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Lord Varys

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  1. Dany definitely will seize the Iron Throne. Whether she will still be alive and sitting on it in the Epilogue of the last book is another matter. She is not as stupid as Aegon. No silly statues from her, nor commands to kill all the rat catchers in the city. It is pretty subtle, but the only interpretation of that quote is that Rhaenyra was running things as queen: Torrhen Manderly sat on Rhaenyra's council while she was ruling as queen in King's Landing. Alys claimed there was and the poor guy saw one. Vhagar could easily enough have produced some eggs while Aemond and Alys were flying around in the Riverlands. Even if that was a lie/deception, there are other dragons left to mount - Silverwing and the Cannibal and perhaps even some hatching during the reign of Aegon III. I expect that the last healthy dragons (Morning, perhaps others) will die during the Rivers boy thing around 150 AC, then we'll have two stunted and twisted dragons hatching in 152 AC the last of which will then die in 153 AC. They could just push him until he breaks and consents. I mean, you know how often the governments of young kings arranged matches for them and they went through with them? That's business as usual. And it is not that Aegon III was willing or capable of resisting his regents and Hands all that much. The boy was like pudding as, especially, the issue of his Kingsguard shows. @Ran You really should rewrite the later paragraph there, too. An unfinished manuscript is usually neither partially misplaced nor burned. Well, I'd not say that the Velaryons ever turned Green. Corlys pretended pretty badly ... and Alyn himself was even worse. The whole 'LOYAL!' thing was nonsense if the queen Addam was loyal to was no longer the queen of House Velaryon at the time of his death. Daenaera's father made his peace with Alyn, Alyn married Aegon III's sister, and Daenaera became their ward. It is pretty clear whose pawn she is when they make her queen. And to be clear - the lot regents could have been partisans of either side. We just don't know. Since they were chosen by lot they were chosen not to staff the regency council with leading members of the two factions. Sandoq would be Aegon's own man, of course. Tyland was Green and turned Black if you consider Aegon III as Black - which he was the figurehead pretender of the Black faction after Rhaenyra's death. Tyland made his king's interests his own - even against his former allies, even against his own house and sister-in-law. But he also never forgot his old friends on the Green Council as the whole Orwyle affair shows. And the name Aegon doesn't have the same sound after Aegon II and, especially, Aegon IV? The whole thing doesn't make much sense. Just as it makes no sense that there was only one Alysanne Targaryen and only three Jaehaerys Targaryens. That's more a dynastic thing - some dynasties liked some names more than others (think of the Georges), but the name John didn't fell out of favor. Henry III's third son was named John, Edward I's eldest son was another John, Edward II's second son was a John, too, and John of Gaunt was, obviously, yet another John. The Edwards only got popular for a time because Edward I's only surviving son was another Edward. The Williams fell out of favor because Henry II's eldest son, a William, died early. Henrys got popular because of Henry II, etc. There were also always lots and lots of Richards - like with the Johns it wasn't a popular name for an eldest son but for a second or third son. Neither the Lionheart nor Richard II or Richard III were firstborn sons. Richard II had an elder brother named Edward who died early, the Lionheart had two elder brothers, and Richard was the youngest son of eight. There is just no reason whatsoever why there should only be one Rhaenyra. And there is literally no reason why Rhaenyra is a Rhaenyra and not, say, an Alysanne or Alyssa or Daella. Viserys and Aemma had one son who died in the cradle before Rhaenyra - we don't know that name. But honoring their firstborn daughter with a Rhaenys-sounding name while there was another Rhaenys who was kind of a rival to Baelon is odd.
  2. Rewatching 'Heirs of the Dragon' for the first time after quite a few months have passed the experience was pretty interesting. I did watch on a really big screen, so all the details were more prominent then during my earlier screenings. I must say I very much enjoyed the set decorations, especially the presence of candles and fire(s) in general. The wardrobes of the characters are also pretty great, especially when Viserys and Rhaenyra wear Targaryen colors ... but also the smoke-grey you get sometimes with Alicent and Otto. Rhaenyra and Alicent's introduction is still pretty fine, and I do enjoy the cake joke as well as the subtle innuendo about Rhaenyra liking her position very much ... while she was effectively lying in Alicent's lap. There are clearly lesbian undertones there. The first key element in the plot I noticed again as done very nicely was the rivalry between Otto and Daemon. Rhys Ivans body language is very tense during their exchange at the council table and you see how the actor really plays the character in such a way that you can see he cannot keep his composure with Daemon. Rationally Otto must know he should not escalate things in this way, but he cannot really think straight. The entire thing also shows how Viserys I makes a cardinal error working with a royal official in high office who clearly cannot get along with his own brother. That is something he should have avoided ... just as Otto would have been well-advised to not be the royal counsellor whose mind constantly revolves around removing the king's own brother from court. Such people almost always overreach themselves ... and have to pay the price for it. Also, of course, destabilizing the royal family by driving or trying to drive wedges between the king and his family destabilizes the government and is thus a very irresponsible thing to do. Another layer indicating that Otto is very irrational here is that the council is kind of agreeing with Daemon's results commander of the City Watch. The council thinks Daemon is effective in his job while Otto fails recognize Daemon's abilities and refuses to consider to use him as an instrument of the Crown. On the big screen Daemon's rampage through the city looks even worse. That scene simply doesn't work, it gives the impression of a mad rampage where random people are rounded up, beaten, mutilated, and murdered. But that's clearly not how it should have looked. Otto pretending to be concerned about this type of wanton brutality when noblemen butcher each later at a tourney also makes the setting inconsistent. Some violence apparently is sometimes problematic ... but not in other situations which might similar or even worse. Think about it - if noblemen can brutally murder (!) each other in the lists and on the tourney ground and people cheer them on and the royals (Rhaenys and Corlys) have an aloof dialogue about what this kind of decadence means for the times they live in ... then I really don't understand why the Aemond incident is supposed to be a big deal in the show later - while the murders of Joffrey Lonmouth and Vaemond Velaryon are not. That doesn't fit together. The violence people accept - ignore, even - should also seep in the royal family itself. Princes mutilating and killing each other would not be different than the tourney and duel violence we see. Thinking about Daemon's issues with Otto I noticed that George's idea to start the story with Aemon-Baelon could have worked pretty well to established a broader depiction of royal siblings over three generations. We know Viserys and Daemon really liked each other, especially in their youth, and they would have grown up with Aemon and Baelon looking forward to rule together as King and Hand (like Aenys and Maegor tried and failed), going to the point where Viserys and Daemon said they would do what their uncle and father could not - ruling together - after Baelon was named heir. Only for Viserys to then kind of betray Daemon after he helped to make him king by keeping Otto as Hand and not offering the job to Daemon. The episode doesn't indicate anything of that, but Daemon makes it clear that he would have liked to be Hand because 'the blood of the dragon runs thick' and he would be the only one to defend Viserys even from himself. When watching Viserys loving conversation with Aemma I realized that in context of that the interpretation of the Viserys-Alicent sex scene later on as marital rape is a bit much. We see Aemma making it clear to her royal husband that they won't have any more children - which, in that context, could imply no more sex (or at least vaginal intercourse). He doesn't object. This certainly means that Alicent could have also established another status quo with Viserys if she had but talked more openly with him about her feelings, desires, etc. She seems to allow herself to be treated as a wife who must please her husband whenever and however he would like without comment. There we would see the difference between the strict patriarchal upbringing of Alicent by Otto compared to Rhaenyra's more liberal upbringing. I also noticed for the first time that Viserys stays at Aemma's side throughout the entire c-section scene and is so distraught and shaken at the end that he seems to have forgotten all about the son he craved so much. He doesn't have the courage to tell Aemma clearly what they are going to do - and that sucks - but he stays at her side and doesn't leave the room (as an even weaker character might have done, think of Rogar Baratheon). After that scene the episode breaks down completely and never gets back on track. We have a first half which takes great effort to introduce Rhaenyra and flesh out her relationship to both her parents, her concern for her mother, and what the birth of a brother might mean for her ... and then we see Rhaenyra not reaction - I repeat: not reacting - to the death of her mother and brother. The bad cut from birthing chamber to funeral is huge mistake, but things get even worse by not actually showing Rhaenyra's state of mind thereafter. We get a council scene, Daemon listening in, Alicent and Otto talking, Alicent and Viserys talking ... but no scene with Rhaenyra. At all. Between the funeral and the intercut dragon cavern/investiture scene. That is very bad dramaturgy. Rhaenyra is the main character of this show, and the death of her mother and unborn brother is the main event in the first episode. Seeing her reacting to both would have been crucial. Instead we don't see anything from her. We don't see how she reacts to learning about the death of her mother, nor her little brother (stuff that was shot), nor her original grieving scene with Alicent (also shot I think). It could also have been great to see her reacting to things by herself, perhaps in her chambers. The next episode makes a big thing about Viserys being unable to talk to his daughter in her grief thereafter ... yet we never see this silence/inability to talk. That's a big problem. Instead we get the random succession discussion - which, in this context, makes absolutely no sense. The queen is dead ... but the king can remarry. He is not that old. He suffers from a mysterious illness but it is not life-threatening yet. Otto already makes plan to, perhaps, hook up Viserys with Alicent, so why would he now put forth Rhaenyra as an alternative heir? And if he does it, why not only as a placeholder until the king has fathered a son on a second wife? This comes out of the left field and there should have been more buildup - perhaps by way of Otto, Alicent, and Gwayne being really pissed about Daemon's behavior at the tourney. The entire thing could have also worked much better if Viserys himself were privately playing with the notion of Rhaenyra as his potential successor prior to Baelon's birth and Otto picking up on that. Not necessarily because Daemon was such a loose cannon but because Daemon was his brother and childless. The throne should pass to the next generation, after all. That would have also better fit with Aemma's weird description of Rhaenyra as a royal womb - as a brotherless princess she would likely be married off to some great lord, not remain as a progenitor of the royal bloodline and thus be no royal womb but a noble womb continuing some other house. The notion that she could somehow continue the royal bloodline still puts her into a pretty important role despite the fact that she isn't the heir. Rhaenyra's own lack of ambition makes sense. That's not an act. She feels trapped in her role, would like to be more important, knows she will never be male, and never expects to be named heir as a woman. She is genuinely surprised when her father wants to name her heir - and that brings us to the bad intercutting of the two scenes at the end. We should have gotten the cavern scene in full. This is a crucial moment in the entire show and the editing pretty much ruins it. We don't see what Rhaenyra thinks about being named heir nor about the prophecy revelation. Script or editing don't give Milly a chance to react, to answer her father, ask questions of her own, express her feelings. The investiture scene could have bettered that to a point but we just see Rhaenyra as a puppet or pawn standing there, with her body language and facial expression not really giving us any indication how she feels about the whole thing. Basically I can just say that they crammed way too much material into that episode. It should have ended with Aemma's death, giving us an entire episode from there to the investiture of Rhaenyra as heir. Best acting in that episode would have been Rhys Ivans, Paddy Considine, Emily Carey and Milly Alcock - with Matt Smith having some good scenes as vulnerable Daemon. That they cut his 'heir for a day' speech still strikes me as a mistake.
  3. In a medieval context such rituals are not just confirmations or fancy rituals but necessary acts to create a king. From a historical perspective Aegon II would certainly also be king - he is proclaimed and crowned first, so he would reign until his deposition by Queen Rhaenyra in early 130 AC, then we would have the brief reign of Rhaenyra, followed by short period of anarchy, after which Aegon II was restored to the throne. The notion that the reign of Aegon II lasted from early 129 AC until his death in 131 AC is just not accurate. It is like saying Henry VI's reign continued while Edward IV was king - and vice versa Edward IV also continued to reign during the brief time of Henry VI's restoration to the throne. There is no need for that since there could have been ruling queens. If George wanted a setting where Daenerys Targaryen is going to be the first ruling queen of Westeros - or the first woman with a decent shot at that position - then he should have just made Rhaenyra more a failed pretender. Never give her a proper coronation, never allow her to put her fat ass on the Iron Throne, never make her the chosen and anointed heir of her father. And not make Aegon II's successor Rhaenyra's son. In fact, if you go back at the appendix of AGoT then Rhaenyra seems more a sister challenging a brother who was the rightful and chosen successor of their father ... not the chosen heir whose throne was stolen by usurping brother. The impression I had from the Dance prior to any detailed narrative was that Rhaenyra was more an ambitious Visenya-like person who simply felt her little brother was unsuited for the crown and she would do a better job. And that somehow her side prevailed in the end because her son was the eventual successor of Aegon II. This original sketch of Rhaenyra has her more as a Daemon Blackfyre - somebody who thought they should rule, not somebody who was chosen to rule by their father. Aegon's private opinion is pretty clear. We don't have to look at his words during the regency era but his actions during the Dance - and his final defense of his mother. That is all we need to know. Although we also see that he definitely views his mother as a ruling queen. Considering Aegon III's court when he finally seizes power in his own right there is little reason to assume he could 'provoke' anyone. The Greens at his court are gone, and neither we nor they, in-universe, have any reason to assume he is going to favor them in the future. Why would he? He is a deeply distrustful person so the last people he would turn to are the former enemies of his mother and himself. And as I already said - the most powerful Green houses (Lannisters and Baratheons) are in disarray and without strong leadership. And it also must strike us as obvious that the false Daeron and Alys Rivers' son will only be able to challenge Aegon III's kingship by gaining support among former Green loyalists. Fervent former Blacks are not likely to declare for or fight for a guy claiming to be Prince Daeron nor for a young boy/youth who is supposed to be Aemond's trueborn son. It is not impossible that Aegon III will also antagonize some former Blacks - like he did with Torrhen Manderly - but that's less likely. Especially Unwin Peake we can expect to throw his lot with the Rivers boy or a fake Daeron since he has every reason to fear the king's vengeance. What I could see Aegon III doing is to not move against Alys Rivers and her son, to confirm them in their possession of Harrenhal and acknowledge Alys' boy as his bastard cousin. Aegon III and his brother suffered horribly during the Dance and it would make sense for him to refuse to make his cousin suffer in a similar way. But that will then a decision that is going to come back to haunt him as Alys' boy grows older, mounts a dragon, and declares himself the rightful king as the male heir through the male line, etc. That could certainly motivate more than a few former Green to support his rebellion. If some things along those lines to happen than Aegon III could technically want to be a peacemaking king and all that - but his lords and subjects would not follow his lead there. They would constantly rebel, for the Rivers boy or this or that fake Daeron. And such crises the Iron Throne would not overcome by constantly pardoning or favoring former Greens. Instead we should see Aegon III and Viserys striking down such rebellions with a vengeance, especially if old enemies of the Blacks were leading figures in such rebellions.
  4. We don't know that for sure. There would have been a castle septon on Dragonstone, and one would imagine she had him anoint her, too. Aegon II was just anointed by some septon, too, Eustace, not the High Septon, who was too old and frail to travel to KL for Aegon's coronation. That should not be a decisive factor there. Even more so as we would assume that Rhaenyra made Eustace anoint her, too, once she took the throne in 130 AC. If being anointed was seen as an important part of legitimate kingship and queenship it should have happened. In fact, the High Septon not anointing either pretender but only Viserys I, one assumes, and then Aegon III again can, in combination with the fact that neither Rhaenyra nor Aegon II went with the proper Targaryen banner, seen as a symbolic indication that neither of them was seen as a proper monarch. It is the High Septon anointment that makes the Faith espouse a particular monarch. Some castle septon isn't enough. Aegon II's restoration to the throne is also incomplete since he never actually sits the Iron Throne again. Insofar as the throne is concerned it is Viserys I, Aegon II, Rhaenyra, 'Trystane Truefyre' ... and then Aegon III. My point regarding Matilda was that history doesn't count her as queen because she was never crowned and never properly styled queen. But nobody says she never 'the Lady of the English' which was the title she used prior to her planned coronation. Rhaenyra clearly used the title of queen, was crowned, sat the Iron Throne, and exerted as much or more power for a time over the Seven Kingdoms as Aegon II did. In Westeros the crucial 'kingmaking' ingredient is a coronation (that's what Aegon the Uncrowned is lacking which is why he is not counted as 'King Aegon II' - Prince Aegon is, at this point, also just a prince and not yet King Aegon VI because he was neither proclaimed nor crowned king, etc.) and the physical possession of the Iron Throne of Aegon the Conqueror. Whoever sat that throne is counted as a sitting monarch even if he was usurper. Rhaenyra is the only exception there. Which is even odder since she was her father's anointed successor. The High Septon's anointment is also pretty crucial - but as I said: That's also lacking for Aegon II.
  5. But he does encourage her to do her own thinking, to figure out what both he and other people do and want. That's him teaching her political lessons she can also use in the future. She is also a pawn, but one that he wants to stand on her own feet eventually. George really does have Littlefinger have three conflicting takes on Sansa - he desires her as Catelyn 2.0, he views her as a pawn because of the claims she has, and he views her as the daughter he and Cat should have had. And in the latter capacity he really acts as a real father would. He wants to prepare her to play the game. But since that's not his only interest/intention with her, things are more complex, messy, and gross.
  6. Definitely not preparing for a large conflict. Aegon IV was very smart and seemed to enjoy to play with people. He deliberately misruled, he wasn't stupid or anything. He encouraged corruption, etc. so that he could profit from the system he put in place. It is not completely bad to have Aegon II and Rhaenyra not as super leaders of the faction. But Aegon did get the chance to fly to battle a couple of times ... while Rhaenyra was effectively too craven and lazy to even do that. And as queen she is constantly pushed around by her advisers, has no plans or designs of her own. Even the decision to arrest/kill Addam and Nettles isn't something she makes - it is effectively the consensus of all her advisers aside from two dissenters.
  7. That doesn't make much sense, either. Especially Aegon III was very close to his mother, defending her until the very end. He even owes his crown to her fighting for her cause. People try to come up with explanations for this, but it doesn't make much sense. Like the whole thing that Rhaenyra is not counted as queen when she was crowned and sat the throne, etc. and her sons continued the royal dynasty while the Green branch was completely destroyed. Rhaenyra is kind of modelled on Empress Matilda - but unlike Rhaenyra she was never crowned queen, so it makes sense that she is not counted as one. But Rhaenyra was and wielded royal power and had her sons succeed her ... so history should at least count Rhaenyra as queen for the brief time she actually reigned and ruled (the six+ months she sat the Iron Throne in 130 AC. Aegon III and his successors would effectively never encourage anyone to honor the memory of Aegon II and his branch, so the guy should actually disappear into obscurity whilst Rhaenyra would be remembered as a tragic hero or martyr. Her determination is what put the branch of House Targaryen in charge that prevailed. That nobody ever had a Rhaenyra Targaryen before and after the Rhaenyra we know is also kind of odd. We don't know where the name came from nor why it wasn't ever used afterwards. George still could add another Targaryen girl named Rhaenyra to the family tree in the future - or at least have a Blackfyre woman named Rhaenyra.
  8. The story never needed any elder siblings for Aegon III nor him being a prisoner of Aegon II. All that was established in the main series is that Aegon III watched Rhaenyra being fed to Aegon II's dragon - which he could have done from afar, atop his own dragon, or some other such scenario. There is, of course, also a scenario imaginable where Aegon II can have Aegon III as prisoner but lack the power to execute him - say, because Aegon III's loyalists have close relatives of his as hostages (his mother, wife, children, siblings). All that could have worked better than what we got. It may have been his decision. But the way I interpret the entire thing Aegon III was not so much making a choice there but going through with a plan his sisters made with him earlier. They would have been stupid to rush in there with a little girl - regardless how pretty she was - and just hope that their brother, who actually was to marry a woman who could give him children, would pick her. And, sure, the regents could have forced the king to marry a woman of their choosing - just as royal parents can and do force princes and princesses do the same. Aegon III may have been king, but he was a minor. And he and Jaehaera were most definitely forced to marry each other earlier. Even Joffrey is effectively forced to marry Margaery Tyrell. It is not his choice, he is told what to do by his mother and grandfather. Also, none of the regents actually act as if they want to be in the good graces of the king later on - especially not Unwin Peake. Oh, didn't know that. I mean, I'm not buying any new edition of TWoIaF that comes out. Can you give me the new quotes there? Not insofar as the degree of kinship was concerned. Vaella's would have been an obscure passed over and very distant female branch ... and Maegor and his hypothetical children were passed over, too. They could be part of a succession regime, but I very much doubt they would come before any descendants of Aegon V. Nah, the regents Aegon III dismisses were guys chosen by lot. They were neither Black nor Green. The Black-and-Green regency council era ended with the Secret Siege and the deposition of Thaddeus Rowan. The leadership of the Kingsguard at the beginning of the Regency era was Green at the top (Willis Fell & Marston Waters) with the other places filled by Blacks. As Fell and others later died, Peake filled them up with his cronies who then also died. Then come new men in, men who are more likely to become Aegon's own men. Thanks to Unwin Peake, Aegon III is freed from his Green queen and marries a Velaryon (i.e. Black) queen, the ward of Baela and Alyn. As the book closes Aegon III starts to get his own inner circle of loyalists - Viserys, Sandoq the Shadow (who I expect is going to remain at his court even after Larra leaves, perhaps even joining the KG eventually), etc. which, for better or worse, you would call 'Black' since they are loyal to Rhaenyra's son. The lords and houses Aegon III has friendly and close(r) ties with are all Blacks - Tullys, Blackwoods, Starks, Arryns. Prominent Green houses like the Lannisters and Baratheons are out of the game, having no adult leaders for the time being. The Hightowers are the only exception there. There is no indication he is going to feature any former Greens. In fact, we can expect that former Greens will continue to trouble him both in the business of the fake Daerons (who but former Greens are going to support them?) as well as the conclusion of the story of Alys Rivers and her son. The Dance of the Dragons isn't really over yet, and Aegon III's is not going to be a peaceful reign. He is perceived as a weak and passive king, so he will face challenges left and right. Some might even come from former Blacks he antagonized (Torrhen Manderly) ... but so far we know most of the former Black houses are remarkably loyal to him, personally, whilst the former Greens have effectively no reason to love him at all. Elaena is married off for the first time by Viserys II's son Aegon IV decades later ... and then by Daeron II who might actually marry Elaena to a cousin of theirs (a descendant of Baela or Rhaena). That's a clear misinterpretation. That's a big 'Fuck you!' to the lords and their silly games - tourneys, chivalry, balls, entertainment, etc. ... but not a statement whether His Grace, the king has forgotten the wrongs done to his mother, his father, his brothers, his sisters, his first wife and queen, his second wife and queen, his friend, Gaemon Palehair, and his own person. Aegon III clearly isn't the person to start another conflict or war ... but the way he took power shows he also doesn't care about what people think of him. He doesn't mince words or actions, and shows he will no longer caper to the whims of his court now that he is in charge. It is obvious that this kind of attitude won't win him the hearts and minds of his (noble) subjects ... which, in turn, should provide the fake Daerons and Alys Rivers' boy with enough support to launch rebellions and even make a bid for the throne in the future. Also, of course, Aegon's personality makes it also increasingly unlikely that he'll ever have people around him who had close connections to the people who killed his mother, father, brothers, etc. He had to suffer that thing during the regency era - but events conveniently freed from doing a great purge himself. Like Jaehaerys I was having none of Maegor's KG, an adult Aegon III would never have suffered his person and family being protected by the likes of Willis Fell and Marston Waters. Garmund Hightower was Ormund's youngest son, a page at Highgarden during the Dance. He participated in no fighting. And if you think about it - pairing the last dragonrider and the king's sister with a thirdborn son of a lord isn't exactly an obvious match. So there might be a story to this - love match, ugly way of Aegon III to get of the dragon sister (if he forced them to live at Oldtown rather than KL or on Dragonstone), or something else. But it strikes one as a very unlikely arranged match considering the age gap and the obscurity of Garmund Hightower.
  9. During the war. Before it she was apparently not that passive. Although, of course, the silliest thing about the 'Black faction' is that Rhaenyra and Daemon clearly never prepared for or even expected there would be a succession war as they completely failed to approach or secure the support of crucial great houses before Viserys' death. Rhaenyra had five sons only two of which were betrothed in 129 AC. Why were Joffrey, Aegon and/or Viserys not betrothed to (some of) the Four Storms? She isn't that bad ... but passive and depressed. It is actually kind of odd that she wants to be queen but not really fight for it herself.
  10. Rhaena and Corwyn should be a non-issue in any case, as it clearly is Rhaena Targaryen herself who suggests the guy as her husband. Certainly, we have no coverage of Rhaena's time in the Vale in the book but it is actually possible Rhaena just had a crush on the guy which Corwyn never actually noticed ... and then he was formally asked by the regency council to marry the king's half-sister and he was pleasantly surprised and had no reason to refuse. Hound-Sansa stuff I always found disgusting - yes, they seem to be very close on an emotional or developmental level, but there is a very unpleasant power imbalance there. And it is really gross that he lusts after her since effectively AGoT. Littlefinger at least has the excuse that the girl looks very much like her mother did in that age. It is thus not him being drawn to a child woman, etc. but another version of the love of his life. Littlefinger-Sansa is certainly creepy in more traditional predatory context, but always have the feeling that one third of Littlefinger actually respects Sansa. He wants her to learn to be as great a player as he is. Sandor, on the other hand, has nothing to offer to Sansa but self-loathing, a truly ugly face, and rage about the injustices of the shitty world they live in. And I shudder at the thought of them exchanging kisses or having sex. With Littlefinger, I think, there is a chance for Sansa to turn the tables if their 'relationship' ever get more serious. A Littlefinger seduced by Sansa could actually end up as her pawn.
  11. We don't really know how close Mysaria and Daemon were in the book - they had a bad breakup after the dragon egg thing when Daemon shipped Mysaria back to Lys and she lost her child at sea. The next time we see Daemon reaching out to Mysaria is for Blood and Cheese. The show decided to make Mysaria closer to Otto than Daemon in the second half of season 1 ... but it is clear that Alicent having Larys burn her manse should change that. So we are likely going to see Mysaria join team Black now, but whether that leads to her getting close(r) to Daemon remains to be seen. I have a feeling that the show will have Mysaria get close to Rhaenyra. Obviously not. In fact, the whole cake-eating thing from the pilot seems to be a kind of meta joke about book Rhaenyra. Emma is not fat, but she isn't all that slender, either, but the entire narrative of Rhaenyra being jealous of Alicent because she gained weight while step mommy didn't feels like clich├ęd standard narrative to explain a quarrel among women. It is the kind of thing spectators come up with when they don't know what's actually going on. The character description of Rhaenyra for Amok has her as a completely different character. There she is described as arrogant, vindictive, suffering from nervous tics (indicating that she might be suffering from a mild version of 'Targaryen madness'). It seems clear that part of the reason why there is a Dance is that Rhaenyra, personally, antagonized certain relations and great lords allowing Alicent to build a good case against her. FaB has her a much weaker and milder personality - we never hear anything about her 'never forgetting a real or imagined slight', she doesn't kill the members of her family who fall into her power, and she is more figurehead than active leader of her own cause. And it is quite clear that the Blacks vs. Greens thing is started by Alicent and her people, not Rhaenyra. If her popularity isn't the same in 129 AC as it was in 110 AC then that's because she gained weight (!), not because it was difficult to get along with her. Daemon is the guy who collects as many enemies as he has friends, not Rhaenyra. Which is, in context, pretty bad as her cause should have hinged very much on her personal charisma. Her passivity throughout the year 129 AC should have very much resulted in the Black cause dying. After all, Daemon also just sits at Harrenhal doing nothing most of the time ... so what the hell does, say, motivate the all those Reach houses to declare for Rhaenyra? The one thing the two versions have in common is that they were both no warriors - but the Amok Rhaenyra at least modelled herself after Visenya, wearing her hair like Aegon's elder sister. The FaB version only dons armor once in her entire campaign and never flies Syrax into battle nor does she lead or accompany one of her armies. That is just a letdown and makes it actually surprising that anyone was willing to fight for her. The entire point of the dragonrider thing is that women can do it, too. You don't have to be a warrior to ride such a beast - and every dragonrider can burn stuff.
  12. Can somebody approve this already? Such a thread does make sense.
  13. Twitter is at best interesting to look for news, but getting into a discussion there is tedious and silly. It could be that the qualifier there crept in from what his sources told about the rationale for the search for additional dragonriders. But even if it didn't ... it would only be propaganda if we had reason to believe Gyldayn aped a royal narrative he didn't believe in. Which doesn't feel right as the Doctrine of Exceptionalism and what you can call Targaryen worship is something that actually still permeates Westerosi society. These people became their royal dynasty and they like to worship them like the British monarchists still worship their royal family. This includes even the highest born Westerosi, e.g. Cersei Lannister considering herself and Jaime unworthy to marry each other because they are not Targaryens. Gyldayn's work is to cover the entire Targaryen reign and the quote I gave you comes from a section about Aegon the Conqueror, so the man would have written that part/chapter during Robert's reign or even later. Gyldayn was supposed to have written about Summerhall with the manuscript being damaged ... but that was never included in TWoIaF. It could be that Gyldayn's fictional biography will still have him as maester of Summerhall but then will survive the fire and continue his career thereafter, perhaps writing his history as an archmaester in old age. George has gone on record saying that he has no intention inventing another maester and creating another 'voice' for the history of the reigns of Jaehaerys II and Aerys II, respectively, so it will be Gyldayn throughout ... as the quote from FaB already effectively confirms. I also don't think for a moment that a Westerosi person must have issues with 'the Targaryens being closer to gods than men' stuff while Robert Baratheon sits the throne. Robert himself is a Targaryen in all but name - the founder of his house was (most likely) a bastard of Lord Aerion Targaryen and Robert's own grandmother was Rhaelle Targaryen. He had most severe issues with Aerys II and his descendants ... but they represent but the last known male branch of the house. He himself if a scion from a illegitimate male cadet branch and through the most recent marriage he happens to be the first cousin once removed of Aerys II. He is basically as much a Targaryen as Laenor and Laena Velaryon. And, of course, celebrating the Targaryen kings should be no issue for the Baratheon regime as Steffon and his sons are literally descended from them all but Jaehaerys II and Aerys II (with the former being Steffon's uncle and the latter his first cousin). They are the same family. Henry Tudor had considerable problems convincing the rest of Europe that he was the rightful king of England. And his own narrative was that he seized the crown from Richard on the battlefield, his marriage to Elizabeth may have effectively helped him to smooth things over and strengthen his rule ... but he took very great steps to be firmly established as king before he married her. There was no co-rulership there, no king ruling in part (also) by right of his wife, but it was all about Henry's own spurious claim. And despite the match with Elizabeth the Tudors were plagued by rival claimants and pretenders well into the reign of Henry VIII - and his obsession with fathering a son is directly linked to the fact that his dynasty might not survive if he has no clear male heir since the other claimants and pretenders were still lurking in the shadows. Henry's own legal claim is a joke. His grandfather was an obscure Welsh guy, and the fact that he had the great luck to marry the widow of Henry V made his sons half-brothers to King Henry VI made them very important people ... but that didn't give either a claim to the throne. Edmund Tudor marrying Margaret Beaufort was certainly a great match ... but the Beauforts were an illegitimate branch of the royal dynasty. Their legitimization by Richard II was done in exchange for them giving up any claims to the English throne. Henry thus only ended up a pretender because of the civil war scenario and when the Lancastrian side ran out of pretenders ... and, of course, because of the shitshow that was Richard III's reign. Robert, on the hand, would have been third in line to the throne for most of his life - coming directly after Rhaegar and his own father Steffon. Regarding the Jaehaera thing: I expect a lot of people thought that the GoT animated feature about the Dance ended the story with their marriage. But we always knew that Aegon III's children had a Velaryon mother, so that was really a non issue. But the story of Jaehaera's death as well as the Regency material is a final commentary on the Dance thing. With Unwin Peake we have a most fervent Green ending up murdering the last child of Aegon II - which is a most disgusting thing to do and certainly a meta-commentary that the Green ideology was as much pretense as Rogar Baratheon championing agnatic primogeniture earlier. The Regency era also has the royal court purged of effectively all prominent Green elements - Tyland Lannister dies, the Green regents die or resign, the Green Kingsguard die, and then Peake's repeated conspiracies lead to a great purge and replacement of many royal officials after the Secret Siege. Unless we see Aegon III choosing a new Hand from a prominent Green family (very unlikely, I'd imagine that he would rather name Kermit Tully) the court of Aegon III is pretty much Black. Even the eventually marriage between Garmund Hightower and Rhaena Targaryen doesn't strike one as a Green-Black reconciliation effort ... since the Hightowers themselves kind of turned into a Black house already with Lady Sam taking charge there and Lord Lyonel and Alyn Oakenfist becoming great friends. Rhaena-Garmund might thus either be love match or Aegon III showing great favor to an already favored house.
  14. I started rewatching HotD today and want a thread where I can post my thoughts and where others can participate and share their insights if they feel like it.
  15. I think all those points give too much agency to Aegon III. He was a pawn at his own court, and his regents and Hand would choose his wife, not he himself. The ball gives some agency to him, but it is a show - like Joffrey's participation in Ned's execution was to be a show - and the regents could have ignored Aegon's choice, like Peake earlier ignored Aegon's choices for the Kingsguard. He tried get rid of Daenaera, after all. More importantly, though, Aegon III clearly is not the sharpest knife in the box, and he is only about 14 years old at that time. He wouldn't have thought much about this ... he would have just done what his sisters told him to do (and it is sisters or half-sisters, not cousins). You might have a point there that a young girl like Daenaera might have not felt threatening to him ... but he must have been aware of his dynastic duty and the lack of male heirs which was the very reason why his regents forced him to marry. Meaning that he might not have had issues if his sisters had given him a wife closer in age to him. In fact, it strikes one as more likely that Unwin Peake was not wrong in his assessment that the choice of Daenaera Velaryon was a self-serving ploy on the side of Baela and Alyn who not only made a Velaryon the next queen ... but also increased the chances that Aegon III might never actually father a son on her which could then, perhaps, allow Baela-Alyn or their son to seize the throne should Aegon III die early. After all, it is not very likely that Daenaera Velaryon was the only Velaryon girl alive at that point. The general age problem which caused the Dance to be another war fought by children and twens is the relative late birth of Jaehaerys' grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Rhaenyra could have been born around 90 AC, Viserys 70 AC, Baelon 50 AC, Jaehaerys 30 AC. Also, of course, Aemma and Alicent could have been married to Viserys at the same time and there could have been the original one year rather than a ten year gap between Rhaenyra and Aegon II. Also, of course, Rhaenyra's multiple husbands could have also been polygamy rather than successive marriage. That kind of thing would have allowed to have more older characters among the children of the two pretenders during the war. Nope, Gyldayn wrote during the reign of Robert Baratheon or later. His history makes that crystal clear: Gyldayn is no 'political writer', writing a history to justify Robert's usurpation. He writes a history about the Targaryen dynasty and he clearly likes his subject very much. Although apparently not as much as silly little books about erotic exploits. I know those paragraphs, but it is you who interprets them as him agreeing with that opinion or inserting such paragraphs for propaganda reasons. It is actually quite possible that those are neither lies nor exaggerations. Especially since they come up as a historical insert when the search for dragonriders comes up - which likely means that Gyldayn paraphrases or summarizes talk at the Black Council which led them to believe that there were potential dragonriders among the smallfolk of Dragonstone and Driftmark. There clearly were people in Westeros - women, mostly, of course - who were unhappy with the First Night as a practice ... but whether this was a big deal for the peasants on Dragonstone in pre-Conquest days (which is the time the paragraphs talk about) we don't know - especially not if the mothers and dragonseeds were actually cherished and costly gifts given as is claimed (the First Night as practiced in the mainland of Westeros seems to have been more a lord demanding his right to bed a woman in her wedding night, not something that involved gifts). That the smallfolk of Dragonstone was in awe and very much under the thumb of their Valyrian rulers during the Century of Blood and thereafter doesn't strike one as unlikely or surprising. That is consensus among the Westerosi people. The standard of royalty and supreme beauty are the Valyrian looks as espoused by most of the Targaryens. That is not something the Targaryens themselves push all that much (they know that not all their children look like that), it is how their subjects view them. And we don't ever actually have firsthand quotes by Targaryens - either in FaB or the main series - which have them celebrate their own beauty and demand that people submit to them because they are so fucking hot. That is you kind of inserting your own 'Aegon was particularly cruel' take into the text. Aegon the Conqueror is pretty much viewed as a great king by pretty much everybody (Dornish historians, perhaps, excluded). The stuff about Jaehaerys I is George/Gyldayn kind of getting confused - that's not propaganda, it is an error in the text. Olenna buys into it, too. She claims that the Baratheons are 'queer' because of their Targaryen blood, confirming that she thinks their blood has special properties that sets them apart from other men. But the interpretation of certain readers that the characters in-universe kind of view Robert's rise to the throne as some kind of radical break with tradition. The great Targaryen kings are still great in Robert's reign. Aerys II isn't viewed as a monster who invalidated 300 years of glorious history ... and the Baratheons are, in the end, just a black-haired cadet branch of House Targaryen. If you want a historical parallel then Robert is not so much Henry Tudor - whose rise to the English throne was a real break with tradition considering his flimsy claim against so many Plantagenet descendants with stronger claims - but Henry IV - a close cousin to the king who gained the upper hand in a short war and took over. Robert's ascension also messed around with the succession but he effectively only pushed aside Viserys. He was next in line after Viserys, anyway.
  16. I don't think there was any narrative necessity for Aegon III to be a young boy when he came into his throne. That was something George wanted to do since Aegon III could easily enough have been Rhaenyra's firstborn son, not her eldest surviving son. And to be sure - the original plan for the kids was that the story progresses somewhat more slowly, giving them time to grow up. His plan wasn't to write about an eight-year-old Bran the entire time. I don't think that's an issue at all - neither Dany nor Sansa actually have 'gorgeous bodies'. They are young and slim girls. Dany's beauty especially is not one of her 'womanly body' - like Arianne's apparently is - but one of fairness of face and 'Valyrian beauty'. But it is clearly the case that especially Daenerys has no puberty problems whatsoever, acting as an adult since AGoT when she was not even fourteen. That is deeply unrealistic (Jon Snow is somewhat better in this regard). Loras Tyrell also doesn't behave like 15-16-year-old. The one character where a depiction of adolescence works is Robb. Men actually lusting after girls like Sansa and Dany is kind of odd in the prevalence it happens. Sansa is too young to attract anyone but pervs, and Dany also draws too many admirers who actually desire her sexually ... and not so much for her political power. I find it actually kind of annoying that Gyldayn is not much of a Targaryen supremacist. He clearly is obsessed with the royal dynasty of Westeros, else he would not bother writing about their private problems and the like. His focus is clearly they as people, not they as rulers nor the governments they established or the laws they made. So he should very much be a fan of everything they did ... like most of the Westerosi people living during their reign would be. But he actually includes doubts about the Doctrine of Exceptionalism in his recounting of the death of the first Daenerys. The ball scenario works very fine for me, though, since the crucial thing there shouldn't be so much how the girl looked ... but who presented her. But, of course, it is more the Westerosi people than the royal family who are obsessed with Valyrian looks and what they symbolize. Rhaenyra loved her brown haired boys, Alysanne and Baelon loved their dirty blonded Alyssa of the mismatched eyes, everybody loved dark-haired Rhaenys, etc. But the sources Gyldayn cites routinely dwell on the very distinct Valyrian features of certain princes and kings, e.g. Queen Rhaena vs. Queen Alysanne, Prince Aemon, Rhaenyra, and then both Aegon III and Daenaera. This is what royalty should look like in Westeros in the eyes of the people. Not so much the Targaryens themselves. Rhaenyra and Viserys I have no issues with brown hair and brown eyes ... Alicent and her cronies do. Of course, on a meta-level George definitely has a kind of 'albino fetish' or a strong preference for albino (i.e. 'Valyrian' characters) in his works. It is staggering how prevalent those traits are in his stories and novels. Gyldayn has yet to write about the reign of Aerys II - and there is no 'propaganda' from Yandel there ... only a not exactly complete list of the suspects behind the deaths of Elia and her children. Which is understandable in context, especially since the Tywin thing wasn't actually confirmed. The notion that a historian would record nonsense about this event is completely unfounded ... even more so as this particular branch of House Targaryen lost the Iron Throne with the death of King Baelor. This was a huge event attended by thousands of people ... and it effectively helped to trigger the resignation of Unwin Peake as Lord Regent, Protector of the Realm, and Hand of the King. That's not something only Mushroom would talk about. If you don't like the 'Aegon was smitten by the beautiful girl' take go with 'Baela and Rhaena talked to their brother earlier and it was arranged between them that he would marry Daenaera before she was presented'. With no sister to marry, a Velaryon bride of Valyrian looks was the next best thing as per Targaryen tradition - which seems to be the main reason why the match couldn't be dissolved later on. The girl was young, but the ideal bride for a Targaryen king. And that's why she married Aegon.
  17. I've trouble viewing Aegon II as depicted as an agent of the patriarchy. But we'll have to wait and see. Oh, she seduced her uncle and declared she would marry him, she was in charge of her marriage to Laenor, she argued forcefully at the council table ... and her final scene doesn't indicate she is going to be depressed now. In a sense I think she is very much holding herself together when she learns about the coup. She is more controlled than Daemon and knows she has to control herself because with him at her side somebody has to keep her cool. But deep down she fully capable to unleash her fire. Emma's version, that is, not George's version. The widows just agree to terms, they don't come up with the idea. Lady Sam plays a more active part, but Lady Johanna and Lady Elenda basically have no other choice. That is something you seem to be desperately wishing for. Pretty much all women in the show are feminist, and Rhaenyra most of all. Viserys I and Corlys are feminists, too, with their agreement to use Dornish-style succession customs for the Iron Throne in the Rhaenyra-Laenor deal. And Corlys is, too, to a point, by pushing Rhaenys' claim. Even Alicent is feminist in her supporting Rhaenyra's claim, her being concerned for her that a brother would push her out of her position, her defending her as a good queen in talks with her father, etc. Not to mention the feminist talk she has with Rhaenys in episode 9. Rhaenyra is clearly the most radical feminist there, demanding a man's freedom for herself ... and her talk about her creating a new order once she is queen is likely something the show will depict. We can be sure that she doesn't do the shit book Rhaenyra did with the Rosbys and Stokeworths, we can expect Rhaenyra to have women and men on her council, etc. And it would make sense if her decreeing that henceforth all lordships in Westeros will follow equal primogeniture is going to be one of the reasons why she might face a lot of opposition later in her reign in the show. I think you are obviously thinking in very, ah, interesting terms if you think Aegon III was actually 'smitten' by Daenaera. Yes, she would have been a very beautiful young girl ... but still a young girl, so whatever this was it wouldn't have been sexual. Daenaera is described as a sweet and nice and very beautiful girl who quickly wins the hearts of others ... but not by means of seduction or becuse she is attractive in a sexual way. She is only six years old at the time. And about 8-9 at the end of the book. And there is also no indication Gyldayn interpreted it that way. But, more importantly, it strikes one as very likely that Baela and Rhaena instructed Aegon that they would eventually bring in his future queen ... and that's just what then happened. It would have been a very private conversation between the royal siblings and a way to thwart Unwin Peake. Something nobody ever talked about later, though, so Gyldayn was stuck with the 'the girl presented by the king's sisters won his heart' narrative all the reports from the ball would have spread. While George may have thought along those lines ... that is not really a good reason for that. They could have just had trouble conceiving children for a longer time. Or Aegon III being who and what he was may have simply not consummated his marriage to either bride for years after the wedding. Especially with Jaehaera who could have easily lived longer, the marriage being childless because neither spouse were willing to actually consummate it because of all the Dance baggage. Their age gap already was enough for this only becoming something Aegon could try to do once he himself came of age ... and then nobody could actually try to force the king to bed his wife. And it is not that he thinks much about those things in the case of, say, Aemon-Jocelyn where we have no clue why they have only one child. There was, of course, also no narrative reason to have all of Aegon III's children be children of the second wife. He could have added older children, sons and daughters by Jaehaera, who either died early or played little to no role in politics since they were female and Daeron and Baelor were the male heirs. You do have to differentiate between depicting men lusting after young/teenage girls (which is a thing in the actual book series with Tyrion and Sandor and others) and child marriage as an institution. Arranged marriage is neither about love nor (necessarily) about consensual sex, so Tommen being married to Margaery or Jaehaera or Daenaera being married to Aegon III (or Aegon III to Jaehaera) has literally nothing to do with a depiction of pedophilia, etc. ... but is simply a depiction of a kind of child abuse that happens to noble and royal children if adult people (not even their parents in those circumstances) force them into marriages for reasons of state. The depiction of that fits very well with both medieval and modern nobility and royalty did (and still kind of do) such things.
  18. I'd not completely agree with the assessment. GoT has another Targaryen queen being betrayed and murdered by a close relative ... but Rhaenyra isn't really portrayed as a tyrant in the book. First she is absent weakling whose campaign is completely in the hands of the men around her ... and then she is the weakling in charge who fails to actually take charge when her enemies close in around her. But of course the way Dany was treated makes it effectively impossible that Rhaenyra's end will be depicted in a way that makes the audience think of Daenerys. So she can most definitely not appear as if she is losing it. And I'd say she can also not be fed to Sunfyre by Aegon II. I'd be very surprised if that actually happened. They already proved they are willing to throw the source material out the window with Laenor not dying. My best guess for Rhaenyra's end would be that her death is going to be faked again - and by Alicent of all people who will not allow that her old friend is going to be murdered. There would be two ways to do this - either by having Alicent being there with Rhaenyra when Aegon II captures her on Dragonstone ... or by Aegon II taking both Rhaenyra and Aegon the Younger prisoner, dragging both their asses back to KL and executing Rhaenyra there, say, as part of the festivities of his formal restoration to the Iron Throne. Alicent would then have another woman being executed in Rhaenyra's place, perhaps with the show somehow using the Mance glamor plot which was never used in GoT. Rhaenyra would then entrusted to friends of Alicent's who ship her to Essos so she is unable to do anything when Aegon II falls and Aegon III is crowned and then Rhaenyra decides to not interfere in things. Kind of like Edward II allegedly survived his own death and then retired somewhere in Italy as to not mess up the reign of his son, Edward III. I don't know. Could be that he assigned some KG to Aemond instead of Helaena and the children - could have been a wise move in the wake of Luke's murder. But it could also be that Aegon II, being an asshole, was one of the kings who - originally, at least - reserved KG protection only for his person. And we should not forget that Helaena did enter her mother's apartments with one guardsman accompanying her who was then slain by Blood. They were not completely defenseless. It would make sense for King Aegon II to eventually name a sworn shield to his heir ... but Tommen has no sworn shield until he is sent away by Cersei, I think. And Myrcella only gains Arys Oakheart when Tyrion sends her to Dorne. To make myself clear here - the end of the Dance as such is anticlimactic as hell. The real story effectively ends with Rhaenyra being driven out of the city and her eventual death. Everything afterwards is a boring and kind of weird epilogue where broken and stupid characters allow themselves to be led to the slaughter by an insidious cripple. The show would be well advised to condense all that material. The Hour of the Wolf can work as the ending of the show, one episode, say, ending with Aegon III's wedding-coronation. Then we can fade into black. The Regency is a new story ... and one lacking a proper ending. If they want to do that, they need another 3-4 seasons or so. And even that they should, perhaps, do with a new show with a new title ... because the Regency clearly will focus on new main characters aside from Aegon III, Baela, and Rhaena. They need to deal with the issue of Viserys' return somehow, of course. But that can be managed. Pretty sure that kind of thing will be reversed in the show - if they include it. In the show Rhaenyra will favor the women ... and then that might come back to haunt her. If they end things with the wedding-coronation then Jaehaera definitely will survive the show. But that doesn't mean she will be the mother of the children of Aegon III. Baela and Rhaena are visibly older than their book counterparts and they will need stuff to do - so there should be romances and stuff for them during the Dance. If they have Corwyn Corbray he could marry Rhaena during the show ... and Baela could properly married to Alyn soon after Jace's death as to smooth over the Velaryon succession. I also think there is room for the introduction of Daenaera Velaryon even if they don't include her eventual marriage to Aegon III (although they could allude or foreshadow that by her being close companion of Aegon III later during the war). Rather than some obscure Velaryon cousin (Vaemond doesn't seem to have children in the show), Daenaera could be a posthumous daughter of either Jace and Baela or Jace and Sara Snow. In that capacity she would be a child Rhaenyra's family would care very much from the day of her birth. I think that would be a little bit too much. We have to wait and see what they will do with the Larys character. So far his creepiness towards Alicent strongly indicates he couldn't care less about the Green cause ... so once we reach the riot he might not really do what he does to help Aegon II's cause. I'd not be surprised if Mysaria is going to play a role there, depending how they depict the Nettles and Addam situation. I mean, if Mysaria, say, fucks with Rhaenyra and forges a letter demanding Nettles execution then Rhaenyra could eventually figure that out ... causing Mysaria to go underground and using her assets to cause a riot. But in general even the book makes it clear Green agents and Green supporters are part of riot movement. Even the Shepherd could have been propped up by Green agents ... but he quickly developed a mind of his own, jumping on the chance to get rid of all the dragons and House Targaryen as a whole. Wat the Tanner and his guys seem the only rioting faction that were driven mostly by genuine anger/fear with no hidden agenda behind their outward actions.
  19. If he wanted us to care about them as people he would actually give us peasant POVs. We see normal people through the eyes of the noble elite or through the eyes of people who are part of aristocratic system (Davos, Areo). We see through noble eyes how the ambitions and wars of the nobility make the people of the land suffer. Arya's and Brienne's Riverlands chapters are basically lessons for the nobility what they should not do. They teach Arya what she is not to do should she ever be in charge. But they are not giving agency to the common people. Like at all.
  20. Obviously I wanted her to be more relevant. I mean, she leads the Alliance, not Leia. But we know how Leia bears herself in the OT, right? So should Leia's boss be like the Mon Mothma we get in Andor and RO ... or a person who is actually in charge and runs things? I know what my answer is to this. Yeah, but Palpatine actually does order around his underlings as Darth Sidious ... Mon Mothma's real persona is that of a terrorist financier, not that of a leader of a terrorist/rebel organization. I'm fine with her being in the Senate, maintaining an loyalist Imperial facade. But this could all be actually more meaningful. She could have been much closer to the Imperial elite, milking them for information. She could have real sway in the Senate with crucial factions so that her legitimate power base was something Palpatine's cronies couldn't just ignore. Instead all we get for his family drama which we don't really see through (Are her husband/daughter really totally ignorant about what she does? Does she have to hide things from them because they might betray her or does she simply want to protect them?) Her public political efforts are a joke.
  21. The Conquest could work great if they really flesh out the Targaryens on Dragonstone earlier, perhaps starting with Lord Aerion's death, the subsequent wedding of the siblings, Aegon's dreams, debates what to do, their mother Valaena and the Velaryon cousins giving input, Aegon's participation in the final battles of the Century of Blood, the making of the Painted Table, etc. This would then be contrasted with a depiction of the royal courts of all the Seven Kingdoms, showing their ambitions, plans, fears, etc. The Conquest as such is not very interesting ... but the audience could care about the people involved there if they knew them. A good way to play things up, to make people care, would be to really flesh out Argilac the Arrogant, Harren the Black, and Mern IX Gardener. I could see Harren the Black as a really brutal and dangerous guy for all his neighbors, especially Argilac. At the same time Mern IX could also dream about his house eventually uniting all the Andal kingdoms under Gardener rule.
  22. She clearly doesn't lead or direct in RO. I never said she should lead from the front or anything ... but she is the one who leads the Rebellion to victory. And you just don't see this in RO. It is even worse since there was actually little reason to have her physically there, on Yavin. She isn't there five days later when the Death Star arrives, so the way to go with things there should have been to either not go to Yavin at all and show the rebel base on Dantooine ... or have her merely as a hologram presence, too. Regarding Andor ... yeah, yeah, she is watched and all, but she is just a terrorist financier, she doesn't direct her cells. Which means she has effectively no real power. The show even addresses this when she confronts Luthen about things. Which is a disgrace if we are to see as the woman who started this entire movement (along with Bail Organa, of course). Mon Mothma's plotline in Andor would have been much more meaningful if we had seen her actually directing rebel missions, moving pawns, sacrificing pieces ... having a plan. We could have still had Luthen as her go-between, etc. Also, it would have been great to see her having a very different public persona - like Darth Sidious is playing the role of good guy Palpatine in the PT - which actually fools the ISB and other Imperials.
  23. Slaver's Bay is mainly a place where slaves are trained and sold. Most slaves aren't there to stay and they clearly have methods and procedures in place to control them. The Astapori have drugs and conditioning to keep the future Unsullied in line, and the Yunkai'i train bed slaves ... like a business that doesn't come with a lot of dangers. The big business in Meereen are the fighting pits - and the slaves fighting there like their jobs. As might the slaves of Astapor and Yunkai to a point who are not trained and grinded down. But there clearly are overseers aplenty in those cities. The business cannot work without them, and they do inflict terrible punishments. We can also reasonably expect that slave uprisings are or were a thing in the region ... but one imagines that since the Doom and the Century of Blood the Ghiscari (re-)established a kind of order that profits them and their business enterprise.
  24. I don't care about the guy's degrees. And I never said that Andor was unrealistic in its portrayal of rebellions ... but it doesn't really portray the Star Wars galaxy the way it is. I'd also say that real world shit has little to no place in Star Wars. This is a fantasy world where the Rebels are the good guys ... we don't need gritty realism messing that up too much. RO sucks as a movie completely independent of Andor. Although the silly Mon Mothma portrayal from RO was transferred to Andor. Now she is a craven woman who doesn't even really know what her own cousin does with the money she gives to an organization she intended to, you know, lead back in ROTS. Brilliant writing.
  25. You can pretend that not all relevant Alliance leaders are on Yavin or in the holo conference ... but what would be the point of that? Mon Mothma and Bail Organa are there, meaning the leaders of the faction represented by Leia Organa in the OT as well as the people at Yavin which defy the Death Star in ANH. The movie does want to give us the impression that the relevant/prominent leaders of the Rebellion are there - either physically or in hologram.
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