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The Book of The Kingsguard - Help Me Decide

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I found the scene was one of the few that had any emotional weight in the finale, and it's very in keeping with Brienne's character to see the good in people, and to do a final act of love for Jamie by giving his life the best spin possible.

As far as Jamie's redemption or not, we won't know unless the books come out. The show has sometimes made things more explicitly clear than the books, like Theon's castration, so it's certainly possible since the showrunners said they went through all the main characters w/GRRM, that Jamie's redemption ultimately falls short, especially as the show specifically has him say he would have sieged RR and killed everyone if necessary, and that event is left much more grey in the books as to how far he would have gone if pushed.  The show tells me he will die with Cersei, but not necessarily the context, if he may kill her, intend to kill  her, intend to reunite and then see finally how evil she is and redeem himself in the last minutes.  

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On 5/21/2019 at 10:11 AM, #FreeGhost said:

I'm not sure how I feel about the scene with Ser Brienne completing Jaime's chapter in the book of the Kingsguard. At first, it was "oh, at least they're giving credence to that." However, in the book canon, that Kingsguard book is central to Jaime's redemption arc. Also, it seems that they're using it t gloss over the catastrophe that was Jaime's show character. To me, this was almost troll-level insulting. Like D&D were going out of their way to drop a final 'screw you' to the book readers. Equal parts touching and insulting to me.

For me, it was just a poor attempt at trying to be poignant. I find the notion that Jaime is an addict who cannot reform quite fatalistic. And that is leaving aside the fact that he went from trying to stay with brienne to going back to cersei in the span of half an episode.

With arya and gendry and Jaime and brienne, had the show not had them get together, it wouldve been better imo. Of course id still hate the ending, but it wouldn't feel like the show runners went.out of their way to give me the middle finger.

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15 minutes ago, RFL said:

I can't believe no one wonders how that book, kept in the Red Keep, still exists.  

 

Oh, but the destruction of the Red Keep was just another plot device. Once it's purpose is fulfilled, as in being a justification for the murder of Dany, it no longer actually happened. ;)

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1 hour ago, Gendelsdottir said:

and repeated that vile canard about Tyrion murdering Joffrey. :)

And Brienne had all the power to alter it but chose to let that slander on Tyrion linger.

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And that is leaving aside the fact that he went from trying to stay with brienne to going back to cersei in the span of half an episode.

Addicts seldom plan the fall.  Jaime was looking at everything he had in the north, a life he could continue with, and the siren call of his addiction started in the silence of the night.  I don't think it was that poorly done.  Its not like he weighed them out and found Cersei the better choice.  Precisely that he was never able to see that she was not is why I think it was an addiction.  

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1 hour ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

It is not clear that this is his motivation. He does at one point, after repeated prodding from Cersei, say "Listen chic our child won't ever be born if the dead come South" but it clearly isn't his main motivation because what he argues more is that they gave their word to fight. That the battle is the living vs the dead. 

I understand human nature perfectly fine but this was not presented as a drunken one night stand & while the dead being out of the way does give him time to reflect on what to do next - he doesn't do that. There is no clear motivation for his decision to return to Cersei - none shown anyway. You choose to believe there was some thinking & contemplating done that isn't shown, I personally am tired of all the things supposedly done that aren't shown & think that D&D use this as an excuse for their plot holes & lazy writing. 

He did indeed come to the decision over night. That's the issue. The VERY night before he says he is staying in WF. Next morning he isn't. If something happened in between that time to change his decision it should have been told. 

Again that's just an incredibly basic way of thinking about it. What you want is for everything in his arc to be detailed, explained and justified. It's not bad writing to not show him thinking over it in excruciating detail. I'm really not sure what you wanted. Did you want for him to sit down and write a list for the pros and cons of leaving? He's an incredibly complicated character and many of his decisions haven't been thought through (case in point, charging at Dany in the Battle of the Goldroad). Even he doesn't know what he wants best, but he thinks he wants Cersei most of all. He took time to come to this conclusion and even tried to settle down for a different life for just a brief moment but realised he couldn't sit still and let Cersei and his child die. It's not at all out of character for Jaime and was the perfect ending for his character. We don't need to be spoonfed every second of his rash decision.

He kept his oath, went North to fight the dead and then had sex with the woman he admired. He reflected and realised that he still loved Cersei and he couldn't let her or his child die. He redeemed himself by keeping his oath and now he's doing what he believes is best which is trying to save his family. 

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I know this is controversial but I am not sure he went back for love. I think he left love with Brienne and went back because of his kingsguard vow, Jaime has always been tied by vows and spends his time navigating contradictory vows.

He was still a queens guard and went back to uphold his vow, and that is what Brienne writes in the book at the end.

I think it makes his ending more tragic, he came close to redemption but the system brought him back down.

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Posted (edited)
25 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

He's an incredibly complicated character and many of his decisions haven't been thought through (case in point, charging at Dany in the Battle of the Goldroad). Even he doesn't know what he wants best, but he thinks he wants Cersei most of all. He took time to come to this conclusion and even tried to settle down for a different life for just a brief moment but realised he couldn't sit still and let Cersei and his child die. It's not at all out of character for Jaime and was the perfect ending for his character. We don't need to be spoonfed every second of his rash decision.

The characters' decisions in the past few seasons have often not been well explained at all. 
Jamie left Cersei, not just to keep an oath, but to break up with her. Certainly that's how Cersei understood it, why else send an assassin after him if he was supposed to come back...? I think it's fair to claim that it's how the audience was supposed to understand it as well. The Brienne romance only made that expectation stronger. To send him back in the way the show runners did, only to "subvert our expectations" yet again, was cheap. 

The story needs to make sense, or it's just a string of random events, not a story.

For those who thinks his choice makes sense, that is fine. I won't argue with you. You enjoyed it, and that's ultimately the goal of entertainment. However, Jamie's arc is still an example of the storytelling craft executed poorly, since there were missing scenes to explain Jamie's change of heart in the end.

Edited by Vanadis

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1 minute ago, Vanadis said:

The characters' decisions in the past few seasons have often not been well explained at all. 
Jamie left Cersei, not just to keep an oath, but to break up with her. Certainly that's how Cersei understood it, why else send an assassin after him if he was supposed to come back...? I think it's fair to claim that it's how the audience was supposed to understand it as well. The Brienne romance only made that expectation stronger. To send him back in the way the show runners did, only to "subvert our expectations" yet again, was cheap. 

The story needs to make sense, or it's just a string of random events, not a story.

For those who thinks is actions make sense, that is fine. I won't argue with you. You enjoyed it, and that's ultimately the goal of entertainment. However, Jamie's arc is still an example of the storytelling craft executed poorly, since there were missing scenes to explain Jamie's change of heart in the end.

Again I disagree entirely with it being executed poorly. As I mentioned, I think it's genuinely one of the few things they executed perfectly. The problem is people are expecting Jaime and Cersei's relationship to be simple. They were in love, Cersei made Jaime angry, Jaime left Cersei, they broke up. This is just not the case. Like with most bad relationships, Jaime was addicted to his partner. Having sex with Brienne was just resolution for Jaime that Cersei was the only woman he ever truly loved. He admired Brienne greatly but he never truly loved her, he explains this in his own twisted way just before he leaves. Yes, Cersei did think Jaime had left her completely (as far as Jaime was concerned, he probably thought the same) but it doesn't make it bad writing for Jaime to go back on this. It just makes him a more complicated character. He knows Cersei is bad for him and he knows Cersei technically deserves to be executed but in the end, he can't justify himself not to at least try and save her. You don't need a long drawn out conversation between Jaime and Brienne to understand what Jaime wants. All you need to see is his impulsive instinct to try and save his sister and be with her. You can try to kick a habit but that doesn't mean it wont just come back to you. Jaime is a flawed and tragic character.

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57 minutes ago, RFL said:

 

Addicts seldom plan the fall.  Jaime was looking at everything he had in the north, a life he could continue with, and the siren call of his addiction started in the silence of the night.  I don't think it was that poorly done.  Its not like he weighed them out and found Cersei the better choice.  Precisely that he was never able to see that she was not is why I think it was an addiction.  

If we are talking about Jaime specifically, he seemed to be weighing things. They had him stay up at night thinking.

Even if he didn't weigh anyhting and abruptly decide to leave, I disagree with that characterization of Jaime. I dont think he wouldve done it, certainly not after cersei sent bronn to kill him.

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2 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Again I disagree entirely with it being executed poorly. As I mentioned, I think it's genuinely one of the few things they executed perfectly. The problem is people are expecting Jaime and Cersei's relationship to be simple. They were in love, Cersei made Jaime angry, Jaime left Cersei, they broke up. This is just not the case. Like with most bad relationships, Jaime was addicted to his partner. Having sex with Brienne was just resolution for Jaime that Cersei was the only woman he ever truly loved. He admired Brienne greatly but he never truly loved her, he explains this in his own twisted way just before he leaves. Yes, Cersei did think Jaime had left her completely (as far as Jaime was concerned, he probably thought the same) but it doesn't make it bad writing for Jaime to go back on this. It just makes him a more complicated character. He knows Cersei is bad for him and he knows Cersei technically deserves to be executed but in the end, he can't justify himself not to at least try and save her. You don't need a long drawn out conversation between Jaime and Brienne to understand what Jaime wants. All you need to see is his impulsive instinct to try and save his sister and be with her. You can try to kick a habit but that doesn't mean it wont just come back to you. Jaime is a flawed and tragic character.

Except we don't know that. The show never explained his rationale for going back to cersei. Which is why I think it was done really badly.

Jaime was certainly flawed, but spending so much time with his redemption arc made the end unsatisfactory for me. Had he died trying to kill cersei, it would have made more sense.

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Just now, Apoplexy said:

Except we don't know that. The show never explained his rationale for going back to cersei. Which is why I think it was done really badly.

Jaime was certainly flawed, but spending so much time with his redemption arc made the end unsatisfactory for me. Had he died trying to kill cersei, it would have made more sense.

The show explained it as best as it could have done, it really was something that didn't need explaining. Jaime had his redemption arc, he redeemed himself entirely by keeping his oath and fighting for the living. Going back to King's Landing to kill Cersei would have been backwards character development. Why would he go back to King's Landing to kill a defenceless woman he his own child. Jaime knew he loved Cersei and he knew he was the only one who could help her through all of this. It's why he agreed with Tyrion's idea to have them both sail off and start a new life somewhere else. Jaime loved Cersei and wanted nothing more than to start a new life with her and the child. She put him through a lot but he still loved her. It doesn't need explaining beyond that. He loves her and he's one of the only people who truly understands her. That's the rationale.

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Posted (edited)

You do know this show is about failure right?  What if Jaime's redemption ultimately failed, he relapsed, and went back and died with Cersei.  It would be almost as shocking as if Ned Stark failed to prevent Joffrey from being king or if Robb Stark failed to avenge the death of his father.  What set the story apart from traditional stories is that it was not always about the hero (or anti-hero, or reformed villain) succeeding.  

Addicts struggle with relapse.  They will try "everything" to prevent it but sometimes you fall back to the familiar.  

Edited by RFL

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2 minutes ago, RFL said:

You do know this show is about failure right?  What if Jaime's redemption ultimately failed, he relapsed, and went back and died with Cersei. 

That is all well and good, but it can't come out of nowhere. They can't spend 8 seasons having him go from NY to LA and then, what, two episodes going back to NY? (Not trying to compare the cities to the fair maidens...)

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1 minute ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

The show explained it as best as it could have done, it really was something that didn't need explaining. 

I disagree wholeheartedly. It could've been done differently and needed explaining after Jaime left cersei knowing she was pregnant.

 

2 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Jaime had his redemption arc, he redeemed himself entirely by keeping his oath and fighting for the living. 

He never fought for the dead and didn't need redemption for that.

He needed to redeem himself from being under cersei's thumb always and doing stupid things for her.

5 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Going back to King's Landing to kill Cersei would have been backwards character development. Why would he go back to King's Landing to kill a defenceless woman he his own child. 

Cersei wasn't defenseless and he has a history of killing a king to save the defenseless people of KL.

7 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Jaime knew he loved Cersei and he knew he was the only one who could help her through all of this. It's why he agreed with Tyrion's idea to have them both sail off and start a new life somewhere else. 

He may have loved cersei, but he left her. People can break up with people despite of loving them.

 

9 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Jaime loved Cersei and wanted nothing more than to start a new life with her and the child. She put him through a lot but he still loved her. 

Why did the show have him leave her then. Had he stayed in KL and died protecting her, it wouldve made much more sense.

10 minutes ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

It doesn't need explaining beyond that. . That's the rationale.

Again, I disagree.

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8 minutes ago, RFL said:

You do know this show is about failure right?  

I don't and it isn't.

 

8 minutes ago, RFL said:

  What if Jaime's redemption ultimately failed, he relapsed, and went back and died with Cersei. 

A possibility, but it would be poor writing.

 

9 minutes ago, RFL said:

It would be almost as shocking as if Ned Stark failed to prevent Joffrey from being king or if Robb Stark failed to avenge the death of his father.  

Shocking doesn't always make for good storytelling.

And it's a whole different discussion why this instance is different from the ned stark beheading.

11 minutes ago, RFL said:

  What set the story apart from traditional stories is that it was not always about the hero (or anti-hero, or reformed villain) succeeding.  .  

For me, it was too nihilistic.Which I thought was really bad storytelling.

 

14 minutes ago, RFL said:

Addicts struggle with relapse.  They will try "everything" to prevent it but sometimes you fall back to the familiar.  

Again, if we are specifically talking about Jaime, it was out of character.

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1 hour ago, The Baelish Mockingbird said:

Again that's just an incredibly basic way of thinking about it. What you want is for everything in his arc to be detailed, explained and justified. It's not bad writing to not show him thinking over it in excruciating detail. I'm really not sure what you wanted. Did you want for him to sit down and write a list for the pros and cons of leaving? He's an incredibly complicated character and many of his decisions haven't been thought through (case in point, charging at Dany in the Battle of the Goldroad). Even he doesn't know what he wants best, but he thinks he wants Cersei most of all. He took time to come to this conclusion and even tried to settle down for a different life for just a brief moment but realised he couldn't sit still and let Cersei and his child die. It's not at all out of character for Jaime and was the perfect ending for his character. We don't need to be spoonfed every second of his rash decision.

He kept his oath, went North to fight the dead and then had sex with the woman he admired. He reflected and realised that he still loved Cersei and he couldn't let her or his child die. He redeemed himself by keeping his oath and now he's doing what he believes is best which is trying to save his family. 

Where did I say I wanted everything to be detailed,  explained & justified in his arc? Nor did I say it was bad writing to not show him thinking over it in excruciating detail. It's bad writing to have a character in a redemption arc turn 180 degrees with NO reason or justification. You insist he did think it through & took time to make his decision. Where in the show has any of this been indicated even a little? 

You can think it's the perfect ending to Jaime & I can think it's not - that's the beauty of having our own minds, own opinions, & thinking for ourselves. 

You are grasping at straws & assuming things that, while may make sense, didn't happen. If it allows you to enjoy the arc by believing it did - that's great. I just can't. 

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6 minutes ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Where did I say I wanted everything to be detailed,  explained & justified in his arc? Nor did I say it was bad writing to not show him thinking over it in excruciating detail. It's bad writing to have a character in a redemption arc turn 180 degrees with NO reason or justification. You insist he did think it through & took time to make his decision. Where in the show has any of this been indicated even a little? 

You can think it's the perfect ending to Jaime & I can think it's not - that's the beauty of having our own minds, own opinions, & thinking for ourselves. 

You are grasping at straws & assuming things that, while may make sense, didn't happen. If it allows you to enjoy the arc by believing it did - that's great. I just can't. 

I don't think it is a 180 on his redemption arc. He had been fully redeemed at that point. The problem is that you're considering him going back to Cersei to be an irredeemable act if you think it is a complete 180 for his character. He's not going back to Cersei to rule over the Kingdoms with her, he's going back to try and save her, both physically and mentally. He helped save the Seven Kingdoms and now he wants to save the woman he loved. He wants to save her from Dany and he wants to save her from herself.He's not undoing anything which he previously went through, he is a better man now. He's not given up on Cersei though. Staying in Winterfell would have been backwards character development. He would have essentially decided that he doesn't care about Cersei or his unborn child at that point.

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Its a horrible ending FOR Jaime but I believe its a perfectly reasonable one to occur.  Am I happy about it?  No.  In the end I was really really rooting for Jaime to find happiness, to be the great knight he ultimately wanted to be, and to rise to the occasion.  When that did not happen I was rooting for him to find a real human connection outside of codependent narcissism with Cersei - which I will admit I thought he had broken the cycle of.   

But Jaime relapsing and ultimately Cersei dying as "collateral damage" of the Red Keep (not being killed by one of our heros directly) was reasonable.  A great story?  Not sure.  I had begun to like the story for its surprised and the idea that the heros are sometimes ill defined and unsuccessful.  

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Am I the only one who thinks Jaime's character arc isn't a circle, its just a dot.  He never changed or grew.  There was no redemption arc.  The most honorable thing he ever did was before season 1, so the Jaime we saw in the first episode throwing Bran out a window was the same guy who sacrificed his honor for the people of King's Landing.  He would always do whatever it took to be with Cersei but all the while retaining a sense of duty that had been long ingrained into his mind .  We may have learned about his greatest sacrifice later on in the show but the fact is the deed was done long before he confessed it to Brienne so that hardly counts as redemption, just revelation.  I don't believe there was a version of Jaime in any season where he wouldn't throw Bran out of that window for Cersei.  Remember Jaime in the Riverlands?

 

I don't get why I keep seeing people say how fitting it was to see Jaime come full circle when he really just spent 8 seasons standing still.  He's not a better man in the end, he's not a changed man, I guess his hair got darker but that's about it.

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