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ravenous reader

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  1. Your idea makes good sense symbolically. Consider the following: This is an example of what @LmL has termed GRRM’s characteristic “fractal symbolism”: Thus, the cat sees Cat who then sees through the cat’s eyes! As a Faceless Man (FM) trainee, Arya has changed the appearance of her face (to ‘Blind Beth’), yet nevertheless the cat can ‘see through’ the guise to recognise her underlying, former identity as ‘Cat.’ Animals generally seem more capable naturally than humans of the ‘True seeing’, as evidenced by the fact that Casso, King of Seals (See-ls?), is also not taken in by FM tricks. This is an allegory for the parable of the Sealord’s cat, making Syrio not only the one to see the cat’s true identity, but from which it also follows from a certain perspective that Syrio can be seen as the Sealord’s cat himself. In other words, Syrio (See-rio?) facilitates the Sealord’s seeing (pun on See-Lord), analogously to how the cat enables blind Arya/Beth to see via skinchanging. This convoluted, ‘fractal’ role-exchange demonstrates a key theme of the author’s whereby “the hunters become the hunted,” and vice versa. Paradoxically, in order to overcome the antagonist, one must ‘become’ the antagonist, thereby no longer really ‘antagonising’ them, but rather neutralising them, utilising their own element against them, a la the Knight of the Mirror Shield. Fighting fire with fire, ice with ice (this would involve being an ice wight like Coldhands or skinchanging an Other/ice dragon, etc.), or catching cats by taking on the characteristics, even slipping into the skin, of a cat oneself. Hence, Syrio’s first lesson of catching cats — foreshadowing that in order to outwit Lannisters (lions), the Stark girl (wolf) must learn to think/see/move like a cat: Spot on! One of my pet peeves is the pretentious application of ‘Occam’s Razor’, ‘Chekhov’s Gun’, and, worst of all, Science, to fantasy literary analysis. For the purposes of ASOIAF, the only thing that matters is a coherent symbolic reading.
  2. One of my favorite topics, ever since @evita mgfs suggested it! Definitely time-travel hijinks involved, as indicated by the marker of the tree ‘growing in fast-forward’(analogous to that growing/going in reverse in Bran’s vision):
  3. Maybe it’s both? The descendants inherit, and must account for, the original sin of the forefathers. GRRM likes paradox and inversion: A nameless, faceless plant... “Such a small thing to hold the power of life and death. It was made from a certain plant that grew only on the islands of the Jade Sea [greensea=greensee].”
  4. Haha. As one of his best readers, you know he doesn’t like closure...
  5. “I am my own champion, my own fool, and my own harpist.” (ASOS Jon X) “Words Are Wind...”
  6. Craster's babes are left to the Cold (old) Gods -- more evidence implying the Others are greenseer-skinchangers.
  7. Thanks for the clarification. Even if it's not Egg himself, the 'bald' head may nevertheless still be a symbolic allusion to him, the egghead of the undercover dragons being quite a distinctive recurring sign (think of Varys or Dany). P.S. Yes, I've been told to read them before, but I'm a stubborn bird.
  8. Is the bald knight in hard pursuit Egg? So then he's a hard boiled (bald) egg! If he keeps falling, then Humpty Dumpty reference? (I've never read Dunk & Egg!)
  9. I'm not following. Can someone please explain the significance of this quote to me? Not getting the joke either Is it the potential sexual innuendo that is so titillating..?
  10. Catelyn II, Clash 22  Jaime will be a kinslayer before ASOIAF ends, when he slays his sister and fulfills the valonqar prophecy. Perhaps Jaime's already a kinslayer... The beast *seemed* to be saying...because Jaime misheard the dragon...who said, "I know you KIN-slayer"! It's waiting for him to come, and it knows him, because he's one of them. If Jaime is Aerys's bastard, then he might be a Waters instead of a Lannister -- adding another level of irony to Jaime's impatience with encountering the gaoler Rennifer Longwaters with his longwinded tales detailing his drop of dragon's blood. From a psychoanalytic perspective, the subterranean descent -- i.e. critical stage of the Hero's Journey -- is quintessentially a quest for self-knowledge. Down there, Jaime is encountering clues to none other than his own identity.
  11. Dorian, your reputation in the forum has been rated 'mostly harmless'...LOL (perhaps it's time to revise your desire for 'revenge')!

  12. Why would Arya say the line 'that's not you,' if she wasn't Arya and hadn't said it to Ned in another context which she was recalling ironically in that moment, the rationale for which as explained to us by the writers themselves following the episode, just in case we had failed to appreciate their cleverness? How would the waif know enough about Arya to know to say that line to a wolf she'd never seen before in the middle of the woods with no one else to hear, feigning an emotion that never actually came to pass? Are you suggesting the waif has access to ALL of Arya's childhood memories, including every line she ever uttered to her father verbatim? (in the books, wearing a mask gives one access to very limited fragmentary flashes of memory of the previous inhabitant of the face; though similar symbolically, it's not qualitatively equivalent to skinchanging). If this is the waif and she's nevertheless using that line, because D&D think it's a catchy callback for their own 'meta-' purposes, then the whole thing is just silly. Fooling a direwolf in this manner wouldn't be possible in the books, but who knows with the dastardly droll D's -- I've given up trying to pry apart their (increasingly non-existent) internal logic (the circumstances surrounding Bran's recent (d)evolution is a case in point), although I sincerely admire your intelligent efforts to bring coherence to their gotcha moments! In the books, it's quite clear that animals in general are not fooled by the masks of faceless men: On the other hand, Melisandre did succeed in fooling Ghost somehow with her 'Bene Gesserit Voice'-like trick.
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