Jump to content
LanMandragoran

GRRM struggling how to show Daenerys' mental instability

Recommended Posts

Just now, Lollygag said:

This is what I expected all along. This is the first time it even occurred to me that she may end up as a true villain, albeit a tragic one. 

That's the problem. There's no time for Daenerys to be a tragic hero.

And yes, tragic hero. Daenerys doesn't fit the definition of tragic villain; if they wanted to go that route, they really wouldn't have time for that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dany doesn't go mad in the TV show, nor in the books. She's not "going mad", she's being further and further ensnared into her own childhood trauma.

She's desperate for a protector as a child, she seeks one in many places. But when she "immolates" her childhood self and creates the dragons - both children for her to protect and tools to protect herself - she attempts to put that behind her by becoming a protector of others rather than wanting protection.

This is why she says "If I look back, I am lost". She doesn't wish to be that child any longer.

Each time she "protects" people, by freeing them from slavery, from oppression, from danger, etc., she relives this very intense personal need. Maybe one needs to have a similar need in oneself to understand. When you act out based on personal trauma, you are always, to some extent, reliving or re-accessing that trauma. 

The act of actually ruling people, leading people, and so on, does not fulfil this need in the same primal way defending them with the dragons does. So the more and more she uses the dragons, the more and more she feeds her own deepest, unresolved fears and desires.

Think of people addicted to sex with the strangers, or who keep entering relationships with the same kind of people who hurt them, and so on. 

Dany is trying to cure her own deepest needs, and it overwhelms her past her ability to see what it is doing to others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Jabar of House Titan said:

That's the problem. There's no time for Daenerys to be a tragic hero.

And yes, tragic hero. Daenerys doesn't fit the definition of tragic villain; if they wanted to go that route, they really wouldn't have time for that.

D&D couldn't manage it anyhow. I'm focused more on how it'll play in the books at this point. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Jabar of House Titan said:

No the Cersei thing is not a good comparison. Because Cersei impulsively does things that don't even make sense to her. Why? Because they give her pleasure.

Cersei is about greed, lust for power and personal satisfaction. Always has been.

Respectfully, I disagree. Villains are not born. They are made.  Cersei:
1. Had an absent, emotionless father
2. Lost her mother at a young age
3. Found solace in her brother (odd, but if you had little true comfort..)
4. Was raised to be entitled and feared
5. Was the oldest but was denied being taught to rule simply because of her gender.
6. Had a prophecy feed paranoia
7. Was, essentially, sold to Robert Baratheon in marriage (this isn't true to only her; women in the middle ages were bargaining chips for alliances through their marriage and fertility)

Cersei is alone responsible for her choices, and all of your points are correct.  She is not as clever as she thinks she is. But there is a reason she is who she is and makes the choices she makes.  So, yes, the Cersei thing actually is a good comparison.  It shows how circumstances affect people.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
34 minutes ago, pudgiebudgie said:

She's not "going mad", she's being further and further ensnared into her own childhood trauma.

What is "going mad" anyway?  I would argue that being further and further ensnared in childhood trauma could be a facet of that.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Jabar of House Titan said:

She's going to be scary. She has to be if she's ever to get out of the Dothraki Sea alive. Her enemies in Essos (aka the entire socioeconomic system of slavery) are going to make it mandatory.

Yes, I think horrible things will happen in Meereen when the queen returns. Fire and blood, terror and death. I used to think that she would not be able to execute her husband. But now I think that Hizdahr is doomed :( This will be the stage of her bitterness.

Edited by Ilissa

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Ilissa said:

Yes, I think horrible things will happen in Meereen when the queen returns. Fire and blood, terror and death. I used to think that she would not be able to execute her husband. But now I think that Hizdahr is doomed :( This will be the stage of her bitterness.

I think Hizdahr will be dead before Daenerys returns. I would hope so for his sake.

But in any case, the rise of Darth Daenerys the Dragonlord and the downfall of Essos in The Winds of Winter still leaves plenty of time for Daenerys to reflect, fall in love, soften, be humbled, smile and decide that her choices aren't limited to fire and/or blood in A Dream of Spring

Edited by Jabar of House Titan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Jabar of House Titan said:

But in any case, the rise of Darth Daenerys the Dragonlord and the downfall of Essos in The Winds of Winter still leaves plenty of time for Daenerys to reflect, fall in love, soften, be humbled, smile and decide that her choices aren't limited to fire and/or blood in A Dream of Spring

  But for what? If her fate is to become the queen of the ashes...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Ilissa said:

  But for what? If her fate is to become the queen of the ashes...

I'm not quite sure that is her fate.

Cersei certainly isn't going to die in the arms of the man she has been emotionally and psychologically abusing since childhood the love of her life (even though she tried to kill him) from a cave-in after spending hundreds of pages smirking, glowering and inexplicably triumphing over her enemies while drinking yet another glass of wine.

Arya isn't going to one-shot destroy the book equivalent of the Night King, all of the White Walkers and the entire Army of the Dead.

Bran isn't going to sit in a wheelchair and do nothing but speak in cryptic almost-riddles that end up going nowhere.

Even if it is Dany's fate, we don't know if Dany is purposefully responsible for the ashes and she did it for a good reason, if Dany made a honest mistake or if she's failed to save the realm and all there is left for her to rule over are ashes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, Jabar of House Titan said:

Even if it is Dany's fate, we don't know if Dany is purposefully responsible for the ashes and she did it for a good reason, if Dany made a honest mistake or if she's failed to save the realm and all there is left for her to rule over are ashes.

But we were promised a same ending. This is not about the destruction of Kings Landing. It is about Dany's choice. Destruction is not important. Only choice is important...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Jabar of House Titan said:

I'm not quite sure that is her fate.

Cersei certainly isn't going to die in the arms of the man she has been emotionally and psychologically abusing since childhood the love of her life (even though she tried to kill him) from a cave-in after spending hundreds of pages smirking, glowering and inexplicably triumphing over her enemies while drinking yet another glass of wine.

Arya isn't going to one-shot destroy the book equivalent of the Night King, all of the White Walkers and the entire Army of the Dead.

Bran isn't going to sit in a wheelchair and do nothing but speak in cryptic almost-riddles that end up going nowhere.

Even if it is Dany's fate, we don't know if Dany is purposefully responsible for the ashes and she did it for a good reason, if Dany made a honest mistake or if she's failed to save the realm and all there is left for her to rule over are ashes.

I agree. 

What did Quaithe say to her? “You must pass beneath the shadow to reach the light.” Is this time the shadow? Will it be different in the books (eg. Not purposeful mass murder) - something that brings her close to losing herself, to something terrible, but she redeems herself?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The real issue is they took the fAegon plot but put Cersei instead. They even gave her the Golden Company like Aegon has in the books. Clearly in the books, it would make perfect sense that Daenerys would stop fighting Aegon, to go help north, but when she comes back no one knows she saved the world and everyone is praising their beloved Aegon, whom she probably believes is a fake. So she has to forcefully take the throne from him, and the only way to do it is to make sure no one will rise up against her out of fear. But in the show, they had Cersei, and there is no reason to believe people would love her and not Dany.

Jon on the other hand would have a claim to the throne, but never goes through with it. The question would then be, if Daenerys will stay with Jon and give up the throne too, or take it like in the show.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

It is the question of her arc, it must be asked and answered. Her madness will manifest itself as her being mistrustful and tyrannical. Take cues from Tyrion's speech to Faegon about trusting no-one, and Maegor for tyranny, as those are what Dany is going to be perceived as. It will hinge most prominently on her having killed Aegon. The people will call her mad and after she has won the throne by killing Aegon they will remove her by popular revolt.

But it isn't in the population's minds that the question needs be answered, it's a question for Dany herself. Did she kill Aegon because she wanted the IT for herself, or because he's an imposter? If she truly cared for the people should she have not left a well loved, capable, uniting young king alone to rule the realm?

Enter Jon, and a chance for Dany to make amends, and prove to herself at least that she's not what they believed her to be.

Edited by chrisdaw

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Petitephlox said:

I agree. 

What did Quaithe say to her? “You must pass beneath the shadow to reach the light.” Is this time the shadow? Will it be different in the books (eg. Not purposeful mass murder) - something that brings her close to losing herself, to something terrible, but she redeems herself?

Perhaps it is the shadow of death that she must pass through before being resurrected to the light.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The shadow was Asshai, as originally Dany was likely supposed to circumvent Planetos by going east, landing in the west of Westeros first. But GRRM removed the timeskip and canceled that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I never understood why GRRM gets the pass by the fandom, though. We act as if the show is not a decent adaption of the books. But here is what bookfans forget on purpose: there are no books. GRRM has not published Winds for 8 years now. Obviously he is also struggling to how to end this story properly. Why no backlash on him though? I mean, to adapt something, you also need the adapting material. If the author doesn't know how to end the story, how could hollywood do a decent job, when even he can't.This is not say, that is solely his part, that the show sucks though. D&D must also be able to write a decent the story by themself. I just want to make the point, that the fandom is pretty one-sided. When you offer someone your books to adapt, you better do the work first. And when you sell something and make millions out of it, you are also responsible to your fans, to end this decently. I love GRRM, but, I am also not on board with "blame only HBO". I blame him too, albeit on a different level.

Edited by T and A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, T and A said:

I never understood why GRRM gets the pass by the fandom

Because his blind fanboys still think his books are gonna be perfect and close everything in a satisfactory manner where their headcanon becomes true.

Newsflash: The books will never be finished.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, LanMandragoran said:

I hope she doesn't as it doesn't fit her character, but if GRRM has told DD the ending and they have kept fairly true to it, it seems likely that he will. And if so, it has to start in Essos. She can't be a benign liberator there, in a moral effort to distance herself from her mad father, and then turn herself into what she always hated (her brother mostly, but her father in memory).

Targaryen going mad doesn't fit his character? It fits perfectly. Although, I'd expect that GRRM would prepare us for it. In fact, he already does, but it's easier to see things when you look back. Perhaps we'll have both Cersei and Dany becoming mad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, LanMandragoran said:

During both the TV show and books, my impression of Daenerys is that of a good character faced with hard dilemmas. Yes, sometimes she is brutal, like with the slavers and enemies in war. Other times she is fierce and threatening, like with Qarth and  Cersei, but at no times does she hate innocent  civilians so much she puts them on fire. The books are currently struggling with the Meereenese knot and GRRM can't seem to get past that; and I am wondering if it is because he is going to have to start turning Daenerys more unstable from that moment. He can't wait until the final chapters of the book series for her to start making maniacal decisions. It has to come with the Winds of Winter, and if he had published the books already, her change into the Mad Queen would not have been so surprising.

A: You're making a lot definitive statements about what GRRm does intend to do, which you know..that you have no idea what's in his head.

B: And far more importantly, he is not struggling at all. Dany in the books is stuck in Meereen for one obvious reason: Aegon hasn't finished his conquest of Westeros.

GRRM intends for a second Dance of Dragons to happen, now what will be the outcome of that..i don't know but a dance is what we will get. It wouldn't be much of a dance if they both landed on the same time, and started double teaming the poor Westerosi, now would it?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, MagicPen said:

A: You're making a lot definitive statements about what GRRm does intend to do, which you know..that you have no idea what's in his head.

B: And far more importantly, he is not struggling at all. Dany in the books is stuck in Meereen for one obvious reason: Aegon hasn't finished his conquest of Westeros.

GRRM intends for a second Dance of Dragons to happen, now what will be the outcome of that..i don't know but a dance is what we will get. It wouldn't be much of a dance if they both landed on the same time, and started double teaming the poor Westerosi, now would it?

 

C. You don't know either what is in his head. And yet, you make the same definitive statements. Ironic, isn't it?

D. If he is not struggeling, he is then lying, because he has stated in several interviews (you can look it up) that he is "struggeling". In fact, he has used the term "struggeling". Either he is struggeling, or he isn't writing. These are the two only options, when you can't deliver a book, and you already have four years of delay. I don't think he is lying.

So, stop being rude and a smartass, when you aren't much informed. 

Edited by T and A

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×