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Great analysis on why this feels like such a betrayal of Dany’s character

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, MinscS2 said:

Interesting article, and I agree with most of it.

As I posted in a different topic: Imagine Jon's reaction to watching most of his army die, Tormund die, Sam getting executed in front of him, and lastly the closest thing he has to children: Sansa and Arya die.

That's the situation Daenerys is currently in, but you can swap Tormund/Sam for Jorah/Missandei, and Sansa/Arya for Viserion/Rhaegal.
Jon lost his shit and did a kamikaze-charge after "just" watching Rickon die. Imagine his reactions if the above was to happen.
Daenerys reaction (so far) is one of great frustration and anger, fury even - but not madness. 

 

If Daenerys ultimate fate in this show is to go insane and die for no apparent reason, there really was no point in her entire story or character arc. You could've been able to cut out everything regarding her from the story, and nothing would change, other than the NK still being alive but stuck north of the wall. It would've been extremely anti-climactic, depressing, and makes no sense from a narrative point of view. 


 

That CNN article is a riot. It's hilarious how we're just normalizing Dany's behavior when she calls her dragons her "children." Jorah pointed out how weird it is that she calls them her children way back in Qarth. It's indicative of an unhealthy pathology regarding her dragons. She thinks of them as surrogate human children and treats them as if their lives are more valuable than any number of human lives.

Whoever wrote that CNN article is so blinded by political ideology that they can't see what this story is about at its fundamental level. It's about a harsh medieval-ish world's discovery of Enlightenment values. That human life is the most valuable thing, that the individual is sovereign, the most powerful tool is truth, the importance of stoicism and prosaic justice tempered by mercy and so on.

Jon is the champion of Ned's philosophy, that you should sacrifice yourself for what you truly believe in, even when it's difficult.

Dany is the champion of Jorah's philosophy, that you should sacrifice what you truly believe in, especially when it's expedient to do so.

To be fair, the show has butchered this story in considerable ways. For starters, they omitted Ned's entire philosophy except for one line of it. Additionally they've ruined Sansa and Arya by having them commit horrendous acts of revenge and then receiving no retaliation themselves for those crimes. This glaring betrayal of the source material is a giant inconsistency with the show's premises, and THAT's why people feel blindsided by Dany's turn towards darkness.

If feeding people to dogs and feeding children to their parents are acceptable, then what's so bad about burning people alive with dragons? Crucifying 100s of people? Feeding them to your dragons?

Well, that's a good damn question! It's one that I can't answer by referencing scenes from the show. I'd have to reference the books, where the human life and revenge premises are internally consistent. So it's no wonder to me why show watchers are confused af and getting mixed signals about what this story is about.

Edited by rustythesmith

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, MinscS2 said:

Interesting article, and I agree with most of it.

As I posted in a different topic: Imagine Jon's reaction to watching most of his army die, Tormund die, Sam getting executed in front of him, and lastly the closest thing he has to children: Sansa and Arya die.

That's the situation Daenerys is currently in, but you can swap Tormund/Sam for Jorah/Missandei, and Sansa/Arya for Viserion/Rhaegal.
Jon lost his shit and did a kamikaze-charge after "just" watching Rickon die. Imagine his reactions if the above was to happen.
Daenerys reaction (so far) is one of great frustration and anger, fury even - but not madness. 

 

If Daenerys ultimate fate in this show is to go insane and die for no apparent reason, there really was no point in her entire story or character arc. You could've been able to cut out everything regarding her from the story, and nothing would change, other than the NK still being alive but stuck north of the wall. It would've been extremely anti-climactic, depressing, and makes no sense from a narrative point of view. 
 

I guess the point where Danaery's can be properly said to have gone 'mad queen' will be the point she makes a move to start burning innocent civilians. So far she has continually talked about it, but has been kept in check... so its hard to know yet which way she's going to go.... but its worrying that its just her advisors stopping her from doing this right now, rather than her own conscience.

All of the things you bring up about Danaery's situation....fair enough...
But lets insert Robert the hate filled husband, The deaths of Joffrey, Marcella, Tomun, Tywin, the Lannister armies, The plotting of the Westerosi families around her, The disloyalty of Tyrion and Jaime, being shame-shame-shamed in front of the whole of KingsLanding... all the people who have betrayed Cersei, or were killed, or who threatened or plotted against her, or killed people she loved... ALL of it made her who she has become.... All of it caused her to be the cold compassionless woman who sees Danaery's as a threat to her, her family, her child (if it exists) - 'If you play the game of thrones, you win or die' as she said to Ned. This is literally existential for her. Her fight is not only for the throne, but for her life.
Yet no-one would describe Cersei as a deserving or good queen, and that we should overlook the bad side to her coz she's been through stuff & its all understandable, that she's frustrated and angry, furious even? (Though she no doubt is!)

If Danaery's ultimate fate in the show is to burn civilians as she says she wants to do, then she will be no better than Cersei. Tragic, yeah, but not someone who is a good queen. Her whole story arc though is that she's always had the potential to go either way... impulsive, volatile & brutal... or compassionate and just. At the moment she's teetering precariously under pressure, but it'll be very hard to extend sympathies to her if she does what Varys fears she will, as much as its hard to extend sympathy to Cersei. It is still up in the air... Varys said to Tyrion that he hoped they will both make the right decision, implying that his decision is not made yet. 
We'll see....!

Edited by Figdoni

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Posted (edited)
50 minutes ago, rustythesmith said:

If feeding people to dogs and feeding children to their parents are acceptable, then what's so bad about burning people alive with dragons? Crucifying 100s of people? Feeding them to your dragons?

Well, that's a good damn question! It's one that I can't answer by referencing scenes from the show. I'd have to reference the books, where the human life and revenge premises are internally consistent. So it's no wonder to me why show watchers are confused af and getting mixed signals about what this story is about.

I think the only difference that I can see is that Ramsay fed to dogs, and Frey being served some son pie, meets the Westerosi way of dealing with justice & revenge for those who are guilty of acts of great cruelty or dishonour, and those meting out their punishment have taken on the role of executioner. It wasn't ok for Ramsay to feed anyone he chose to his dogs... just as it wasn't ok for Bran to get pushed out a window... (but its ok if its someone shoved out a Moon door if they're found guilty of something)

So its not the act itself that is viewed as bad, but if that act is done in an unjust situation, I guess... like against civilians or people who haven't really done anything to deserve it.
There are also differences between cultures... its maybe fairer to bring change in gradually than turning up and applying your own personal version of justice and revenge to a nation or people who have been born into their own society and indoctrinated into those ways. 
 

Edited by Figdoni

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4 hours ago, RhaenysBee said:

The article wasn’t really about Daenerys, it was about sexism in television. Daenerys was just the vassal, an excuse to convey the general message. 

 

As for where the show is taking here, there’s no way of knowing or guessing, as the show follows to logic, consistency or common sense whatsoever. There’s no cause and effect or act and consequence. 

They might make her mad because that’s what they want, or it might be a red herring and they might not do it because that’s what they want. 

Yep, to add to that how necessary was the message that Sansa is who she is today due to being raped, as if women can’t become powerful or important without such a life changing horrific incident taking place.

Benioff and Weiss couldn’t help but remind us of that one last time in the latest episode. 

Ive always said it regardless of whether you’re for or against Dany, the agenda against her in desperately trying to make her look unfit to rule seems pretty forced.

She still didn’t manage to satisfy Vary’s even after sacrificing her army in the North for the greater good of humanity. He will now be fixated on the idea that she is mad like her father regardless of what she does. Any deaths, any fire, simply anything and she will be labelled ‘mad and erratic.’ 

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1 hour ago, LearnToBeNoOne said:

Yep, to add to that how necessary was the message that Sansa is who she is today due to being raped, as if women can’t become powerful or important without such a life changing horrific incident taking place.

I have read several other opinions that echo this sentiment regarding Sansa’s statement about her past trauma, but I did not get the same impression from this scene. 

My take on it was that she was making the statement that her past has changed her and molded her into a different person than she used to be. Everything she did and everything that happened to her has had an impact, and despite (not because of) all the horrible things she had to endure, she stayed strong and survived.

 

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2 hours ago, rustythesmith said:

That CNN article is a riot. It's hilarious how we're just normalizing Dany's behavior when she calls her dragons her "children." Jorah pointed out how weird it is that she calls them her children way back in Qarth. It's indicative of an unhealthy pathology regarding her dragons. She thinks of them as surrogate human children and treats them as if their lives are more valuable than any number of human lives.

To be fair it's not much different than loving your dog. Have you ever seen people with no kids with their dog? That dog is literally a child to them. Hell, I have kids & I love my dog dearly. I don't think she treats them like they are more valuable than human lives but as valuable as human lives. It's not odd for her to be heartbroken or feel vengeful after someone has murdered someone she loves. If someone murdered my dog I would feel pretty damn vengeful also. Of course, thankfully for the would-be murderer, I don't have a fire breathing dragon to reign hell down on them - if I did I wouldn't - but it might cross my mind. 

2 hours ago, rustythesmith said:

Whoever wrote that CNN article is so blinded by political ideology that they can't see what this story is about at its fundamental level. It's about a harsh medieval-ish world's discovery of Enlightenment values. That human life is the most valuable thing, that the individual is sovereign, the most powerful tool is truth, the importance of stoicism and prosaic justice tempered by mercy and so on.

I agree with all of this. 

 

2 hours ago, rustythesmith said:

To be fair, the show has butchered this story in considerable ways. For starters, they omitted Ned's entire philosophy except for one line of it. Additionally they've ruined Sansa and Arya by having them commit horrendous acts of revenge and then receiving no retaliation themselves for those crimes. This glaring betrayal of the source material is a giant inconsistency with the show's premises, and THAT's why people feel blindsided by Dany's turn towards darkness.

The show has butchered everything. But the reason I think I feel so blindsided by Dany is that there was no decent into or turn toward darkness but a plummet. She jumped off the cliff with little to no warning. Yes she has done some bad things, yes she is hot headed. But never would she have suggested burning a city of innocent people to the ground. I posted in another thread that had she not mentioned wanting to fry KL BEFORE Rhaegal & Missandei were killed it may have felt more natural. It's understandable for her to be upset in that situation, to be grief stricken & distraught & say some things she may not really mean. It would never be ok for her to actually burn KL but if she said it & listened to her advisors when they talked to her about it - that's a very human reaction IMO. 

2 hours ago, rustythesmith said:

If feeding people to dogs and feeding children to their parents are acceptable, then what's so bad about burning people alive with dragons? Crucifying 100s of people? Feeding them to your dragons?

They aren't really the same things though are they? Ramsay was a sadistic fuck who had raped Sansa, tortured Theon, & killed Rickon among other horrendous acts. Maybe the hounds was his repercussions for the horrid things he did. 

The Frey's butchered an entire group of unarmed people at a wedding. Maybe he deserved what he got. 

The people of KL have done nothing to Daenerys or her dragons. To make all three things equivalent I think we would have to talk in terms of Dany just scorching Cersei. Maybe Cersei deserves that. 

 

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1 hour ago, LearnToBeNoOne said:

She still didn’t manage to satisfy Vary’s even after sacrificing her army in the North for the greater good of humanity. He will now be fixated on the idea that she is mad like her father regardless of what she does. Any deaths, any fire, simply anything and she will be labelled ‘mad and erratic.’ 

Does the label matter if she's killing masses of people though? It's like complaining that a murderer is called insane rather than calculating. 

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3 minutes ago, Rose of Red Lake said:

Does the label matter if she's killing masses of people though? It's like complaining that a murderer is called insane rather than calculating. 

Yes, it matters. Nobody called Tywin mad when he sacked KL. There’s a huge difference between being insane and being ruthless. 

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2 hours ago, rustythesmith said:

Additionally they've ruined Sansa and Arya by having them commit horrendous acts of revenge and then receiving no retaliation themselves for those crimes. This glaring betrayal of the source material is a giant inconsistency with the show's premises, and THAT's why people feel blindsided by Dany's turn towards darkness.

They listened to the actors too much. Sophie wanted a dark scene so they gave it to her. Lady Stoneheart is probably going to do what Arya did to the Freys - this is probably why GRRM wanted to keep her in. So I would agree. Still, they were never fighting for the Iron Throne, a symbol of dominance and subjugation that they would then rule from which separates them from Dany's mission of imperialism and conquest, so I think there are distinctions there still...even in the mess.

Interesting points on enlightenment values, I hadn't thought of it like that.

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6 hours ago, The_Spanish_Inquisition said:

She’s spent her whole recent life surrounded by yes-men who have varying reasons for telling her what she wants to hear, and it does her no favors. 

Haha  - she is the George Lucas of Westeros and she is about to make the prequels. The universe is fucked :)

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Oh and that article is just dumb, trying to assert modern political opinion onto a fantasy story.

I have no doubt Dany was set up as a tragic burner of cities from her initial conception - a subversion of the fantasy cliche magical princess that uses her powers to save the universe. D&Ds execution may be dumb but Dany's character arc is what it was always designed to be.

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1 minute ago, Nictarion said:

Yes, it matters. Nobody called Tywin mad when he sacked KL. There’s a huge difference between being insane and being ruthless. 

Who cares what they call her if she's burning people alive for a throne, just like every mad Targaryen and every sane one. Its all fire and blood anyway. 

Plot: Dany kills innocent children like Tywin

You: how unfair she is called insane for this :( :( :( 

Everyone else: Jesus she's an asshole just like Tywin

I agree, this article was really dumb.

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19 minutes ago, Rose of Red Lake said:

Who cares

Everyone cares. Tywin was not considered mad. He was considered a successful Hand of the King.

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Ilissa said:

Everyone cares. Tywin was not considered mad. He was considered a successful Hand of the King.

Keep it apples to apples here. For murdering innocent children, he was not called that. I dont know anyone who said that was "a success" except maybe Robert? 

So if Dany kills innocent kids like Tywin... Instead of horror Dany's fans are worried about what NAME she's called instead of examining the act itself. You're asking for feminism to matter in a place where it really shouldn't. "Gosh it's so unfair, why can't female murderers be treated equally as our male ones!"

Its actually...faux feminism. 

Edited by Rose of Red Lake

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Posted (edited)
13 minutes ago, Rose of Red Lake said:

Keep it apples to apples here. For murdering innocent children, he was not called that. I dont know anyone who said that was "a success" except maybe Robert? 

Dany kills innocent kids like Tywin. Instead of horror Dany's fans are worried about what NAME she's called instead of examining the act itself. You're asking for feminism to matter in a place where it really shouldn't. "Gosh it's so unfair, why can't female murderers be treated equally as our male ones!"

Its actually...faux feminism.  

Hahahaha))) I am absolutely not a feminist.

I say if Tywin was not called insane and unable to rule for sacked of King's Landing, why Dany should? In fact, Dany was supposed to seize the capital last season. This would solve many problems.

 

Edited by Ilissa

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Posted (edited)
Quote

. Once Daenerys landed in Westeros and launched her military campaign, however, the show began to frame her ambition as evidence of her unfitness to rule.

Aerys burned people for jollies. 

King Robert and his self indulgence and lack of attention was framed as unfit to rule. 

Renly never really got tested but seemed like he was only in it for himself and showed little fitness to rule. 

Stannis was completely uncompromising and clearly shown as being unfit to rule due to what he would do for his ambition. 

Robb could not master his desires and fulfil his oaths and ended up getting thousands of his most loyal people killed. 

Balon had already led his islands to wrack and ruin by war and then started others with little ambition beyond piracy. 

Joffrey. You do the math.

Tommen was a child who inheritance was simply a tool for others to fulfil their ambitions. 

Cersei a Tywin wannabe who blew up churches and imprisoned nuns to be used as sex slaves for her zombie. 

That is the Kings\Queens of Westeros who have been shown on TV. Just about every one of them barring Robb is a stinging rebuke of hereditary monarchy. 

Of the Prince\Princesses. 

Rhaegar dragged the kingdom into war and bloodletting so he could get it on with a 15 year old then failed to lead his troops till it was too late. 

Doran was utterly inactive according to the show. 

Oberyn had nothing to rule but obsessed with vengeance. 

Ellaria stages a coup and leads her principality to a disastrous war. 

From burning the warlocks of Qarth,  Daenerys has always had an undercurrent of violence and vengeance to her. In a show that seems to have gone to lengths to show virtually no one so far as fit to rule, its a bit of a shoehorning of an agenda to try to suggest Daenerys fitting the mould of every other ruler and pretender is some kind of misogyny. 

People may not like that she is succumbing to her violent instincts. That is a fair criticism. But I think that this risk has been part of her character since the first book. My criticism would perhaps be that they are not showing Aegon's painful honour as being another flaw that would diminish him as a leader. The criticism to me is the system not the people. But I do not have to make an article fit the 2020 elections. 

 

 

 

Edited by ferrelhadley

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6 hours ago, LearnToBeNoOne said:

Yep, to add to that how necessary was the message that Sansa is who she is today due to being raped, as if women can’t become powerful or important without such a life changing horrific incident taking place.

Benioff and Weiss couldn’t help but remind us of that one last time in the latest episode. 

Ive always said it regardless of whether you’re for or against Dany, the agenda against her in desperately trying to make her look unfit to rule seems pretty forced.

She still didn’t manage to satisfy Vary’s even after sacrificing her army in the North for the greater good of humanity. He will now be fixated on the idea that she is mad like her father regardless of what she does. Any deaths, any fire, simply anything and she will be labelled ‘mad and erratic.’ 

Yeah but that’s not because dan and Dave or hbo are sexist, it’s because they can’t write and they don’t care about narrative sense. Male characters and their storylines are just as fucked up, look at Tyrion, Jon, Jorah, Jaime, Davos. 

And yes the agenda against Daenerys is utter bullshit, plenty of other characters have done similar things and they were never considered insane. Daenerys’s reactions to events are completely human and rational (except when she shits on Viserion’s death because she’s worried about Jon). She has every reason to be furious after the losses she and her forces suffered and she has no reason to not use her resources because it’s “immoral”. It’s utter nonsense for the sake of stretching the plot and trying to cook up a non-existent conflict. It’s pathetic. 

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4 hours ago, a girl knows nothing said:

I have read several other opinions that echo this sentiment regarding Sansa’s statement about her past trauma, but I did not get the same impression from this scene. 

I didn't initially, after watching it again I realised how it could be perceived that way.

Just thought to add that viewpoint as there was an element of that lingering regardless of the reason.

4 hours ago, a girl knows nothing said:

My take on it was that she was making the statement that her past has changed her and molded her into a different person than she used to be. Everything she did and everything that happened to her has had an impact, and despite (not because of) all the horrible things she had to endure, she stayed strong and survived.

 

I do favour this approach.

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Posted (edited)

Dany has been on the "mad queen" path for years. The only thing that surprises me is more people haven't seen it coming. For exhibits A, B and C see my posting history :)

Also, Dany hinges her whole campaign on being somehow "better" than the rest of them, the whole "breaking the wheel" thing, and this would put her in the same category as the most ruthless of the lords and kings she claims to despise.

Edited by Mikkel

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