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rotting sea cow

R+L=J speculation from frigging 1998!

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13 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

I've largely familiarized myself with all the important bits and pieces in various online reviews, Tor rereads with that Leigh Butler lady, and more recently the Search of Ice and Fire tool.

So I basically know the story. Frankly, I just don't find Dunk or Egg very interesting. They're dull, and they mostly serve to give us yet MORE Targaryen backstory, which not everyone is interested in.

The She Wolves of Winterfell story, now that one I'll definitely read.

Only one of those stories features the Targaryens prominently. Egg is just a little boy. They cover a lot of the major themes of the series and have their very own feeling, which is at times much better than the tone of the actual series.

And with the whole Bloodraven thing one should really have read TSS and TMK before one even opens ADwD. Else the whole feeling one gets when one realizes who the three-eyed crow is isn't the same. Those stories have become an integral part of the series since that was revealed.

But I guess I now know why you think this story is about the Starks. You just ignore all the other aspects of it. But it is about the world and all the characters George has created, not just the ones through which we got our first glimpse on the world.

2 minutes ago, The Fattest Leech said:

Give me your address. I'm mailing you a copy STAT! 

I second that. And the book with the great illustrations is far too great not to be read!

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6 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Only one of those stories features the Targaryens prominently. Egg is just a little boy. They cover a lot of the major themes of the series and have their very own feeling, which is at times much better than the tone of the actual series.

And with the whole Bloodraven thing one should really have read TSS and TMK before one even opens ADwD. Else the whole feeling one gets when one realizes who the three-eyed crow is isn't the same. Those stories have become an integral part of the series since that was revealed.

But I guess I now know why you think this story is about the Starks. You just ignore all the other aspects of it. But it is about the world and all the characters George has created, not just the ones through which we got our first glimpse on the world.

I second that. And the book with the great illustrations is far too great not to be read!

I get invested in characters, not worlds. I didn't enjoy the Wheel of Time prequels either, despite being obsessed with WoT until Sanderson took over and ruined it. World Books are good, as they increase your understanding of the setting from an almost academic point of view, but spin-offs, prequels and the like attempt to get you interested in new protagonists, and that just doesn't work for me.

And yes, I also am an easy sucker for the first POV trick. The guys you introduce and familiarize me with first retain my loyalty, and shape my worldview in the story. And if it turns out that you tried an unreliable narrator type of trick, where the guys you got me to believe in and root for gradually turn out to be the bad guys, well, that's a big turn off for me too.

Anyway, not that it matters to anyone else. Just a bit of a response to your exploration of what informs my reading motivations.

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Well, George's tales grow in the telling. And if you hear him say it all his characters are his children, so if you want to savor the entirety of the story you have to take it all.

'The Hedge Knight' began as this prequel thing for the Silverberg Legends anthology but by the second and third story it clearly has gotten a life of its own that really has a relevance in relation to the main story. It is not just some sort of easter egg. In fact, it might be that Dunk & Egg are actually more crucial to the entire political aspect of the story than anything our guys are doing.

Those stories discuss what it means to be a knight, a lord, a king, and ask the question what such people should do. With Egg becoming the champion on the smallfolk when he becomes we sort of get a glimpse what the correct answer is.

And I'd not surprised at all if whoever ends up in charge of the Realm will be Aegon V's heir not only in biological sense but also insofar as he or she will revive his agenda. This world has to change so that the life of the commoners are better. The rights, privileges, and petty squabbles of the lords don't matter.

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8 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

Well, George's tales grow in the telling. And if you hear him say it all his characters are his children, so if you want to savor the entirety of the story you have to take it all.

'The Hedge Knight' began as this prequel thing for the Silverberg Legends anthology but by the second and third story it clearly has gotten a life of its own that really has a relevance in relation to the main story. It is not just some sort of easter egg. In fact, it might be that Dunk & Egg are actually more crucial to the entire political aspect of the story than anything our guys are doing.

Those stories discuss what it means to be a knight, a lord, a king, and ask the question what such people should do. With Egg becoming the champion on the smallfolk when he becomes we sort of get a glimpse what the correct answer is.

And I'd not surprised at all if whoever ends up in charge of the Realm will be Aegon V's heir not only in biological sense but also insofar as he or she will revive his agenda. This world has to change so that the life of the commoners are better. The rights, privileges, and petty squabbles of the lords don't matter.

Disagree. The world does not have to change. It is the brutality and gritty realism of the world that drew people to it in the first place. This story isn't about social progress. It is about humans dealing with the barbarism and travails of their time period as best they can.

Look, I fully believe Jon will indeed seek a more just society, in Egg's tradition, given his relatively egalitarian experiences on the Wall and among the Free Folk, not to mention his experiences growing up as a bastard. But I equally expect these changes to be limited in success and perhaps even limited in longevity, and beset with challenges. George didn't say for no reason that Aragorn's tax policies were never explored or challenged in detail.

Ruling is supposed to be hard, and we aren't suddenly going to see the lordly classes overthrown in some type of social justice revolution. Maybe some basic laws will be implemented to ease the lives of the commoners somewhat. Maybe a Magna Carta of sorts, even. But no more than that.

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28 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Disagree. The world does not have to change. It is the brutality and gritty realism of the world that drew people to it in the first place. This story isn't about social progress. It is about humans dealing with the barbarism and travails of their time period as best they can.

That is what made the story interesting as a fantasy series. But the world itself is just ugly, unjust, and appalling to any civilized person. And, quite frankly, the real middle ages were usually better than what George has come up with, especially with the sharing of power of the commoners.

Nobody would want to live in such a world, and at the end of the story we should at least get some sort of positive vision for the future. The world they are rebuilding should not reward people like Littlefinger, Gregor, Roose, Ramsay, etc. and the methods they are using. Whether this will then be fully realized is another matter.

And you have to keep in mind that the heroes essentially are the good, kind-hearted people. People like Ned (who risked everything to save the children of his sworn enemy and gave his life to save his daughter(s)), Davos, Brienne, Catelyn, Sansa, Samwell stand out as characters.

28 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Look, I fully believe Jon will indeed seek a more just society, in Egg's tradition, given his relatively egalitarian experiences on the Wall and among the Free Folk, not to mention his experiences growing up as a bastard. But I equally expect these changes to be limited in success and perhaps even limited in longevity, and beset with challenges. George didn't say for no reason that Aragorn's tax policies were never explored or challenged in detail.

Ruling is supposed to be hard, and we aren't suddenly going to see the lordly classes overthrown in some type of social justice revolution. Maybe some basic laws will be implemented to ease the lives of the commoners somewhat. Maybe a Magna Carta of sorts, even. But no more than that.

There certainly won't be a revolution, but I think the power of the aristocracy might be broken for good. The continuous wars are weakening them as a class, and the Others will cull the people even further. If the people leading the war against the Others remain in charge of things after the end of the fighting they can rebuild a centralist absolute monarchy with a strong royal bureaucracy and perhaps even a standing army. Then things could be very different. It would, of course, still depend very much on the person of the king. But the people would no longer be the pawns and playthings of this or that lord.

In medieval times the lords always were the greatest enemies of the common people, not the king. The kings used the popular support they got from the commoners to cull the power of their lords.

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50 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

That is what made the story interesting as a fantasy series. But the world itself is just ugly, unjust, and appalling to any civilized person. And, quite frankly, the real middle ages were usually better than what George has come up with, especially with the sharing of power of the commoners.

Nobody would want to live in such a world, and at the end of the story we should at least get some sort of positive vision for the future. The world they are rebuilding should not reward people like Littlefinger, Gregor, Roose, Ramsay, etc. and the methods they are using. Whether this will then be fully realized is another matter.

And you have to keep in mind that the heroes essentially are the good, kind-hearted people. People like Ned (who risked everything to save the children of his sworn enemy and gave his life to save his daughter(s)), Davos, Brienne, Catelyn, Sansa, Samwell stand out as characters.

There certainly won't be a revolution, but I think the power of the aristocracy might be broken for good. The continuous wars are weakening them as a class, and the Others will cull the people even further. If the people leading the war against the Others remain in charge of things after the end of the fighting they can rebuild a centralist absolute monarchy with a strong royal bureaucracy and perhaps even a standing army. Then things could be very different. It would, of course, still depend very much on the person of the king. But the people would no longer be the pawns and playthings of this or that lord.

In medieval times the lords always were the greatest enemies of the common people, not the king. The kings used the popular support they got from the commoners to cull the power of their lords.

You sound like Joffrey, who also wanted a central standing army. In the Show, at least.

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29 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

You sound like Joffrey, who also wanted a central standing army. In the Show, at least.

:lol:

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On 3/23/2017 at 0:57 PM, The Great and Mighty Poo said:

The war that never ends :drunk: 

 

I bet you guys would be best friends in real life.

Lol!  So I'm not the only one who thinks that. 

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On 3/23/2017 at 6:14 PM, Free Northman Reborn said:

 

As for Egg, he comes across as an alien-like, aloof little weirdo.

 

You mean a young Mekon?

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On 3/23/2017 at 11:24 AM, Lord Varys said:

That goes back to the publication of ACoK. The cloth dragon is pretty obvious, as is the fact that Rhaegar thought his son Aegon was very special. You don't need Daemon Blackfyre for any of that. Perhaps some people even wondered about the Aegon boy since AGoT but back then we had no reason to believe the boy may have survived.

Speak for yourself. I knew there was a chance of it as soon as I read Ned's recollection of the baby's head being smashed beyond recognition. If you can't recognize the face, it leaves an opening for a stunt baby.

On 3/23/2017 at 1:14 PM, Free Northman Reborn said:

<snip

As for Egg, he comes across as an alien-like, aloof little weirdo.

<snip

I kind of identified with him. I was an aloof little weirdo myself.

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On March 23, 2017 at 11:53 AM, rotting sea cow said:

People in Usenet (good times, good times) already guessed some important plot lines with only one book at hand in 1998! (and already complaining it's taking too long between books)

Link here

https://www.reddit.com/r/asoiaf/comments/60u93h/spoilers_extended_rlj_speculation_from_199798/

 

 

Wow. This is cool and funny. So I guess the show directors only needed to go online to read about it in order to convince George? I really want the new book now. 

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9 hours ago, Lady Blizzardborn said:

Speak for yourself. I knew there was a chance of it as soon as I read Ned's recollection of the baby's head being smashed beyond recognition. If you can't recognize the face, it leaves an opening for a stunt baby.

No doubt. 

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On 3/23/2017 at 2:14 PM, Free Northman Reborn said:

Actually I recall that I eventually obtained a copy of Book 1 somewhere and read through it in a day or so, given its relatively low word count. The one where Dunk basically causes the death of a good Targaryen who fought on his side in that melee challenge. And I think there was some Robert Baratheon ancestor involved too. Might be the Laughing Storm, or maybe I'm confusing him with another Baratheon clone.

As for Egg, he comes across as an alien-like, aloof little weirdo.

Sorry, it didn't grab me.

That's fair enough, but they're really easy reads.  Especially if you just get the graphic novel versions of THK and TSS - those should take, like, an hour tops.  Considering how much time you allocate to determining the forces House Stout can muster, I think it'd be a sound investment of your time. :P  

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R+L=J isn't the question anymore. The question is what will it mean for Westeros?

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