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Bakker LIII - Sranc and File

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I am somewhat leery of further vulgarity being attached to to Bakker threads and thus me as a Bakker fan, but on the other hand that title really made me laugh.  

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17 hours ago, kuenjato said:

I'm genuinely curious -- are you happy/satisfied with the way TAE ended? You've been patiently arguing with us, and even though I don't agree with your defense, I ask as one Bakker fan to another (because I am still a fan--at least of PoN and some of TAE) -- do you truly feel Bakker measured up to his own talent in the climax and conclusion of the second series? And if so, are there areas that you felt could have improved or weren't effective, or didn't work at all for you?

 

If I wanted to just be happy/satisfied directly I would have stopped at the bardic priests rape of the bastard prince in Ishual. Stopping, essentially, at Acrackedmoon/'all you need is hate's fated 6 pages.

It's clear to me that to get something out of it, you had to look at the bigger picture. I don't know how anyone could get through it wanting direct enjoyment with all the rape and death and torture involved.

I mean, if anyone hates the end of Hamlet because everyone dies and it's a downer and there is no direct enjoyment, sure, I get that.

But TAE ended as a tragedy. It seemed fated by the very first 6 pages to be a tragedy, and lo, it was a tragedy in the end. Further it's not just about enjoying tragedy perse, as some kind of escapism. Hamlet was a reference to various RL political situations and the second apocalypse series is a reference to the real world. It is a dark retelling of the six o'clock news. I would like it to be a happier, more directly enjoyable story, but it's a result of it mirroring the real world that it can't be. The real world being shit is why we can't have nice things...except for, IMO, sell out authors who will support utter escapism from the real worlds shitness (thus helping to perpetuate that shitness for short term monetary gain). On the other hand though, the six o'clock news doesn't have dragons or nonmen, so atleast it's not raw 6 o'clock we're facing - we get to have some genuine epic in there! Even if the epic sometimes undermines itself by being a tiny minded red pill...ie, undermines itself by going back to the 6 o'clock news.

So indirectly I enjoyed the ending, it played out as the tragedy it had painted itself as. Actually in a weird way I found Kellhus's failure to be cathartic - Bakker had said we'd need therapy at the end, but actually it turned out to be a kind of therapeutic itself. At least for myself, anyway. So many books, TV shows and movies will just play on the idea the main character is under threat and play on it and play on it over and over and...it's just one continual fucking bluff. It was nice, just nice just for once, for it to not be a fucking bluff and he died. To not play into the hands of manipulator authors bullshitting me that the main character can die when he wont because they have a mortgage to pay. And I know how many readers actually want authors to do that manipulation, because it creates a just world. But I don't and it was nice to actually have a book for me - but it's not just me. There are dozens of us! [[ Sits back, waits for someone who says they can see how they read to now totally seriously give a scathing responce in reply as to 'the' assertion that a scant handful matter ]]

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I was actually fine with the ending. Yea, for the wrong reasons, but I still don't care. Downer Endings don't always bother me, but given the way that world is, I suspect that most of the endings would be downer anyway.

That being said, just because things happen in the real world, doesn't mean it works in stories of any sort. Honestly, "gritty realism" can be just as much of a cop-out than idealist type/sappy/happy endings. 

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19 hours ago, kuenjato said:

That's interesting, I never even considered that.

Bakker is a troll -- and like most trolls, has an incredibly thin skin when confronted. Which is weird, considering his rhetoric.

Might was well create a new thread with that title, it's awesome.

Ha well, he has this big huge thing about tribalism being bad, but then some of his fans...

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2 hours ago, Callan S. said:

If I wanted to just be happy/satisfied directly I would have stopped at the bardic priests rape of the bastard prince in Ishual. Stopping, essentially, at Acrackedmoon/'all you need is hate's fated 6 pages.

It's clear to me that to get something out of it, you had to look at the bigger picture. I don't know how anyone could get through it wanting direct enjoyment with all the rape and death and torture involved.

I mean, if anyone hates the end of Hamlet because everyone dies and it's a downer and there is no direct enjoyment, sure, I get that.

But TAE ended as a tragedy. It seemed fated by the very first 6 pages to be a tragedy, and lo, it was a tragedy in the end. Further it's not just about enjoying tragedy perse, as some kind of escapism. Hamlet was a reference to various RL political situations and the second apocalypse series is a reference to the real world. It is a dark retelling of the six o'clock news. I would like it to be a happier, more directly enjoyable story, but it's a result of it mirroring the real world that it can't be. The real world being shit is why we can't have nice things...except for, IMO, sell out authors who will support utter escapism from the real worlds shitness (thus helping to perpetuate that shitness for short term monetary gain). On the other hand though, the six o'clock news doesn't have dragons or nonmen, so atleast it's not raw 6 o'clock we're facing - we get to have some genuine epic in there! Even if the epic sometimes undermines itself by being a tiny minded red pill...ie, undermines itself by going back to the 6 o'clock news.

So indirectly I enjoyed the ending, it played out as the tragedy it had painted itself as. Actually in a weird way I found Kellhus's failure to be cathartic - Bakker had said we'd need therapy at the end, but actually it turned out to be a kind of therapeutic itself. At least for myself, anyway. So many books, TV shows and movies will just play on the idea the main character is under threat and play on it and play on it over and over and...it's just one continual fucking bluff. It was nice, just nice just for once, for it to not be a fucking bluff and he died. To not play into the hands of manipulator authors bullshitting me that the main character can die when he wont because they have a mortgage to pay. And I know how many readers actually want authors to do that manipulation, because it creates a just world. But I don't and it was nice to actually have a book for me - but it's not just me. There are dozens of us! [[ Sits back, waits for someone who says they can see how they read to now totally seriously give a scathing responce in reply as to 'the' assertion that a scant handful matter ]]

OK. Now, can you get that some of us do not like the ending, not because it didn't "fulfill" standard expectations as to narrative tropes, but because we felt it was poorly done in execution and, worse, a shoddy application/culmination of the various themes presented across the six books? Because adopting Bakker's tone that readers are ultimately responsible for their expectations and reactions--which basically boils down to "no art is bad, it's just the individual interpretation" -- isn't doing much around here. Many of us are well read outside of genre and have had a wide variety of experiences in regards to traditional and non-traditional content and closure.

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5 minutes ago, kuenjato said:

OK. Now, can you get that some of us do not like the ending, not because it didn't "fulfill" standard expectations as to narrative tropes, but because we felt it was poorly done in execution and, worse, a shoddy application/culmination of the various themes presented across the six books? Because adopting Bakker's tone that readers are ultimately responsible for their expectations and reactions--which basically boils down to "no art is bad, it's just the individual interpretation" -- isn't doing much around here. Many of us are well read outside of genre and have had a wide variety of experiences in regards to traditional and non-traditional content and closure.

He's never going to accept that Bakker is anything other than brilliant. It's like trying to argue with a devout Catholic about the pope.

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36 minutes ago, kuenjato said:

OK. Now, can you get that some of us do not like the ending, not because it didn't "fulfill" standard expectations as to narrative tropes, but because we felt it was poorly done in execution and, worse, a shoddy application/culmination of the various themes presented across the six books?

What's the difference between a broken expectation in regard to a narrative trope and a charge of poor execution?

To me, for any book ever, they are both the same thing.

I mean, in the book the wizard of oz Dorothy gets some gold bangles at one point in Oz. Then they are never mentioned again. She adventures, gets back to Kansas and...not a word. It was probably a genuine fuck up of the author, who just forgot about them.

To me, an author who lets quests and even themes die deliberately, I get it can look the same as the bangle example - and it is the same, really. The thing is if you theorised what it means that the bangles never showed up again and talked to Baum, he's probably get a Morgan Freeman thought and at that moment realised he fucked up.

While Bakker would go on about the significance of significances dying - he'd wank on, because he's a schemer. It's like he's making pictures that are made with negative space. The absences of resolved quest and themes creates something by absence.

But yeah, nothing is nothing. Less is less. In those terms I get people don't like the ending.

Quote

Because adopting Bakker's tone that readers are ultimately responsible for their expectations and reactions--which basically boils down to "no art is bad, it's just the individual interpretation" -- isn't doing much around here. Many of us are well read outside of genre and have had a wide variety of experiences in regards to traditional and non-traditional content and closure.

I think Bakker's smart assery is that that readers aren't responsible for their expectations and reactions, but it might fall into being a private joke if the text really fails to deliver that idea to the reader as they fall into this or that expectation. I'm hoping maybe he's gotten past that somehow with a significant demographic and I'm not seeing it, but maybe he didn't make the jump.

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1 hour ago, Darth Richard II said:

He's never going to accept that Bakker is anything other than brilliant. It's like trying to argue with a devout Catholic about the pope.

I'd say something, but on the principle of takes one to know one maybe you've got me tagged. Whether it's evangelism or sleep deprived vitriol, it's all pretty much the same; obsessive keyboard stroking.

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37 minutes ago, Callan S. said:

What's the difference between a broken expectation in regard to a narrative trope and a charge of poor execution?

 

Consistency from what's come before -- I at least expect the writing quality to match previous books. This is the biggest issue for me. TUC was very self-indulgent, and it was that factor more than anything else that soured me on the overall experience. These issues became more apparent in TGO, but were in full force in the last book. It really damaged the experience for me.

Consistency in execution of concepts -- TUC fell flat for me in this regard. All of the ideas Kalbear brought up earlier in this thread would have been more interesting. What we got wasn't particularly interesting (although the execution of that idea was actually the best part of the entire novel, from Kelhuss entering the Ark to Mimira's final vision).

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, kuenjato said:

OK. Now, can you get that some of us do not like the ending, not because it didn't "fulfill" standard expectations as to narrative tropes, but because we felt it was poorly done in execution and, worse, a shoddy application/culmination of the various themes presented across the six books?

I am actually somewhat in awe of the mental gymnastics he must be doing to so thoroughly miss this point without deliberately trolling.

Edited by Let's Get Kraken

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9 hours ago, Let's Get Kraken said:

I am actually somewhat in awe of the mental gymnastics he must be doing to so thoroughly miss this point without deliberately trolling.

This has gone on for like three threads now.  He's just not hearing it. 

I mean if the book was just the sentence "and then the no-god showed up again and everyone died" I'm convinced we'd be having the exact same coversation.

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