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Everything posted by SeanF

  1. I'm not sure when exactly, the series jumped the shark. I thought the Porne plot in Season 5 was terrible. I thought Sansa marrying Ramsay was implausible, but (if you accepted the implausibility) done well. I enjoyed the storylines at the Wall and Meereen, and Volantis (bar a sex slave offering it for free to Tyrion). I remember thinking that Daenerys was turning towards tyranny in Season 5, but then her turn towards tyranny never went anywhere for three seasons (save for one part of Season 6). I admired the way the role of the High Septon was played, but thought parts of the story in Kings Landing were very implausible (eg Sparrows simply arresting Loras in a castle full of guards and armed nobles). On the whole, I enjoyed Season 6. It was implausible that the Dothraki would all follow Daenerys after she killed their leaders, but okay. I mostly enjoyed the Kings Landing plot and the North (even if the Battle of the Bastards was a bit ropey). It ended on a high note with Cersei blowing up the Sept, Dany sailing for Westeros, Arya feeding Walder Frey his children, and Sansa turning Ramsay into dogfood. Dany gave her "pillage and burn" speech to the Dothraki. I thought that this might mean the Dothraki would pillage and burn, but instead, they rode off to rescue a city under siege. It convinced me that Dany's fiery speeches were mostly piss and wind, and her bark was worse than her bite. Season 7 is when we really started to hit problems. With 7 episodes, armies had to teleport around Westeros. Tyrion came up with stupid military strategies, in order to even the odds with Cersei. Cersei faced no consequences, for destroying the Sept. The Wight Hunt was ridiculous. Tyrion decided to trust Cersei, who had repeatedly proved herself untrustworthy. The secret annulment was a very lame device. But, to its credit, we had the final confrontation between Ellaria Sand and the battle on the Goldroad. The show was in decline, but I thought they'd pull off something special for Season 8. With hindsight, I see that the show's ethical values suddenly shifted, in order to vilify Daenerys. In any earlier Season, executing the Tarlys would have been unexceptional. Now, it suddenly became the worst imaginable atrocity, causing Varys and Tyrion to have their faith in her shaken. And then we got Season 8. It had its moments. But, the fight against the Night's King was underwhelming, we had Sansa admitting she was empowered by rape, we had three villains in three successive episodes, Jaime's redemption arc went nowhere, Dany turned into the love child of Unity Mitford and Satan, and the final episode ended with lots of random stuff. I certainly thought , prior to the Season, that there was a good chance that Jon and Dany would become antagonists, once Jon's ancestry became known. But, you can make people antagonists, without making one of them batshit evil in the last two episodes, after presenting that person as a (flawed ) heroine for 70 episodes. It's not so much that the burning of Kings Landing came out of nowhere. It's the fact that it would serve no military purpose whatsoever that came out of nowhere.
  2. You're absolutely right. Linda Antonsson was correct when she said that the House of the Undying was the point at which the show began going off the rails. Lindsey Ellis describes it as an example of the sunk cost fallacy. Once you invest heavily in a show or book series, you keep defending it long past the point where it's jumped the shark.
  3. Re the villification of Daenerys, the other argument that the producers seem to be running with is that she always was a villain, but somehow, we the viewers, , and her followers in the series, were too gullible to see it (leave aside all their Inside the Episodes, where they were saying how wonderful she was). She took some morally questionable decisions, and gave a couple of fiery speeches, but never once did she seem a villain to me, at least by the moral standards established in the Showverse (where it's cool to feed people to dogs, feed children to their parents etc.). I think, if you want to portray a person as Timur the Lame at the end, you have to show that person becoming Timur the Lame. Killing slave traders doesn't really do that.
  4. My impression is that Johnson certainly wants an election.
  5. I expect her to do what is necessary to win. War involves killing people. Some of the people you kill will be nice people. The Good/Wise/Masters were not going to end slavery peacefully. Cersei was not going to let Daenerys run for election against her. The Lannister army on the Goldroad was not going to just surrender peacefully. I just don't understand why quite jarringly, in Season 7, Daenerys was suddenly expected to adhere to moral standards that got her own soldiers killed in droves. Martin has made it entirely clear that he regards war as legitimate against a great evil, like the slave trade. Destruction by dragon is sometime necessary, As the Army of the Dead discovered. Edit: Or as Cas Stark pointed out upthread, Varys could have told her about the secret passages he told Tyrion about in Season 2. Or she could have flown round the Red Keep with the three dragons, and induced a surrender. Instead, we were given military plans that made no sense.
  6. "The cities" that were attacking her own city. Her advisors' strategic mistakes are very much the point. They destroyed half her armed forces between them. You don't win wars through non-violence. Look, I know that to some people, it was foreshadowed that she would burn Kings Landing because she didn't organise a campaign of Gandhian non-violent resistance in Slavers Bay, but most of us just don't buy this.
  7. D & D wanted to keep Cersei in the game right until the end. So, they had to show Daenerys and her allies doing militarily stupid things to even the score.
  8. SeanF

    Will ADOS Be Entirely Dedicated To The Others?

    Presumably, the war against the Others, and Dany's political conflict with the Starks (if that is a thing).
  9. SeanF

    Dany and child murder

    All sympathetic characters in this series are shades of grey. Every one. I'm confident that Daenerys will never turn into the mad Nazi/Satan travesty that D & D gave us. For one thing, D & D whitewashed Tyrion, whereas Martin has described Tyrion as "the villain (but we all love a good villain)." Why would he then want to turn Daenerys into a bigger villain? I do think her story will go down a darker path in TWOW, however.
  10. She was threatening to burn Yunkai, the aggressor, that was burning down her city. She did not have to be talked out of burning Meereen, because she never wanted to burn the city. And bear in mind, violence in war is sometimes the correct choice. Burning down the Red Keep at the start of Season 7 would have ended the war against Cersei in 30 minutes. Tyrion's and Varys' military advice was terrible.
  11. She has made threats, either when her people are starving or dying of thirst, or when her enemies are lobbing incendiaries into Meereen - actually burning down her own city - which her detractors seem to feel is okay. If I were hiding in a bomb shelter, i'd probably have some hard words to say about the people who were doing the bombing. Maybe you would, too.
  12. If you're making the argument that killing is wrong, regardless of circumstance, then I suppose that there is no distinction to be drawn between between soldier and civilian. I reject pacifism as a philosophy, but respect your right to think otherwise.
  13. The distinction between combatants and non-combatants is crucial, in terms of military ethics. Prior to Episode 5, she never went after non-combatants. She acted as a decent soldier would, until she went batshit.
  14. Daenerys never carried out genocide in Essos. Nor did she ever exterminate people, because they didn't love her. Nor did she slaughter civilians. D & D's sympathies lie with slave traders. There's no reason why we should do so.
  15. SeanF

    Warship types in ASOIAF

    I would assume that the Narrow Sea is like the Mediterranean. Galleys were standard in that Sea till about 1800.
  16. And, I want to see if I can grab a copy from Waterstones in Piccadilly a few days before the publication date.
  17. That does cheer me up, after reading endless gloating on Quora from someone who used to post very frequently here, how the ending of the show proved that she was right that Dany was a complete monster (you can probably guess who I'm referring to).
  18. In the books my favourite character is probably Cersei, because I find her chapters so entertaining. I love her really nasty sense of humour. But, I know she has to get her comeuppance, so I won't be upset when it happens, so long as it's not some lurid account of rape and torture (which I don't expect). I like Daenerys, but if she does become a self-righteous maniac, I'm sure there will be a logical progression to that destination. It won't be sprung on us, fifty pages from the end of ADOS. I like Arianne, but I'm pretty sure she's heading for a fiery end, because of her ambitions. So, as you say, it's not the fact that characters you like get killed that's problematic. There just has to be a point to it.
  19. In the end, no character emerged better in the Show than in the books. Unfortunately, I think Jon killing Dany at Tyrion's instigation, is a thing. I can't believe they'd come up with that on their own. I think it remains very much an open question whether it's because Dany's a tyrant, or simply the victim of Tyrion's malice. I can see Dany's story taking a darker turn in TWOW. But darker turn does not been ranting genocidal maniac. I think the burning of Kings Landing is a thing. The wildfire caches are Chekhov's gun. I expect they ignite as Dany fights her way into the city. I'm sure that she does not deliberately incinerate civilians because Jon turned her down. I think the crucial battle against the Others will be on the Trident (in line with Dany's dream at Astapor) not Winterfell. This will be after the burning of Kings Landing. Sansa may never end up in the North at all. The Vale plot was largely removed from the Show. I'm not convinced Northern independence is a thing. The North is already self-governing. It's said that Bran becoming King is a thing. I can't see how it makes sense, given where he is now, and he's 10. I doubt if Arya sails into the Sunset. That's Elissa Farman's story. Bronn is not Master of Coin. Jaime's redemption arc will be meaningful, and Cersei will die well before the end. If Tyrion is "the villain" (as Martin has stated) than it's hard to imagine that Dany will also be one.
  20. Re: Tyrion's "evil men" speech to Jon. I think this is where D & D break the fourth wall, and expound on their own political beliefs. That a liberator is necessarily a tyrant, and that the best course in the face of injustice is to turn away and do nothing. Which, naturally, suits the perpetrators of injustice very well. It's a form of selective pacifism. It's also full of lies. Daenerys did not "murder" anyone at Astapor, in the show, nor did she murder the Dothraki Khals. The first action was similar to liberating a concentration camp. The second was straightforward self-defence against people who were debating whether to imprison her in the Dosh Khaleen, execute her, or sell her as a slave. The reference to the crucifixion of "hundreds" of Meereenese nobles (163) overlooks that it was in response to the crucifixion of 163 children. Peter Dinklage delivers this piece of sophistry with gusto, and it sounds persuasive at first, but it really is a morally bankrupt piece of rhetoric. Back in the glory days of the series, we'd have seen this as Tyrion working on Jon, in order to save his own hide. If the book series ends with Tyrion persuading Jon to kill Daenerys, I expect that his motives will be far less virtuous than D & D tried to present.
  21. Yes, I assumed it was the same Fallow. I hope something really horrible happens to him. People who make others slaves should get to experience slavery.
  22. Regarding swinging the sword, you really wouldn't want a slight young women taking repeated swings at your neck, until your head came off. Death by Drogon is far cleaner.
  23. SeanF

    Dany and child murder

    Actually, I think George Martin's attitude to slavery is summed up by Abner Marsh in Fevre Dreme, where he says he'd love to see slavery end peacefully, but if it has to be done by force, then so be it. So, I'd say the correct take is that Dany's anti-slavery campaign was righteous overall, but not everything she did in the course of that campaign was. If she was alays morally perfect, she'd be a Mary Sue.
  24. Revealing Jon's parentage to Tyrion, at the appropriate moment, was very Cerseiesque. Be under no doubt that her aim was to get Daenerys killed at that point, at the hands of her advisors.