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Tyrion1991

Should Martin have ended the War of Five Kings?

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Posted (edited)

So I got introduced to the show and then the books entirely on the recommendation that “oh it has this girl who’s basically the Dragonborn”. But delightfully there was more than just Danys story. Really, if Stannis wasn’t keeping the throne warm for Dany I’d like him a lot more.

The War is just very riveting. All the different factions, the family disputes between Tyrion and Tywin, Renly and Stannis. Theon and the Ironborns betrayal. The Red Wedding. It’s easily the most compelling aspect of the series for me in Westeros.

That being said, I think GRRM killing off Rob Stark, ending the Baratheon threat entirely at Blackwater, using the Tyrell’s as a dues ex machina to bring the war to a conclusion was questionable. By the end of Swords, Stannis is the only one left standing and he’s so far from the capital that he’s almost out of the story at this point.

I feel this was a mistake. For one a lot of these characters were very interesting and had great potential. Tywin vs Dany. Rob Stark vs Stannis. We MIGHT still get Dany vs Stannis but Iam doubtful. GRRM chose to sever these potential plot threads. If the whole story had ended with ASOS then fine; but it didn’t. 

Also, if you kill that many big characters and intend to continue the story then you have to bring in New Blood which can be a little awkward. Euron gets a few lines of text and suddenly it’s “a thousand ships and my dragon horn”.  Dorne is earned I feel because it is hinted they are up to no good. But even then I don’t feel Euron is a good replacement for Tywin.

In resolving this war GRRM basically has to do another Game of Thrones book to set up the next war. I suspect a lot of the travelogues are really laying the groundwork for this. But why set up a new war when you already have an existing one that was working fine?

I am not entirely sold that Aegon, Arriane, Cersei, Margery, Littlefinger and Euron will be as compelling a conflict as the War of the Five Kings. 

One of the problems is that this new war is too removed from the original core cast. Which I consider to be the group that travelled to Winterfell and their immediate relatives. Roberts brothers. Theons father. Rob and Joffrey obviously. All the contenders are very closely linked.

Now, we have Euron who Theon barely knew. The Dornish who are outside the circle entirely. The same is true of the Tyrell’s. You don’t have the Stark, Baratheon, Lannister and Ironborn focus that was personified and seeded wonderfully by GRRM in the Kings Arrival at Winterfell.

 

Edited by Tyrion1991

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7 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

Now, we have Euron who Theon barely knew. The Dornish who are outside the circle entirely. The same is true of the Tyrell’s. You don’t have the Stark, Baratheon, Lannister and Ironborn focus that was personified and seeded wonderfully by GRRM in the Kings Arrival at Winterfell.

The Stark children are in transition and training.  They will be back in a big way.  Bet on it.  Jon, despite being stabbed, isn't leaving the story either.  Cersei is still a major player, and Jaime probably is as well.  Stannis, despite being in the frozen North, isn't likely to give up either.  As Tywin said "This is Stannis we're talking about.  He will fight to the bitter end, and then some."

And that isn't even counting Daenerys, who is likely to make her move (finally) in the next book.

The core characters are all still around, and still in position to play a prominent role going forward.

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1 minute ago, Nevets said:

The Stark children are in transition and training.  They will be back in a big way.  Bet on it.  Jon, despite being stabbed, isn't leaving the story either.  Cersei is still a major player, and Jaime probably is as well.  Stannis, despite being in the frozen North, isn't likely to give up either.  As Tywin said "This is Stannis we're talking about.  He will fight to the bitter end, and then some."

And that isn't even counting Daenerys, who is likely to make her move (finally) in the next book.

The core characters are all still around, and still in position to play a prominent role going forward.

 

Thats still quite a way off. I am not envisaging Sansa or Jon taking over until late TWOW. Whereas Rob was already fighting battles in GoT and made King.

We do have Cersei but before the conflict was Stark vs Lannister or Lannister vs Baratheon. Now it’s Cersei vs Tyrell and Aegon. It’s removed from the core conflicts between those original characters. Same with Sansa and Theon who are all isolated from one another.

Stannis might take the North in Winds. But really this is the issue. In Clash you felt like all of the wars were interlinked and feeding into one another. Ironborn take Winterfell this effects Rob in the Riverlands. We don’t see that anymore. Stannis, Euron, Cersei, Aegon, they’re all doing their own thing. It feels less grand and high stakes. 

I really can’t imagine Dany reaching Westeros in Winds. Resolving the Dothraki, Mereen and meeting up with Tyrion is ambitious enough for one book. Plus, honestly, Danys not in the circle of core characters because she wasn’t in the Kings Arrival at Winterfell or an immediate family member. There isn’t a history of conflict that began with that fateful meeting. She’s always been separate from the bulk of the story. It will be incredibly difficult to introduce her.

So yeah I think this loss of focus on the core cast is partly the result of ending the War of Five Kings. George has to focus on the disparate struggles instead of the core conflicts.

 

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2 hours ago, Tyrion1991 said:

 

Thats still quite a way off. I am not envisaging Sansa or Jon taking over until late TWOW. Whereas Rob was already fighting battles in GoT and made King.

We do have Cersei but before the conflict was Stark vs Lannister or Lannister vs Baratheon. Now it’s Cersei vs Tyrell and Aegon. It’s removed from the core conflicts between those original characters. Same with Sansa and Theon who are all isolated from one another.

Stannis might take the North in Winds. But really this is the issue. In Clash you felt like all of the wars were interlinked and feeding into one another. Ironborn take Winterfell this effects Rob in the Riverlands. We don’t see that anymore. Stannis, Euron, Cersei, Aegon, they’re all doing their own thing. It feels less grand and high stakes. 

I really can’t imagine Dany reaching Westeros in Winds. Resolving the Dothraki, Mereen and meeting up with Tyrion is ambitious enough for one book. Plus, honestly, Danys not in the circle of core characters because she wasn’t in the Kings Arrival at Winterfell or an immediate family member. There isn’t a history of conflict that began with that fateful meeting. She’s always been separate from the bulk of the story. It will be incredibly difficult to introduce her.

So yeah I think this loss of focus on the core cast is partly the result of ending the War of Five Kings. George has to focus on the disparate struggles instead of the core conflicts.

 

I think the books are gonna be close to the show when it comes to how dany deals with mereen. The dorthaki respect strength and cavalry and dany rides a dragon so... they will unite behind her most likely. She goes to mereen on drogon and kills her enemies similar to the show. The rest of essos will likely realize the futility of fighting her and sort of give into her demands although we all know it will be temporary. Then she gathers the insane amount of soldiers and heads to westeros. Obviously tyrion will be in there somewhere and there are alot of smaller details but thats the gist of it. I expect that either by the end of winds of winter or in the first quarter of the next book we will see dany on the throne or will get as far as she will get.

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There are good reasons for GRRM to keep the wars pretty short and keep the story moving, and that also means that wars must have their outcomes.

For one thing, if the War of Five Kings didn't get a resolution, risk is that the series would get hopelessly convoluted even by Asoiaf standards. Unlike, to my knowledge, the real Middle Ages decisive battles to settle the score once and for all seems to be just as, or even more, favored than, an endless dance of the armies doing raiding, counter-raiding, ambushes, sieges, counter-sieges and so on for years on end in Westeros.

We see some of this later in northern part of the War of Five Kings with Robb and Tywin not engaging in a single all-out battle but prefer to, or at least Tywin prefered to, wage war to conserve his strength and not gamble everything on a single showdown. But most else I can see its about armies seeking out each other, as they did in the Conquest, the Dance and, as far as I know, also in the Blackfyre Rebellions, and Robert's Rebellion, to fight it out and settle the score in a day. It would make for some pretty weird set of happenings to prevent the war being settled fairly quickly with so many great armies involved and with this attitude. Or an endless grind which almost goes nowhere and where the readers might simple be bored that no resolution is reached by four or five books, its just endlessly more of the same raids, sieges and manouvering.

Imagine a war that is like this: Robb goes around in the West to raid but can't get to Lannisport or Casterly Rock and so force the issue, Tywin sits in Harrenhall with a clear road down to King's Landing in case something would happen. Stannis sits on Dragonstone and raids the coasts while the massive Reach-Stormlander army is spread out across half the continient to not die of illness or starve to death while futially trying to besiege King's Landing but can't due to the threat of Tywin moving down on their rear. And the Ironmen are all over the coasts on the western half of Westeros. Then comes Aegon, and he takes Storm's End! Before he is sealed up in Storm's End and is then sealed in that and a few more castles by Reach-Stormlander forces, before some change sides and the war goes down into Aegon sitting in some castles, his enemies in a few other castles, and that's how it looks for the rest of the story. Then finally come Danaerys and with dragons resolute the whole affair in a half book, which has essentially been in a stalemate for some four or five books. Probably not very interesting to its better to keep the action moving.

Thus I would think that GRRM chose to have quick and decisive wars that can keep us interested an then move the story on.

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Posted (edited)

The biggest alternative would have been Stannis taking as much of the Stormland's forces that survived being murdered by Tarly, and marching north to intercept Tywin Lannister and try to link up with Riverlanders and the Northmen to catch the Lannister forces and destroy them. Or at the very least, put himself in between Tywin and King's Landing, and allow his blockade to continue along with the war interfering with every other method of supplying the city. 

This engenders the possibility of Robb gathering some braincells, tossing his crown at Stannis' feet, and telling some of his bannermen to stuff it. He does this early enough and they will listen. And the Riverlords have no grudge against Stannis, so several of them would already be marching with Stannis forces. And if it is Stannis' forces that help trap Clegane and kill him, Edmure will already love him. 

Even though Clegane isn't nearly as dumb as GRRM would like to say, given his talent and success in story. He may well hear the reports about Stormlord forces, and begin retreating back towards Tywin's forces.

But that leaves a few things open, namely if Stannis is obviously doing that, then Tywin will either retreat or bumrush to King's Landing and try to bust open the way for his men's loot to reach the city, providing some relief, and then possibly recruiting from the city itself

If Tywin retreats back to the Westerlands, he will be preserving his force in the field, HIS fields, while also keeping the 3rd army he is raising secure from being murdered in the crib

And none of this takes the Tyrells out of the picture, so a Reach and Westerlands alliance is still on the cards. And with the Westerlands secured and Tywin having another army coming up, the partnership won't be as onesided as it was.

So making some assumptions.

Stannis nixxes the plan to smash right in to King's Landing, realizing it leaves him too exposed should the Tyrells come out to fight for once and should Tywin choose his daughter and grandchildren over his own lands. Stannis orders his sell sails to tighten the noose around King's Landing letting nothing in or out, and to harrass everything around that coast as well. And I just realized Myrcella got smuggled through all of that....how the fuck?!

 

Anyways, he marches up to the Riverlands, on a clear path away from King's Landing and towards to battle front. Word of this makes it to everyone, Sir Gregor is sent word to remain in the field and harry and harass and scout. He does so. Stannis makes it to the Riverlands and combining with the local Riverlords, he puts an end to the raiding. Robb hears about Stannis' march north and decides to link up with him and forestall the Oxcross attack and the pillaging of the Westerlands.

 

Tywin decides to retreat away from Harrenhal and ride back west, while sending an offer of alliance and marriage to the Tyrell's. He knows he is danger of being surrounded.

 

The Tyrell's accept, and also march forth and begin occupying parts of the Stormlands while sending another force upwards towards King's Landing on the Rose Road, and sending the Redwyne fleet around Westeros to try and lift a siege instead of staging one. This is both to attempt to draw Stannis away and secure King's Landing.

 

The siege in King's Landing isn't conveniently lifted by the end of the blockade or the relief force of Tywin and the Tyrell's. It continues, and gets worse. More riots break out. 

Stannis, Edmure and Robb secure the Riverlands and seize a few forts on the border. Robb marries Roslin Frey. He sends a relief to take a force up to the North and go around Moat Cailin and fight off the Iron Born, while leaving keeping around half of his forces in the South.

Ser Stafford forces link up with Tywin's and also link up with a Reach contingent, and they march forth once again.

King's Landing begins decivilizing as the Redwyne fleet engages Stannis' naval forces and the fighting between Reachmen and Stannis' men heats up, as Stannis is continuing to starve King's Landing into submission. The Redwyne fleet breaks through, rescues the Lannisters as their forces sally forth from the Red Keep to the port. The Wildfire is ignited even as the riots break the gates wide open and Stannis men start pouring in.

 

They manage to escape, Stannis only losing a few hundred men. The war goes on, with Stannis' fleet broken in half and the Redwyne fleet severely brutalized by fighting in and out of Blackwater bay.

 

Robb is released to the North and back to Winterfell to mourne over his dead brothers and bring Roslin back, with a small contingent left to Stannis. Roose managed to get Walda anyways and is more than happy to see his bastard executed instead of rewarded. 

 

King's Landing is a total fucking loss, but Stannis' men loot the remains for the gold of the people, finding plenty or enough. Stannis moves to move the "throne" somewhere else. The Vale's intransigence gets addressed, and Lysa is overthrown one way or another, and Valemen finally join the fight. The Reach starts looking for a way out, but Tywin is determined to see this through the bitterend and offers Balon an offer of alliance while also asking Dorne to join the fight.

 

Robb puts the Wildlings down, and executes Theon, then goes around evicting the rest of the Ironborn

An invasion of the Westerlands occurs simultaneously with Stannis waging a campaign to reclaim the Stormlands and march into the outer Reachlands..........

 

EDIT: The preoccupation of Dany's Dragons as being gamechangers bugs me to no end. Every mention of a Dragon being an unstoppable gamechanger is from Dragons that are atleast a century old and anything worht talking about over ten years old. Yeah sure, Drogon is growing fast, but still.

Edited by Vashon
incompltete

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How is Tyrell army arriving Deus ex machina? It was completely logical so it can't be. Deus ex machina would be Tywin on a dragon burning the Baratheon fleet. 

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At the very least, Storm wouldn't be what it is if he hadn't. 

This is a fundamental choice in the direction of the books. I think Martin is a good enough writer to have made the story work in a different direction, but it is this that makes ASoIaF what it is. He is using profound earth-shattering consequences as part of the narrative, which is why the books as a whole have such impact. 

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And when having characters act dumb for whatever plot convenient reason isnt available, teleporting eunuch ex machinas are used.

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5 hours ago, Vashon said:

And when having characters act dumb for whatever plot convenient reason isnt available, teleporting eunuch ex machinas are used.

Do you hint that no real life leader ever makes any mistakes or bad decisions?

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5 minutes ago, Lion of the West said:

Do you hint that no real life leader ever makes any mistakes or bad decisions?

[Mutt goblin face]

"Duuurrrr, nerbidy is perfik BROOOO"

Name a reason besides plot convenience that Ramsay survives long enough to be the torture porn technician we know him as? Not the Watsonian reasoning, the Doylist reasoning. The Watsonian reasoning is the ever convenient "Psychic powers as biological E-War to make peoples dumb" that was slipped in. And even then its pretty stupid.

"Ramsay"

Ill get loyal men to help you hold it.

And duurrrrp Theon never considers who these men would be loyal to.

Its a significantly greater fuckup than Elphinstone in Afghanistan, widely considered the world champion at epic stupidity and bungling a military operation due to believing the locals.

That entire segment of Ramsay, from getting captured then used as a tool then castrating Theon was literally just Bad Guy Wins porn, poorly concieved from start to climax. Ramsay didn't need to be captured, he could have been in the Dreadfort, hiding from the consequences. The backstory makes it even dumber that anyone in his party would have been taken alive at all. And it was written as a "Hark, an EVIL torture loving VILLAINOUSLY VILLAINOUS VILLAIN committing heinous acts of VILLAINY". Just like real life medieval lands.

Except not. The worst excesses were entirely kept within the bounds of the local fiefdom, and whenever it affected the nobility, ala Elizabeth Bathory, the nobility would not fucking tolerate that shit.

 

Like yeah, its patently obvious that some comeuppance is about to be paid, but getting there, from Ramsay's side, was a bit much and contrived. That and Varys Diabolous Ex Machina. 

 

Actually you know what? Defend THAT. Do it. I want to see that shit get defended.

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Pro tip number 1 :

NEVER under estimate the power of THE GRRM.....

You think Tyrion is clever? 

GRRM made Tyrion. 

You think you care about the story?

GRRM made you care about the story.

What GRRM made you believe, GRRM will take what you believe away.

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Personally I am surprised that almost nobody who

1) first fights a duel with heir of house Stark

2) claims that he had slept with both wives of ruling heads of houses Stark and Arryn

3) is lover of wife of HotK and could be real father of next lord Arryn

4) is stealing from the crown and almost certainly also making a lot of people hating him by his other economical scams

5) has tendency to make people hate him

6) is a weakling

is still alive. After all if some petty noble would disappear or had nasty accident no VIP would really care.

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That's different. And he WAS confronted about the finances but Robert didn't give a shit. And Robert didn't give a shit about the Gold Cloaks getting corrupted either, and apparently neither did Renly. One was apathetic to a fault and the other was completely fucking useless. And Jon Arryn didn't do much to stop it either or push much about it.

The only person who has cause to try and murder Littlefinger is Tyrion, and Tyrion was kept busy and Littlefinger made himself both useful and scarce in the same move by offering to broker the Tyrell-Lannister marriage, and after that, Tywin was in charge and there was nothing Tyrion could do with Littlefinger without hard proof.

After that, Littlefinger again makes himself both scarce and useful by getting the fuck out of King's Landing and up to the Vale. Where Lysa, while having been surprisingly competent at keeping control and restraining the Vale Lords, has done few favors to defend her sanity. 

And without good proof, the Valelords have nothing to pin on Littlefinger, while having plenty reason to keep him around. Lots of bribery related reasons and also lots of rational reasons of convenience. And I also suspect that Lord Arryn never had much negative to say about him either, and if he ever did, it was in relation to outrageous demands from Robert and exasperation with Robert. But even then, all the Valelords would have known that Jon Arryn had the power to dismiss Littlefinger should he want to. He didn't.

Book!Petyr Baelish went whole hog in ambition, and succeeded, but he never directly went so lowbrow vicious monster that Ramsay did. After his incident with Brandon Stark, he went out of his way to avoid anything so obvious. Slimy? Yeah.  Tv Show Baelish was serving D a D's fap session and Sophie Turner's "Imma Big Girl Now" and served up a confirmed ad identified Sansa Stark to Ramsay, when if he was going to reveal her, he could have just had her betrothe and marry Sweetrobin.

Ramsay did nothing but act like a rabid animal, and an unclever one at that. Shit man, outside of actual royalty I can't think of too many instances where that kind of behavior gets anything but a murder on sight order. Roose calls him out on this. I'll organize a fucking book burning if the Bolton issue happens in even remotely the same way.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/20/2019 at 7:00 PM, Vashon said:

[Mutt goblin face]

"Duuurrrr, nerbidy is perfik BROOOO"

Oh, how cute!

Quote

Name a reason besides plot convenience that Ramsay survives long enough to be the torture porn technician we know him as? Not the Watsonian reasoning, the Doylist reasoning. The Watsonian reasoning is the ever convenient "Psychic powers as biological E-War to make peoples dumb" that was slipped in. And even then its pretty stupid.

Because Ramsay is a very craft and exploitative individual and because he is needed in both the story to be an enemy in the North to the Starks after Robb has left, and also perhaps have a role to play in the events in the North after the Red Wedding. We still haven't got the final two books to we don't know how the Bolton story will end, or not end.

Quote

"Ramsay"

Ill get loyal men to help you hold it.

And duurrrrp Theon never considers who these men would be loyal to.

Its a significantly greater fuckup than Elphinstone in Afghanistan, widely considered the world champion at epic stupidity and bungling a military operation due to believing the locals.

That ignores Theon's position. Theon is in a doomed position so priority number 1 is always get out of a situation where you are facing certain death by whatever means you have at your disposal and through whatever oppertunities presents itself. Theon is offered a one-in-a-million-odds chances to turn the tide, seeing no real way out of his situation he tries with this chance and the rest is what happens.

Quote

That entire segment of Ramsay, from getting captured then used as a tool then castrating Theon was literally just Bad Guy Wins porn, poorly concieved from start to climax. Ramsay didn't need to be captured, he could have been in the Dreadfort, hiding from the consequences. The backstory makes it even dumber that anyone in his party would have been taken alive at all. And it was written as a "Hark, an EVIL torture loving VILLAINOUSLY VILLAINOUS VILLAIN committing heinous acts of VILLAINY". Just like real life medieval lands.

Except not. The worst excesses were entirely kept within the bounds of the local fiefdom, and whenever it affected the nobility, ala Elizabeth Bathory, the nobility would not fucking tolerate that shit.

No, it was a very a part of the story to both bring some truth to what people crying for torture, blood and violence on criminals/wrongdoers is asking for. There are certainly bloodthirsty individuals but most people will have enough humanity in them to be sickened and favor a humane treatment without bloody punishments also of wrongdoers. Wrongdoers should naturally face justice but we shouldn't lose ourselves to base bloodlust and cruelty in response to suffer wrongs or hurt. That is, I would think, the message of Theon's torture but also for reasons of the plot and story.

Problem is that you have just described how it comes that Ramsay can do this and how it plays out. First Ramsay keeps his, activities, to the Bolton lands and targeting the smallfolk. And once he moves beyond it, and definietly after he targets Lady Hornwood, there's an uproar and it gets both Rodrick and the Manderlys moving to stop him. After that Ramsay is kind of hate and survives by being in a position of strength to protect himself from violent ends to this life.

Quote

Like yeah, its patently obvious that some comeuppance is about to be paid, but getting there, from Ramsay's side, was a bit much and contrived. That and Varys Diabolous Ex Machina. 

I don't even understand what you are ranting about now.

Edited by Lion of the West

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On 5/20/2019 at 2:33 PM, Loose Bolt said:

Personally I am surprised that almost nobody who

1) first fights a duel with heir of house Stark

2) claims that he had slept with both wives of ruling heads of houses Stark and Arryn

3) is lover of wife of HotK and could be real father of next lord Arryn

4) is stealing from the crown and almost certainly also making a lot of people hating him by his other economical scams

5) has tendency to make people hate him

6) is a weakling

is still alive. After all if some petty noble would disappear or had nasty accident no VIP would really care.

I always found Littlefinger's story compelling. Certainly he's not going to ever go down as being the hero, but he tried that dueling Brandon and it backfired and ended with him being humiliated. 

So he makes lies his weapon. Lies that he pushes to propel himself higher and higher. That he slept with both Tully twins to make him look better than Brandon. That he always loved Lysa because her influence with her husband helped him rise first in the Vale then in King's Landing. 

He's the real Game of Thrones. Manipulating everyone into going against one another so he can profit. He probably hates the system as much as anyone in Westeros, but he's exploiting it's flaws to his advantage at every possible opportunity.

Lord of Harrenhal, Lord Paramount of the Riverlands, Lord Protector of the Vale, he's amassing a lot of influence around himself and who knows what his real game is, if it's anything more complicated than a power play.

As you say, it's a minor miracle he's still breathing. Varys may have said no one mourns the death of Spiders, but I'd say the same is true of Mockingbirds. He's building a tall tower, but one misstep and it will come crashing down hard. 

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4 hours ago, Lord Lannister said:

He's the real Game of Thrones. Manipulating everyone into going against one another so he can profit. He probably hates the system as much as anyone in Westeros, but he's exploiting it's flaws to his advantage at every possible opportunity.

Lord of Harrenhal, Lord Paramount of the Riverlands, Lord Protector of the Vale, he's amassing a lot of influence around himself and who knows what his real game is, if it's anything more complicated than a power play.

 

This is the problem.

In a series that even after 300 years there are still bitter vassals claiming to have more right to Highgarden than the Tyrells because they were "stewards" suddenly is fine with a nobody, there is there for 2 generations, getting Harenhall and becoming a lord paramount of the riverlands (he's not even from there), while also he takes the lord of the Vale as his ward, and is never around his castle...

Littlefinger does have a very strong plot armor, no way the Tyrells involved at the purple wedding would let him alive after he stabbed Ned and Joffrey in the back.

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7 hours ago, Lion of the West said:

Because Ramsay is a very craft and exploitative individual and because he is needed in both the story to be an enemy in the North to the Starks after Robb has left

This fit in "plot convenience".

Ramsey should have been killed on the spot together with Reek. His disguise is even more dumb when you think about it. Why Rodrik was dumb enough to kill the son noble and potential heir to one of the strongest vassals of the Starks and let the peasant live?

 

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7 hours ago, Lion of the West said:

Oh, how cute!

Because Ramsay is a very craft and exploitative individual [/quote] Nah, that doesn't work

and because he is needed in both the story to be an enemy in the North to the Starks after Robb has left, and also perhaps have a role to play in the events in the North after the Red Wedding.

Because plot is Doylist reasoning, its also extremely poor reasoning

That ignores Theon's position. Theon is in a doomed position so priority number 1 is always get out of a situation

He had a multitude of other, saner, safer, and just plain better options

 

No, it was a very a part of the story to both bring some truth to what people crying for torture, blood and violence on criminals/wrongdoers is asking for.

That lesson is ruined by making a discount Hannibal Lector

 There are certainly bloodthirsty individuals but most people will have enough humanity in them to be sickened and favor a humane treatment

This is the sticking point, where things start getting really backwards, also, addresses nothing

Wrongdoers should naturally face justice but we shouldn't lose ourselves to base bloodlust and cruelty in response to suffer wrongs or hurt. That is, I would think, the message of Theon's torture

Except it doesn't work, since that isn't the reason for what happens to Theon, its merely the reason he garners almost no sympathy

 but also for reasons of the plot and story.

WEAK. It breaks down at what GRRM thought to make the origin story for him, that Ramsay effectively couldn't keep it in his pants regarding torture and serial killing. There isn't any reason for him to be taken alive like he was, isn't much reason for word of that horror to have not made it to Robb(making some assumptions here regarding scheduling), isn't much reason for, while he was alive, Robb to not want Ramsay dead anyways or give three fucks about Bolton's opinion on it, and not even much reason for Bolton to even oppose Ramsay's summary execution. There really isn't much reason, AT ALL, beyond "teehee rape and torture galllore, the worstest guys win, WEEEEEE", for Ramsay Snow to ever make it far enough to become a Bolton. Ramsay's backstory for how he ended up at Winterfell means him even making it there at all breaks down from any standpoint.

Problem is that you have just described how it comes that Ramsay can do this and how it plays out. First Ramsay keeps his, activities, to the Bolton lands and targeting the smallfolk. And once he moves beyond it, and definietly after he targets Lady Hornwood, there's an uproar and it gets both Rodrick and the Manderlys moving to stop him. After that Ramsay is kind of hate and survives by

Sheer bloody plotshielding because somebody was wacking a fat todger to the "time for some bad things to happen". Shit man, that Northern civil war is the kind of shit that should have Bolton forces under immediate suspicion while down south, and have Roose send orders to have Ramsay hunted down and executed.

I don't even understand what you are ranting about now.

Teleporting Eunuch of "Oh noes, I wrote myself into a corner". Like, Im reading the rest of the books, if they ever come out, but I am under no illusions that this is going to truly be, in terms of quality, the successor of Tolkien or George Lucas era Star Wars. To me, his Tuf Voyages are of outright high quality. Ill never touch Wheel of Time or Sword of Truth, having had them ruined for one reason or another, but A Song of Ice and Fire will always have a neat place in my heart. Just that last little bit at the end of that book.

 

Unfortunately its all that badass mystical backstory I like the most, and the inevitable "winter kills everything, swords can't stab a blizzard" ending that is coming to dash all the expectations of heroes saving the day.

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27 minutes ago, Arthur Peres said:

 

This is the problem.

In a series that even after 300 years there are still bitter vassals claiming to have more right to Highgarden than the Tyrells because they were "stewards" suddenly is fine with a nobody, there is there for 2 generations, getting Harenhall and becoming a lord paramount of the riverlands (he's not even from there), while also he takes the lord of the Vale as his ward, and is never around his castle...

Littlefinger does have a very strong plot armor, no way the Tyrells involved at the purple wedding would let him alive after he stabbed Ned and Joffrey in the back.

He's the Lord of Cursed Ruins, a thoroughly pillaged wasteland, and is locked in some mountains without hope of escape. And its very temporary at that.

Littlefinger has no known legitimate issue. So he is the very definition of a temporary problem. Meanwhile, the Tyrells are a continuing insult to petty aristocrats that have nothing better to live for.

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