker's blade but to redirect that movement from a dangerous trajectory to a safe one.  Both of which mean that a defender can parry a blow using far, far less strength than the attacker put in to it.

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Posted (edited)

Loved the sparring.  Im not overly concerned with the technical problems people raise.  Needle is referred to as "castle forged steel" in season one so I don't think it would break under the weight of the blunted practice sword Brine used.  I also don't have a problem will Needle parrying the blows.  The weight of the practice sword actually helps Arya in this as it crates a lot of momentum.  All Arya is doing is defecting it enough to make it miss.  That momentum also opens the door for Arya to counter as it takes Brienne time to stop the heavier sword and change direction.  My big problem with the scene is the tv/movie trope that actors can't wear helmets because u can't easily recognize them.  This sparring session would never occur without helmets or if it did all Brienne's blows would be aimed at the body.  Even a blunted practice sword swung that hard could have killed Arya if it caught her in the side of the head.  In reality a good sword fighter like Brienne would have been trying to hit Arya's sword so her opponent could practice blocking the blows not club her senseless.  Still, it's tv and it was great fun!

Edited by valyrian_steel

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I find it impossible to suspend disbelief that any little girl (not just Arya, and no slam on Masie Williams' acting) can be a "warrior."

From the perspective of someone who has raised one girl and who has oodles of little girl relatives in my extended family, it just looks laughable. When I see Arya raise a sword against a grown man, I keep thinking to myself, "You don't even have to know any martial skill to deal with her, just take it away from her and send her to her room."

Female Warriors. Nope, it doesn't work at all. Assassins, thieves, spies that involve sneaking around, but no combat, sure. But combat against grown men, all of whom outmatch them in strength, speed & stamina, virtually regardless of size or weight... ppfffft.

(Not just in GoT either -- Hollywood is increasingly doing this in all sorts of action/sci-fi movies. Barring magical influences, it's all ridiculous.)

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29 minutes ago, Donaldys I Trumpagar said:

I find it impossible to suspend disbelief that any little girl (not just Arya, and no slam on Masie Williams' acting) can be a "warrior."

From the perspective of someone who has raised one girl and who has oodles of little girl relatives in my extended family, it just looks laughable. When I see Arya raise a sword against a grown man, I keep thinking to myself, "You don't even have to know any martial skill to deal with her, just take it away from her and send her to her room."

Female Warriors. Nope, it doesn't work at all. Assassins, thieves, spies that involve sneaking around, but no combat, sure. But combat against grown men, all of whom outmatch them in strength, speed & stamina, virtually regardless of size or weight... ppfffft.

(Not just in GoT either -- Hollywood is increasingly doing this in all sorts of action/sci-fi movies. Barring magical influences, it's all ridiculous.)

The idea of female warriors is not ridiculous. Some women are fitter, faster and stronger than some men. That is a fact. So your claim that all men will outmatch a woman in strength speed and stamina regardless of size or weight is false.

However, it is also a fact that the strongest man will always be stronger than the strongest woman and fastest man will be quicker than fastest woman. That doesnt mean that no woman can be an effective or welll above average warrior (just probably not the best warrior).

For example, I find it difficult to believe Brienne could beat the best male warriors (Khal Drogo, Jaime pre losing his hand, Ser Barristan Selmy, Ser Arthur Dayne, etc) but not at all difficult to believe she could or would beat ordinary soldiers (even most above average ones). Her defeat of The Hound I still have trouble with though. Sandor Clegane is one of the most powerful and feared living warriors in Westeros.

Now, as for Arya being a 'little girl', she is 17 in season 7, which is a huge difference from the 11 or 12 she would likely be at this point in books. 17 year olds can be quite strong, fast and fit. 

That said, I felt her fight with Brienne and going toe to toe with her in a swordfight was far fetched. 

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It was a nice fight. 

 

I wish the actress playing Arya had grown up a bit more because something about the fight felt unrealistic due to her size. Arya being able to parry or deflect a 2 handed overhead strike from Briene with needle considering her size was just a tad bit weird. The way Jorah fought the water dancer at the pits was much better because you can clearly see Jorah's opponent clearly deflecting and parrying many hits but dodge the heavy hits. 

ANYWAYS, still a good fight. Not at the level that was the Mountain vs the Viper but still very good. 7/10

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I loved it

Yes seeing her block was a little jarring, but seeing Briene getting beaten was so satisfying  (so over rated) {how the fuck did she beat the hound ffs}

I don't dislike Briene just find her above avarage at best, but having her swing her sword at the unarmored head of her ward in an attempt to kill her unrealistic and out of character.  (Ward in essence as she promised Cat to find and protect her, and death would have been the outcome is her blow found it's target)

But loved it none the less.

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On 08/08/2017 at 5:54 PM, Status Crow said:

Did anyone notice Arya's reaction in the crypts?

Arya: "Jon left you in charge?"
Sansa: "He did. I hope he comes back soon. I remember how happy he was to see me. When he sees *you*, his heart will probably stop."
Arya:  ...
 

 

"... his heart will probably stop" + Arya never answering Sansa's question about who's on the list.

Looks like Jon's dead again.

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Posted (edited)

First off, Arya did not beat Brienne.  There were 4 (?) rounds to the fight.  The first round was Arya immediately as Brienne did not expect the quickness.  The second round was also Arya as Brienne was still a bit rattled.  The third round was Brienne (courtesy of the big boot).  The final round, where both were dialed in, was a draw, with blades poised to each throat.  They are equal - only different in style.

Both were smirking.  Compare Brienne before and after the fight.  She was dying of boredom when training Pod.  Now she has a real sparring partner.  The learning will go both ways.

Brienne did beat the hound.  However, he was half dead to begin with.  That fight was much more visceral but Brienne would have been dead if Sandor was healthy.  Neither would be a match for any of the legendary swordsmen.

 

Edited by Brave Ser Robin

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Arya vs Brienne = Catelyn Stark on background.

Arya could mention that Hound was injured when he battled Brienne. Luckily they are about to meet again.

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I enjoyed the interaction between Brienne and Arya. And the scene had a purpose. But I wish they hadn't shown Arya blocking a two handed blow from Brienne with Needle (Arya holding any sword for that matter would have been equally jarring since she is much smaller than Brienne). They should've left it at Arya being quicker/more nimble than Brienne. But it doesn't bother me too much since Arya is now capable of switching faces. There might be some element of magic involved here.

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12 hours ago, elder brother jonothor dar said:

I loved it

Yes seeing her block was a little jarring, but seeing Briene getting beaten was so satisfying  (so over rated) {how the fuck did she beat the hound ffs}

I don't dislike Briene just find her above avarage at best, but having her swing her sword at the unarmored head of her ward in an attempt to kill her unrealistic and out of character.  (Ward in essence as she promised Cat to find and protect her, and death would have been the outcome is her blow found it's target)

But loved it none the less.

But still a whole lot more realistic than the undead shuffling around, dragons incinerating people, an attractive woman really being a very old woman, an animated corpse etc.

It's a fantasy TV show based on a fantasy novel.  In both mediums 95% of what you see or read is BS in relation to reality, from the obvious stuff like Dragons to the way the people interact with each other.

I find it amusing how some readers/viewers take such umbrage to certain things and let others go.

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