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manchester_babe

Why do book readers hate R+L=J?

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I'm a book reader and I don't hate R+L=J. I came to the conclusion that Jon is most likely Lyanna and Rhaegar's son on my own after reading the first volume and long before I visited these forums, long before I read anyone else's thoughts or talked to anyone about the series. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion on the above, but I must say I find it somewhat offensive how some readers presume to know the way other readers' minds work or how and why other readers came to be convinced of R+L=J and how they make generalizations as though all the various people who have reached this conclusion about Jon's birth had the same, single thought process, approach and interest. The post below is just one example.

On 2018. 03. 07. at 11:01 PM, House Beaudreau said:

In my long experience with this debate over the years, i have found that 1believers of R+L=J  believe in this theory mostly because its convenient and they really want it to be true, because in there mind it ties everything up in a nice neat little bow. 2. in there mind the story ends with Jon's Lineage being revealed and everyone going "oh, great! he's the rightful king, he's gonna marry Dany and they will live happy ever after."  and they are very quick to dismiss evidence like Edric Dayne basically telling us who Jon's Mother is, or the testimony given to Davos about Jon's mother in the SIsters, etc.  

3. But this doesn't address that if Jon is even alive, he's still a Bastard, He's still in the Nights watch, Jon most likely wouldn't care about the Iron Throne because he knows of the real enemy. He passed on Winterfell and being named a Stark which is all he ever wanted because of his vow. Him marrying Dany would be a perpetuation of Targaryan/feudal incest which GRRM has taken a pretty strong stance on.  

And lastly Jon's Bastardness matters, it matters, in terms of the story, and in the character's own mind. suddenly turning Jon into the rightful Targaryen heir seems to go against the way GRRM tells his stories. GRRM is more likely to step up his readers to think Jon is Rhaegar's son only to turn it around on us, and find out he is actually Ned's real Bastard fathered on Wylla a starfall serving wench or some fish wife from the Sisters. I know its a literary faux pas to analyze a work of fiction based on other works the author has written but its undeniable that GRRM presents his stories in a certain way and borrowed a lot of language/character models/ themes from his previous work.    

1. I don't know what you mean by convenient. If you mean that it's the simplest and most logical explanation, I may agree. However, I, personally, totally refute the idea of "wanting it to be true". Jon is my favourite character, but I'm not at all a fan of the Targaryen family, and I'm certainly not invested in Jon being a Targaryen or a dragon rider (I dislike dragons). I see him as a true Stark, in fact, and I would like the character just as much if he was a fishwife's son. 

2. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I certainly do not expect any of that. Like everyone else who pays attention while reading, R+L=J supporters can also notice that the story is not your usual fairy tale. For one thing, Rhaegar was already married before meeting Lyanna. Highly unusual in itself. Furthermore, the story GRRM is telling us shows that the idea of "rightful heir" or "rightful king" is pretty much open to interpretation in-world, especially in times of war and turmoil. GRRM can masterfully create ambiguous situations, and what we have seen so far makes it very easy for him  to make Jon's position (bastard versus "true heir"), when and if Jon's true parentage becomes publicly known in-world, greatly ambiguous.  No one is likely to "live happily ever after" in these books. As for Jon and Dany, R+L=J makes a match or an affair between them just another example of incest in the story , which I, personally, find as unattractive as it gets.

3. There you go. You yourself seem to acknowledge that R+L=J is not exactly fairy tale material and it does not seem to be leading to the kind of story you describe in Nr. 2 above. Why do you suppose that supporters of the theory do not see any of those circumstances? Sorry, but this kind of argument seems to refute R+L=J on the grounds that it doesn't make for a good fairy tale ending - but then how can you accuse everyone who has reached the conclusion of R+L=J of supporting this theory because they hope for a "happily ever after" outcome? 

The story is not finished yet. We don't know what GRRM is going to do with the tropes he has planted in the novels but there is plenty of room for him to go in different directions. It is absolutely possible that the big surprise is not Jon's true parentage but what the author is going to do with it in the end.

By the way, the idea that someone is of royal descent though he himself does not know about it, and, although he finds it out, nothing (or nothing good) comes out of his true parentage is not exactly new in literature. It may be new in the fantasy genre (I really can't say that), but it has certainly been used by other authors. Just read

Spoiler

The Accursed Kings by Maurice Druon or The Egyptian by Mika Waltari

Also, as I saw suggested in other posts, the idea that we have all reached the conclusion of R+L=J by first thinking of it and then starting to look for evidence is totally untrue and presumptuous. 

So, once again to the OP: I neither hate, nor adore R+L=J. I simply find it a logical enough conclusion based on the clues I found in the books, and that's enough for me. I have read many alternative theories since I came to this forum, found at least one that I thought could make a great story, but I'm still not convinced by any of them. 

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16 hours ago, Julia H. said:

I find it somewhat offensive how some readers presume to know the way other readers' minds work or how and why other readers came to be convinced of R+L=J and how they make generalizations as though all the various people who have reached this conclusion about Jon's birth had the same, single thought process, approach and interest.

Essentially the same is true in reverse, too.  Those who considered R+L=J and rejected it as improbable didn't all arrive at that conclusion via the same route.

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3 minutes ago, JNR said:

Essentially the same is true in reverse, too.  Those who considered R+L=J and rejected it as improbable didn't all arrive at that conclusion via the same route.

But who said otherwise? I don't recall anyone here making that kind of blanket statement as the one in the post @Julia H. was replying to. 

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1 hour ago, JNR said:

Essentially the same is true in reverse, too.  Those who considered R+L=J and rejected it as improbable didn't all arrive at that conclusion via the same route.

Obviously. Does anyone say that they all arrived at that conclusion via the same route though?  

1 hour ago, kissdbyfire said:

But who said otherwise? I don't recall anyone here making that kind of blanket statement as the one in the post @Julia H. was replying to. 

:ninja:c:agree:

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2 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

But who said otherwise? I don't recall anyone here making that kind of blanket statement

 

47 minutes ago, Julia H. said:

Does anyone say that they all arrived at that conclusion via the same route though?  

Are you two serious?  

It's been the constant refrain on this site for at least half a decade.  From the very first page of this thread, for instance:

Quote

'Cause they hipsters, and R+L=J  is mainstream. 

You see the idea there.  Anyone who doubts or dislikes R+L=J as a theory didn't arrive at it through logic in any sense, but is simply trying to be different.  

That's quite a simple route by which to arrive at a conclusion, to say the least.

This is immediately, and typically for this site, backed up with the following (which seems not to realize Rhaegar and Lyanna can't be demonstrated to have spent thirty seconds alone together during the Rebellion):

Quote

Only "Rhaegar + Lyanna" is a fact established in the books beyond any reasonable doubt. 

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5 minutes ago, JNR said:

 

Are you two serious?  

It's been the constant refrain on this site for at least half a decade.  From the very first page of this thread, for instance:

You see the idea there.  Anyone who doubts or dislikes R+L=J as a theory didn't arrive at it through logic in any sense, but is simply trying to be different.  

That's quite a simple route by which to arrive at a conclusion, to say the least.

This is immediately, and typically for this site, backed up with the following (which seems not to realize Rhaegar and Lyanna can't be demonstrated to have spent thirty seconds alone together during the Rebellion):

Huh? I meant that I don't  see people making statements like, "everyone who doesn't believe in R+L=J have reached this conclusion following the exaxt same thought process". 

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On 2/13/2018 at 9:51 AM, Ahl of the House Cutler said:

But it doesn't make perfect sense.

What sense does it make for the heir of the throne,  who is already on his fathers/kings shit list,  to steal some northern girl and piss off an entire region who already dispises southerners and encite a rebellion?

It makes LESS sense than your comment about B+L=J because we have already seen incestuous relationships in the literature.  As far as I am concerned Brandon+Lyanna=Jon is just as good of a theory as R+L=J.  Maybe even more so.

What if Lyanna was crying at the tourney of Harrenhall because she just found out her one true love, her brother Brandon, was now betrothed to Cat?  

I would say it makes more sense that LITTLEFINGER had more to do with Lyanna's disapperance than did Rhaegar.  What better way to piss off the dude that pounded your ass in the dirt for the woman you loved than to steal the woman that Brandon loved.

Think about it...

It makes sense in the flow of the narrative. It doesn't make sense to you, because you're outside of their physical world, unable to interact in their society.

Rhaegar was said to be obsessed with prophesy, making the idea of completing his Three Heads of the Dragon a fixation. His wife was known to be fragile and could not bear another child, meaning he had to find someone else to do it.

Lyanna is from the paramount house of the North, so having a child with her would symbolize a union of ice and fire, giving Aegon a second bride in the process.

On the subject of incest, this seems to be an outlier, reserved for Targaryens and the most depraved of people, judging by Ned's disgust. This doesn't bring into account the timing of his birth being an issue.

Also, how could Baelish have anything to do with her disappearance? He was hospitalized (or the Westerosi version of it) after his fight with Brandon, then immediately sent away.

He was a minor lordling (not even a lord yet), so he didn't have the men to have this done. All his later power came from Lysa.

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On 13.2.2018 at 4:51 PM, Ahl of the House Cutler said:

But it doesn't make perfect sense.

What sense does it make for the heir of the throne,  who is already on his fathers/kings shit list,  to steal some northern girl and piss off an entire region who already dispises southerners and encite a rebellion?

I have a (NyQuil-induced) theory that Rickard and Rhaegar had the same kind of vision/dragondream of Robert and Lyanna together on the Iron Throne. That's why Rickard betrothed Lyanna to Robert against her wishes and it's also why Rhaegar targeted Lyanna in the first place. Along the way though, Rhaegar fell in love with her, so he convinced himself that she was the key to the TPtwP prophecy (he was arrogant like that). 

But their visions weren't Lyanna and Robert at all, it was Lyanna2.0 and Robert2.0, Arya and Gendry, and everything Rickard and Rhaegar did set it all in motion in the first place.

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20 hours ago, kissdbyfire said:

Huh? I meant that I don't  see people making statements like, "everyone who doesn't believe in R+L=J have reached this conclusion following the exact same thought process". 

Not in that language.  The statements made are more like this:

"Everyone who doesn't believe R+L=J has decided that simply because R+L=J is too popular a theory, and they just want to be different."  

The premise is that that is the thought process used to arrive at the conclusion -- it's got nothing to do with facts or reason, it's purely about contrarian resistance to a popular theory.

Look on the first page of this thread.  You'll see multiple instances of such remarks there alone.  You can find such remarks in virtually any thread on this topic.    

But there are many people who arrived at the idea R+L=J is false in a rational way, based on aggregation and analysis of the canonical facts... and the rejection of fanon that can't be demonstrated using the books, such as the premise that Jon was born at the TOJ, or that Rhaegar and Lyanna said two words to each other in their lives, or were anywhere near each other during the Rebellion. 

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On 3/14/2018 at 9:00 PM, kissdbyfire said:

I'm not sure why you assume Gilly's baby and Mance's are several months apart in age? Mind you, I'm not saying they aren't because I don't remember anything specific. But I never thought of it that way, for whatever reason. 

I disagree on babies/toddlers ages... you can pass a 3mo old for a 5mo old, maybe. But no way you'd get away w/ it if the ages are, say, 3mo and 9mo (and that's only 6 months difference). 

They're about two months apart, if my calculations are correct. It wouldn't be difficult to make them seem like they're the same age.

The problem with that theory is that at least two people have either questioned Jon, or figured it out on their own: Aemon (told Sam), Stannis (questioned which baby was which).

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On 4/4/2018 at 10:30 AM, JNR said:

Not in that language.  The statements made are more like this:

"Everyone who doesn't believe R+L=J has decided that simply because R+L=J is too popular a theory, and they just want to be different."  

The premise is that that is the thought process used to arrive at the conclusion -- it's got nothing to do with facts or reason, it's purely about contrarian resistance to a popular theory.

Look on the first page of this thread.  You'll see multiple instances of such remarks there alone.  You can find such remarks in virtually any thread on this topic.    

But there are many people who arrived at the idea R+L=J is false in a rational way, based on aggregation and analysis of the canonical facts... and the rejection of fanon that can't be demonstrated using the books, such as the premise that Jon was born at the TOJ, or that Rhaegar and Lyanna said two words to each other in their lives, or were anywhere near each other during the Rebellion. 

No one is saying that the books stated that Jon was born at the ToJ, or that Rhaegar and Lyanna were on speaking terms; they're (we're) saying that there is ample evidence to support those things having happened:

  • Conflicting stories regarding Jon's mother.
  • A woman who now lives in Dorne, in a castle that Ned visited, nursed Jon and is said (by a child who lives there, and Ned) to be his mother, but never to anyone that matters (Jon, Cat, his other kids, him maester), and certainly not to the public.
  • Three kingsguard at the ToJ, when no Targaryen is there.
  • Dany's vision.

While it's not hard evidence, it points to something specific. Also, it's the best theory out there.

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14 minutes ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

 

No one is saying that the books stated that Jon was born at the ToJ, or that Rhaegar and Lyanna were on speaking terms; they're (we're) saying that there is ample evidence to support those things having happened:

  • Conflicting stories regarding Jon's mother.
  • A woman who now lives in Dorne, in a castle that Ned visited, nursed Jon and is said (by a child who lives there, and Ned) to be his mother, but never to anyone that matters (Jon, Cat, his other kids, him maester), and certainly not to the public.
  • Three kingsguard at the ToJ, when no Targaryen is there.
  • Dany's vision.

While it's not hard evidence, it points to something specific. Also, it's the best theory out there.

I think it's entirely possible that the woman who nursed Jon at the Starfall was Lyanna incognito as Wylla.  Wylla doesn't appear to be an uncommon name.

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23 hours ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

No one is saying that the books stated that Jon was born at the ToJ, or that Rhaegar and Lyanna were on speaking terms

I see from your 81 posts that you are relatively new to the site... or you wouldn't take this peculiar position. 

I could point you to many, many posts over the years that say things like "I would bet my life that R+L=J" or "GRRM has already written that Jon is the trueborn son of Rhaegar Targaryen."

23 hours ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

Also, it's the best theory out there.

If only there were some objective way to assess the concept of best.  

People say this sort of thing all the time too... but we're not talking about ten theories running a hundred meters and the best is whichever crosses the finish line first.   R+L=J is really only the theory that best pleases the userbase of this fan site and other, similar fan sites.

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On 4/3/2018 at 8:25 PM, JNR said:

 

Are you two serious?  

It's been the constant refrain on this site for at least half a decade.  From the very first page of this thread, for instance:

You see the idea there.  Anyone who doubts or dislikes R+L=J as a theory didn't arrive at it through logic in any sense, but is simply trying to be different.  

That's quite a simple route by which to arrive at a conclusion, to say the least.

 

41 minutes ago, JNR said:

R+L=J is really only the theory that best pleases the userbase of this fan site and other, similar fan sites.

- Baldrick, have you no idea what irony is?
- Yes, it's like goldy and bronzy only it's made out of iron.

 

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1 hour ago, JNR said:

I see from your 81 posts that you are relatively new to the site... or you wouldn't take this peculiar position.

I don't understand why you're italicizing new like it's some sort of deficiency.

I've been scrolling through the oldest threads for nearly two years, and I've never seen anyone say definitively that the books say R+L=J.

1 hour ago, JNR said:

I could point you to many, many posts over the years that say things like "I would bet my life that R+L=J" or "GRRM has already written that Jon is the trueborn son of Rhaegar Targaryen."

Making your belief in something known is a far cry from stating something as fact.
Also, GRRM stated that he gave D&D the go ahead after they guessed correctly the parentage of Jon Snow (though you could say they're taking creative license to shift the story/GRRM lied/misled everyone).

1 hour ago, JNR said:

If only there were some objective way to assess the concept of best.  

You're being obtuse at this point.

1 hour ago, JNR said:

People say this sort of thing all the time too... but we're not talking about ten theories running a hundred meters and the best is whichever crosses the finish line first.   R+L=J is really only the theory that best pleases the userbase of this fan site and other, similar fan sites.

You clearly understand what I meant by best, but are making this a matter of empirical data, in the same frame as track and field.
It would be more akin to football/basketball, where there are scores, but there is also the room for outside intervention (refs), ensuring that things can be contested.
In summation, R+L=J the checks the most boxes regarding the books that have been released thus far, with regards to the mystery of Jon's mother.

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4 minutes ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

I've been scrolling through the oldest threads for nearly two years, and I've never seen anyone say definitively that the books say R+L=J.

Stannis mode:

- "Look harder."

 

 

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45 minutes ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

In summation, R+L=J the checks the most boxes regarding the books that have been released thus far, with regards to the mystery of Jon's mother.

That would be x+L = J. But you are talking about the parents, not the mother. That is the same issue with the show interview you mentioned.  

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30 minutes ago, SirArthur said:

That would be x+L = J. But you are talking about the parents, not the mother. That is the same issue with the show interview you mentioned.  

No, I'm talking about his mother.

If x+L=J, then the most logical choice- based on the context clues provided in the books- would be Rhaegar.

  • She was being held by the Kingsguard- and capture was less of Aerys style than burning alive, then raping his queen.
  • It makes no sense for Ned to claim him as his own if he was anyone aside from Rhaegar's (if you want I can easily elaborate).
  • Of the Rhaegar has the most opportunity, given Jon's (aprox.) age and his own inexplicable absense from the fighting for the months leading to the BotT.
  • There's also his comment in Dany's vision about the three heads of the dragon/his insistence that there must be a third/his obsession with prophesy.

That being said, it could have been some random hedge knight.

To the second part, please elaborate.

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36 minutes ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

If x+L=J, then the most logical choice- based on the context clues provided in the books- would be Rhaegar.

That is not how logic works. Logic comes to a conclusion based on a combination of facts. Example:

a ) Rhaegar is close to his friend Arthur Dayne and his wife Elia
b ) Ashara Dayne is close to her brother Arthur Dayne and lady-in-waiting for Elia

logical conclusion based on the facts: Ashara and Rhaegar are close to each other through two persons.

What you provide are assumption. The logical conclusion would not be that Rhaegar is the father, the logical conclusion is that Rhaegar knowns about what is going on. based on

Quote

a ) She was being held by the Kingsguard- and capture was less of Aerys style than burning alive, then raping his queen. 
b ) It makes no sense for Ned to claim him as his own if he was anyone aside from Rhaegar's (if you want I can easily elaborate).
c ) Of the Rhaegar has the most opportunity, given Jon's (aprox.) age and his own inexplicable absense from the fighting for the months leading to the BotT.
d )There's also his comment in Dany's vision about the three heads of the dragon/his insistence that there must be a third/his obsession with prophesy.

 

Fact c) is logical wrong. As the KG have a higher "opportunity". 
Fact d) needs support context and only gives us the information that Rhaegar must have 3 children. Assuming Rhaegar from this fact is a circle though.
Fact b ) tells us that there must be a reason for claiming him as his own. The assumption here is that Rhaegar is the only solution for this problem. 
Fact a) , if thougth through to the end, contradicts the love story, we need, based on interviews from GRRM about Rhaegar and Dany's thoughts about Rhaegar. 

What remains is b with support of c: Jon must be Rhaegars because Ned hides his parents and Rhaegar was in proximity. And the assumption is that Rhaegar is the solution. I would not call that logical. It is also not not logical. It just is state unknown. The only conclusion we can draw is that Rhaegar was in proximity. Based on the facts you presented, Lyanna + KG is a better solution. We know this because of support fact

e ) KG father no children. 

So if Ned hides KG + Lyanna, he protects the honor of the KG. It is still state unknown, however c) is true in that case. See, a better solution that Rhaegar. 

 

36 minutes ago, Jon_Stargaryen said:

 

To the second part, please elaborate.

People (like JNR) have been looking for years for a real source that can tell us exactly what GRRM asked D&D. The best we know so far is, that he asked about Jon's mother. 

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