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Areisius

The character assassination of Daenerys

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Hodor's Dragon said:

You're playing with words. Yes, the author is the person who gets to decide what happens, but what happens needs to make sense based on what has happened before or it sucks, regardless of whether you hang the word "characterization" on it. And speaking of words, "character assassination" is a perfectly appropriate term to use when a character's actions changes wildly, without any appropriate set-up or segue, at the very end of a lengthy work. It may have been the author's right to do that, but that doesn't mean the author is immune to criticism for his/her acts or that the critics can't sharpen their pens for descriptive terms like "character assassination" that drive home the point of what kinds of mistakes were made.

The problem here is in your statements "based on what has happened before" and "a character's actions changes wildly" which assumes a precedent scenario through which to convey character change. For example, we might have a character in the beginning of a story face a certain scenario which causes a specific reaction; then at the end of the story we have the character face that same scenario, but this time (usually due to growth in the character's understanding through the events of the story) the character will react to that same situation in a different way. That's character growth, and it works through precedent, and that allows the audience to note the character's actions have changed, reflecting a change of character.

But Dany is in an unprecedented scenario. In this regard the story is simply showing us characterization - how the character reacts to the new scenario which has never been experienced. This is no more "hanging the word 'characterization' on it" than it would be to say I'm "hanging the word 'amphibian' on frog" - that is the definition of the word. By way of analogy, it's no different than a story in which a character acts a certain way when everything is fine, but then after facing a scenario where the character loses everything for which they care, their actions aren't the same as before. We can say the character's action have "changed" but it's not the type of "change" we find with character growth which is conveyed through a precedent scenario; the character's "change" of actions isn't "based on what has happened before" it is based on what has happened to the character in the unprecedented scenario. Dany lost everything for which she cared and because of that, her reaction was what it was - thus, characterization.

I'll propose that what really happened in your mind is that you built up an image of Dany in which you thought (illogically) that you could perfectly predict her actions in any given scenario with or without precedent. In your mind "Dany would never do that!" but the problem here isn't with the characterization of Dany, it's with your thought process and inability to understand that your false image of Dany was, false. When the narrative informed you of Dany's character - through characterization - you rejected the fact of characterization and then supplanted the real character of Dany with your false image of the character, demanding in your mind that your false image is certainly the true image and, thus, cry "Character assassination!" because the character didn't hold true to the false image of your reasoning (which reasoning was based on a false premise).

I'd propose that you demonstrate this to be the case by attempting to (incorrectly) use the phrase "character assassination" as a justified criticism, thus showing that you had a "true image" of Dany in your mind which the writers (in your mind) "told untruths in order to hurt the reputation" - a reputation which you manufactured out of hasty conclusions, much like Tyrion. 

I do agree that writers aren't "immune" to criticism but that doesn't then make all criticism valid. Sometimes the criticism and condemnation of a witch-hunting mob is just the poorly thought-out, ill-informed, self-righteous herd mentality of a witch-hunting mob and the witch isn't actually a witch at all. 

 

Edited by John Meta

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26 minutes ago, John Meta said:

[…]

 Sometimes the criticism and condemnation of a witch-hunting mob is just the poorly thought-out, ill-informed, self-righteous herd mentality of a witch-hunting mob and the witch isn't actually a witch at all. 

 

Mmmm. I guess the Public Relations and social media rescue team hired by D&D has started working…

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9 hours ago, Aldarion said:

1) Actually, it is very easy for writer to make a mistake in characterization. Of course, that doesn't lead to incorrect characterization (writer cannot, by definition, be incorrect in characterizing his own character), but it does lead to bad one. You see, characterization should be consistent; if you have established person's character as being such-and-such, it should remain that way unless there is significant external influence for change.

2) D&D have put no effort in their work. It became quite clear that they never had understood the character or the motivations of the characters they were writing. Although at least in some cases it might be ambigious, but even there they eventually screwed up (for a long time you could say that Jon was using Daenerys to help his people survive, and was not actually in love with her, but they completely threw that possibility of the boat in the last season). They went out of their way to make it possible for Stannis to burn Shireen, and in fact f***ed up his characterization ever since he killed Renly, they completely cut out Young Griff and as a result screwed over Cersei and Daenerys both...

1) Most of your statement here is really general making it difficult to fully understand without some kind of specificity. A character whose actions are inconsistent would be characterization of an unpredictable character - I'm not seeing the "problem" in this. But if we do apply some specificity in the form of Dany - then are you suggesting that the "external influences" (e.g. loss of friends, loss of family, loss of love, loss of identity, loss of purpose, loss of counsel, loss of food, loss of sleep) of the unprecedented scenario which Dany faces aren't "significant"?

2) Here you make a statement but don't really support it in any meaningful way. For instance you say that "they never understood the character or the motivations of the characters they were writing" but then provide an follow-up example of Jon Snow which specifically illustrates his motivation (i.e. love). You seem to be saying (in "you could say that Jon was using Dany) that since you didn't know Jon's motivations, then the writers didn't know Jon's motivations, but I'd propose that doesn't follow at all. At any rate, we do know Jon's motivations due to the narrative as is, so I'm not sure of the point here.

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20 hours ago, Lord Stackspear said:

I could spend a lot of time addressing all of your response to my post but I'll just focus here because I think this is the crux of the debate.  With respect to GoT Seasons 1-6, I would agree that the story was complex.  There were a lot of moving pieces that were finally starting to converge into a single narrative story line.  It was going to be a difficult task for the show runners to bring the disparate story lines into focus and deliver a satisfying and logical end to the such a complex show with complex characters whose stories had been intricately told over 6 incredible seasons of story telling.   

IMO, the show runners failed.  Seasons 7 and 8 weren't too complex and complicated for people to understand.  They weren't "too smart" such that significant parts of the audience just weren't able to follow and make sense of what happened.  The seasons were rushed.  The story lines were rushed.  Things happened that simply did not make sense.  The rich, complicated, fascinating, intriguing story that was GoT became a series of dots that needed to be connected no matter how ugly the final shape appeared to viewers.  The result was a problem with the narrative story, not the audience.  People like me aren't mere casual viewers.  I've read the books twice, I watched most of the episodes in the series more times than I can count.  I've invested countless hours of my life in this story.  I'm not just upset because I'm some Dany-loving fanatic - I've never seen her as a purely "good" character.  I'm disappointed because the the narrative story the show runners decided to tell had serious flaws that did not make sense. 

More power to you if you think the last two seasons were a satisfying end to this complex story that made narrative sense and provided a satisfying ending.  I wish I were you.   

Though your reply is really just unsupported rhetoric. You say the words "serious flaws" as if the statement is just true because you can write two words. But, what are the "serious flaws"? As I've said, I've seen a ton of "serious flaws" which when evaluated weren't flaws with the narrative, they were serious flaws in the reasoning and understanding of the critics. It's one thing to dislike something, it's completely another to criticize others and help create a hostile environment under the guise of "justfied" judgment. This is how witch-hunts happen. A bunch of people moved by false rhetoric into creating a hostile environment in which innocent are hurt. This is why I'm even here interacting, not because I love interacting with the internet, but because someone has to diffuse the mob before people get hurt - which they do. Many peoples lives have been ruined by this sort of thing - innocent people who have done nothing wrong. 

An example of the complexity of this story is in the penultimate culmination of Arya's arc in the Long Night. In this episode we have eight seasons of character development setting up the pay-off of this character's arc. When you look back on Arya's story line, it takes on an entirely new signficance in that every interaction of every step of her journey is preparing her for a single moment in time versus death itself. From Jon giving her Needle to Ned allowing her to break tradition to the Waterdancer to the Faceless Men, all the way through her story. The resolution in the episode is perfectly fitting. This is one thread of a disparate tapestry. This episode also combines into this weave the threads of Beric, Melisandre, and Theon who all receive resolution to their arc while simultaneously supporting Arya's resolution - we also have Jorah's resolution fitting perfectly into this tapestry of resolution being woven together with Arya's story line. 

Everything Arya does in this episode reflects everything she has done along her entire eight-season arc, all culminating into a single moment of time while simultaneously being supported. Arya becomes the only character who can reasonabley defeat the Night King as she has been prepared by life for this specific task. Add to this Bran giving her the Catspaws Dagger under the weirwood tree, her sparring drop left/catch right maneuver with Brienne, etc. also foreshadowing this moment at that spot with that weapon.

That's one aspect of this story and I'm not even fully exploring all nuances of interwoven plot lines, parallels and introversions which are present in this single episode, let alone every episode of the past two seasons. This is just the surface of the proverbial pool. That level of sophistication in interweaving story elements is rare - I'm hard-pressed to think of another story which has that level of thematic interplay in multiple resolutions weaving together to support a single main character's story arc.

But the critics response to this has no mention of any of the interweaving arcs, their response is "I can't believe the Night King died at Winterfell that's bad writing" which is not only absurd criticism, but demonstrates they have practically no understanding of what is actually going on in this episode, and the story is too complex for them to connect the proverbial dots. This is the pattern I see in the criticism: people not understanding the story at all. I see people who actually think Dany went crazy because bells were ringing. I see people that think the Night King was a main character with an arc. I see people who think characterization is character assassination. I see people who call something that took eight seasons to come to fruition "rushed" - I see people who claim "serious flaws" and "doesn't make sense" but failt to actually support that criticism in any meaningful way.

And again, in the end, this all creates a hostile environment in which real people with real emotions and real lives get hurt, sometimes having their lives utterly ruined for no justifiable reason except a very loud and - let's call it, no so bright - mob wanted/expected something else. No human being deserves this kind of treatment, let alone an innocent person.

And just to make this post a little longer, speaking of "expectations" I've spent time the past few years like many, listening to the "theories" and "expectations" of this story, and to be frank, they all sucked. "Bran is the Night King" sucked. "Littlefinger is still alive"? Sucked. "My favorite character should win the game of thrones and sit on the Iron Throne" majorly sucked and didn't even understand the point of the story. Those theories are what made no sense and had serious flaws. So in the end, there are a ton of people who, when they say "I'm mad that D&D ruined the story, I would've did this instead..." are actually saying "I'm mad that D&D didn't ruin the story and told a good story instead of the awful story I wanted."

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31 minutes ago, John Meta said:

So in the end, there are a ton of people who, when they say "I'm mad that D&D ruined the story, I would've did this instead..." are actually saying "I'm mad that D&D didn't ruin the story and told a good story instead of the awful story I wanted."

It wasn't a good story though.
A series of random events just isn't a good story.

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On 6/7/2019 at 8:05 PM, Lord Stackspear said:

It seemed more like a toddler telling me a story where, they knew the person they were telling me about had to die, so they just kept telling me things that happened until they got to the end.

Bang on! It really felt like that. The characters knew the ending before the events to have them make sense took place and they acted in a way to get to that ending rather than what made sense for what we knew of the characters.

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Posted (edited)
On 6/7/2019 at 2:11 PM, John Meta said:

Character assassination means you are saying untrue things about someone in order to hurt their reputation. It's not possible for a writer to engage in character assassination, they can only characterize. Try to understand that character assassination doesn't mean a character does something you didn't expect them to do - that's just an example of, well, a character doing something you didn't expect them to do.

The main problem with your post is the attempt to use things that were said in order to somehow demonstrate that actions which are in conflict with what has been said, cannot be taken by a character. But this isn't any more true than it is in the real world. We may have a story about an extreme pacifist and he remarks "I would never hurt a fly" and other characters randomly remark that he is a peaceful pacifist who would never hurt another living soul. But then, we have a love interest enter the story, and at the end of the story the villain is about to kill her when BLAM! BLAM! the villain falls dead and we cut to a shot of the pacifist now holding a smoldering gun in his hand. This is not "character assassination" this is called "characterization." It shows us that his character of "pacifist" can be challenged when put into such an extreme situation. We now know more about the character.

The same is true of Dany. It doesn't matter that people can quote back and forth the "good/bad" things said of Dany, what matters is what she did. In this episode, the audience is seeing Dany is a completely unprecedented situation and the past is irrelevant - people who say "That character would never do that" are wrong, they are in fact seeing exactly what that character would/will do (this applies to all characterization in all stories). Was it shocking to you? Great. Was it expected? Great. The fact is, her change was not abrupt because there was, in fact, no "change" at all since the audience had never once seen her in this specific situation. Dany did what Dany would do in that situation. The narrative is informing the audience of that.

Anyone claiming things like "she would never do that" or "that is a change of her character" are wrong and don't understand stories and characterization. Like most criticisms I've seen, the problem here is not with the writing but with a segment of the audience's ability to understand a story.

You're are wrong in so many ways it's not even funny. I noticed that you didn't pick apart any of the quotes I used from the show which shows me you obviously have no argument with them. Her character is is pretty easy to understand: She does not want to be like any other Targaryen before her and she wants to break the wheel. No other character wants to change the system that is in place but her so this shows the watcher that she is on a very unique path of stopping the tyrannical rulers like she did in Essos and was going to do in Westeros. 

 

As you know D&D are not the original writers of the show so all of this "characterization"you keep repeating is null and void. D&D made up their mind to character assassinate Daenerys in one season and it's blatantly obvious. 

 

FYI. Dany went through way worst in Essos by losing Drogo, her son and many, many close friends and her character never wavered. 

 

 

Edited by Areisius

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2 hours ago, John Meta said:

So in the end, there are a ton of people who, when they say "I'm mad that D&D ruined the story, I would've did this instead..." are actually saying "I'm mad that D&D didn't ruin the story and told a good story instead of the awful story I wanted."

No. This is not true and you know it. Most of the posters here, at Reddit, in hundreds of Youtube channels, and even in mainstream media, who are angry with that shipwreck, clearly state they have no problem with the ending itself, but with the way it is hastily botched. No dialog, stupid attempts at humor at the worse moment, monstrous inconsistencies, characters whose personalitie turn the opposite of what it used to be, etc.

A witch-hunt, really? With a 4.3 IMDb rating? With actors telling how they are disappointed? A 1.6 million signatures petition?

I think you're on duty here.

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, John Meta said:

1) Most of your statement here is really general making it difficult to fully understand without some kind of specificity. A character whose actions are inconsistent would be characterization of an unpredictable character - I'm not seeing the "problem" in this. But if we do apply some specificity in the form of Dany - then are you suggesting that the "external influences" (e.g. loss of friends, loss of family, loss of love, loss of identity, loss of purpose, loss of counsel, loss of food, loss of sleep) of the unprecedented scenario which Dany faces aren't "significant"?

2) Here you make a statement but don't really support it in any meaningful way. For instance you say that "they never understood the character or the motivations of the characters they were writing" but then provide an follow-up example of Jon Snow which specifically illustrates his motivation (i.e. love). You seem to be saying (in "you could say that Jon was using Dany) that since you didn't know Jon's motivations, then the writers didn't know Jon's motivations, but I'd propose that doesn't follow at all. At any rate, we do know Jon's motivations due to the narrative as is, so I'm not sure of the point here.

1) There is difference between inconsistent character and inconsistent characterization. I do not think Dany was meant to be inconsistent character. As for "significant external influence", my issue never was in the fact that Daenerys turned into murderous dictator (and even then, as others point out, she had gone through just as bad stuff before without snapping). My issue is in how it was done. I have pointed out before that she always has had that murderous streak in her - yet after a certain point, said streak gets ignored, even disappears, for - as far as I can see - no good reason. Also, while it is definitely possible for her to go from "roses and flowers" idealist to a mass murderer - I expect it will happen in the books - it should have been handled better, in a more gradual transition perhaps.

OP gives a rather good illustration of what I am talking about:

Quote

 

S07E05 - Eastwatch


DAENERYS: I know what Cersei has told you. That I've come to destroy your cities, burn down your homes, murder you, and orphan your children. That's Cersei Lannister, not me.
I'm not here to murder, and all I want to destroy is the wheel that has rolled over rich and poor to the benefit of no one but the Cersei Lannisters of the world.


S07E06 - Beyond the Wall
TYRION: Nobody trusts my sister less than I do, believe me. But if we go to the capital, we'll go with two armies, we'll go with three dragons, and anyone touches you, King's Landing burns down to the foundation stone.
DAENERYS: And right now she's thinking of how to set a trap. 
TYRION: Of cours she is. And she's wondering what trap you're laying for her.
DAENERYS: Are we? Laying any traps?
TYRION: If we want to create a new and better world, I'm not sure deceit and mass murder is the best way to start.
DAENERYS: Which war was won without deceit and mass murder? 
TYRION: Yes, you'll need to be ruthless if you're going to win the throne. You need to inspire a degree of fear. But fear is all Cersei has. It's all my father had And Joffrey. It makes their power brittle.
Because everyone beneath them longs to see them dead.

 

2) My main example there was actually Stannis. As for Jon, his main motivation is duty. He lied to, and got killed, woman he loved for the sake of the Watch. Having love be his primary motivation is still inconsistent with how he was portrayed before. So him refusing - not being unable, outright refusing - to see that Daenerys is turning into a tyrant, and refusing to do anything about it, is inconsistent characterization.

Edited by Aldarion

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Although they aren't definitive, if you look at entries for Daenerys on TV Tropes or wiki sites in the recent past, and then compare them with current entries, they've been very largely rewritten.  That suggests a very abrupt shift in characterisation, and one which was not earned.

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20 hours ago, Aldarion said:

Problem is that while Dany's motivations were consistent, her actions were not. She was like a pendulum, shifting from one extreme to another. One moment she listens to reason, another one she does not. In books, at least, there is a farily consistent progression towards darker characterization, without much in the way of abrupt shifts.

Sure, what is there of the books are better. But the show finished... so meh, I'll just be satisfied with what we have - it's not like we are probably going to get anything else.

Also, I am not certain that she requires a progression towards darkness. Or that her character even required consistency as it was destabilizing. I do think the writing in the show was very poor but what shone through to me with Dany was a character that ultimately ended up feeling unloved and powerless, then turned to anger and fear when her idealism and entitlement came crashing down. Could have been written much better but I thought the dot points were still there.

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Posted (edited)
15 hours ago, John Meta said:

Though your reply is really just unsupported rhetoric. You say the words "serious flaws" as if the statement is just true because you can write two words. But, what are the "serious flaws"? As I've said, I've seen a ton of "serious flaws" which when evaluated weren't flaws with the narrative, they were serious flaws in the reasoning and understanding of the critics. It's one thing to dislike something, it's completely another to criticize others and help create a hostile environment under the guise of "justfied" judgment. This is how witch-hunts happen. A bunch of people moved by false rhetoric into creating a hostile environment in which innocent are hurt. This is why I'm even here interacting, not because I love interacting with the internet, but because someone has to diffuse the mob before people get hurt - which they do. Many peoples lives have been ruined by this sort of thing - innocent people who have done nothing wrong. 

An example of the complexity of this story is in the penultimate culmination of Arya's arc in the Long Night. In this episode we have eight seasons of character development setting up the pay-off of this character's arc. When you look back on Arya's story line, it takes on an entirely new signficance in that every interaction of every step of her journey is preparing her for a single moment in time versus death itself. From Jon giving her Needle to Ned allowing her to break tradition to the Waterdancer to the Faceless Men, all the way through her story. The resolution in the episode is perfectly fitting. This is one thread of a disparate tapestry. This episode also combines into this weave the threads of Beric, Melisandre, and Theon who all receive resolution to their arc while simultaneously supporting Arya's resolution - we also have Jorah's resolution fitting perfectly into this tapestry of resolution being woven together with Arya's story line. 

Everything Arya does in this episode reflects everything she has done along her entire eight-season arc, all culminating into a single moment of time while simultaneously being supported. Arya becomes the only character who can reasonabley defeat the Night King as she has been prepared by life for this specific task. Add to this Bran giving her the Catspaws Dagger under the weirwood tree, her sparring drop left/catch right maneuver with Brienne, etc. also foreshadowing this moment at that spot with that weapon.

That's one aspect of this story and I'm not even fully exploring all nuances of interwoven plot lines, parallels and introversions which are present in this single episode, let alone every episode of the past two seasons. This is just the surface of the proverbial pool. That level of sophistication in interweaving story elements is rare - I'm hard-pressed to think of another story which has that level of thematic interplay in multiple resolutions weaving together to support a single main character's story arc.

But the critics response to this has no mention of any of the interweaving arcs, their response is "I can't believe the Night King died at Winterfell that's bad writing" which is not only absurd criticism, but demonstrates they have practically no understanding of what is actually going on in this episode, and the story is too complex for them to connect the proverbial dots. This is the pattern I see in the criticism: people not understanding the story at all. I see people who actually think Dany went crazy because bells were ringing. I see people that think the Night King was a main character with an arc. I see people who think characterization is character assassination. I see people who call something that took eight seasons to come to fruition "rushed" - I see people who claim "serious flaws" and "doesn't make sense" but failt to actually support that criticism in any meaningful way.

And again, in the end, this all creates a hostile environment in which real people with real emotions and real lives get hurt, sometimes having their lives utterly ruined for no justifiable reason except a very loud and - let's call it, no so bright - mob wanted/expected something else. No human being deserves this kind of treatment, let alone an innocent person.

And just to make this post a little longer, speaking of "expectations" I've spent time the past few years like many, listening to the "theories" and "expectations" of this story, and to be frank, they all sucked. "Bran is the Night King" sucked. "Littlefinger is still alive"? Sucked. "My favorite character should win the game of thrones and sit on the Iron Throne" majorly sucked and didn't even understand the point of the story. Those theories are what made no sense and had serious flaws. So in the end, there are a ton of people who, when they say "I'm mad that D&D ruined the story, I would've did this instead..." are actually saying "I'm mad that D&D didn't ruin the story and told a good story instead of the awful story I wanted."

I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the story points I thought did not make all that much sense, but I’ll give you a few examples I think are illustrative of where the story telling failed in the last two seasons. I expect you’ll disagree, but whatever.  And, for the record, I agree with you about Arya’s character arc - it was one of the few (perhaps the only) major characters in the show who had a final two season arc that was pretty well done.

Season 7

1. The plan to go beyond the wall and bring a wight to convince Cersei to cease hostilities and join the fight against the dead.  The idea that anything could convince Cersei to do anything other than look out for herself was stupid.  The only purpose of this whole story line IMO was to find a way to kill one of Dany’s dragons and bring the wall down.  Multiple aspects of it were rushed and didn’t make sense (for example, the idea that a raven got a letter to Dany and then Dany flew her dragons in time to save them - sorry, was just a perfect example of bad story telling).

2. Burning/execution of the Tarly’s - everyone want’s to argue that this was some big foreshadowing of Dany’s cruelty and penchant for mass murder.  It wasn’t. When you need two characters to tell you how bad it was because it wasn’t self-evident, that’s bad storytelling.  Everyone who wants to cite this as evidence seems to read a lot of things into the story that were not presented or even remotely implied in the telling of the story.

3.  Littlefinger’s trial/execution - I’ve rewatched the season several times.  It was not a well told story.  Yes, you can fit the pieces together by imagining what took place off screen, but a good story should give you enough hints that a very perceptive watcher might have suspected it, but still ended up being surprised.  I think this story was deliberately told so you would be shocked, not so it would make sense

Season 8

1. Dany’s tyrannical turn to burn thousands of innocents after she had won and was feared.  I’m sorry, but the way it as depicted on screen (combined with what the showrunners stated) allows only one rational explanation IMO - Dany had a sudden psychotic break that was predetermined by her Targaryen lineage.  I know a lot of people want to come up with all this foreshadowing and evidence that we all missed.  I disagree.  There was foreshadowing and evidence of Dany making very bad decisions and there are ways the story could have been told where I could explain her actions in a different manner.  That’s not the story the show told.  I guess it’s a satisfying story for some people to watch one of the main characters suddenly lose it and go crazy - I don’t think it is.  

2. Dany’s sudden transformation into a radical fascist.  Again, just didn’t make sense.  It’s like she had this sudden delusional break.  I don’t see the evidence for this ideology developing in her.  Even if you can believe that her losses drove her to kill thousands of innocents, where is the evidence that she was developing this tyrannical ideology?  Ok, sure - everyone wants to quote her saying either they can live in my new world or they can die in my old one - well, after that, she established a pretty good peace in Slaver’s Bay, then came to Westeros and decided to put her quest for the throne on hold to save humanity from their final doom.  I don’t see evidence that she was starting to craft a new ideology where everyone in Westeros needed to die so she can make room for some new tyrannical regime.

3. Rhaegal’s death - this is definitely a more minor one, but it is just so illustrative of the stupidity in the last season.  Dany “forgot” so one of her dragon’s were killed by some cruise missile spear that, come one week later, was as ineffective as could be.  Look, I get it - we had to see the odds between her and Cersei as being even, we had to be fearful that Drogon might die in the battle of KL, we had to believe Dany had continued to lose everything.  But, it didn’t make any sense - it was merely a story point to help us get form A to Z.  Earlier, I mentioned the idea of a toddler telling a story saying “and then this happened, and then this happened, and then this happened” - this is a pretty good example of this.  

4. The aftermath of Jon killing Dany - so many story problems with this, but I’ll just say, the world of Westeros we had come to know over the past 6-7 seasons appears to devolve into some Disneyesque happily ever after with all these lords suddenly agreeing to follow a Stark king (minus the one actual Stark kingdom).  What was presented in the aftermath of Dany’s death was an unrecognizable world to the one that came before it.  

I could go on.  There are more examples.  I’m sure you’re going to want to go line by line though my post and tell me why I’m wrong - go for it.  I probably won’t respond because at a certain point, this is a waste of time.  I’m happy for you if you found the last couple of seasons to be a satisfying end to this story.  I don’t think people like myself are just creating a mob mentality to bash D&D - and let me be clear, those are the only two guys I am criticizing.  Every one else involved in the show clearly did an amazing job - I hope they get lots of awards for what they did.  But, I think there is room to criticize the story D&D wrote and to be deeply dissatisfied with how they finished the show.  They had a monumental task to finish this story in a satisfying, coherent way - I don’t envy the job they had, and it’s easy to criticize from the comfort of your own couch.  But, one has to wonder whether if they had simply handed the show off to someone else, or decided that Star Wars could wait and they were going to stretch out the last couple of seasons and/or do one more season whether they could have put together a better story.  We’ll never know, but, for me and many others, the story they told was a failure.     

Edited by Lord Stackspear
Typo

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2 hours ago, ummester said:

 Sure, what is there of the books are better. But the show finished... so meh, I'll just be satisfied with what we have - it's not like we are probably going to get anything else.

Also, I am not certain that she requires a progression towards darkness. Or that her character even required consistency as it was destabilizing. I do think the writing in the show was very poor but what shone through to me with Dany was a character that ultimately ended up feeling unloved and powerless, then turned to anger and fear when her idealism and entitlement came crashing down. Could have been written much better but I thought the dot points were still there.

Dot points were there - they were provided by Martin. It is just that, due to lack of time or else interest, D&D screwed up at connecting them.

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1 hour ago, Aldarion said:

Dot points were there - they were provided by Martin. It is just that, due to lack of time or else interest, D&D screwed up at connecting them.

The journey from idealistic, charismatic, and brave young leader to mass murderer has been travelled by quite a few people throughout history.  But, we are entitled to see more than just the beginning and end of that journey, if we're to find it believable in fiction.

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20 hours ago, John Meta said:

The problem here is in your statements "based on what has happened before" and "a character's actions changes wildly" which assumes a precedent scenario through which to convey character change. For example, we might have a character in the beginning of a story face a certain scenario which causes a specific reaction; then at the end of the story we have the character face that same scenario, but this time (usually due to growth in the character's understanding through the events of the story) the character will react to that same situation in a different way. That's character growth, and it works through precedent, and that allows the audience to note the character's actions have changed, reflecting a change of character.

But Dany is in an unprecedented scenario. In this regard the story is simply showing us characterization - how the character reacts to the new scenario which has never been experienced. This is no more "hanging the word 'characterization' on it" than it would be to say I'm "hanging the word 'amphibian' on frog" - that is the definition of the word. By way of analogy, it's no different than a story in which a character acts a certain way when everything is fine, but then after facing a scenario where the character loses everything for which they care, their actions aren't the same as before. We can say the character's action have "changed" but it's not the type of "change" we find with character growth which is conveyed through a precedent scenario; the character's "change" of actions isn't "based on what has happened before" it is based on what has happened to the character in the unprecedented scenario. Dany lost everything for which she cared and because of that, her reaction was what it was - thus, characterization.

I'll propose that what really happened in your mind is that you built up an image of Dany in which you thought (illogically) that you could perfectly predict her actions in any given scenario with or without precedent. In your mind "Dany would never do that!" but the problem here isn't with the characterization of Dany, it's with your thought process and inability to understand that your false image of Dany was, false. When the narrative informed you of Dany's character - through characterization - you rejected the fact of characterization and then supplanted the real character of Dany with your false image of the character, demanding in your mind that your false image is certainly the true image and, thus, cry "Character assassination!" because the character didn't hold true to the false image of your reasoning (which reasoning was based on a false premise).

I'd propose that you demonstrate this to be the case by attempting to (incorrectly) use the phrase "character assassination" as a justified criticism, thus showing that you had a "true image" of Dany in your mind which the writers (in your mind) "told untruths in order to hurt the reputation" - a reputation which you manufactured out of hasty conclusions, much like Tyrion. 

I do agree that writers aren't "immune" to criticism but that doesn't then make all criticism valid. Sometimes the criticism and condemnation of a witch-hunting mob is just the poorly thought-out, ill-informed, self-righteous herd mentality of a witch-hunting mob and the witch isn't actually a witch at all. 

 

Such a lot of hogwash, but what it still all boils down to is that you are trying to declare the story "good" by definition.

Nothing in the latter part of a good story is "unprecedented;" everything builds on what has gone before. ESPECIALLY in a work of this size, if there's nothing in the 1st 71 episodes to serve as a "precedent" for the last two, then you have a serious story disconnect and need to go back to the drawing board or better yet back to Fiction Writing 101 and leave drawing boards for real stories for after you get some hang of the craft.

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5 hours ago, Hodor's Dragon said:

Such a lot of hogwash, but what it still all boils down to is that you are trying to declare the story "good" by definition.

Nothing in the latter part of a good story is "unprecedented;" everything builds on what has gone before. ESPECIALLY in a work of this size, if there's nothing in the 1st 71 episodes to serve as a "precedent" for the last two, then you have a serious story disconnect and need to go back to the drawing board or better yet back to Fiction Writing 101 and leave drawing boards for real stories for after you get some hang of the craft.

Just to be clear, I'm using the word "good" in a functional/objective sense - in the same way I might evaluate the engine on your car and conclude the engine is "good" because it's functional. I'm presuming you're using the word in a subjective sense relative to things that you "like" i.e. good = liked. Like is relative and subjective; good is not relative and is objective (in the sense in which I'm using the term).

I'm not saying that since the story is good, it should be liked - that's clearly not how it works. There are many "good" artistic expressions that I don't "like" - probably the music you like, I don't. That's not to say that the music is "bad" (i.e. poorly written/not properly functioning) but that it's personally, relatively, subjectively, not my wave, as it were.

But I am saying the story is "good" in the sense that it has no "serious flaws" that are actually justified, objective "Fiction Writing 101" - in fact, I'd propose there is no such a thing as "Fiction Writing 101" in any objective sense and it's just a phrase invented by people who are trying to pass off their subjective "likes" as if they are objective facts - but this is simply a form of egotism (inability to personally disentangle/distinguish subjective from objective).

When you say "nothing in the latter part of a good story is unprecedented" you're engaging in that egotism (attempting to entangle your personal subjective opinions with objective fact) as well as being factually wrong. Virtually every story in existence is based on a series of unprecedented events occurring to which a character reacts giving insight into character through characterization.

For example, in the Fellowship of the Ring - Frodo reacting to his being given ownership of the One Ring is an unprecedented event which shows us his character will willingly risk his life to aid others. Frodo/Sam leaving the Shire is unprecedented, Frodo facing the Ring Wraith and contemplating using the ring is an unprecedented situation (shows his character of being susceptible to fear which causes a reaction of contemplation which could give away the quest), Frodo at the Council of Elrond is an unprecedented situation (characterizes him as willing to accept an even greater burden for the sake of others). Frodo determining which route to take is an unprecedented situation (shows characterization of taking responsiblility for the company), having to travel without Gandalf is unprecedented (will continue in the face of deep loss), meeting Galadriel is unprecedented (giving the choice of offering the ring to someone else - willing to give up the quest in the opportunity presents itself), facing Boromir in his madness is unprecedented (decides to leave the company - characterization of unwillingness to jeopardize the quest even for the sake of company, including Sam), having to save Sam is unprecedented. And so on and so forth for virtually every story that has ever been told.

The fact that you think "no good story" contains unprecedented events (especially near the climax) shows that you either don't know the meaning of the word "unprecedented" or are determined to invent "objective storytelling axioms" out of thin air through very poorly thought-out "reasoning" in order to perpetuate an unreasonable criticism due to self-interest. I'd propose it's the latter.

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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Lord Stackspear said:

I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the story points I thought did not make all that much sense, but I’ll give you a few examples I think are illustrative of where the story telling failed in the last two seasons. I expect you’ll disagree, but whatever.  And, for the record, I agree with you about Arya’s character arc - it was one of the few (perhaps the only) major characters in the show who had a final two season arc that was pretty well done.

Season 7

1. The plan to go beyond the wall and bring a wight to convince Cersei to cease hostilities and join the fight against the dead.  The idea that anything could convince Cersei to do anything other than look out for herself was stupid.  The only purpose of this whole story line IMO was to find a way to kill one of Dany’s dragons and bring the wall down.  Multiple aspects of it were rushed and didn’t make sense (for example, the idea that a raven got a letter to Dany and then Dany flew her dragons in time to save them - sorry, was just a perfect example of bad story telling).

2. Burning/execution of the Tarly’s - everyone want’s to argue that this was some big foreshadowing of Dany’s cruelty and penchant for mass murder.  It wasn’t. When you need two characters to tell you how bad it was because it wasn’t self-evident, that’s bad storytelling.  Everyone who wants to cite this as evidence seems to read a lot of things into the story that were not presented or even remotely implied in the telling of the story.

3.  Littlefinger’s trial/execution - I’ve rewatched the season several times.  It was not a well told story.  Yes, you can fit the pieces together by imagining what took place off screen, but a good story should give you enough hints that a very perceptive watcher might have suspected it, but still ended up being surprised.  I think this story was deliberately told so you would be shocked, not so it would make sense

Season 8

1. Dany’s tyrannical turn to burn thousands of innocents after she had won and was feared.  I’m sorry, but the way it as depicted on screen (combined with what the showrunners stated) allows only one rational explanation IMO - Dany had a sudden psychotic break that was predetermined by her Targaryen lineage.  I know a lot of people want to come up with all this foreshadowing and evidence that we all missed.  I disagree.  There was foreshadowing and evidence of Dany making very bad decisions and there are ways the story could have been told where I could explain her actions in a different manner.  That’s not the story the show told.  I guess it’s a satisfying story for some people to watch one of the main characters suddenly lose it and go crazy - I don’t think it is.  

2. Dany’s sudden transformation into a radical fascist.  Again, just didn’t make sense.  It’s like she had this sudden delusional break.  I don’t see the evidence for this ideology developing in her.  Even if you can believe that her losses drove her to kill thousands of innocents, where is the evidence that she was developing this tyrannical ideology?  Ok, sure - everyone wants to quote her saying either they can live in my new world or they can die in my old one - well, after that, she established a pretty good peace in Slaver’s Bay, then came to Westeros and decided to put her quest for the throne on hold to save humanity from their final doom.  I don’t see evidence that she was starting to craft a new ideology where everyone in Westeros needed to die so she can make room for some new tyrannical regime.

3. Rhaegal’s death - this is definitely a more minor one, but it is just so illustrative of the stupidity in the last season.  Dany “forgot” so one of her dragon’s were killed by some cruise missile spear that, come one week later, was as ineffective as could be.  Look, I get it - we had to see the odds between her and Cersei as being even, we had to be fearful that Drogon might die in the battle of KL, we had to believe Dany had continued to lose everything.  But, it didn’t make any sense - it was merely a story point to help us get form A to Z.  Earlier, I mentioned the idea of a toddler telling a story saying “and then this happened, and then this happened, and then this happened” - this is a pretty good example of this.  

4. The aftermath of Jon killing Dany - so many story problems with this, but I’ll just say, the world of Westeros we had come to know over the past 6-7 seasons appears to devolve into some Disneyesque happily ever after with all these lords suddenly agreeing to follow a Stark king (minus the one actual Stark kingdom).  What was presented in the aftermath of Dany’s death was an unrecognizable world to the one that came before it.  

I could go on.  There are more examples.  I’m sure you’re going to want to go line by line though my post and tell me why I’m wrong - go for it.  I probably won’t respond because at a certain point, this is a waste of time.  I’m happy for you if you found the last couple of seasons to be a satisfying end to this story.  I don’t think people like myself are just creating a mob mentality to bash D&D - and let me be clear, those are the only two guys I am criticizing.  Every one else involved in the show clearly did an amazing job - I hope they get lots of awards for what they did.  But, I think there is room to criticize the story D&D wrote and to be deeply dissatisfied with how they finished the show.  They had a monumental task to finish this story in a satisfying, coherent way - I don’t envy the job they had, and it’s easy to criticize from the comfort of your own couch.  But, one has to wonder whether if they had simply handed the show off to someone else, or decided that Star Wars could wait and they were going to stretch out the last couple of seasons and/or do one more season whether they could have put together a better story.  We’ll never know, but, for me and many others, the story they told was a failure.     

Obviously I'm going to criticize your criticism here.

Season 7

1. I presume you would agree that you're going to have better odds of convincing someone that Bigfoot is real if you actually have a bigfoot to show? True? So the idea that you would have a better chance of convincing someone of something being true by actually having physical evidence of that thing is factual. But somehow, to you, that which is factual... is stupid.

When you talk about Cersei, first you're using audience information (which the characters don't have) in order to assess potential likelihoods of a character's reaction to an unprecedented situation (Cersei seeing with her eyes that the undead are real). But the characters haven't been following Cersei around for years, watching everything she does with "limited omnipresence". The characters don't really know that much about Cersei, let alone how she might react to the news that an undead army is factually coming. But what they do know (like most of us, except you) is that their chances of proving the reality of the undead to Cersei greatly increases by showing her that reality so she can know it is factual.

Then your conclusion that it's "stupid" to think Cersei would agree to help in the fight if the threat is proven real is based on a conclusion coming completely out of the thin air of your own mind which somehow you think is able to know the exact outcome of a character's decision before that character even announces their feelings. But there is no possible way that you could know what Cersei was going to do in that situation. There is no possible way for you to have known that when Cersei agreed to send troops that she was lying.

So here at 1 your "reasoning" for your criticism is based on: backwards to reality logic, conclusion based on imagination from unknowns, conclusion based on imagination from unknowns.

Also, you state "the only purpose for this story line was IMO" so you imagine a purpose in your own mind, which you have no way to verify the truth of the imagining; then proceed to use your imagined truth as a premise from which to criticize. And you don't see the "serious flaw" in your reasoning here?

2. The burning of the Tarly's was characterization showing us that Dany is willing to kill opponents which will not bend the knee. When you say "It wasn't" you're factually wrong. You then conclude that "that's bad storytelling" based on a premise which is factually wrong.

3. There's nothing in this except an opinion "it was not a well-told story" with no support for the conclusion except - surprise - imagination.

Season 8

1. This one is the main focus of this thread and I've already addressed the fact that this is characterization. When you say "suddenly lose it and go crazy" this demonstrates that you're not able to understand this story elements and cannot distinguish characterization for what it is. In the end, Dany is acting on the notion that "the ends justify the means" thus making all of her decisions "right" in order to bring about a desired goal. If Dany wants to "wash away" the old world in fire, that is "justified" by her ideology. The fact that people may want to debate the ethics of such an ideology (i.e. ends justify the means) is irrelevant. It is Dany's characterization. The problem here isn't with the characterization or the story it is with a segment of the audience's ability to comprehend the story elements that exist in all stories.

2. Follows from the flaws of 1. In an early season someone (I believe, Daario) said to Dany something like, "You don't belong on a throne, you're not a queen" she replied "What am I?" He replied, "A conquerer." Connecting the dots helps understand the story, and to be fair, there are a lot of dots in GoT. Understanding characterization also helps, as does understanding basic story elements. The problem is that a lot of people don't understand these things, and forgot the dots causing inability to connect. That's not really a problem until they then begin criticizing the story and the writers instead of first taking a look in the mirror and making sure that the finger is pointing in the right direction.

3. I have no idea what this criticism is supposed to mean. Dany "forgot" what, exactly?

4. This is like a lot of critcism in which you mention something that occurs and pronounce it "bad storytelling" as if the ability to recite a scene is itself a premise from which to draw your conclusion. But it's not, it's just you reciting what happened in a scene. Yes, the representatives gathered all agreed to support a specific person to rule. The Council of Elrond all agreed to support a specific person to hold the fate of the world in their hands. Was that "bad storytelling" as well? Based on what form of reasoning?

I don't disgree that you could go on with more "examples" I suppose if we went far enough we could criticize Jon Snow's hairstyle as "stupid and unrealistic and ruined the show" and just let words come out of our mouths and presume the ability to speak renders all things spoken as the facts of reality. But that's not how it works. 

About the "mob mentality" I stand by the proposition. All I can say is that I sincerly hope no one sitting in their seat of GoT judgment ever has to face standing before another seat of judgment while they are judged by their own measure. No one deserves to face a seat of such warped judgment, and yet the people (all of them) who worked hard to produce a good (i.e. functionally sound, if not sophisticated) artistic expression now face the seat of that warped judgment and apparently those in the seat of judgment couldn't care less about the "righteousness" of their judgment nor the collateral damage (physical/metaphysical, whatever) being caused in the lives of others.

Again, "I like that" "I don't like that"? Great. "I don't like that and therefore that is bad writing and the writers are stupid failures and let's all shout very loudly and try to damage the reputations of people and cause discord and damage"? This is, the opposite of great.

Edited by John Meta

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1 hour ago, John Meta said:

Just to be clear, I'm using the word "good" in a functional/objective sense - in the same way I might evaluate the engine on your car and conclude the engine is "good" because it's functional. I'm presuming you're using the word in a subjective sense relative to things that you "like" i.e. good = liked. Like is relative and subjective; good is not relative and is objective (in the sense in which I'm using the term).

I'm not saying that since the story is good, it should be liked - that's clearly not how it works. There are many "good" artistic expressions that I don't "like" - probably the music you like, I don't. That's not to say that the music is "bad" (i.e. poorly written/not properly functioning) but that it's personally, relatively, subjectively, not my wave, as it were.

But I am saying the story is "good" in the sense that it has no "serious flaws" that are actually justified, objective "Fiction Writing 101" - in fact, I'd propose there is no such a thing as "Fiction Writing 101" in any objective sense and it's just a phrase invented by people who are trying to pass off their subjective "likes" as if they are objective facts - but this is simply a form of egotism (inability to personally disentangle/distinguish subjective from objective).

When you say "nothing in the latter part of a good story is unprecedented" you're engaging in that egotism (attempting to entangle your personal subjective opinions with objective fact) as well as being factually wrong. Virtually every story in existence is based on a series of unprecedented events occurring to which a character reacts giving insight into character through characterization.

For example, in the Fellowship of the Ring - Frodo reacting to his being given ownership of the One Ring is an unprecedented event which shows us his character will willingly risk his life to aid others. Frodo/Sam leaving the Shire is unprecedented, Frodo facing the Ring Wraith and contemplating using the ring is an unprecedented situation (shows his character of being susceptible to fear which causes a reaction of contemplation which could give away the quest), Frodo at the Council of Elrond is an unprecedented situation (characterizes him as willing to accept an even greater burden for the sake of others). Frodo determining which route to take is an unprecedented situation (shows characterization of taking responsiblility for the company), having to travel without Gandalf is unprecedented (will continue in the face of deep loss), meeting Galadriel is unprecedented (giving the choice of offering the ring to someone else - willing to give up the quest in the opportunity presents itself), facing Boromir in his madness is unprecedented (decides to leave the company - characterization of unwillingness to jeopardize the quest even for the sake of company, including Sam), having to save Sam is unprecedented. And so on and so forth for virtually every story that has ever been told.

The fact that you think "no good story" contains unprecedented events (especially near the climax) shows that you either don't know the meaning of the word "unprecedented" or are determined to invent "objective storytelling axioms" out of thin air through very poorly thought-out "reasoning" in order to perpetuate an unreasonable criticism due to self-interest. I'd propose it's the latter.

I'm not about to get mixed up in your word salad, but I'll say a couple of things.

First, you're goddamned straight that I'm "attempting to entangle [my] personal subjective opinions with objective fact." YES, SIR OR MADAM, I make so bold as to claim that I can tell a shit story (e.g., GOT, Season 8) from a great one (e.g., ASOIAF, Vols. I-V.). I do, indeed, and you can't take the right to claim that away from me and if you ordain that I should leave it out of our discussions I shall simply disregard your ordinance.

I will also make so bold as to say that if humans generally spent their time wondering over whether they could tell good things from bad things, they probably wouldn't know it because they would still be squatting around a cave fire and lacking a language that would aid their ability to engage in abstract thought.

Finally, I am simply meaning "unprecedented" as you clearly meant it in your original discussion; IOW, it doesn't mean a unique, new event, it means an event that isn't related to forerunner facts in the story. If you don't like that meaning, the blame is not to me.

(Also, all the LOTR crap you went on and on about was in the beginning or middle of the story, not the last chapter.)

 

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, Aldarion said:

1) There is difference between inconsistent character and inconsistent characterization. I do not think Dany was meant to be inconsistent character. As for "significant external influence", my issue never was in the fact that Daenerys turned into murderous dictator (and even then, as others point out, she had gone through just as bad stuff before without snapping). My issue is in how it was done. I have pointed out before that she always has had that murderous streak in her - yet after a certain point, said streak gets ignored, even disappears, for - as far as I can see - no good reason. Also, while it is definitely possible for her to go from "roses and flowers" idealist to a mass murderer - I expect it will happen in the books - it should have been handled better, in a more gradual transition perhaps.

OP gives a rather good illustration of what I am talking about:

2) My main example there was actually Stannis. As for Jon, his main motivation is duty. He lied to, and got killed, woman he loved for the sake of the Watch. Having love be his primary motivation is still inconsistent with how he was portrayed before. So him refusing - not being unable, outright refusing - to see that Daenerys is turning into a tyrant, and refusing to do anything about it, is inconsistent characterization.

1) There is no difference between inconsistent characterization and an inconsistent character - the characterization IS the character, that is why you see the word "character" in "characterization": inconsistent character-ization. The one is what makes the other. 

I agree that Dany wasn't meant to be an inconsistent character. The problem here is that you, like many, are failing to understand that at King's Landing Dany is in an unprecedented scenario. To assess "consistency" you have to first have a replicated scenario through which to make the assessment of consistent actions/reactions. Think of a repeatable experiment in which the parameters must be the same in order to assess consistency in the results. Suppose you have an environment of cold, and you apply radiation and the environment produces light; then you apply the same radiation to a different environment (say, of heat) and there is no light production. Your don't say the outcome is "inconsistent" you say the outcome is "different" - it is different because the environment has been altered. But if you have the same environment of cold, apply the radiation twice, and once light it produced and once it isn't - then the results are inconsistent.

Dany didn't "change" or "turn into" , it wasn't a change in character, it was a revelation of character that had always been there in potential, and only when the right amount of weight was applied did it reveal itself - thus the symbolism of the dragon wings sprouting from her back.

Think of it like a person who is a law-abiding and kind citizen while society is up and running. Then when the collapse of society takes place, that person becomes a vicious looter and a pillager. The person didn't actually change - a dramatic change in situation caused their true character to come out. Understand? This is the point of the proverb "Crisis reveals character"

Or, think of it like the internet. You see people in the real world and they act a certain way - usually respectable, kind and considerate. But you put them on the internet and remove all consequences giving complete anonymity and suddenly you see a person spewing hate and bitter strife. The person didn't "change" - the removal of consequences created a scenario in which their true character could be revealed.

2) Here you're regarding inconsistency as "wrong" in terms of writing, but this is called character growth. Character growth by its very nature is inconsistent characterization. Usually we have a character face a certain scenario and he reacts a specific way. Later we repeat the same scenario, and the character reacts differently - inconsistent with the first example. This inconsistency is a sign of character growth showing that the events that have unfolded have caused a change in character reflected in the new "inconsistent" outcome.

Jon is ice and fire which is symbolism of duty and love: he moves between the two motivations as the events in his life unfold. At first he is an adherent of duty but becomes detached from that due to his time in the Night's Watch (duty) - in which his duty caused death - especially notable in the scene in which Jon had to pass sentence on those that had betrayed their oaths (especially Ollie). Note his face in the preparation - unlike a character like Dany, whose face is stern and remorseless when she executes, Jon's face is visibly disturbed. He doesn't want to do his duty, be he must: cold as ice.

That is why Jon immediately leaves the Night's Watch - symbolic of cutting off duty as his sole motivation. Then with Dany Jon moves into love as motivation (fire/passion). Love is of course blind to the flaws of the object of love. It "covers" mistakes with rationalization. That also results in death when Jon must pass sentence on Dany. Note he holds her the same way he holds Ygrette. Thus his motivation is his character growth: a song of ice and fire. In the end, the two are brought into balance within him.

Edited by John Meta

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1 hour ago, John Meta said:

Obviously I'm going to criticize your criticism here.

Season 7

1. I presume you would agree that you're going to have better odds of convincing someone that Bigfoot is real if you actually have a bigfoot to show? True? So the idea that you would have a better chance of convincing someone of something being true by actually having physical evidence of that thing is factual. But somehow, to you, that which is factual... is stupid.

When you talk about Cersei, first you're using audience information (which the characters don't have) in order to assess potential likelihoods of a character's reaction to an unprecedented situation (Cersei seeing with her eyes that the undead are real). But the characters haven't been following Cersei around for years, watching everything she does with "limited omnipresence". The characters don't really know that much about Cersei, let alone how she might react to the news that an undead army is factually coming. But what they do know (like most of us, except you) is that their chances of proving the reality of the undead to Cersei greatly increases by showing her that reality so she can know it is factual.

Then your conclusion that it's "stupid" to think Cersei would agree to help in the fight if the threat is proven real is based on a conclusion coming completely out of the thin air of your own mind which somehow you think is able to know the exact outcome of a character's decision before that character even announces their feelings. But there is no possible way that you could know what Cersei was going to do in that situation. There is no possible way for you to have known that when Cersei agreed to send troops that she was lying.

So here at 1 your "reasoning" for your criticism is based on: backwards to reality logic, conclusion based on imagination from unknowns, conclusion based on imagination from unknowns.

Also, you state "the only purpose for this story line was IMO" so you imagine a purpose in your own mind, which you have no way to verify the truth of the imagining; then proceed to use your imagined truth as a premise from which to criticize. And you don't see the "serious flaw" in your reasoning here?

2. The burning of the Tarly's was characterization showing us that Dany is willing to kill opponents which will not bend the knee. When you say "It wasn't" you're factually wrong. You then conclude that "that's bad storytelling" based on a premise which is factually wrong.

3. There's nothing in this except an opinion "it was not a well-told story" with no support for the conclusion except - surprise - imagination.

Season 8

1. This one is the main focus of this thread and I've already addressed the fact that this is characterization. When you say "suddenly lose it and go crazy" this demonstrates that you're not able to understand this story elements and cannot distinguish characterization for what it is. In the end, Dany is acting on the notion that "the ends justify the means" thus making all of her decisions "right" in order to bring about a desired goal. If Dany wants to "wash away" the old world in fire, that is "justified" by her ideology. The fact that people may want to debate the ethics of such an ideology (i.e. ends justify the means) is irrelevant. It is Dany's characterization. The problem here isn't with the characterization or the story it is with a segment of the audience's ability to comprehend the story elements that exist in all stories.

2. Follows from the flaws of 1. In an early season someone (I believe, Daario) said to Dany something like, "You don't belong on a throne, you're not a queen" she replied "What am I?" He replied, "A conquerer." Connecting the dots helps understand the story, and to be fair, there are a lot of dots in GoT. Understanding characterization also helps, as does understanding basic story elements. The problem is that a lot of people don't understand these things, and forgot the dots causing inability to connect. That's not really a problem until they then begin criticizing the story and the writers instead of first taking a look in the mirror and making sure that the finger is pointing in the right direction.

3. I have no idea what this criticism is supposed to mean. Dany "forgot" what, exactly?

4. This is like a lot of critcism in which you mention something that occurs and pronounce it "bad storytelling" as if the ability to recite a scene is itself a premise from which to draw your conclusion. But it's not, it's just you reciting what happened in a scene. Yes, the representatives gathered all agreed to support a specific person to rule. The Council of Elrond all agreed to support a specific person to hold the fate of the world in their hands. Was that "bad storytelling" as well? Based on what form of reasoning?

I don't disgree that you could go on with more "examples" I suppose if we went far enough we could criticize Jon Snow's hairstyle as "stupid and unrealistic and ruined the show" and just let words come out of our mouths and presume the ability to speak renders all things spoken as the facts of reality. But that's not how it works. 

About the "mob mentality" I stand by the proposition. All I can say is that I sincerly hope no one sitting in their seat of GoT judgment ever has to face standing before another seat of judgment while they are judged by their own measure. No one deserves to face a seat of such warped judgment, and yet the people (all of them) who worked hard to produce a good (i.e. functionally sound, if not sophisticated) artistic expression now face the seat of that warped judgment and apparently those in the seat of judgment couldn't care less about the "righteousness" of their judgment nor the collateral damage (physical/metaphysical, whatever) being caused in the lives of others.

Again, "I like that" "I don't like that"? Great. "I don't like that and therefore that is bad writing and the writers are stupid failures and let's all shout very loudly and try to damage the reputations of people and cause discord and damage"? This is, the opposite of great.

Well, I’m very happy for you that those are all additional examples of a great story that were completely logical and made for a great narrative story.  For me and many others, they are not. You can dismiss us as members of a mob who are simply out to bash the show runners if you want.  I’m not going to spend any more time explaining my opinions to you.  I respect that you have a different opinion and we’ll just have to leave it at that.  

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