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Elba the Intoner

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About Elba the Intoner

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    Singing, Musical Theatre, bike riding with my family, going to the beach and anything related to Jane Austen.

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  1. Elba the Intoner

    The Will to Change: Rereading Sandor II

    Miodrag this is a very interesting interpretation and like others have mentioned it is one I hadn't considered before. I am now realizing that this line, “Bloody dwarf. Should have killed him. Years ago.”, can be extended even further. It not only refers to Sandor's view of the Lannisters as a whole but their worldview that he adopted for much of his life after he was burned, the idea that the weak should just die and get out of the way because only the strong can survive. Now I realize that what Sandor is saying is that he should have put an end to this idea long ago, because it made him do things he now regrets very much. Milady, I agree that Sandor's offer to Sansa about her going with him and how he would protect her and keep her from being hurt is a declaration of love. Nice job putting it in context with Jaime's thoughts about Cersei. There's also another comparison that I saw in Miodrag's later comments: "No, he is a totally free man making his own choices, as evidenced in his reply to Sansa’s “Where will you go?” question: “Away from here. Away from the fires. Go out the Iron Gate, I suppose. North somewhere, anywhere.” That’s right, he can really go anywhere. " I hadn't noticed this before but highlighting it the way Miodrag did, this reminded me very much of Jaime's thoughts when looking at the white book in the white tower and thinking how it was a blank page and he could write anything he chose. This happens just after Brienne leaves Jaime probably for good for all Jaime knows, and after a time where the two of them were forced together and Jaime was challenged by Brienne's world view just as Sandor was by Sansa's. ETA Re: "That is why, if the two of them ever meet again, Sansa may be faced with the same invitation once more. It’s not too realistic to expect Martin’s going to pass on such an opportunity." I agree that Martin is leading up to another opportunity for a second "proposal" which will have a different outcome this time I do think that Sansa and Sandor will meet again and I believe it is heading towards this too, especially given that there are elements of Jane Eyre in this story and we have the two different "proposals" there too. (Same with Pride and Prejudice although I don't think there are quite as many P&P elements here as there are with Jane Eyre.)
  2. Elba the Intoner

    The Will to Change: Rereading Sandor II

    Great analysis Ragnorak! You have a real eye for battle strategies. I am guessing you are a chess player and a very good one. I appreciated the explanation of Sandor as a battle commander and leader and the realization that even when Tyrion confronted him and ordered him to go back out the gates, his refusal there was not the exact moment of his abandonment as he had been willing to fight and even suggested that Stannis' men should be allowed through the gate where his men and he could attack them. That actually is quite a sound strategy and it was only after Tyrion forced his hand and took his men that he left his post. And also his refusal to go back out was not motivated solely by his own fear of the fire but out of genuine concern for his men after they had suffered so many losses by that point. The ship names also jumped out at me as being significant and I agree that Loyal Man is a reference to Sandor and wonder what it means that the Fiery Heart standard was raised over that ship. It could foreshadow that Sandor will somehow come to serve Stannis as you suggested, or given that the fiery heart represents the religion of Rhllor, maybe it foreshadowed Sandor's upcoming associations with the Thoros and Beric and the duel in the cave. Regarding the question of answered prayers, I noted something while going through these last few chapters though it's not necessarily related to Sandor. Sansa prays to the Mother for help and we get two verses of the song. The first is "Gentle Mother, font of mercy, save our sons from war, we pray," which as has been discussed here will be answered for Sandor specifically when he ends up at the Quiet Isle. But we also get the second verse, "Gentle Mother, strength of women, help our daughters through this fray,". It's interesting that we see this verse here because the Catelyn chapter just before this Sansa chapter is where Catelyn releases Jaime and sends him with Brienne to bring back her daughters. Sansa doesn't know it but it is her mother, and only her mother, who has taken the steps to try and help her and her sister when no one else would which suggests that Sansa's prayers are also being answered for herself here. It also brought me back to Sansa's nightmare of the riot in her previous chapter and how she called out for all these men to save her, including her father and her brothers, but interestingly does not call for the man who did actually save her, but none of them can save her and in the case of Robb he won't even take the steps to have her and Arya released as prisoners. Only her mother did something to try and help, as she prayed for here. (ETA Something else I noticed is that Catelyn's talk with Jaime in the dungeon of Riverrun very much mimics Sansa's talk with Sandor on the rooftop. Catelyn talks of Jaime's death and that he should fear the place of torment in the deepest of the seven hells, "if the gods are just." "What gods are those Lady Catelyn? . . . If there are gods, why is the world so full of pain and injustice?" And then they talk truthfully to each other, and then at the end Catelyn uses a sword at Jaime's head in an inversion of when Sandor places the sword at Sansa's neck.)
  3. Elba the Intoner

    The Will to Change: Rereading Sandor II

    Great write up Lyanna! I have been meaning to comment for a while but was not able to do so sooner because of: one- real life, two- board issues making it really difficult to get on here for days after an episode airs, and three- getting caught up in the rant and rave of the last episode. But I digress. This interaction with Sansa and the next one in her room after the BBB are my favorites because of their emotion and intensity. I think it's a really good point to stress that Sandor was up on the rooftop first and he may have been up there for some time before Sansa showed up contemplating his life and his outlook in it. It has been pointed out that the odds are not looking good in general for the defenders of King's Landing, Stannis is a formidable opponent, and he has the fire on top of everything else and Sandor admits that he could die out there this time and it is often during such bleak times as this, with the notion of death and fear all around, that one tends to take stock of their life an do some good old fashioned self reflection. I agree with Old Gimlet Eye that Sansa challenges his outlook on life just as he challenges hers and yet she manages to unnerve him. I think the end of their encounter proves this because for all that Sandor keeps telling Sansa to look at him and often demands her scrutiny, at the end of their heated exchange he is the one to tell her to leave because he's sick of her looking at him. "Now fly away, little bird, I'm sick of you peeping at me." Really"? He's sick of her looking at him? He practically begs her to do that every time he sees her. I don't have much to add to the other comments about why Sandor draws his sword and places it near Sansa's neck and why Sansa does not appear to be afraid when he does this, though I loved the ideas put forth by Milady as to it representing a sort of good luck kiss. And yeah the phallic imagery is strong with this one. We can compare this to Sansa's next chapter, not to get too much ahead, in which Joff commands Sansa to kiss his sword which she does reluctantly and while wishing him ill in her thoughts. I also loved Ragnorak pointing out the contrast between Sansa's composure here with her abject terror when she is made to appear before Joff and he points the crossbow at her (and the constant reminder throughout the series of how inadequate a weapon a crossbow is LOL). I think the answer is yes to all three questions. Good call on the Sept of Baelor being burned. It does appear that the Stark girls (or maybe this pertains to all the followers of the Old Gods who pray as Ragnorak had mentioned in an earlier post that Sam's prayer to be saved was answered and Sam has adopted the Old Gods) prayers are being answered in indirect ways and now that Lyanna has pointed out that Sansa wants the Sept to be burned I am convinced that will happen. As for the second question about will the Gods hear Sansa's prayer for Sandor, I have a feeling that that is what his time on the Quiet Isle is about and we should look at this prayer again when we get to that chapter. I also did a little reading ahead to Sansa's next chapter and I have a comment about Sansa's prayer to the Mother that I am saving for when we get to that. Someone remind me when we get there :-) And yes, I think he is an answer to her prayer for a true knight. Here's a question I have for everyone. What do you all make of this line when Sansa is remembering how the Hound saved her during the riot and she thinks: "The Hound leapt at them, his sword a blur of steel that trailed red mist as it swung. When they broke and ran before him he had laughed, his terrible burned face for a moment transformed."? It suggests to me that in that moment when he was acting as a true knight and saving her that it was a moment of sheer joy but not because he was the butcher of these people as he referred to himself here (nice call back to his killing of Mycah the butcher's boy by the way), but because he was saving her and doing what he always wanted to do when he dreamed of being a knight as a boy. It sounds to me kind of like what Tyrion will describe as the battle fever.
  4. Elba the Intoner

    Rethinking Romance: Love Stories of ASOIAF, Part 2

    I am replying from my phone so this won't be a long reply but I just wanted to say that I enjoyed this essay Longrider. It seemed like a labor of love for you. I don't think I picked up on the cloak symbol for Sam and Gilly before but it is really amazing how George throws these little details in consistently to give a hint of what is really going on. He consistently uses the cloak of protection idea as a means of showing us that these two people are married, not officially or legally, but in the way that counts most, in their own minds and hearts. And nice discussion too on Gilly's agency and that she is choosing Sam of her own free will as opposed to the first time she made the offer back at Craster's which was more of an attempt to make a bargain because of her desperate circumstances.
  5. Elba the Intoner

    Rethinking Romance: Love Stories of ASOIAF, Part 2

    And I forgot that too, Longie. I never picked up on the cloak symbolism with Gilly and Sam. And Sam bestows it earlier. I was totally lulled by the sweet act, it is cold outside, and there is so much cloak stuff in the series, I should have learned to look for it. LOL! But it is like his relationship with Jon. He bonds with you early, and you know he is true from the get go, with his love and caring and friendship. I agree so much with what you said in the spoiler. She has not forgotten any of them. One of the arguments I always hear against Arya and Gendry is that Arya doesn't ever think of him anymore after they have been separated. I don't believe that's true and that Mercy chapter is really a callback to all of this. I think Arya is just so numbed after the red wedding and her time with Sandor that by the time she gets to Braavos and has a chance to start a new life she wants to focus on that. After all, Arya runs into Sam in Braavos and even though she doesn't know him personally, she can see that he is a brother of the Night's Watch but she doesn't go asking after Jon then either, yet by the way she didn't give up needle you know she still cares about Jon.
  6. Elba the Intoner

    Rethinking Romance: Love Stories of ASOIAF, Part 2

    LongRider this was lovely. Thank you. I never realized how much the themes of the cloak of protection and singing a soothing song are reinforced with these two, almost as much as with Sandor and Sansa. Another similarity is that we learn that Sam, our POV character, has a gentle heart and sweet singing voice, just like Sansa. I think what bonds Sam and Gilly is how they both were abused as children despite their completely different upbringings and social status. Booknerd I also really enjoyed your essay on the Arya Gendry chapter where he first outs her as a girl. That scene was always one of my favorites between them, and it also sets up nicely their inherent conflict about being from two different worlds and Gendry's realization that he should never be this close to a highborn "lady". Actually, Sam sees that as an obstacle too between him and Gilly as LongRider pointed out. That Arya Gendry chapter is one crazy rollercoaster of emotions. It starts out rather lighthearted despite their dire circumstances and their exchange is so funny it made me chuckle. Then it takes this 180 degree turn and ends up so dark and ominous and with one of the worst acts of murder seen on page.
  7. Elba the Intoner

    Rethinking Romance: Love Stories of ASOIAF, Part 2

    Back on here after a long absence and I'm very excited to hear about Yolkboy's announcement! Really looking forward to it. I very much enjoyed the other episodes so far. Any ideas when Sandor and Sansa will be posted? Booknerd your Arya Gendry essays were great and funny too. I liked your take on Gendry's attitude at the Inn with all the orphans and why he was hanging around there, hoping that Arya would show up. One detail from the books that always stuck out for me was when the Hound first grabs Arya near the BWB's camp. She thinks she hears Gendry calling for her. I always believed it was him calling for her and that he was devastated when she was kidnapped, right after they had an argument too.
  8. Elba the Intoner

    [Book Spoilers] EP302 Discussion

    Also, lots of people were at court to see Sansa beaten and the Tyrells could learn that from anyone. Sansa gives another example that most people would not have known about. Only Joff, the Hound and Meryn were there when Joff forced Sansa to look at her father's head. It's a very intimate example of Joff's cruelty.
  9. Elba the Intoner

    [Book Spoilers] EP302 Discussion

    Hmmm, mostly I liked this episode a lot but I'm a little torn on a couple of things. First off, I'll start with what I loved. Sansa with the QOT was awesome! Diana Rigg is spot on as the QOT. Also, I loved the introduction of the Reeds and thought that was great as well and the direwolves look amazing. Aww, that dream of Bran with his brothers in the wood made me sniffle. Also, Jojen saying how when he told his father about about Ned that was the only time he ever saw his father cry. That was touching. And we get a Howland Reed mention, too! Sooooo, Jojen has "seen" the events of Robert's Rebellion. That's interesting. Of course seeing the Hound again was epic! Loved it. I like Thoros too, he seems cool. I guess they are combining him with Tom O Sevens unless Tom shows up later. And I almost forgot Dolorous Edd with another one of his sarcastic comments always makes me smile. I also liked the Joff Cersei scene. You can tell that Cersei has lost all control over him. The Joff Marg scene was fine. It sets up some good foreshadowing there about the purple wedding. Marg - "Would you like to watch me kill someone?" Joff - "yes". Well Joff, she's going to kill you he he. Tyrion - Shae scene was neither here nor there for me. I feel like saying to the show creators that it's okay - they don't have to show Tyrion in every episode. Anyway, yeah it looks like they are setting up that Shae is going to be jealous of Sansa with Tyrion or something. Robb talking with Karsark was good, especially the line about how Robb lost the war when he married Talisa. (I very much agree with those of you who can't stand Talisa. Even if they are setting her up to be a spy I just hate seeing her on the screen). What was hard to watch but great television - Theon. Wow! I cringed so hard when they went to cut off his finger. So, that guy who sets him free who was supposedly sent by his sister is Ramsay right? He's gonna have a little fun with a hunt next ep from what it looks like. I wish Ramsay didn't look so young and so much like Pod though. I pictured Ramsay a lot older than Theon but this guy looks younger. What I'm a little disappointed with is the Jaime and Brienne fight, though I hate to say it. Their fight scene was one of the things I was most looking forward to but I found it to be a bit of a let down. Maybe because I was so looking forward to it. Where was the dance with me, and kill me or kiss me stuff? And it looks like we are not going to get a Wench out of him now. I love the Wench - Kingslayer stuff because later on when they start calling each other by their names it really shows how they have come around in their thinking of each other. I know I'm just being overly picky but that's how I feel. On the other hand, I loved seeing them on screen again. These two are fantastic together and I know I'll still enjoy watching them. Also, I'm not sure what to make of this Catelyn confession about Jon Snow. I mean, where did that come from? I can't decide if that makes her character better or not.
  10. The Sphynx is the riddle not the riddler.