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Lord Varys

[Book Spoilers] Selyse and Shireen

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Mago is also a POV character for the next book, no? So frankly, you have no more clue how big a deal he is going to be than I do.

I´m pretty sure that GRRM has said he´s not going to add any more POV characters. So no.

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Just a place to discuss their roles in the series - or better, the lack of them (at least in season 2). Do you approve of it, don't you like, do you thinks it's a mistake, do you think they can still repair it?

Its not a mistake yet. We'll see if it's a mistake later. Both characters are significant in the novels. The fact that we havent seen them yet doesnt mean they are eliminated from the story.

This reminds me of the big stink that people made over the dire wolves early last year. That was premature. The dire wolves were and are a pretty significant part of the show. People were just impatient and hyper-critical.

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Yeah, and the "only death" quote could be taken as an indirect reference to Shireen... Given that she survived greyscale and should be dead. In ADWD I think it's Val who says she should be killed since she considers her to be still contagious or unclean... Something of that ilk.

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Mago is irrelevant. Whatever he does next, another Dothraki can do. Its not like he had a huge background and we knew him.

As for Shireen, I think people are overanalyzing what Mel said about sons and stillborns. She never talked about a daughter. The option is still there, and its way too early to say that they decided to cut her altogether from the show.

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Mago is indeed not at all that important. And they did introduce Khals Pono and Jhaqo last episode. Jhaqo is the really important guy in the coming Daenerys-Dothraki story in TWoW. Mago's place in the series could play Jhaqo's new bloodrider who hates Daenerys because she caused Mago's death, or something like that. And if Jhaqo (or said Mago replacement) is responsible for Rakharo's death, this would actually fit the story nicely.

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I think the producers are being purposefully vague when it comes to Stan's family. The logistics of a TV show do not seem to have a place for an extensive cast, and beyond that, casting actors to comprise roles which are not going to be vital for 1 or 2 more seasons is also an awkward situation to be in. I account this as the reason why certain characters, like Selyse (who is only seen from a distance), Shireen, and Damphair (on Theon's end) have not been truly revealed on the show. I think the producers are trying to leave things with Stan's family as open and vague as possible. This will allow them to introduce the characters later, when they feel the characters are truly needed for their narrative, and when there's more time to develop them -- this season is already stacked with so many new faces...more might be too overwhelming. The clever word play Mel used (referencing only sons) also allows the producers time to even decide if Shireen is necessary to what they're doing with the show's narrative.

I imagine the TV show to be very strategic -- seeing how long you can get away with putting off certain character introductions. Selyse can be locked in her tower all season, easily enough, if she's sickly and depressed, and then be revealed next season, played by a well-known actress they couldn't squeeze in to this season. Same with Shireen and Patchface.

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Yeah, but why not introduce Shireen as Stannis's daughter and heir by at least mentioning her? Nobody insisted that Shireen play an important role this season. I'd have been content with namedropping only. We got Lothor Brune mentioned, and saw him as an extra. Even Randyll Tarly was mentioned, so they could have mentioned Shireen as well. She truly is politically important. So this smalls more like cutting than mere omitting for the time being, although I'd love to be surprised. After all, with ASoS becoming two seasons, they have to introduce us to more characters on Dragonstone. I'm quite sure Edric Storm will be introduced in season 3 as Stannis's ward, not Renly's, since the whole Penrose plot seems to have been dropped.

As to Aeron: I'm quite sure his introduction scene will be his first chapter of AFfC, but set in season 4 of the series, since the whole Kingsmoot stuff most likely is going to be placed in the season covering the second half of ASoS. But they are most likely going to be mentioning all the Greyjoy brothers, especially Victarion, since he is going to separate Robb from the North...

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I agree that I'd be content with namedropping only. We don't need to see Selyse and/or Shireen. But, it's a HUGE mistake to write Shireen out of the script (if they are). Changes the character of Stannis, and There's just really no need to do it. That smacks of D&D trying too hard to put their stamp on the story.

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I disagree that Shireen is politically important. In general, Stannis' followers barely even consider her existence, let alone consider her an actual heir to the throne. Men aren't vying to be betrothed to her with the same voracity we see with other heirs. Massey even seems confused about why he should continue his quest for sellswords if Stannis is rumored to have died. Shireen's narrative importance often doesn't seem that great. We learn about greyscale from her but that information doesn't really become useful until ADWD and we get Patchface, who is such a mysterious character because we don't know much about his origins or how he can seem to have prophetic jingles. The only truly meaningful dialogue we've had from Shireen is that she dreamed of dragons. Maybe she will become a much more important character in future books, but the text so far doesn't suggest that she already is.

That being said, I'd still like for her to exist on the show, even if only by name right now.

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"only stillborns, only death" seems to imply no daughters either imho.

Of course, my concerns could be totally off base. Shireen and Patchface very well could remain fairly irrelevant background characters, in which case there is no issue. But I highly suspect at least one of them comes to greater importance by the end of the series.

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Mellisandre's comment indicates that Shireen does not exist in the TV show.

That and the downgrade applies to Stannis's wife, immediately implies that they aren't gonna live much longer in the books either. One thing I love about the series is how it subtly gives away hints of things to come, which us readers have been arguing about for ages.

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Just because Shireen and Patchface aren't in the show, it doesn't mean that they aren't important in the long run. We didn't even have a ToJ scene, and that's probably the most important & most discussed scene ever, and it definitely means something. The writers are just simplifying the story and writing out characters so that they don't over-saturate the show. They could still bring in a child and a fool named Patchface in later seasons, if need be.

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Just because Shireen and Patchface aren't in the show, it doesn't mean that they aren't important in the long run. We didn't even have a ToJ scene, and that's probably the most important & most discussed scene ever, and it definitely means something. The writers are just simplifying the story and writing out characters so that they don't over-saturate the show. They could still bring in a child and a fool named Patchface in later seasons, if need be.

But how have they been important in the books? Selyse's biggest part in the books has been to introduce Mel to Stannis, but anyone could have introduced Mel to Stannis and things still would have worked out the way they did. Apart from Pathface, Shireen's biggest part has been to introduce us to greyscale and we could learn about that anytime from any character. You are right, though, anyone could be introduced as the fool Patchface later on down the road.

I do think it's odd that we haven't gotten any sort of TOJ flashback or storytelling and I'm super sad that Meera and Jojen haven't been cast. Those do seem like very important parts of the story. Shireen and Selyse have simply not been very important at all thus far.

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Both Selyse and Shireen became extremely important during ADwD. At least on the political field, not as characters. Shireen is Stannis's heir, and in TWoW she will be declared queen. Selyse is going to be her Regent, she will rule the remnants of Stannis's forces at the Wall and have might actually influence what happens up there in no small scale.

Shireen is as important as Tommen or Myrcella to the series. She is very much a child, a non-character, but she is an important figurehead. And despite the fact that Stannis did not marry/betroth Shireen to anyone yet, I'm quite sure Queen Shireen is going to marry someone in TWoW. Gods, it might even be Tormund.

The fact that Stannis did not betroth Shireen to anyone shows that he is not willing to use his daughter as bargaining chip to bind lesser lords to his cause. He did not offer her the Florents or some lesser Stormlords back in ACoK, so it's out of question that he would consider promising her to one of his household knights (i.e. Massey, Horpe etc.)

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No sons; only stillborns, only death

Everyone is taking things out of context, they worded it so that it was confusing. I think they will include his wife and daughter it was just not needed in the show yet

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I'm truly and honestly not seeing it, Lord Varys. Maybe there are large parts of the plotline I have forgotten, but from what I'm recalling no one is even trying to betroth themselves to Shireen (There's more interest in betrothal to the heir to the Iron Islands!). I agree that Stannis made a logical choice by not even considering using Shireen as a bargaining chip for an aliance. I agree that as it stands, Shireen is his heir and Selyse would be Queen Regeant if Stannis were to die. But he's already got a very uneasy hold on his followers. Followers that only consist of what's left of some of his wife's family and his bannermen, northerners who appear content to use him to reestablish claims and rights to their territories, and perhaps some wildlings who don't seem to really care about his cause.

Everything I've read in the books has given me the understanding that if Stannis dies, his cause dies with him. Maybe Shireen and Selyse will attempt to continue the rules from the wall, but again, they are surrounded by people who really don't give a crap about their cause. I'd be pleased to hear your insights to see what I might be missing.

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I don't give Queen Shireen that much time to rule, either, but we can't know for sure. Melisandre will back them. And if we follow the logic of the 'Queen's Men'-thing, most of Stannis's men are actually Melisandre's men.

I could even see Jon being married to little Shireen, if he returns from the dead (and is no longer considered/accepted as Lord Commander/brother of the Night's Watch).

But I'm sure we agree that the crowning (and death) of Queen Shireen I Baratheon will be an important event. It will happen in TWoW. Either because Stannis is well and truly dead, or because his wife and daughter are led to believe he is dead. If Jon's men (i.e. the wildlings) still intend to go south to avenge Stannis - even after Jon has been murdered - Selyse and Shireen would at least have resemblance of an army. Marsh's men cannot hope get rid of them, not even if all the Night's Watch was with them (which they are not).

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Would Melisandre back Shireen and Selyse if Stannis were well and truly dead? Furthermore, why would her Queen's Men continue to blindly follow Melisandre if Stannis were well and truly dead? Mel gained her position of power amongst Stannis' followers because she preached that Stannis was Azor Ahai reborn and that he had a most extraordinary task. If he's well and truly dead I think it would be likely for Mel to be revealed as giving false prophecy and losing the trust of her supporters. She's 'read the flames' a tad inaccurately before (Alys Karstack instead of Arya Stark) but I can't see her followers shrugging their shoulders and going along with it if she says, "Oh, but I simply read them wrong. Shireen is actually Azor Ahai reborn." Melisandre disappeared quite abruptly as Jon finished reading Stannis' letter. It almost seemed as if she realized how perilous a position she is in if Stannis is well and truly dead. Of course, there are other explanations such as she was going to inform Shireen and Selyse or she was going to gather the rest of the Queen's Men to march with Jon, but I tend to not consider those explanations as valid possibilties when Jon is distracted by Queen's Men running amok and terrorizing a giant trying to get to Val. That particular scene seemed to be screaming out at the reader that Selyse and Melisandre no longer had power over their men.

If the Queen's Men are no longer following the queen(s), then Selyse and Shireen no longer have an army to support them. When they stabbed Jon, Marsh and others pretty strongly indicated they did not want the NW to take part in anything to do with avenging Stannis or retaking Winterfell or besting Ramsay and the only ones who actually agree to follow Jon were wildlings, and I don't believe they are going because they care even one iota about avenging Stannis. Jon might say aloud that he wants to avenge Stannis, but his general thoughts indicate that he also doesn't really care all that much about that task. So no army for poor Shireen.

I agree it's possible that Shireen could be crowned, but I think it's unlikely that it will be an important, narrative altering event. I once wondered if Mel would try to burn Shireen in order to use her king's blood as part of a magical ritual, and that might be narratively important, though I can find no evidence that Mel might do this.

You mentioned something that I never considered before; Jon marrying Shireen. Val calls Shireen death and the last we see of Jon he is nearing dying. It's such an interesting idea to explore. What would it mean? Does have any similarities to what we know of the Night's King and his wife? Would this path make Shireen's possible crowning important? I'm sort of excited now when I think of all of the the narrative possibilities if Jon and Shireen were to marry. In this, you've convinced me that Shireen's arc could be more than I expected. Truly enjoyed this discussion, though I am sorry I sort of hijacked it from the OP's original intent.

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Both Selyse and Shireen became extremely important during ADwD. At least on the political field, not as characters. Shireen is Stannis's heir, and in TWoW she will be declared queen. Selyse is going to be her Regent, she will rule the remnants of Stannis's forces at the Wall and have might actually influence what happens up there in no small scale.

Shireen is as important as Tommen or Myrcella to the series. She is very much a child, a non-character, but she is an important figurehead. And despite the fact that Stannis did not marry/betroth Shireen to anyone yet, I'm quite sure Queen Shireen is going to marry someone in TWoW. Gods, it might even be Tormund.

The fact that Stannis did not betroth Shireen to anyone shows that he is not willing to use his daughter as bargaining chip to bind lesser lords to his cause. He did not offer her the Florents or some lesser Stormlords back in ACoK, so it's out of question that he would consider promising her to one of his household knights (i.e. Massey, Horpe etc.)

What I'm saying is that their ommission from the TV series may indicate that your forecast for Winds of Winter may not come to pass. It may well be that the faction that killed Jon will also either kill Shireen and her mother, or take them captive and hand them over to the Boltons to distance themselves from Jon's alliance with Stannis.

Either way, the outcome could well be both their deaths, thus negating the need for their plotline in the first place, hence the move by the TV show to ommit them from the start instead.

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Didn't Stannis have 2 people follow him from the 'Seven' burning ceremony in Episode 1? He almost forgot to wait for them but looked back. Reached out a hand and had who I presumed to be his wife and daughter leave with him?

I thought it was the daughter. She appears to be a small figure and the way she runs from the crowd made me think she was a child.

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