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  1. Yea, on re-watch Karene clearly saw that Logain was about to to break through with saidin missiles and protected Moiraine and Liandrin. Presumably, she didn't have anything left to protect herself. As to Mat, I'd say that slaughter at the farm handily explains why he wouldn't want to return to Two Rivers - he knew that the Fade was really after the 2 of them and the family died because they sheltered under their roof. Returning to his sisters would only make them a target.
  2. Exactly. There was a suggestion up-thread that only the Tower-trained use gestures and wilders don't. I think that the Tower weaves with somatic components initially come from wilders and/or private invention. Certainly, Logain in the show doesn't gesture and I don't remember one way or another what he does in the books, apart from the bond kiss, but for instance Damer Flynn also used extensive gestures with his own, superior Healing. Taim, of course, didn't use gestures, but he wasn't truly a wilder. I think that it was the other way around, since they find and train all sparkers and the Aiel are pretty numerous. At least there were a lot of Wise Ones in pre-Sanderson books - hundreds in every clan IIRC, but he simplified the disposition of forces for TG by seriously reducing channeler numbers on the side of Light without explanation. I mean, I understand that all these thousands of channelers were seriously unwieldly in a battle scenario and it was hard to come up with something to put forces of Light in desperate straights with them around, but I can't help feeling a little bitter because books were wasted on recruiting and assembling them! Anyway, back to the show - why was Kerene worriedly glancing at Moiraine - twice, right before she was killed? It must be some kind of misdirection, but I didn't see Liandrin doing anything untoward, either.
  3. So, the gesture thing was a relatively late ret-con by RJ when he decided that the AS needed to be Worfed by practically everybody, since before that he had even the Forsaken use gestures on occasion and Rand certainly did so as well. What is more, there are some examples of the weaves that wilders and other channelers invent on their own having the gesture component, like Moiraine's eavesdropping weave needing a stone for focus or the Asha'man "wife" bond requiring a kiss, etc. So, to me the implications of so many (but not all) AS weaves having a somatic component is that much of their syllabus was cobbled together from the wilder tricks, rather than being an unbroken tradition from AoL like they like to pretend. Mind you, the AS still knew a lot of techiques that the Aiel and the Windfinders didn't, like healing, linking, etc. They actually had the broadest and biggest library of commonly known weaves, with secret Ajah and personal ones on top of that. Siuan shields Nynaeve while being completely immobilized in TGH, so the Tower weave for it doesn't require gestures in the books. And frankly, it would be pretty useless if it did, because speed is of critical importance in this case. I don't think that she gestures when grabbing somebody with the flows of Air either. Moiraine covered all the area up to Baerlon in mist from the back of a galloping horse without gesturing and IIRC never gestured when setting wards. Oh, and she hit Rand with OP once without twitching a muscle and didn't gesture when she attempted to fight various Forsaken either, unless she was using balefire - for which both Rand and Rahvin also gestured.
  4. Oh, and when Rand sees Moiraine escorting a captured False Dragon together with the Reds and Co., it will feed his distrust and fear of her and lead to him more plausibly believing Ishy's insinuations than was the case in the books.
  5. Well, I loved this episode. Yes, the "army" was just a token 3 dozen people and it is unclear how Alanna and her Warders would have been able to hold it back, by themselves, when the whole group was having a hard time doing so, but I am willing to suspend my disbelief. I guess that they'll be merging Alanna with Myrelle? I mean, she does seem friendly with Moiraine in the show and the next episode will likely show what happens to a Warder if his Aes Sedai dies
  6. Why would it be weird to imagine souls as genderless? IMHO it is far weirder that they should be gendered and segregated for the presence or absence of the channeling ability from the moment of Creation and until the Wheel stops turning. Unlike Jordan, the show isn't going to endlessly harp on how completely alien and incompehensible men and women are to each other, which was his sole justification for gendered souls. If you are talking about the excellent show "Avatar: The Last Airbender", then it has an avatar soul that reincarnates as both men and women. Which is what I thought was the case in WoT until Aran'gar and Jordan's confirmation in an interview that that was the general order of things in WoT and not just something that was due to non-standard DO-assisted revival. True, but Dragon-candidates immediately come across as potentially more important characters. Particularly since they didn't even explain what ta'veren actually means. And it is not quite as straighforward an explanation as "a potential savior". Not sure what you are talking about - do you think that a random male channeler could have made it to the Eye and used it? I mean, it isn't like male Aiel channelers don't go to the Blight somewhat regularly - so what, any one of them should have been able to do so? The Dragon is the most powerful ta'veren ever, which ideally should help them to know what to do and to succeed at doing it, against all odds. Moiraine and her hypothetical "group(?) of friends" couldn't be that. In the end, Rand needed female channelers to accomplish what he did - why is it so difficult to imagine a female Dragon working with a man to the same end? Personally, I don't see that all that much needs to be adapted. The Dragon Reborn breaking the world prophecies didn't come true via taint madness in the series, after all, just Rand's massive ta'veren influence. Arthur Hawkwing, a non-channeler certainly broke the world just as badly. Wouldn't people be afraid of a woman, if she had the same effect on civilization as Hawkwing did? Sure, a male Dragon is even worse because he _could_ go mad and destroy with the One Power too - which will result in additional angst from everybody when he is revealed to be Rand.
  7. So? If you remove the IMHO unpleasant idea that souls have intrinsic gender and that there are channeling and non-channeling souls, which is only used to set up a highly pointless side-plot in the books, then who the Dragon was won't necessarily determine who they could be. It is pretty easy for me to understand why Egwene was set up as a ta'veren and a Dragon candidate - so that she wouldn't be seen by the viewers as a side character to the boys main characters, like a lot of book readership saw her and Nynaeve. And so that people wouldn't assume that whenever she disagrees with the boys she is wrong, because they are the will of the Pattern made incarnate and how dare she, which ditto. And let's be honest - despite Egwene's ambition, adaptability and fierce desire to learn, her meteoric rise within a year or so still doesn't come across as wholly plausible and opens her to the accusations of Mary Sueism. If each book covered at least as much time as TEoTW, then sure, it might have been somewhat believable, but as it turned out - nope. A female Dragon could have used it if linked with a man? Particularly if you throw out Jordan's sexist 1:1 linking rule of a man having to be in control, which wasn't even present in the early books, IIRC. Ditto Callandor, in the books very few people knew that it was a male sa'angreal before Rand took it, and in the early books one of the Forsaken hinted at the possibility of gender-neutral sa'angreal existing. Only the strongest ta'veren ever could hope to succeed at said repair. And before you say that taint-facilitated access to LTT's memories was crucial for Rand's success - sure, but there is Mat's example for how a strong ta'veren could gain the required knowledge without the taint. BTW, did we actually learn in the books what the Eye of the World was intended for? I don't remember any canonical explanation. My head-canon used to be that it provided Rand with a bit of extra resistence to the taint. A vaccination, so to speak. Oh, and did the books mention anywhere that having an unconscious seep-through from their former lives was typical for the male characters channelers, or was it just the case for Rand? It would have made a lot of sense if it was somewhat common.
  8. I guess that I am easily amused, because I mostly liked the episodes. Yes, there were some unnecessary clunkers, but on the whole I found that the show kept my attention quite well. I am a fan of WoT, but there were always a lot of aspects of it that I saw as flawed, and I am not wholly satisfied by how it ended, so it was never a holy cow to me. Which is why I am open to changes. For instance, I can understand the need to establish from the start that Egwene and Nynaeve are as important as the boys, which is the whole reason for women being considered for the DR in the show. How many times did significant parts of fandom claim that the superboys were the main characters because they were ta'veren and always right because ditto and how dare the foolish supergirls, who were "only side-characters", disagree with them/take so much narrative space, etc. Now, of course Rand is _the_ most important character, but Egwene and Nynaeve ended up as at least as important as Mat and Perrin, but because they weren't introduced from the beginning as ta'veren, etc. this never was wholly accepted among the readers. The show tries to fix this - and frankly, despite Egwene's undeniable tenacity and ambition, her meteoric rise would have looked more plausible if she had been a ta'veren as well. Not to mention that it would have avoided the unfortunate perception that only men can be ta'veren. I also understand the reasons for giving the superboys more distinctive backgrounds and I like Mat's - honestly I find this Mat much more sympathetic than the book one. But was Perrin's wife and her fridging really necessary? Wouldn't Perrin accidentally killing a random fellow villager during the fighting have worked just as well? For that matter, couldn't they have sent 2 Trollocs after al'Thor's and had Tam dispatch one of them before getting wounded? IMHO generally the first episode should have been 5-10 minutes longer than it was, to allow for more character interactions. And mightn't they have just vaguely mentioned the prophecies to explain why Moiraine decided to search the Two Rivers and given her Siuan's Talent for seeing ta'veren? I mean, she does spend a lot of time before the attack just staring at the 4 kids, so maybe they did? Anyway, everything else I am prepared to take in a stride, really. I wonder how Perrin and Egwene will escape the Whitecloaks in this version, since from the Egwene/Nynaeve clip it doesn't look like they will be rescued the same way they were the books. BTW, has it been confirmed by RJ/Sanderson that it was common for male channelers to remember fragments of their former lives due to the taint madness? It would explain how some of them were so effective at channeling despite being completely self-taught, in comparison to the female wilders. I like that the show ran with this idea, anyway.
  9. No, sorry, that was a confusing phrasing on my part. I meant that while Ishamael was the one who created the Black Ajah and curated it and the other Darkfriends during his periods away from the Bore, once the other Forsaken were free, they'd just grab whoever they wanted and give them tasks, so that some of the BA/DFs ended up with contradictory instructions from a couple of different FS. And those other FS cared even less about preserving their pawns than Ishy did. It was Bel'al who ordered the 13 BAs to reveal themselves with a bang. Claiming that the Whitecloaks could infiltrate the White Tower and murder people there with impunity would be an even worse move than what she did. The Oaths might have prevented her from doing it, too. I mean, blaming the Darkfriends was actually accurate. She may have been fishing to learn more, such as Moiraine's possible involvement? Also, the Whitecloaks had people on the ground in Falme and they also have an excellent spymaster. It is entirely possible that Elaida, of all people, was less well-informed. I don't remember - is Rand's name actually known to the masses at this point? Re: Ishy, he is very inconsistent. Yes, he wants to convert Rand, but then at other occasions he tries to kill Rand directly or indirectly. He is quite mad at this point, of course. I don't know - if destiny is forcing a character into a romantic relationship against their will, what's the difference? Min's feelings towards Rand will evolve and become more believable, but she does spend a lot of time as a pawn of various interests. OTOH, random people do get caught in great changes and tossed around, so I don't have a problem with it. Not everybody can have clear goals and personal missions. I have an issue with how Min comes to completely devote her life to Rand eventually and how a lot of readership saw her as his one "real" romantic relationship specifically because of it. Moiraine has a massive personal spy network and generally tries to find and befriend useful people wherever she goes. She discovered Min and made use of her abilities. Nor did Moiraine wish to send Min to Tar Valon previously - why would she, when Min was her secret ace in the hole, tucked safely away from the prying eyes of other Aes Sedai? But once Rand was found and began coming out into the open, the other half of their plan required Siuan to try to bring the nations together in suppport of the Dragon Reborn, so the Amyrlin could really use any additional advantage in intelligence gathering. Therefore Moiraine sent Min to her. Oh, and she also probably didn't want a blossoming romance to distract Rand from his duty (as she saw it). Yes and no. Rand being isolated and unable to fully trust anybody is large part of his predicament, which I have no quarrel with. It is believable. I don't see why there would have been exceptions back when the AS were much more numerous, nor why anybody in the present would know if there were a millenium or so ago. As to the failed initiates, they are very thoroughly indoctrinated against using the One Power in any obvious ways - this is one of the reasons why the White Tower keeps even weak novices for a long time. And if it happens anyway, the AS come down on such women as a ton of bricks, drag them back, punish them harshly and imprison them. Stilling might not be out of question either. It is mentioned later that former initiates and wilders live in fear of AS because of it. IMHO, it is yet another knock on effect of delaying the rescue of Moiraine until so late and then having to cram it in as quickly and perfunctory as possible. It would have been a natural spot to reveal where Mordeth's power came from. Or they could have just had female warders. The drawbacks aren't big enough to give up the advantages of having a warder entirely. Not to mention that they, as well as all the other Tower initiates, should have been trained to defend themselves physically when the open use of the One Power would be unnecessary and detrimental, which is most of the time when they are traveling undercover. Sigh. Elayne is still only 16, a baby of the family and Andoran monarchs are supposed to defer to their male relatives in the military and security matters. Nynaeve comes from an environment where she didn't have a superior and didn't have to bow to the nobility. It is OK and it will change quite soon. Honestly, Elayne not taking Gawyn along as a bodyguard in TDR was seriously dumb even on the first read. Their jaunt in TGH clearly demonstrated the advantages of having somebody who can fight back by mundane means at hand, while out in the world on a covert operation. Power of life and death over other people and ability to secretly direct events is one hell of a drug. It was mentioned that the highest-ranking Darkfriend in some area was a beggar, for instance. But I am sure that normally many Darkfriends do get ahead, since it is beneficial for the organization to have people in high places. And once you join, the only way out is feet first, of course. However, the times when Ishamael is out, as he has been for about a decade and half prior to the beginning of the series, aren't normal times. So, maybe Fain wouldn't have still been a peddler in a different time period, but Ishy wanted to have as many eyes out looking for the Dragon Reborn as possible, so there was that. Siuan didn't set out to climb to the top, she was ambushed by it, just as Egwene later was. And the people who put her there may well have been BAs, I don't remember. But yes, she can't trust anybody except the supergirls. And it is a good thing that she doesn't. There is also an argument to be made for letting them investigate on their own, without prejudging them as to conclusions, because they might have uncovered something that Siuan herself had missed. She didn't intend for them to leave again, IIRC, it was a surprise to her. OTOH, you need to discard "The New Spring" when judging this situation. Because it retroactively retconned Siuan and Moiraine into massive idiots. In the series proper the BA reveal was an unpleasant surprise for Siuan, even though she was theoretically aware of likelyhood of of their existence, nor could she have had any realistic idea as to how pervasive they were. After NS, of course, she absolutely should have known. Personally I think that Aes Sedai politicking improves and I like later Siuan's and Egwene's political plots. OTOH, Jordan did inject his all-female organizations with more silliness than is plausible.
  10. Yes, but the other Forsaken can also command the BAs, or other Darkfriends that they come across, and Bel'al wanted the dirty dozen to reveal themselves ostentatiously for some reason. I guess that the only possible answer is that Ishy is nuts and changes his goals frequently. He also personally tried to kill Rand both in TEoTW and TGH. But yes, it would have made more sense if a different Forsaken had ordered it. Yes, and there is more than one such pre-ordained romantic relationship in the series, not just those involving Rand. Some characters are more OK with it than others, but ugh. Rand's emotional stability and him having strong ties to the world are both important, so I guess that's why. He needs to have a lot of attachement anchoring him. But I never was a fan of the harem. A good idea that would have made Niall's conclusions somewhat more plausible. The novices normally aren't allowed to leave the Tower grounds and the Accepted aren't allowed to leave Tar Valon for that very reason, BTW - they aren't trusted not to use their powers in the ways that might hurt publicity and reputation of Aes Sedai. BTW, I have been searching for some other info in the Theoryland database and found out this about Mordeth: So, apparently it wasn't just a fan theory, though sadly not confirmed in the books themselves. Oh, and this dossier on Cadsuane gives a glimplse of what the Greens were supposed to do with their time: Again, rather unclear why it wasn't mentioned in the books themselves. So, apparently the Greens were expected to fight in the Blight occasionally? But they couldn't be bothered to show up at Tarwin's Gap or to regularly ride with the Borderlander armies on their Blight raids? I have read somewhere during the last week that Jordan was opposed to admission of women to the US military academies back whenever it was first allowed, and IMHO the the way he wrote his female channelers certainly reflects that. He couldn't envision them harmoniously working with the military or being properly integrated into armies, unless it was as enslaved damane.
  11. For Seanchan, a damane would not count as a witness since nobody would listen to anything she has to say. Liandrin should have been more circumspect, but well. And she was the only one who was compromised, all those other BAs were just obeying Bel'al's orders. I don't remember what the purpose of them revealing themselves like that was - to saw mistrust and fear in the White Tower, maybe? Ishamael would have gotten more mileage out of tormenting Rand with the suffering the women were going through on his account. He wants to break Rand down mentally more than anything else, his occasional attempts to kill him notwithstanding. Nor does he care about the wellbeing of his pawns. As to Seanchan, they have massive cultural blinkers nor do I think that their hierarchy would lend itself to anybody being able to accuse Suroth of anything on a word of a damane. Even Seekers would ignore anything a newly caught, foreign damane has to say, as she'd be likely to just want to get back at her captors. I do think that allowing Min to visit Egwene is absurd in the circumstances, though. Or, indeed, letting Min live. I don't want to defend the plotting of TGH, because it is really haphazard, but it does improve in the mid-books, IMHO.
  12. That's what I thought as a reader too, until Jordan gave that interview. And I was quite disappointed with this revelation. Yes, Halima, but it was DO's work for Pete's sake, not a natural reincarnation. I mean, Aginor (with tDO`s help?) somehow managed to imbue _Trollocs_ with (formerly human?) souls or fragments of souls, so what's another deviation? Also, Halima did nothing of substance in the end, she should have just been omitted. Channeling being tied to the soul also has other unpleasant connotations - like, some souls were chosen (heh) at Creation to be channelers and others not. And is strength also tied to the soul? So that again, some were destined to be massively powerful and others feeble for as long as the Wheel turns? Regarding the Dragon/Dragon Reborn, since the Pattern protects itself, it is clear that they both had to be spun out male, because the way RJ set up saidin and saidar, the tainting of saidar could never be reversed. Not to mention that gender relations in WoT are very far from total inversion and men have an incomparably higher standing than women had IRL historically, or would have in a world with tainted saidar. In fact, beneath the very highest levels, the men and women in WoT seem to be relatively equal, with men having a slight social mobility advantage due to mostly all-male militaries. Yes, there are outliers like Far Madding and Altara, but also like Amadicia and Tear. Yes, the Aiel have Maidens, but they never rise to command. So, personally, I am all for the show change in this respect. I am somewhat dubious on the idea that the prophecies don't specify the DR as male, because there is going to be a ton of knock-off effects. But I understand why it was done - how many times did the claim that the 3 superboys are the main characters and everybody else is ignorable and how dare they disagree with the "real protagonists" came up in fandom? It makes sense to establish Egwene and Nynaeve as being of equal importance from the get go. RJ didn't do a good job of it until later in the series. I have always thought that LTT's soul had non-Dragon incarnations in-between, both during the Third Age and during the ages between. Like Brigitte explained that some of her lives were entirely mundane? So, yes, I thought that Guire Amalasan, the False Dragon whom Hawkwing defeated may have been one of LTT's non-Dragon rebirths. It has been mentioned in the text that Hawkwing's soul and LTT's are sometimes allies and sometimes opponents and there was nobody of note in AoL who could have been Hawkwing's soul, as far as we know. But I don't think that a true Dragon Reborn could have been spun out until the Seals were about to crack. Because it isn't just about the soul, Amalasan either wasn't a ta'veren or was a weaker one than Hawkwing. Ta'verenness isn't a function of the soul, as far as we know, but something the Pattern applies as neccessary for it's stability and it is usually temorary. The Dragon (Reborn) is the strongest ta'veren known.
  13. If she can cut you off, she can effectively shut you up. Also, we have seen that opinions of the weaker sisters are given inherently less weight in any discussion. We also saw young Siuan, as well as weakened Siuan being forced into doing things and IIRC we saw the same with the sisters of Salidar embassy. Sure, if a sister is in a group not under orders from above - which could also come from the head of the Ajah, in addition to the Hall and the Amyrlin, she can leave, but her betters can retaliate - and that retaliation doesn't necessarily have to involve a penance. It can also work as shutting out of opportunities, demanding menial service (like poor Cabriana in New Spring), etc. Yes, a sister can just avoid the White Tower, but isn't it a kind of punishment in itself? Never to be among people with whom one has the most in common? I think that it very much does, from what we have seen in books. If Siuan continued to play a broken woman, even once she was healed, why wouldn't they? She made a mistake when she tried to get her position back - she should have known that she was irrevocably compromised, but she was canny enough as a character that she didn't have to make it. Puh! The perceived need for strength hierarchy gone. I don't remember - was Merilille an underdog strength-wise re: the AS with the Borderland army? As to Verin, well, she is exceptional and Cadsuane is also more respectful of ability versus OP strength than most AS. But weren't we told that friendships mostly don't survive large strength differences? Specifically because of the strength hierarchy? A weak and powerless sister would have weak and powerless friends. It is not clear to me to what extent Ajah protects weaker sisters either. In fact, we didn't really have any PoVs of AS who have always been weak, have we? Yes, I still don't understand _why_ he was so fixated on having characters spin their wheels, when he had so many intriguing plots ready to go instead. Nynaeve is 8 years older, IIRC, and has more experience of travelling simply and dealing with day-to-day survival. She is bossy and protective by nature and she is used to being in position of authority and being responsible for youngsters. But fear not! The characters' relationships are evolving and changing.
  14. Do you have a link? That sounds mostly alright.
  15. Yea, but it makes the whole thing even more absurd. A person who had been forced to defer her whole life must take command knowing all the time that it is strictly temporary and that she will go back to being an underdog and open to retaliation on the part of her stronger sisters whom she was temporarily set over. How can anybody learn and develop their leadership abilities with all this constant topsy-turvy? For that matter, how can a weaker sister build up her reputation enough to be considered for leading a mission, when she would have been shouted down and shut up in any AS group undertaking prior to that? And even if she managed to manipulate her betters into a successful course of action, _they_ would have been the ones to reap the benefits and acclaim. Jordan could have easily done so by other means. The Salidar sisters do, somewhat justifiedly, blame Siuan for what happened; she was too good at creating an impression of being broken while being stilled; her slate was wiped clean and she has to rebuild her carreer from scratch. In fact, Siuan could have been canny enough to realize that she was irrevocably compromised and not even try to regain her position. That's just something off the top of my head. I can kinda sorta see how the White Tower could have worked as an organization even with AS having as much independence as they do, _if_ they could build up their clout and prestige through successful action and achievement. I don't see it working at all, with the immutable strength hierarchy. For that matter, the sisters would be motivated to impede stronger novices and Accepted as much as they can, to protect their own position. Nor would they have been as interested in recruiting women with strong potential, who'd be inevitably lording it over them once raised, as they were depicted to be. Sure, but hierarchies that put insompetent newbs in power iRL are usually either hereditary, or at least have said newbs being good at gaining support of significant parts of the population. Here it is just inexplicable. Also, to my great disappointment, it was never upended. I thought that there was a lot of set-up for that, as an easy and believable way to quickly improve the effectiveness of the White Tower before the Last Battle, but it never came to anything.
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