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Cron

Is There Anything On The Show That You Think Is Better Than The Books?

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2 hours ago, Anton Martell said:

I'll answer all your Dorne post here: It's great when you have hinsight and know about what the character thinks. As a reader we can think Doran's plan is dumb (although I still wouldn't agree). But if you get in his shoes you'd see why it's actually smart. 

We are in a world were this kind of deal is not cast away that much. Your word is your bond, and I'm sure Doran was sure Dany would know about the deal. I'm pretty sure Viserys knew but kept it secret. And even if he didn't, Varys and Illyrio probably told him that the deal was a sure thing.

There is no indication that Viserys knew about any plan having to do with Dorne.  In fact there's evidence he didn't, given we know from Dany's PoV that he intended to marry Daenerys at some point (he just got desperate enough to sell her to Drogo first).  So, at best the idea that Viserys knew is a hastily thrown together Retcon.  If Viserys was really engaged to Arianne Martell and he knew it, there's no way he could have kept that secret, not from his abuse victim anyway.  He was constantly bragging to her about his destiny in Westeros and how everyone is secretly sewing dragon banners, etc.  This would be just too good to not mention. 

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So he is right to believe that the deal should work. When you make this kind of deal, in general you don't expect the other to not follow through. And you say he sends help just when she has dragons, but you don't know wether he helped in one way or another during dany's earlier life.

We can be pretty sure there was no such help, given it's not mentioned by any Dornish or Targaryen character - in fact it would be the perfect thing for Quentyn to bring up to convince him that the Dornish are her real friends, rather than just fairweather ones.  He had plenty of opportunity to bring it up.  And if Doran didn't tell Quentyn about this help before sending him???  OK one more point in the "Doran is an idiot and doesn't train his heirs" column.   Now, we do know that at some point, Oberyn tried to "raise an army for Viserys" somewhere in Essos but that Doran very quickly put a stop to that.  

It seems that Doran worked through intermediaries in setting up the original engagement, and that the engagement was kept a secret from all parties until some undefined point in the future.  I don't have a particular problem with that, but it does put Quentyn in a very bad negotiating position.  

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Also, the plan was for Arianne to marry Viserys. He planned that for 10 years, and he couldn't know that he was going to die like that. So he had to change his plan quickly and did the best he could. So yeah, he is unprepared, but you don't have time to plan that well, especially with the distance between the different characters...

Wait a few months, give Quentyn the proper training (especially in dragon lore!), and get some real intelligence from Mereen before shooting from the hip.  And how about build a fleet?  He's already waited 15 F-ing years - I think he can wait another 6 months to a year to ensure that he doesn't screw everything up.  

And we might argue, OK, maybe Quentyn was supposed to be an emissary, to gather the intelligence before deciding Dorne's next move.  That would be fine, but Doran failed to give Quentyn any idea on how to proceed if Dany didn't throw herself at his feet and beg for help.  So instead we have Quentyn sitting and brooding in Mereen, afraid that he would be a failure if he went back empty handed (whereas this should have been one of several options), and ultimately coming up with the World's Stupidest Plan.  Doran should have talked to Quentyn about various possible contingencies, and how a wise ruler would then proceed.  If attempting to tame a F-ing dragon was one of those possible contingencies, then Doran better ought to have at least gotten the poor boy some training at the Citadel first...  

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As for what he can bring Dany: how about one of Westeros kingdom. That's not such a tiny thing. Support from Dorne would help her win the throne. 

Dany does not need to marry Quentyn to win support from Dorne, at any point from when Robert took the throne until this point in time.  Furthermore, Dorne alone is insufficient to win the throne.  Conversely, what she needs to get support from Dorne is a fighting chance to win in a war to take KL.  Her dragons and her own army are what gets her that - exactly the things that Doran's plan requires that she throw away.  

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As for the whole Dany being hostage. Even if Dorne has some sort of progressive view of women being able to lead, Doran knows that only a king can rule westeros. So he probably assumes she doesn't want to rule. Why would she, it's not something that is that common, especially for a young woman. When he send Quentyn he is pretty sure it's a great idea because it's a girl who has dragons and doesn't know shit. He treats her like most lords would treat a marriage: the dower is what interests him. Now it might be a stupid assumption, but that's because we know Dany's character. He doesn't.

It seems like you're both arguing that Doran thinks that Dany should be happy with any plan that gets her Dorne's support to take the 7k in her own right, but then also arguing that Doran thinks that Dany will be happy to be a pawn and allow Quentyn to rule.  In either case, Doran's plan is poor - whether she wants to rule or not, she has a large army and 3 dragons which she has to give up if she wants to go with Quentyn to Westeros right now.  

That makes it much harder for Doran to justify getting Dany in the way he did it.  He's committing treason to do this, and yet he apparently has no plan whatsoever for actually getting Dany on the throne.  He has communicated with none of the other 7k.  The Dornish army, while unblooded, still has no chance in hell of winning against the Lannister-Tyrells.  Also, given what we see of Quentyn it appears that Doran has not in any way prepared Quentyn to rule as king so I don't think that's right either.  

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As for Doran treating Arianna and not preparing her: he did not know if he could trust her. Also, you can't spill this plan to everyone, it's treason, you keep it under wrap. I admit it's a bit stupid on his part to have done so, but that's one of the reasons why I like the Martells: they made assumption and did not talk, basically they are human. They were both sure of their plan, and they fucked up in a way. I like that. 

I'd be fine with them both being fuck-ups. 

What I'm not fine with is this idea that at the end of AFFC I'm supposed to think Doran is a genius and Arianne is a naive fool for not recognizing his secret brilliance.  That's clearly what GRRM is doing with that stupid line everyone is obsessed with.  And a lot of readers bought it, clearly.  Even Arianne bought it in-universe.  If GRRM wants us to see that Doran is actually a fool for not training Arianna properly he's certainly keeping it very subtextual.  No, he wants to have it both ways.  He wants us to think that Doran is a genius but also that Dany is reasonable for rejecting Quentyn.  This just does not work beyond a superficial examination.  

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I don't like the idea that GRRM somehow got overwhelmed by his plot. I think he planned it and made the decision this way for a reason. And maybe Doran will be a complete fool in the end, but what he did made sense from his perspective.

Yeah, GRRM had reasons for doing what he did in ADWD which I explained.  However these didn't mesh well with the choices he already made in AFFC so it ends up very akward.  He tied his own hands.  

 

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On ‎17‎/‎08‎/‎2016 at 4:40 PM, Cron said:

Very interesting stuff.

Based on comments in this thread, perhaps I've not consciously placed enough value on the "change of medium" itself, which provides some things the books simply CANNOT.

I think it goes both ways as well, you can't give the same kind of internal window into a character onscreen that you can on the page.

You look at Jacksons LOTR for example and for me the really obvious change is that it shifts from being a story about 4 more easily relatable Hobbit characters developing though a world of high fantasy and becomes a story were characters like Aragorn, Théoden exist on the same level as them being more believable and showing more development. I think that shift had to be made because the films didn't have the same differentiation between the Hobbits who we had an internal window on(descriptions of their thoughts and feelings) and everyone else that we mostly didn't.

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Getting Tyrion (and even Asha and Theon) to Mereen and with Dany.  

The Tywin stuff.  

Almost everything they left out I agree with, it's too much to list so I will list stuff I wish they had kept instead- Satin, original flavour Jayne Westerling, Edmure not being a nob. /list.

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21 hours ago, A spoon of knife and fork said:

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Couldn't agree more.  The whole Dorne thing is an utter mess .  Preston Jacobs really hammered this home for me in his insane video, he (obviously) didn't convince me that his theory was correct but he did inadvertently demonstrate just how full of holes that whole story line is.

It's a shame for a number of reasons.  For me, as a reader, it really sullies the story as a whole.  I was a bit of a zealot before I started coming to these boards and analysing the story a bit more.  Then again part of this is because the books aren't finished.  If GRRM can write well enough to distract from the fact this stuff is actually nonsensical then I'm cool with it

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4 hours ago, Anythingatall said:

Couldn't agree more.  The whole Dorne thing is an utter mess .  Preston Jacobs really hammered this home for me in his insane video, he (obviously) didn't convince me that his theory was correct but he did inadvertently demonstrate just how full of holes that whole story line is.

It's a shame for a number of reasons.  For me, as a reader, it really sullies the story as a whole.  I was a bit of a zealot before I started coming to these boards and analysing the story a bit more.  Then again part of this is because the books aren't finished.  If GRRM can write well enough to distract from the fact this stuff is actually nonsensical then I'm cool with it

I think there are some other parts from earlier books that also don't quite hold up to scrutiny, but don't bother me so much because i haven't been sitting here analyzing them for 5 years...  Anyone who thinks the books are perfectly plotted masterpieces with careful foreshadowing for everything that will happen is really overthinking it TBH.  These are very entertaining character-driven works...  More space-opera than hard scifi if I may use that analogy.  Sometimes, as a result, the plot ends up being increasingly clumsy.  Which is fine - nothing in this world is perfect and ASOIAF is really excellent for what it is.  

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@Anton Martell I will not even attempt to quote that monster post :D so here we go, instead: 

I do understand that we are of opposite opinions regarding the majority of the questions discussed, but I still sort of feel like you are exaggerating my point. I am not trying to pretend that I read asoiaf for the grand messages about war and feudalism and so on, or for the detailed descriptions (which, to be fair, are not at all that bad in terms of proportion of the books, especially compared to Lotr books). I read and watch this story for the story (or plot, if I want to use a more controversial terminology). I also think that it's hard to expect the reader to not read these books for the plot, when they are essentially thousands and thousands of pages of plot. There are so many plots, smaller and bigger, entangled in each other you can't even see the message clearly through the massive cobweb of plot. 

This does not mean, however, that I don't appreciate the description of the historical/fantasy setting, including, food, clothing, daily routines, custom, celebrations, law, politics, economy, entertainment, horse riding. I am, in fact, way more obsessed with anything medieval than I should be. That's the entire reason why I'm reading/watching asoiaf/GoT, and basically any show with medieval setting. These are the exact things (mostly politics and economy) that I really miss from the show, the things I would include instead of ten dick/fart/pussy/sex jokes per episode. 

What I actually meant by editing, was those bazillion plotlines. I would cut out half of the ongoing plotlines without a second thought, and we would still have more than enough plot and setting description for 5 books. Who in the name of all the gods of the series cares about people like Alys Karstark or Dacy Mormont or Greyjoy1,2,3,4,5,6,7, or Darkstar or Whatshisname Oakheart or Qorin Halfhand or Myranda person in the Vale? (Apologies if you do happen to care about any of these people, obviously no offense was meant)

As for the literary value of asoiaf... Let some smart academic wisemen determine that for us in 2116. Harry Potter is obviously not a literary masterpiece, that's neither its purpose nor its strength. Also not the reason why I keep comparing it to asoiaf. 

And last but not least, we most likely disagree on the likelihood of book 6-7(-8?) being published. I simply do not believe in book 7 ever being finished and published (by Martin, per se). Maybe book 6, in the next couple years, but I have no expectations. There goes closure. The only closure I'm expecting to get is that of the show's. And for that I'm more than thankful to the show and HBO and D&D, because at this point I don't feel like I can rely on any other source to provide me with the end of this story.

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14 hours ago, RhaenysB said:

@Anton Martell I will not even attempt to quote that monster post :D so here we go, instead: 

I do understand that we are of opposite opinions regarding the majority of the questions discussed, but I still sort of feel like you are exaggerating my point. I am not trying to pretend that I read asoiaf for the grand messages about war and feudalism and so on, or for the detailed descriptions (which, to be fair, are not at all that bad in terms of proportion of the books, especially compared to Lotr books). I read and watch this story for the story (or plot, if I want to use a more controversial terminology). I also think that it's hard to expect the reader to not read these books for the plot, when they are essentially thousands and thousands of pages of plot. There are so many plots, smaller and bigger, entangled in each other you can't even see the message clearly through the massive cobweb of plot. 

This does not mean, however, that I don't appreciate the description of the historical/fantasy setting, including, food, clothing, daily routines, custom, celebrations, law, politics, economy, entertainment, horse riding. I am, in fact, way more obsessed with anything medieval than I should be. That's the entire reason why I'm reading/watching asoiaf/GoT, and basically any show with medieval setting. These are the exact things (mostly politics and economy) that I really miss from the show, the things I would include instead of ten dick/fart/pussy/sex jokes per episode. 

What I actually meant by editing, was those bazillion plotlines. I would cut out half of the ongoing plotlines without a second thought, and we would still have more than enough plot and setting description for 5 books. Who in the name of all the gods of the series cares about people like Alys Karstark or Dacy Mormont or Greyjoy1,2,3,4,5,6,7, or Darkstar or Whatshisname Oakheart or Qorin Halfhand or Myranda person in the Vale? (Apologies if you do happen to care about any of these people, obviously no offense was meant)

As for the literary value of asoiaf... Let some smart academic wisemen determine that for us in 2116. Harry Potter is obviously not a literary masterpiece, that's neither its purpose nor its strength. Also not the reason why I keep comparing it to asoiaf. 

And last but not least, we most likely disagree on the likelihood of book 6-7(-8?) being published. I simply do not believe in book 7 ever being finished and published (by Martin, per se). Maybe book 6, in the next couple years, but I have no expectations. There goes closure. The only closure I'm expecting to get is that of the show's. And for that I'm more than thankful to the show and HBO and D&D, because at this point I don't feel like I can rely on any other source to provide me with the end of this story.

Fantastic post, I enjoyed reading it all.  Regarding the section I gave boldface:

(1)  I DO like the characters you mention (Alys Karstark, Dacey Mormont, et cetera),and I think the vast number of characters is one of the strengths of ASOIAF.  It's a full, rich world, where even secondary and tertiary characters are given depth and realism, but I understand the desire to get to the main characters and main storyline, too (Wheel of Time is an awesome work of fantasy fiction, which I sometimes compare to ASOAIF, but one complaint I have about Wheel of Time is that the protagonist, Rand Al'Thor, is sometimes offstage for LONG periods of time, and I mean hundreds of pages, despite the fact that in that story Rand IS the clear indisputable protagonist, which ASOIAF doesn't really have.   Many times while reading those excellent books, I wondered "Okay, this is cool, but where on Earth is Rand?!?")

(2)  Regarding the literary value of ASOIAF:  It is very, VERY high.  I've read hundreds and hundreds of books, probably even thousands and thousands.  My opinion: GRRM has the best characters I've ever read about, and characters are what drive the story.  LOTR has been taught in literary courses in colleges and universities for a very long time already, as I understand it (and rightly so), and now I'm hearing Harry Potter is being taught in classes in colleges and universities too.   ASOIAF is at least as worthy as LOTR (better, in my opinion, and of course I've read all LOTR books except Silmarillion), and in my opinion ASOIAF is MUCH more worthy than Harry Potter (which I think you would agree about, given your statement that HP is "not a literary masterpiece, that's neither its purpose nor its strength").

(3)  Great, great, closing paragraph, I almost stood up and applauded.  We'll get Book 6, it's almost done as I strongly understand it, but I agree the likelihood that we'll see Book 7 (which is supposed to be the end) is VERY much in question, to say the least.  B/c of this, I've been in favor of GRRM stopping writing the novels altogether (after Book 6 is done), and devote himself 100 percent to the show, so we can milk as much canon ASOIAF as we can out of GRRM's brain as quickly as possible.  With GRRM doing broad stroke plot outlines, and others helping him fill in the blanks (detailed episode screenplays, or whatever), everything would be canon, GRRM-approved material.  If this is done, I'm sure we could get 1 season every year, which is the equivalent of a book, and which is FAR more canon ASOIAF than we will EVER get if we just sit around waiting for GRRM to produce a novel once every 6-8 years.  Naturally, I think this will require much greater compensation for GRRM from HBO, but as I understand it he already makes more from the show than the books anyway, and clearly he deserves it.  HAR!

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6 hours ago, Cron said:

Fantastic post, I enjoyed reading it all.  Regarding the section I gave boldface:

(1)  I DO like the characters you mention (Alys Karstark, Dacey Mormont, et cetera),and I think the vast number of characters is one of the strengths of ASOIAF.  It's a full, rich world, where even secondary and tertiary characters are given depth and realism, but I understand the desire to get to the main characters and main storyline, too (Wheel of Time is an awesome work of fantasy fiction, which I sometimes compare to ASOAIF, but one complaint I have about Wheel of Time is that the protagonist, Rand Al'Thor, is sometimes offstage for LONG periods of time, and I mean hundreds of pages, despite the fact that in that story Rand IS the clear indisputable protagonist, which ASOIAF doesn't really have.   Many times while reading those excellent books, I wondered "Okay, this is cool, but where on Earth is Rand?!?")

(2)  Regarding the literary value of ASOIAF:  It is very, VERY high.  I've read hundreds and hundreds of books, probably even thousands and thousands.  My opinion: GRRM has the best characters I've ever read about, and characters are what drive the story.  LOTR has been taught in literary courses in colleges and universities for a very long time already, as I understand it (and rightly so), and now I'm hearing Harry Potter is being taught in classes in colleges and universities too.   ASOIAF is at least as worthy as LOTR (better, in my opinion, and of course I've read all LOTR books except Silmarillion), and in my opinion ASOIAF is MUCH more worthy than Harry Potter (which I think you would agree about, given your statement that HP is "not a literary masterpiece, that's neither its purpose nor its strength").

(3)  Great, great, closing paragraph, I almost stood up and applauded.  We'll get Book 6, it's almost done as I strongly understand it, but I agree the likelihood that we'll see Book 7 (which is supposed to be the end) is VERY much in question, to say the least.  B/c of this, I've been in favor of GRRM stopping writing the novels altogether (after Book 6 is done), and devote himself 100 percent to the show, so we can milk as much canon ASOIAF as we can out of GRRM's brain as quickly as possible.  With GRRM doing broad stroke plot outlines, and others helping him fill in the blanks (detailed episode screenplays, or whatever), everything would be canon, GRRM-approved material.  If this is done, I'm sure we could get 1 season every year, which is the equivalent of a book, and which is FAR more canon ASOIAF than we will EVER get if we just sit around waiting for GRRM to produce a novel once every 6-8 years.  Naturally, I think this will require much greater compensation for GRRM from HBO, but as I understand it he already makes more from the show than the books anyway, and clearly he deserves it.  HAR!

That's something we must agree to disagree on, then. I really can't stand every little nobody having a whole entire plotline and life story while major characters and major plotlines are not going anywhere. I understand that only because I don't like certain (major-ish) characters and plotlines other people may still enjoy them, that's alright we are all different. But I wanted to die every time we explored 100th rank characters while the main plot was just slipping away instead of coming together, especially in ADWD and even AFFC. And while there is no main character in the Harry Potter sense, there's the golden trio, one of which is dead, and another lost, and a third... I don't even remember wtf Tyrion was doing the last time he appeared in ADWD. And all the while I'm reading all about bloody locusts and strong belwas's diarrhea, five books passed and Daenerys is STILL not going to westeros. All the while I'm reading about the thenns and this tribe and that tribe and val and Dolorous Edd being funny, Jon is bloody dead and the others are coming. So what the hell is going to happen to those bloody kingdoms and their internal and foreign affairs, how will they survive winter and whatever is coming with it, who the hell will rule whatever is left and how? Tell me about that and not another hundredth sellsword company. 

Again, I don't think I'm qualified to judge the literary value of asoiaf. Or Lotr or Harry Potter for that matter. I didn't study literature, or read thousands of books, I'm just one reader in a million.

As I have expressed this opinion before, I do not think that the author's involvement with the show is as simple as Hey, I want to write season 7 and 8! Okay, come on in! But can I have more money? Sure, here's more money. I also think that the best way to give his readers canon material would have been to finish the books before the show caught up with the story. This is neither impossible, nor without precedent and in my opinion the fair way to play both with the audience and HBO. But that's none of my business. 

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3 hours ago, RhaenysB said:

That's something we must agree to disagree on, then. I really can't stand every little nobody having a whole entire plotline and life story while major characters and major plotlines are not going anywhere. I understand that only because I don't like certain (major-ish) characters and plotlines other people may still enjoy them, that's alright we are all different. But I wanted to die every time we explored 100th rank characters while the main plot was just slipping away instead of coming together, especially in ADWD and even AFFC. And while there is no main character in the Harry Potter sense, there's the golden trio, one of which is dead, and another lost, and a third... I don't even remember wtf Tyrion was doing the last time he appeared in ADWD. And all the while I'm reading all about bloody locusts and strong belwas's diarrhea, five books passed and Daenerys is STILL not going to westeros. All the while I'm reading about the thenns and this tribe and that tribe and val and Dolorous Edd being funny, Jon is bloody dead and the others are coming. So what the hell is going to happen to those bloody kingdoms and their internal and foreign affairs, how will they survive winter and whatever is coming with it, who the hell will rule whatever is left and how? Tell me about that and not another hundredth sellsword company. 

Again, I don't think I'm qualified to judge the literary value of asoiaf. Or Lotr or Harry Potter for that matter. I didn't study literature, or read thousands of books, I'm just one reader in a million.

As I have expressed this opinion before, I do not think that the author's involvement with the show is as simple as Hey, I want to write season 7 and 8! Okay, come on in! But can I have more money? Sure, here's more money. I also think that the best way to give his readers canon material would have been to finish the books before the show caught up with the story. This is neither impossible, nor without precedent and in my opinion the fair way to play both with the audience and HBO. But that's none of my business. 

Great post, I read it all with interest.

(1)  Don't get me wrong, a lot of what you say about stagnant major storylines resonates with me.   Dany, in particular, I think has had a story "stuck in the mud with its wheels spinning" (my words) for some time now.  But I still enjoy the other stuff, and I think it was a mistake for the show runners to chop so much of that out (indeed, it's part of the reason the show outpaced the books, as you discuss in your final paragraph, I believe)

(2)  On whether you're qualified to judge literary value:  Well, if you've read the books and have an opinion on the literary value, then I think that's valid.  I myself have read quite a few books, and while my degrees aren't in literature, I don't think my opinion would be any more or less valid if they were.  Sometimes the marketplace itself speaks loudly.   I often chuckle when people rip, for example, Harry Potter.  Uhhh, JK Rowling is a billionaire...so...I'm guessing she must have done something right along the way (I'm not saying money is everything, but rather, actually, that the commercial success indicates high demand for, and satisfaction with, her work)   If it's so easy to write such stuff, I don't understand why some of these critics don't write similar stuff themselves, so they can be billionaires too.  Why don't they do it?  In my opinion, it's cuz they can't.  (Another great example is Star Wars.   Some people rip it, but ya know what?  George Lucas is a multi, mulit-billionaire.  If his stuff is so bad, then I would think nearly anyone could produce it.  So why don't they?  In my opinion, it's cuz they can't.)

(3)   Hmmmm...I don't blame GRRM for the show outpacing the books, I blame the show.  My impression has been that they raced through the material, chopping out huge parts at times, then ran out of material, then, so far as I know, just started making stuff up.    GRRM is a master storyteller who is in somewhat advanced years, I don't think we can reasonably expect him to just start cranking out novels so fast that the show can't even keep up with him, especially when the show is chopping out and skipping huge chunks.  

GRRM's books are VERY deep, layered and detailed.  My goodness, look at the comments they generate on these boards over things that superficially seem so minor and trivial, but upon closer inspection are seen to be, quite possibly, very important.  It takes TIME to produce something like that, especially at GRRM's age, and again, I don't think it's reasonable to expect him to be able to keep one step ahead of people who aren't even covering all the stuff he IS writing.

But it's cool.  Like I said, I'm in favor of GRRM abandoning the novels after Book 6.  Regarding a deal between GRRM and HBO, I'd be shocked if the details you mention can't be easily worked out.  Both parties to any such negotiations have substantial incentives, as I understand it, since GOT is HBO's No. 1 show and money from the show is now GRRM's primary source of income anyway.  I think reasonable people (GRRM and HBO) should be able to work out the fine details in any contract negotiations.

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5 hours ago, Cron said:

Great post, I read it all with interest.

(1)  Don't get me wrong, a lot of what you say about stagnant major storylines resonates with me.   Dany, in particular, I think has had a story "stuck in the mud with its wheels spinning" (my words) for some time now.  But I still enjoy the other stuff, and I think it was a mistake for the show runners to chop so much of that out (indeed, it's part of the reason the show outpaced the books, as you discuss in your final paragraph, I believe)

(2)  On whether you're qualified to judge literary value:  Well, if you've read the books and have an opinion on the literary value, then I think that's valid.  I myself have read quite a few books, and while my degrees aren't in literature, I don't think my opinion would be any more or less valid if they were.  Sometimes the marketplace itself speaks loudly.   I often chuckle when people rip, for example, Harry Potter.  Uhhh, JK Rowling is a billionaire...so...I'm guessing she must have done something right along the way (I'm not saying money is everything, but rather, actually, that the commercial success indicates high demand for, and satisfaction with, her work)   If it's so easy to write such stuff, I don't understand why some of these critics don't write similar stuff themselves, so they can be billionaires too.  Why don't they do it?  In my opinion, it's cuz they can't.  (Another great example is Star Wars.   Some people rip it, but ya know what?  George Lucas is a multi, mulit-billionaire.  If his stuff is so bad, then I would think nearly anyone could produce it.  So why don't they?  In my opinion, it's cuz they can't.)

(3)   Hmmmm...I don't blame GRRM for the show outpacing the books, I blame the show.  My impression has been that they raced through the material, chopping out huge parts at times, then ran out of material, then, so far as I know, just started making stuff up.    GRRM is a master storyteller who is in somewhat advanced years, I don't think we can reasonably expect him to just start cranking out novels so fast that the show can't even keep up with him, especially when the show is chopping out and skipping huge chunks.  

GRRM's books are VERY deep, layered and detailed.  My goodness, look at the comments they generate on these boards over things that superficially seem so minor and trivial, but upon closer inspection are seen to be, quite possibly, very important.  It takes TIME to produce something like that, especially at GRRM's age, and again, I don't think it's reasonable to expect him to be able to keep one step ahead of people who aren't even covering all the stuff he IS writing.

But it's cool.  Like I said, I'm in favor of GRRM abandoning the novels after Book 6.  Regarding a deal between GRRM and HBO, I'd be shocked if the details you mention can't be easily worked out.  Both parties to any such negotiations have substantial incentives, as I understand it, since GOT is HBO's No. 1 show and money from the show is now GRRM's primary source of income anyway.  I think reasonable people (GRRM and HBO) should be able to work out the fine details in any contract negotiations.

Why, thank you for praising my silly posts all the time :D

That observation about Daenerys is on point. I often feel like we are taking three steps back for every step we take forward, regarding not only hers, but other storylines as well. I still think that skimming the story is absolutely necessary for a successful television adaptation and I don't blame the show runners for outpacing the books. If I understand correctly the original plan and agreement was to bring one book per season to the small screen. The show runners of course made debatable decisions along the way when it came to forming and editing the source material. Once again, that's how adaptation is. But I do not think it is in any way their fault that they outpaced the books by not covering all of the source material. That should never be the purpose of a television adaptation. Of course I do not know if there was a discussion or an agreement about what would happen should the show catch up with the book, maybe they knew this would happen from the very beginning. I was going to bring up Harry Potter, but I just finished reading the Cursed Child and I had the epiphany that I should never again compare Martin to J.K. Rowling. So I will just say that I still do not think it is impossible to get two books written and published in 5-6 years. For example, using up-to-date technological background is never a set-back...

As for literary value, I think it's very important not to confuse it with popularity. While sales revenues can be chosen as an indicator to determine the value of a book, it certainly isn't the only or the most important indicator. Yes, J.K. Rowling is a billionaire and yes, Harry Potter has its values, but let's not forget that E.L. James is a billionaire too, and I hope we don't have to open a discussion about the potential literary value of Fifty Shades of Grey. Also, these success stories, George Lucas and Rowling are not  just about writing some great stories nobody could repeat. There are some very good business decisions behind them and an environment and context that favored the birth of these empires. Lucas and Rowling aren't billionaires only because of their book sales, but also, and primarily, because of the empires they built on their stories. Movies, comics, video games, Lego, board games, online presence, all the merch in the world. It wasn't really the literary value that made them billionaires. And after years of being brainwashed at university, I still think that the real value of a book (or anything really) is not something that can or should be monetized and grasped through how much money the story makes its author. 

There was something else I wanted to add... Yes, a bit more about Asoiaf in particular. I agree of course that GRRM is a great storyteller, his style and language are both very enjoyable (and he improved my medieval vocabulary, which is always a good thing). The story is vast and rich, the characters are layered and deep. The amount of thought he put into creating the political and economic context is stunning. The mix and match of historical events, eras and contexts is brilliant. It is truly a great work, I never argued that, I never will, I got sucked into this fandom for a reason too. But. Because there has to be a but, right? I think he overdid it at some point. It got too vast, too detailed, too deep, too complex and too layered. And he is right in the middle of it and sometimes I wonder if he even sees a way out. I do appreciate his intentions to write a rich story, but more often than not, less is more. 

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5 hours ago, RhaenysB said:

Why, thank you for praising my silly posts all the time :D

That observation about Daenerys is on point. I often feel like we are taking three steps back for every step we take forward, regarding not only hers, but other storylines as well. I still think that skimming the story is absolutely necessary for a successful television adaptation and I don't blame the show runners for outpacing the books. If I understand correctly the original plan and agreement was to bring one book per season to the small screen. The show runners of course made debatable decisions along the way when it came to forming and editing the source material. Once again, that's how adaptation is. But I do not think it is in any way their fault that they outpaced the books by not covering all of the source material. That should never be the purpose of a television adaptation. Of course I do not know if there was a discussion or an agreement about what would happen should the show catch up with the book, maybe they knew this would happen from the very beginning. I was going to bring up Harry Potter, but I just finished reading the Cursed Child and I had the epiphany that I should never again compare Martin to J.K. Rowling. So I will just say that I still do not think it is impossible to get two books written and published in 5-6 years. For example, using up-to-date technological background is never a set-back...

As for literary value, I think it's very important not to confuse it with popularity. While sales revenues can be chosen as an indicator to determine the value of a book, it certainly isn't the only or the most important indicator. Yes, J.K. Rowling is a billionaire and yes, Harry Potter has its values, but let's not forget that E.L. James is a billionaire too, and I hope we don't have to open a discussion about the potential literary value of Fifty Shades of Grey. Also, these success stories, George Lucas and Rowling are not  just about writing some great stories nobody could repeat. There are some very good business decisions behind them and an environment and context that favored the birth of these empires. Lucas and Rowling aren't billionaires only because of their book sales, but also, and primarily, because of the empires they built on their stories. Movies, comics, video games, Lego, board games, online presence, all the merch in the world. It wasn't really the literary value that made them billionaires. And after years of being brainwashed at university, I still think that the real value of a book (or anything really) is not something that can or should be monetized and grasped through how much money the story makes its author. 

There was something else I wanted to add... Yes, a bit more about Asoiaf in particular. I agree of course that GRRM is a great storyteller, his style and language are both very enjoyable (and he improved my medieval vocabulary, which is always a good thing). The story is vast and rich, the characters are layered and deep. The amount of thought he put into creating the political and economic context is stunning. The mix and match of historical events, eras and contexts is brilliant. It is truly a great work, I never argued that, I never will, I got sucked into this fandom for a reason too. But. Because there has to be a but, right? I think he overdid it at some point. It got too vast, too detailed, too deep, too complex and too layered. And he is right in the middle of it and sometimes I wonder if he even sees a way out. I do appreciate his intentions to write a rich story, but more often than not, less is more. 

Oh, nice!

(1) Regarding Dany's story taking 3 steps back:  Yeah, I groaned at the end of ADWD when Dany was back out in the wilderness,helpless and captured by a khal (or khals).  I consciously thought to myself "You're kidding, now her story is actually going backwards??"

(2) Regarding the show outpacing the books:  Guess we'll have to politely disagree.  GRRM is only one man, crafting the whole story carefully, with an attention to detail I don't believe is matched by the entire show production, which I'm sure has hundreds of people contributing to the effort.   And all the show has to do is "adapt" GRRM's work.  I've long believed it was a mistake for them to chop out so much and race through the material, and I think it really shows.  I love the show, but I'm very confident that many people on these boards would opine that the show was better before they ran out of GRRM's material.  I believe Season 5 is very widely viewed as the weakest season, and I believe Season 6 is widely viewed as the second weakest season.  Is this coincidence?   A big part of why Season 5 and Season 6 were done the way they were done is b/c...they ran out of material.

Maybe we could compromise, though:  I greatly enjoyed a lot of scenes that were not in the books, but COULD have happened in book continuity (for examples, Robert's hunt, and Robert and Cersei's conversation where they talk about their marriage holding the 7 kingdoms together).  How would you have felt if the show focused on fewer total characters, but stretched it out by adding scenes for those characters that could have been in book-continuity, but weren't?  (If they had done this, there's a very good chance they would not be out of canon material for the main characters, or maybe just finally running out now)

(3)  I know it's not impossible to get two books published in 5-6 years, but it's just not realistic here.  Look at the publishing dates for all 5 main books.  That's what it takes for GRRM to crank out what we've been reading (even if part of the reason for the delays is b/c he's GOT to rest his brain and watch the NY Giants, HAR!).  Rhae, he's coming up on 69, I think.   I'm not saying that's ancient, but I don't think we can expect him to crank one of these books out every 2 and a half years.  GRRM is GRRM, and it takes him about 5 or 6 years to crank one of these things out, and that time is not likely to decrease, it's likely to increase, as he gets older.

(4)  The person who wrote 50 Shades of Grey is a billionaire????  Wow.  I did not know that, and would not have guessed (I never saw the movie, and never read the book, but I've heard of both)

(5)  I agree that money is certainly not the only measure of quality.  I tried to stress that above, when I think I wrote something about the profits being a measure of the demand for it b/c people enjoyed it so much, but maybe I could have made that more clear.   The reason they've done so well (and made money) is b/c people love them so much.  It's a matter of supply and demand, and the demand is VERY high for the things we've been discussing.

(6)  Well, I'm confident GRRM knows the way out of the complexity and layers, he DOES know the end of the storylines (at least the major ones, as I understand it).  But I get what you're saying   Sometimes a book can become so detailed and descriptive that the story grinds to a halt.  Did you know there are people who enjoy reading books with long (and I mean LONG) descriptions of scenery and landscape?   Not me, I don't read that stuff (I can't imagine you reading it either, but maybe I'm wrong).

 But each person, I guess, has a different place where they draw the line, and I'm fine with GRRM's line (I'm not necessarly saying I would have drawn the line of "detail and complexity" exactly where GRRM did, just that he's well within an acceptable range for me, and frankly, even though I love the show, I wish the show had simply followed the books a lot more closely)

 

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4 hours ago, Cron said:

Oh, nice!

(1) Regarding Dany's story taking 3 steps back:  Yeah, I groaned at the end of ADWD when Dany was back out in the wilderness,helpless and captured by a khal (or khals).  I consciously thought to myself "You're kidding, now her story is actually going backwards??"

(2) Regarding the show outpacing the books:  Guess we'll have to politely disagree.  GRRM is only one man, crafting the whole story carefully, with an attention to detail I don't believe is matched by the entire show production, which I'm sure has hundreds of people contributing to the effort.   And all the show has to do is "adapt" GRRM's work.  I've long believed it was a mistake for them to chop out so much and race through the material, and I think it really shows.  I love the show, but I'm very confident that many people on these boards would opine that the show was better before they ran out of GRRM's material.  I believe Season 5 is very widely viewed as the weakest season, and I believe Season 6 is widely viewed as the second weakest season.  Is this coincidence?   A big part of why Season 5 and Season 6 were done the way they were done is b/c...they ran out of material.

Maybe we could compromise, though:  I greatly enjoyed a lot of scenes that were not in the books, but COULD have happened in book continuity (for examples, Robert's hunt, and Robert and Cersei's conversation where they talk about their marriage holding the 7 kingdoms together).  How would you have felt if the show focused on fewer total characters, but stretched it out by adding scenes for those characters that could have been in book-continuity, but weren't?  (If they had done this, there's a very good chance they would not be out of canon material for the main characters, or maybe just finally running out now)

(3)  I know it's not impossible to get two books published in 5-6 years, but it's just not realistic here.  Look at the publishing dates for all 5 main books.  That's what it takes for GRRM to crank out what we've been reading (even if part of the reason for the delays is b/c he's GOT to rest his brain and watch the NY Giants, HAR!).  Rhae, he's coming up on 69, I think.   I'm not saying that's ancient, but I don't think we can expect him to crank one of these books out every 2 and a half years.  GRRM is GRRM, and it takes him about 5 or 6 years to crank one of these things out, and that time is not likely to decrease, it's likely to increase, as he gets older.

(4)  The person who wrote 50 Shades of Grey is a billionaire????  Wow.  I did not know that, and would not have guessed (I never saw the movie, and never read the book, but I've heard of both)

(5)  I agree that money is certainly not the only measure of quality.  I tried to stress that above, when I think I wrote something about the profits being a measure of the demand for it b/c people enjoyed it so much, but maybe I could have made that more clear.   The reason they've done so well (and made money) is b/c people love them so much.  It's a matter of supply and demand, and the demand is VERY high for the things we've been discussing.

(6)  Well, I'm confident GRRM knows the way out of the complexity and layers, he DOES know the end of the storylines (at least the major ones, as I understand it).  But I get what you're saying   Sometimes a book can become so detailed and descriptive that the story grinds to a halt.  Did you know there are people who enjoy reading books with long (and I mean LONG) descriptions of scenery and landscape?   Not me, I don't read that stuff (I can't imagine you reading it either, but maybe I'm wrong).

 But each person, I guess, has a different place where they draw the line, and I'm fine with GRRM's line (I'm not necessarly saying I would have drawn the line of "detail and complexity" exactly where GRRM did, just that he's well within an acceptable range for me, and frankly, even though I love the show, I wish the show had simply followed the books a lot more closely)

 

Yeah, I couldn't believe she was back in the middle of the Dothraki sea all alone again either.

I suppose it's best to agree to disagree on these things, and just accept and respect other people's opinions. The world would be boring if we all thought alike and agreed on everything. 

No, I was wrong, her net worth (according to 2015 data) is $80M , so not quite a billionaire, but that's still a lot of money. 

Yes of course, popularity and how much people love a book is always an indicator, but once again, people tend to love all kinds of crap too. People love Fifty shades and Kuwtk too, I think (literary) value should be more than that. 

Well I'm glad that people have confidence that he does see the way out. And yes, I'm quite aware of the fact that people are different with different tastes and some may as well enjoy parts of the book that drive others insane. And that's cool, but it won't change my opinion and what I enjoy, nor should it change their opinion and what they enjoy. And like opinions on characters and storylines, opinions on the line of detail and complexity may and should differ as well. Some people actually wish there were more details. 

 

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17 hours ago, RhaenysB said:

Yeah, I couldn't believe she was back in the middle of the Dothraki sea all alone again either.

I suppose it's best to agree to disagree on these things, and just accept and respect other people's opinions. The world would be boring if we all thought alike and agreed on everything. 

No, I was wrong, her net worth (according to 2015 data) is $80M , so not quite a billionaire, but that's still a lot of money. 

Yes of course, popularity and how much people love a book is always an indicator, but once again, people tend to love all kinds of crap too. People love Fifty shades and Kuwtk too, I think (literary) value should be more than that. 

Well I'm glad that people have confidence that he does see the way out. And yes, I'm quite aware of the fact that people are different with different tastes and some may as well enjoy parts of the book that drive others insane. And that's cool, but it won't change my opinion and what I enjoy, nor should it change their opinion and what they enjoy. And like opinions on characters and storylines, opinions on the line of detail and complexity may and should differ as well. Some people actually wish there were more details. 

 

What is Kuwtk?

Regarding detail:  Yeah, GRRM gives enough detail for me, don't get me wrong; I'm certainly not a person who wishes it was more.  

But some people love things that I understand even less.  Have you ever read "Old Man and the Sea"?   Whoa.  My memory is that that book goes on and on and on with scenery descriptions of the ocean.  Very dry.  (Get it?  Ocean? Dry? HAR!)

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7 hours ago, Cron said:

What is Kuwtk?

Regarding detail:  Yeah, GRRM gives enough detail for me, don't get me wrong; I'm certainly not a person who wishes it was more.  

But some people love things that I understand even less.  Have you ever read "Old Man and the Sea"?   Whoa.  My memory is that that book goes on and on and on with scenery descriptions of the ocean.  Very dry.  (Get it?  Ocean? Dry? HAR!)

That is the kind of knowledge you don't need in your life, trust me. 

:lol: yeah I did and I actually liked that book a lot. Gasp. :lol: but Moby Dick which also goes on and on and on in the ocean and that truly was a pain to get through. The sad fact is all I remember about that book is what a pain it was to read. I suppose I wasn't mature enough to appreciate what there was to appreciate back then. 

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2 hours ago, RhaenysB said:

That is the kind of knowledge you don't need in your life, trust me. 

:lol: yeah I did and I actually liked that book a lot. Gasp. :lol: but Moby Dick which also goes on and on and on in the ocean and that truly was a pain to get through. The sad fact is all I remember about that book is what a pain it was to read. I suppose I wasn't mature enough to appreciate what there was to appreciate back then. 

Good stuff, I'd love to continue this conversation, but I think we're both getting "off topic," and I don't want do draw down "The Wrath."

Oh well.

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Obviously, to see intense focus on certain characters - fleshing out their book dramas is a great thing.  Unfortunately that comes at the cost of minimizing or removing other characters altogether. 

So, I guess my answer is that the show illuminates the story of some characters to a further depth than the books really do.  Some of the characters have really been brought to life FULLY and enjoyably so.  With some, perhaps too much focus was created when it was not necessary.

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6 hours ago, Iron Mother said:

Obviously, to see intense focus on certain characters - fleshing out their book dramas is a great thing.  Unfortunately that comes at the cost of minimizing or removing other characters altogether. 

So, I guess my answer is that the show illuminates the story of some characters to a further depth than the books really do.  Some of the characters have really been brought to life FULLY and enjoyably so.  With some, perhaps too much focus was created when it was not necessary.

Name 3...

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8 hours ago, Iron Mother said:

Obviously, to see intense focus on certain characters - fleshing out their book dramas is a great thing.  Unfortunately that comes at the cost of minimizing or removing other characters altogether. 

So, I guess my answer is that the show illuminates the story of some characters to a further depth than the books really do.  Some of the characters have really been brought to life FULLY and enjoyably so.  With some, perhaps too much focus was created when it was not necessary.

No way! Too much focus? A further depth than the books? Fully brought to life? I'm gobsmacked. That's tantamount to saying this sophomoric-humored show has some kind of deeper insight into the characters than the books' author.

I 100% disagree. The books are far more in-depth, the characterization richer, you can see INTO THEIR MINDS, what could be better? An actor smirking at the screen? An actor failing to even miss his/her direwolf? An actor telling stupid jokes that fall flat? An actor going on about the morality of killing beetles?

As to the OP, some of the sets are pretty.

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4 minutes ago, Karmarni said:

No way! Too much focus? A further depth than the books? Fully brought to life? I'm gobsmacked. That's tantamount to saying this sophomoric-humored show has some kind of deeper insight into the characters than the books' author.

I 100% disagree. The books are far more in-depth, the characterization richer, you can see INTO THEIR MINDS, what could be better? An actor smirking at the screen? An actor failing to even miss his/her direwolf? An actor telling stupid jokes that fall flat? An actor going on about the morality of killing beetles?

As to the OP, some of the sets are pretty.

Now now.  Maybe she meant Talisa (who is more developed than Jeyne, because Jeyne is a bit character), or Shae.  Sansa is playing Jeyne, and she is far more fleshed out than Jeyne.  You're just being a book purist.

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