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Nathan Stark

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About Nathan Stark

  • Birthday 08/17/1992

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  • Lord Food Taster for House Manderly
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    Destroying Freys.

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  1. Renly was totally, 100% aware of the Cersei/Jaime incest. Here is the evidence; 1) Renly had Robert's bastard, Edric Storm, at Storms End for several years and knew full well that he had the Baratheon look. He was also spending significant time around Joffrey, Myrcella and Tommen during that same period due to his presense on the Small Council, so he was well aware that Robert's "legitimate heirs" looked nothing like him. 2) Renly was working with the Tyrells to get Robert to suplant Cersei in favor of Margaery, a plan that only works if you get rid of Cersei and disinherit her children. Ollena and Mace Tyrell would never have consented to risk their precious Margaery's life if they were not aware of Cersei's treachery. This implies that they had a man on the inside. The only three real options here are Renly, Loras, and Littlefinger. Given the working relationship between Renly and House Tyrell, and his romance with Loras, the great likelihood is that Renly and Loras both knew about the incest. 3) The incest was hardly a difficult thing to discover. Pycelle almost admitted his knowlege to Tyrion in ACoK. Varys would have known pretty much from the start. Littlefinger was aware as well, as his "help" was instrumental in Ned discovering it. Stannis and Jon Arryn found out about the incest by visiting Gendry, another bastard of Robert's and comparing him to the decidely non-Baratheon looking royal children. Renly not knowing about the incest, when pretty much every other person on the Small Council knew about it, is a very big stretch of logic. 4) Renly's whole plot to replace Cersei with Margaery makes absolutely zero sense unless he was aware of the incest. Replacing Cersei and disinheriting her children is necessary for the plot to work, since polygamy is allegedly illegal and Robert getting an anullment is both legally difficult and politically toxic. Renly and Loras were seriously risking war by doing this. They, and Ollenna and Mace, didn't roll the dice believing that Cersei's children were legitimate heirs. Given these points, it is pretty clear that Renly was aware that Cersei and Jaime were committing base treachery. There are arguments against this claim, which I will present below, along with my response in bold. a) We are never told directly in the text that Renly knew about the incest. But we don't have to be told directly. It is subtext. We are meant to infer Renly's thinking from his actual actions within the text, and his actions make the most sense if he knew. b) Why didn't Renly tell Robert if he knew about the incest? For reasons similar to that of Stannis. Robert wouldn't believe the truth without serious evidence to back it up. Stannis chose to go to Jon Arryn with what he knew, while Renly and Loras hatched up a plan to dangle Margaery as a feasible alternative to Cersei. In both cases, they were lining their ducks up in a row before telling Robert. But of course, Robert died before Renly had a chance to get his Margary gambit in operation, otherwise Renly, all thing being equal, would have told Robert. (On a somewhat related sidenote, Robert was probably one of the few people in the Red Keep who didn't know Cersei and Jaime were sleeping together. Robert was remarkably blind to things he did not wish to see.) c) Renly swore to Stannis and Catelyn that he really didn't know about the incest. Renly is lying. He has every motivation to lie about his knowledge. If he admitted to Stannis and Catelyn that the "fable" was true, Renly would be admitting that Stannis is the trueborn heir after all, and that he, Renly, is jumping ahead in the line of succession. If Renly plays dumb, he can frame himself and Stannis as being on more equal footing, because if Joffrey is legitimate, he and Stannis are both usurpers. (Some have argued that Renly's comments to Catelyn after his shambolic meeting with Stannis indicates that he didn't know because he wonders aloud if she thinks Stannis's story is true or not. This is entirely unconvincing. Renly has no reason to admit to Catelyn that he was witholding information about the incest from her and rather good reasons not too. It is very telling that Renly had Stannis's letter accusing Cersei, and he still chose not to tell Catelyn about it.) There is a misconception among the fandom that Cersei and Jaime's antics were a closely gaurded, deeply hidden secret. This was simply not the case. Cersei and Jaime were in fact being utterly reckless and their affairs were going to be discovered at some point. Ned and Cat may have been absolutely shocked to learn that this was happening, but they were living isolated in Winterfell for nine years, not spending time in the Red Keep. By the time Ned arrived in Kings Landing, all the various plots and schemes surrounding Robert and the Lannisters had been going on for a while. At that point, Varys, Littlefinger, Pycelle and Stannis all knew about the incest. Renly had a plot to get Robert to marry Margaery and abandon Cersei. Occam's Razor says that Renly knew about the incest. **Note: I was going to post this in the other thread by @Craving Peaches regarding what Renly owed Stannis, but figured that this discussion deserved a full thread of it's own. Also, I didn't want to derail the original topic of that thread, which merits serious discussion in its own right.**
  2. As Robb Stark said, "Bran can't be Lord of Winterfell before me, and Renly can't be king before Stannis." I know Renly stans like to wave this fact away like it is a minor, insignificant detail that can be overcome, but it is not. This is not a liberal democracy; it is feudalism operating under semi-salic primogeniture laws of succession. If Robert's children by Cersei turn out to be illegitimate, as indeed they were, then under Westerosi laws and norms, Stannis was the rightful heir, and Renly did in fact owe Stannis his fealty as the younger brother. Sure, Stannis can't proove that Joffrey is illegitimate, you say? Well Renly could. He had Edric Storm at Storm End for years, the spitting image of Robert Baratheon, just like Gendry, and Mya Stone shared the Baratheon look. Just like Joffrey, Myrcella and Tommen cleary do not share the Baratheon look. It doesn't take a genius to figure this out. Jon Arryn and Stannis himself found out Cersei's children were bastards. Then so did Ned. Littlefinger and Varys definately knew as well. And we are to believe that somehow Renly failed to figure this pretty transparent fact out? Sorry. Doesn't pass the smell check. Renly is a lot of mostly annoying things, but being stupid is not one of them. That's not to say I think Stannis was being smart to pick the fight he did with Renly, only that Renly declaring ignorance of Joffrey's bastardy is entirely dishonest and self-serving. Of course Renly knew about Joffrey's bastardy. His whole plan in AGoT was to get Robert to marry Margaery, a plan that can only work if you prove Cersei's treachery. But really, at the end of the day, all this talk of whether Renly knew or didn't know about Joffrey's illegitimacy is a distraction from the bigger issue here: the laws of succession are the best means available in a feudal society for peaceful transfer of power, and Renly intended to smash right through that by jumping ahead of Stannis in the line of succession. Renly said it himself, "the men holding those banners will make me king." In short, might makes right. If that plan had actually worked, and Renly had two or more sons by Margaery, than the precedent Renly set would make peaceful transfer of power deeply uncertain. On a final note, using Brynden Blackfish as a means to support the argument here is pretty silly. Brynden showing some independence by refusing to marry according to his older brother's wishes and Renly deciding to jump ahead in the line of succession are totally different things. You might have noticed that for all his disagreements with Hoster, Brynden never tried to usurp him at any point.
  3. Haven't heard from @Seams in a while. Though I've been off and on a lot, so I may have missed a few of their generally wonderful posts. Ironically, Reddit seems far more toxic than anything on here.
  4. Lo Bu isn't a character in the series. Tywin is. So I can't compare a character I've actually read about at length to a random name of a person we've never met.
  5. Well, it could work in theory, especially regarding the Ironborn. The main obstacle is that other than the Ironborn, the North and Westerlands are geographically separated and don't share many other similar interests. I doubt the Starks held too much of a grudge against the Targaryens regarding the New Gift, since it didn't affect lands held directly by the Starks, and because it helped the Nights Watch. If anything, Alysanne seems to have charmed the spots off Alaric Stark.
  6. Nobody is telling you to feel anything about what happens in the next book. It just seems a tad silly to cast the entirety of Dorne in the same broad net as Wyl, the Vulture King, or Oberyn Martell. I suppose all of the entire North should be badly ashamed because the Winter Wolves did them some war crime shit a few times. That seems to be the standard you are trying to set here.
  7. In my humble opinion, when one finds themselves arguing about what exactly constitutes a genocide with someone of German-Jewish descent, the first thing to do is to stop digging. One can critique Dany's choice to inflict violence on the slaver elite, though it was justified in my view, but it was clearly not genocide because Dany didn't attempt to wipe all the Ghiscari out, slavers or otherwise. Dany even respected Ghiscari culture enough to marry one of them, and to negotiate with the religious leader of Ghiscari culture in order to make peace with the Ghiscari elite. So it wasn't genocide. That's not the hill to die on. Some within the fandom occaisionally try to explain away atrocities within the text either because they really love a character or they really hate a character. Arguing that Dany genocided the poor, innocent Ghiscari slavers is an example of the latter. By trying to cast Dany as the unreasonably violent one, these arguments by neccesity have to whitewash the monstrous slavery practiced by the Ghiscari elite. One should not let their personal dislike of a fictional character lead them to defend slavers. It's not the hill to die on.
  8. I think it would be a shame for you to leave just because of a small but vocal minority of Twitter Blue people about. We need more people here interested in good faith critical analysis, not less. I can't help but agree with @Craving Peaches that a lot of the folks defending evil actions in the text here are being contrarian just for the sake of it. That's in vogue nowadays, it seems.
  9. I thought for sure that was a link to the "Sansa: Portait of a Psycopath" thread.
  10. I think it is more nihilistic for George to kill off a character whose already had a tragic ark and faced consequences, and then pull a fast one on us by having that character be secretly alive the whole time. I don't think Quentyn's story is a multi-chapter pean to nihilistic despair. I think it is a melancholy rumination on how in over his head Quentyn is. He wasn't prepared, mentally, physically or emotionally for the kind of toll adventure would have on him. Quentyn is just a guy, quiet, sad, and sweet-natured, who would have been far happier had he told Doran to go pound sand and just married and read his books. Gerris Drinkwater himself tells Quentyn that "men's lives have meaning, not their deaths." Quentyn's life mattered, and he threw it away in service of a quest he didn't really believe in for a father he was not close to. The story we are given is a tragedy because it didn't need to happen. Quentyn could have turned back at any point, and he would be alive and well. Or George could just say "psych!" and pull Quentyn out of his hat. I think that would rob Quentyn's previous story of any meaning. The thing about finding "clues" in literary text is that since its all subjective, you can find evidence for any theory you might have. In ASOIAF, readers often find "clues" in support of pet theories. Just think back to the recent "Who was the real catspaw" thread, where several readers argued that clues in the text proved that Joffrey wasn't responsible for the catspaw. I'm not saying we shouldn't look for clues, or theorize about them. I am saying this can be tricky. Because one mans clues are often insignificant to another. And that's where we are. All of the evidence you've provided in support of Quentyn being alive has other explantions that don't point to that outcome. Gerris and Arch might not be hiding anything at all from Barristan; they might just distrust him because he's loyal to Dany and they are in a prison cell. Maybe that person on the bed is Quentyn after all, and we don't get a pov into his last moments alive ruminating on his failures because that's basically been his entire story up to this point. I get it. You don't want Quent to be dead. Neither do I. I liked the poor sad Frog. If George R. R. Martin could pull off a "somehow Prince Quentyn is alive" moment that didn't undercut what Quentyn's whole narrative ark was about, I'd be happy to read it. I don't think that's what he is going to do, and I am not convinced by the evidence often presented arguing the alternative. I admit I find the theory silly, but I don't hate it. I just find it unlikely.
  11. Ah yes. The "oh." The one made semi-infamous among the ASOIAF fandom through Emmet Booth's needlessly long overexplanation of it. (I love PoorQuentin, btw, his analysis is usually great, but the essay about the "oh" is a trip.) It's probably the most famous "oh" in the history of words. So here's the thing: I kind of agree with Poor Quentyn here even if I find the overall analysis a bit much. Quentyn's last moments before being incinerated are such a wonderful underreaction to being incinerated. He didn't really have time for much else because this took place within a few brief seconds. Sometimes an underraction is all you get. I get why fans theorize about Quentyn being secretly alive, somehow. I just don't agree with it. Yes, George R. R. Martin is a crafty author whose stories contain a lot of twists and turns, but there is a pattern to those twists and those turns. They are all Shakespearean tragedies, not "somehow Emperor Palpatine is alive." What makes Quentyn's story meaningful is that he didn't have to make the choices he did. He could have stayed home. He should have turned back. Quentyn, like 99.9% of all of humanity, was just not cut out for being a hero like in the stories. Heroes get rewarded for being brave and stupid. But that gets you killed more often than not. Quentyn's own fruitless attempts to be the hero of his own story got him killed. And that is tragic. So if Quentyn somehow popped back into the story, it wouldn't be cool, or exciting, or fun. It would be confusing and pointless and sad. It would be a cheap "gotcha" twist by an author who just doesn't do that. I think George R. R. Martin ultimately respects his audience far more than D and D ever did.
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