Jump to content
Tyrion1991

An issue with the Nights Watch

Recommended Posts

2 hours ago, Davjos said:

A more civil tone would suit. Your aversion to all things Stark or Snow is sufficiently apparent on the fora without the need to become antagonistic. And to call Corvo ‘generic’ shows plain disregard for his contributions to discussion on books you feel so strongly and passionately about. 

 

Regarding your OP. While GRRM has perhaps not delved into too much of the North-Wildling ‘Conflict’ it has become (IMO) sufficiently clear that the High Lords of Westeros do not deal with small incursions of raiders etc. Piracy is rampant in the Narrow Sea, Iron Born have raided for millennia, Skagos is a society of savage cannibals despite being under the Northern banner. However, when the threat becomes sufficiently pressing, the lords of the North do interfere and fight the Wildlings directly. The Old Bear can name 5 Kings Beyond the Wall. Iirc the Starks have pushed all four back (Bael became a Stark if the stories are true). Edd was considering marching on Mance Rayder if the need arose. 

Other examples are the War of Ninepenny Kings on the Stepstones or the conflict with the Kingswood Broterhood. 

Additionally, because of the War in the South, the North is in political disarray and lacking base strength. If lords Umber and Karstark march south, their lands are less defended, which results in less fighting back the Wildlings. 

Also the hate for the Starks by the Wildlings seems weakened by the fact they descend from Bael, a Wildling King. Finally, Jon is liked by the Wildlings like Tormund and Ygritte for who he is just like you seem to despise him for who he is. 

 

So the High Lords don’t often get their hands dirty or get into these wars. But their bannermen might and the sort of border reaving should filter into the society. 

Also George controls a lot of this backstory. If the last time a Stark came to blows with a King Beyond the Wall was in living memory but the Targaryens were overthrown a century then those two situations would flip. So George made this conflict more distant from the North rather than a fresh wound like it is with the Stark/Targaryens. It’s not like a King Beyond the Wall killed Neds father or vice versa. So the conflict is very much ancient history.

You don’t think Jon being Wildling Royalty and every Wildling being predisposed to like him is a little contrived? That does make things much easier for Jon. At that point he’s pushing on an open door.

You say that as if there are lots of reasons too like him both in and out of the story. There’s no reason in either case. He’s not a particularly good fighter. He’s an idiot who has a habit of getting people killed. He has no credible or impressive wins under his belt. Being an idiot is a very boring character flaw for our hero to overcome. Compare that to Jamie overcoming his narcissism and past demons. Plus George seems to think it’s an admirable trait to chose duty over love and that’s ridiculous. Since Jon is a vehicle for this I find him distasteful by association. Plus he has the lamest and most painfully obvious secret heritage ever. I found it patronising that he’s depicted as being introspective and thoughtful as if it’s impressive and nobody in the world possesses the ability to do that. I am struck by the constant expectation that I should like the character. He’s the cringe default character.

Plus, he got all of the Wildlings killed including Ygritte. Who are now Wights coming for all those long faced Northerners. These should be considered calamitous failures rather than chalked up as victories. Plus, the whole Lost Cause mentality annoys me.

Share this post


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

Gotcha. I brought it up b/c it's an argument I've seen people make so many times, "the free folk got trapped north of the Wall", and stuff like that. 

Yes, I saw that too. I think it's because of the stories that Bran the Builder made the Wall - therefore done in a lifetime.

As I see it, you can compare it for example, to the Great Wall of China, which took a long time and was constructed in stages. This one is the Great Wall on steroids, lol.

Edited by Ruki88

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

You don’t think Jon being Wildling Royalty and every Wildling being predisposed to like him is a little contrived? That does make things much easier for Jon. At that point he’s pushing on an open door

Huh? This claim is hyperbolic. We don't get that many named characters among the FF,  but even w/ not that many being individually on the page, we know of several that dislike Jon to varying degrees. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 8/25/2019 at 2:15 AM, Tyrion1991 said:

Yes generic Stark fanboy, I will reread the entire novel series like you told me to until I come to the same conclusion that the North is the greatest faction in the world. Although after reading it two or three times Iam not sure my views going to change anytime soon. It’s still the same crummy Northern supremacy being rammed down my throat every few pages.

Crush them? Really? Well I hope the Others kill everyone in the North and knock you North fanboys down a peg. I hate the haughty arrogance of this warrior race that think they are better than everyone else. 

There is nothing in the text that supports your claim that Starks are Mary Sues and that the North is in any way better than other regions. Starks get scattered all over the world, are forced into hiding or die in horrible deaths. While the war mostly ends in the south, the North further descends into civil war and chaos. I think the Starks, the North, the Night's Watch and the wildlings evoke something personal in you and you attribute your negative feelings to them in accordance. Because I just don't see GRRM's writing to be bad when it comes to this and the written text doesn't support your claims.

On 8/25/2019 at 2:15 AM, Tyrion1991 said:

Why shouldn’t they be openly hostile? You just said that the North is being raided. That means people killed, women raped and all the ripple effects of that. The only reason the author has to make everybody understanding and rational is to make Jon uniting the North and the Wildlings easy. You’re basically saying there not any real bad blood between them just a bit of mild attitude. That’s not believable or realistic.

Jon hasn't united the North and the wildlings at all, he currently discovers the unpleasantness off being stabbed. At the end of ADWD the North and the wildlings are not united, they simply have found a temporary compromise because of the circumstances they both faced. I think you are ahead of the story here. And even the compromise wasn't easy for Jon, cause remember, he got stabbed and everything.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

Also George controls a lot of this backstory. If the last time a Stark came to blows with a King Beyond the Wall was in living memory but the Targaryens were overthrown a century then those two situations would flip. So George made this conflict more distant from the North rather than a fresh wound like it is with the Stark/Targaryens. It’s not like a King Beyond the Wall killed Neds father or vice versa. So the conflict is very much ancient history

I guess I don't see the issue with this. Not every family can have recent history as dramatic as the Targaryen's, not should they. The Targaryen's were the ruling class that got overthrown. The Starks weren't. 

30 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

You don’t think Jon being Wildling Royalty and every Wildling being predisposed to like him is a little contrived? That does make things much easier for Jon. At that point he’s pushing on an open doo

What Kissed by fire said. This is quite the exaggeration & blatantly false. 

31 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

You say that as if there are lots of reasons too like him both in and out of the story. There’s no reason in either case. 

This is a matter of opinion. Some agree with you, some do not. It's a personal preference. 

 

32 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

He’s not a particularly good fighter. He’s an idiot who has a habit of getting people killed. He has no credible or impressive wins under his belt

He's a decent fighter. The best of the NW certainly & while he is no Arthur Dayne he isn't anything to scoff at either. Again, everyone can't be an amazing swordsman. It diminishes those that are. 

33 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

Compare that to Jamie overcoming his narcissism and past demons

Jaime is an excellent character with an amazing character arc but Jon is dealing with his own demons. Being raised a bastard has weighed heavily on him. He, along with many other young characters, especially the Stark children have faced tragedies beyond anything I can imagine having to cope with. 

36 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

George seems to think it’s an admirable trait to chose duty over love and that’s ridiculous. Since Jon is a vehicle for this I find him distasteful by association

Well sometimes it is an admirable trait but this is also a matter of opinion. 

37 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

I found it patronising that he’s depicted as being introspective and thoughtful as if it’s impressive and nobody in the world possesses the ability to do that. I am struck by the constant expectation that I should like the character. He’s the cringe default character

We get it. You don't like Jon. That's ok. Not everyone does. Some people do & that's alright too. 

38 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

Plus, he got all of the Wildlings killed including Ygritte. Who are now Wights coming for all those long faced Northerners. These should be considered calamitous failures rather than chalked up as victories. Plus, the whole Lost Cause mentality annoys me.

What? So he is wrong if he chooses love over duty & wrong if he chooses duty over love also? 

Here he chose duty - I don't think there is a time he chooses love over duty other than when he tries to defect. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Tyrion1991 said:

 

You say that as if there are lots of reasons too like him both in and out of the story. There’s no reason in either case. He’s not a particularly good fighter. He’s an idiot who has a habit of getting people killed. He has no credible or impressive wins under his belt. Being an idiot is a very boring character flaw for our hero to overcome. Compare that to Jamie overcoming his narcissism and past demons. Plus George seems to think it’s an admirable trait to chose duty over love and that’s ridiculous. Since Jon is a vehicle for this I find him distasteful by association. Plus he has the lamest and most painfully obvious secret heritage ever. I found it patronising that he’s depicted as being introspective and thoughtful as if it’s impressive and nobody in the world possesses the ability to do that. I am struck by the constant expectation that I should like the character. He’s the cringe default character.

 

Hmmm, you definitely don't like this character. It's cool, I get it. I have my own despised character in this series **cough**Sansa Stark**cough**.

I feel like you see Jon either a Gary Sue because he doesn't have it hard enough, or an idiot because he's not making the 'right' decisions. Whichever suits you in the given situation.

As for me, his actions reflect in a way his upbringing. He was educated along his true born siblings true, but I don't think he had the level of education as Robb. He was the future Warden of the North so I reckon he should've had separate lessons in ruling that Jon as a bastard or Bran and Rickon as 2nd and 3rd sons would not have. I would find it rather strange if he didn't, really. So I always found it unfair that some ppl criticise Jon in comparision with Robb. Jon wasn't educated to lead but to follow. Moreover, as a bastard he wasn't really allowed to have ambition in a way...he more often than not caried shame on his shoulders for his birth, something for which he had no control over. A bit unhealthy if you ask me.

I think Jon was used to being a loner and doing things on his own. Now I don't know if this is because he is an introvert by nature or as a result of his bastardry. Also, being himself judged for something not of his doing it might explain why Jon has an easier way of changing his mind if the evidence is good enough.

As an introvert myself (personal testimony is not that valid I suppose but it's the one I've got), I do tend to isolate myself, think a lot and say very little. I also don't waste my time trying to make my intentions clear to others. I suppose in a way I understand where Jon is coming from.

I don't understand ppl who say he made stupid decisions and that's why he ended up being stabbed. Again, if Jon always made the right choice he's a Gary Sue, if he makes dumb decisions he's an idiot. It feels like either way it goes it's never OK.

I'm not here saying he's perfect and everything he did was just right but a little bit of perspective would be appreciated.

Saying that he didn't explain himself enough to the ones who stabbed him is a little bit weak as I see it. I feel that he could've tried until he was blue in the face but sometimes biased, ignorant viewpoints are not corrected just by talking. If only it was that easy history as we know it would be very different.

You also mentioned the duty/love bit. When he chose duty (NW over Ygritte) then that was not good. When he arguably chose love (saving Arya) then he is a traitor and deserved to be stabbed. Again, it feels like no matter what decision he makes it's never the good one. It's either white or black. Ppl tend to forget about the shades of grey when it comes to him.

Ppl praise GRRM as if he's the 2nd coming of Shakespeare, how he writes ambiguous, gray characters etc etc BUT not THIS guy. No, this guy is definitely a white knight, Gary Sue, generic character.....

Edited by Ruki88

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Tyrion1991 said:

 

So the High Lords don’t often get their hands dirty or get into these wars. But their bannermen might and the sort of border reaving should filter into the society. 

Also George controls a lot of this backstory. If the last time a Stark came to blows with a King Beyond the Wall was in living memory but the Targaryens were overthrown a century then those two situations would flip. So George made this conflict more distant from the North rather than a fresh wound like it is with the Stark/Targaryens. It’s not like a King Beyond the Wall killed Neds father or vice versa. So the conflict is very much ancient history.

[...]

You say that as if there are lots of reasons too like him both in and out of the story. There’s no reason in either case.

Wildlings roam the Wolfswood and threaten the life of Bran. It is not just an ancient conflict. The First Ranger met with the Lord of Winterfell to discus the threat of a KBTW. 

 

You must admit there are some reasons to like Jon, whether they carry weight for you or not. One such is the fact he knows the ‘true enemy’ and allows the Wildlings south, ignoring the ways of old. Or his brotherly love for Arya and his worry that with his hand burned he might never ruffle her hair like he used to. Or the fact he easily accept those deemed less in the society, whether smallfolk, unladylike, Ironborn, fat etc. 

Share this post


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

Wildlings roam the Wolfswood and threaten the life of Bran. It is not just an ancient conflict. The First Ranger met with the Lord of Winterfell to discus the threat of a KBTW. 

 

You must admit there are some reasons to like Jon, whether they carry weight for you or not. One such is the fact he knows the ‘true enemy’ and allows the Wildlings south, ignoring the ways of old. Or his brotherly love for Arya and his worry that with his hand burned he might never ruffle her hair like he used to. Or the fact he easily accept those deemed less in the society, whether smallfolk, unladylike, Ironborn, fat etc. 

 

One incident from which no Northerner dies. It’s essentially an opportune mugging. Hardly a blood feud in which both sides are tearing into the other.

No other character has seen a Wight. You’re framing that as if Jon always knew the true threat coz smarts when it’s only because he has undeniable proof dangled in front of them. So I never gave him brownie points for this. Chance has put him in a position of opposing this true threat.

He let’s a few hundred Wildlings south. After they’ve all went to Hardholm and it’s too late to do anything about it. This is trying to salvage the dregs of a bad decision.

What ways of old? This entire discussion has revolved around there not being a serious blood feud between the Wildlings and North/NW. Which means there kind aren’t any “old ways” at all.

I am supposed to like him because of the unique character trait of showing affection for his sister? You’re supposed to do that. You don’t get brownie points for it.

Many other POV characters have a similar acceptance of “cripples, bastards and broken things”. Almost all of the major POV have a much more modern and post enlightenment viewpoint to make them more palatable to a modern audience. So it’s not a particularly unique part of his arc. If they were all racists and hissing “different” I could understand but they aren’t. Also, it’s extremely on the nose. See, he’s standing up for the fat guy! He’s a swell man.

Plus I’ve seen Full Metal Jacket and this completely ruins his first book story. There is a fine line between referencing and copying entire scenes. Whereas the other stories are really unique and well crafted you have a dull linear plot in one location which is beating you over the head with “He needs to learn to follow before he can learn to lead!”. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

He let’s a few hundred Wildlings south. After they’ve all went to Hardholm and it’s too late to do anything about it. This is trying to salvage the dregs of a bad decision.

I'm not sure what you mean here... Jon didn't let "a few hundred wildlings" through the Wall after they'd gone to Hardhome. At least that's not what and how it happens in the books. After Stannis and the NW defeat Mance's host, Stannis lets ~ 1,000 of the Free Folk through. The majority however are still north of the Wall; some join Tormund, some join the Weeper, some join Mother Mole ("thousands", we are told) and head to Hardhome. Eventually Tormund and his group come through, and they number 3,119. So it many, many, many more than "a few hundred". 

And what bad decision are you talking about? Again, seems you're mixing things up. 

31 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

What ways of old? This entire discussion has revolved around there not being a serious blood feud between the Wildlings and North/NW. Which means there kind aren’t any “old ways” at all.

And yet the NW even has a horn signal to warn the black brothers of wildlings approaching. We also have northern lords/clan chiefs clearly saying they hate the FF. 

31 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

I am supposed to like him because of the unique character trait of showing affection for his sister? You’re supposed to do that. You don’t get brownie points for it.

You're not supposed to like him at all. But reading and understanding the books instead of twisting everything into a pretzel to justify your dislike is not particularly helpful when discussing the books. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Tyrion1991 said:

No other character has seen a Wight. You’re framing that as if Jon always knew the true threat coz smarts when it’s only because he has undeniable proof dangled in front of them. So I never gave him brownie points for this. Chance has put him in a position of opposing this true threat. 

There were about 300 Brothers on the Fist of the First Men. Wights made attempts at the life of the First Ranger and the Lord Commander in Castle Black . Sam has killed an Other. The entire Watch is perfectly aware of the fact the Others and Wights are marching. However, letting the Wildlings through and marching them to Winterfell is enough for Jon to be stabbed. 

 

oh and you don’t get browny points for watching FMJ, you’re supposed to have watched it ;)

Share this post


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

I'm not sure what you mean here... Jon didn't let "a few hundred wildlings" through the Wall after they'd gone to Hardhome. At least that's not what and how it happens in the books. After Stannis and the NW defeat Mance's host, Stannis lets ~ 1,000 of the Free Folk through. The majority however are still north of the Wall; some join Tormund, some join the Weeper, some join Mother Mole ("thousands", we are told) and head to Hardhome. Eventually Tormund and his group come through, and they number 3,119. So it many, many, many more than "a few hundred". 

And what bad decision are you talking about? Again, seems you're mixing things up. 

And yet the NW even has a horn signal to warn the black brothers of wildlings approaching. We also have northern lords/clan chiefs clearly saying they hate the FF. 

You're not supposed to like him at all. But reading and understanding the books instead of twisting everything into a pretzel to justify your dislike is not particularly helpful when discussing the books. 

 

3000 from what, 30,000? One giant from an entire species? That’s a pretty mediocre effort. 

Siding with the Nights Watch over the Wildlings. The NW aren’t even a roadbump for the Others and there’s no reason the Wildlings can’t bolt up the gate once they’re through. 

Do the Northern Lords ever talk how many wildling scalps they took or how many of their people were killed/tortured in raiding? What you’re describing is far too mild and reasonable; plus too one sided. You have basically Racist Uncle Kevin who nobody takes seriously. As for the horn that’s just a functional thing and pure common sense. The “old ways” should be centuries of NW and Northerners actively hunting and butchering the wildlings in a bloody border struggle. Instead it’s basically quaint and mild cultural prejudice.

I very much am expected to like him. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
57 minutes ago, Tyrion1991 said:

3000 from what, 30,000? One giant from an entire species? That’s a pretty mediocre effort

Aren't there only a few Giants left? Anyway it doesn't matter how many they came from. You said hundreds, & kbf proved you wrong. Changing the argument doesn't do you justice. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Tyrion1991 said:

 

3000 from what, 30,000?

No one knows how many. There were speculations that Mance's host had "twenty, thirty thousand", but there may very well be more who didn't join Mance.

1 hour ago, Tyrion1991 said:

One giant from an entire species? That’s a pretty mediocre effort. 

Again, you are basing your preposterous claims on what happened in the abomination. You are welcome to do so, but not this side of the forum. 

ADwD, Jon XI

"I am told they have more giants with them."                                                          Val answered. "Almost two hundred of them, Your Grace. And more than eighty mammoths."

There's a good chance the +200 giants and +80 mammoths are the vast majority of the surviving of both species. So, not only it's not anywhere near "one giant" but in fact hundreds more. Seems to me Jon's actions may have actually saved two species from extinction.

1 hour ago, Tyrion1991 said:

I very much am expected to like him. 

I have no idea what you meant in the middle part of your post, but given your propensity to use non-canon info to back up your claims, I won't even bother.

But out of curiosity, why do you think you're expected to like him? And who expects you to like him? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, kissdbyfire said:

No one knows how many. There were speculations that Mance's host had "twenty, thirty thousand", but there may very well be more who didn't join Mance.

Again, you are basing your preposterous claims on what happened in the abomination. You are welcome to do so, but not this side of the forum. 

ADwD, Jon XI

"I am told they have more giants with them."                                                          Val answered. "Almost two hundred of them, Your Grace. And more than eighty mammoths."

There's a good chance the +200 giants and +80 mammoths are the vast majority of the surviving of both species. So, not only it's not anywhere near "one giant" but in fact hundreds more. Seems to me Jon's actions may have actually saved two species from extinction.

I have no idea what you meant in the middle part of your post, but given your propensity to use non-canon info to back up your claims, I won't even bother.

But out of curiosity, why do you think you're expected to like him? And who expects you to like him? 

 

A few people.

For one the text itself. Because the text depicts him as the solemn bastard son of Ned who’s secretly the true King who can set the worlds problems to rights. The text does try to present in a positive light. He’s very much intended to be the series Kaladin, Rand al Thor etc etc. So yeah you are expected to like him by the author. It’s not like Theon for example.

Then there’s people on this forum who worship the ground he walks on and are all but waiting for the boy wonder to deliver the realm from evil. This ranges from the likes of Order of the Greenhand thinking he’s the next Sword of the Morning in a very well thought out theory to the people sniping Dany.

Its came up a few times with my friends and at work. One colleague assumed Jon was my favourite character when she asked about the show. My brother is quite fond of him and expected him to become King. A close friend of mine brought him up and was quite surprised when he learnt I wasnt chewed about him compared to say Kaladin or Dalinar. TBH we don’t really talk that much about Ice and Fire beyond the occasional titter that he hasn’t finished the books. Broader interests and all that. But yeah, he is almost certainly among the favourites in my immediate circle of friends. So that is an expectation.

So yeah, if the text, you guys and the people I talk to on a day to day basis expect me to like the guy then yeah; that is an expectation.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Tyrion1991 said:

So yeah, if the text, you guys and the people I talk to on a day to day basis expect me to like the guy then yeah; that is an expectation.

Well, regarding the irl examples you gave... I think we (human beings) tend to do that often. We sometimes assume others are like us, and think like us. That's why con artists still exist; honest people tend to think others are as honest as they are, and end up being taken for a ride. So, I see what you're saying. But I think it's more that the people you mentioned are making assumptions rather than expecting you to like him. 

Personally, I don't expect you (or anyone else for that matter) to like Jon (or any other character ftm). To each their own and all that. What I grinds my gears a bit is when people twist the text [of the books] and make claims that are blatantly false to justify their "hatred" for some characters. Martin did a great job fleshing out and developing the characters, that's a big part of why the novels are so great. The characters feel real, they have positive traits but are flawed, imperfect, human

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

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

Create an account

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

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×