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Ran

[Pre-ADwD Spoilers] Jon 1

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Who says it's necessary? Melisandre? Yeah, and she's a really unbiased and reliable source.

If the Others are option 1 and Mel and the worldorder she's trying to create is option 2 then I'd go for secret option number 3. Westeros and the rest of the world are truly screwed if only option 1 and 2 exist.

Yes, you'd go for option 3, what if there is no option 3, you can say "we're screwed" a million times but you still have to make a choice between 1 and 2. That's the essence of real moral dilemmas, it's easy when one has to choose between the bad solution and the good one, we all naturally pick the good one. But sometimes you have to choose between a bad solution and a even worse solution.

And choosing the bad in that situation does not make the person bad, in fact it makes him/her better than the person who does nothing because he's fantasizing about option 3 which never comes, and in turn allows the worse thing to happen.

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I would choose to find some obsidian and make my stand against the others and maybe try to get some FF Mels way, 2 birds with one stone is my motto.

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If anything her and her god have been a destabilizing force throughout the kingdom inciting brother to murder brother and destroying the places of worship of an ancient culture. If anything she's using Stannis as a puppet to fulfill HER agenda, not some prophecy.

Nice one raif. When reading the the above it ocurred to me that Mel may be using R'hllor and his religion too. Mel seems to plan and enjoy employing her "powers" and when it comes to the "magic using" she seems to know exactly what she's doing. Where Thoros did not (he's more of a cleric or priest, for lack of a better term).

It would seem that we've truly seen R'hllor at work with Thoros. He was a warrior, a bad priest, and a drunk. He was sent on a mission, observed the rites of the Red Priests for a dead man, and something really happened. It scared him into some true piety.

In Mel's case, she uses blood magic and shadow binding and calls it the gift of R'hllor and justifies what she does in his name and for the sake of what she sees as the greater good. Not the same thing.

She appears to believe that she is the only one who really sees the truth, but we pretty much know her take on Stannis is either a misinterpretation or a deliberate falsehood.

So her zealotry could be seen as her way of hiding her true intent or she's working from an incorrect interpretation and has the power to really do some damage. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

To me Mel is Maegi first while Thoros (in the post UnBeric timeframe) seems more of the true priest.

If we get a look inside her head we'll know what she is pretty quickly.

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I can see why she picked Stannis too now, older brother with a infeority complex that yearns for power and recognition. He would be the perfect patsy to seduce and manipulate. His success and failures even, are windows of opportunity to broaden her influence and control. Once he becomes irrelevant to whatever stage in the game he was meant to piggyback her too he becomes expendable....I think.

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Mel seems the type of administator to take liberty with the use of her powers absent her employers permission or will. Thats what makes her more corrupt and dangerous than Beric because hes pious and obedient while shes wanton and careless in her relationships with mortal men.

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[...] while she's wanton and careless in her relationships with mortal men.

You (and others) fail to convince me. So far, I count two men who wanted to murder her, both of which she let live. Wanton and careless? I don't get it.

She's rational, cool, well-spoken, can see the future (better than any other character, at least). She has access to very powerful magic. She actually knows what's going on: that the fight is not about who sits the Iron Throne, but about the Others attacking.

All she has going against her is... what? That she has magic that looks unpleasant (birthing Shadowbabies). And that she labours under the impression that she needs to sacrifice one or two people to achieve her goal. Pretty much like the Targaryens. Everybody else in the book sacrifices tens of thousands for nothing but the Game of Thrones.

Do I like her? No. But hers wouldn't be the first character in the book that is purposefully drawn in a way to subvert cliche. I maintain that she is Gandalf, who happily sends a handful of Dwarves and a Hobbit on a fool's quest so as to possibly destroy a dragon who might become an important piece in a much larger conflict. Gandalf who casts his lot with the supposed true king of the realm, holding up Gondor against Sauron at great personal cost to... himself? No. To Gondorians. And a Gandalf who finds herself playing a heavy role in a fictional universe where Doing The Right Thing actually comes at a cost. Where "there are no easy choices. Only one less terrible than the other." Gandalf had it easy.

(Gandalf also had access to better books. He actually cast his lot with the right king. And his assumption that the One Ring would be destroyed was actually correct. But that's a difference in knowledge, not zealotry. And let's remind ourselves that Melisandre seems admirably detached about the quality of her evidence.)

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All she has going against her is... what? That she has magic that looks unpleasant (birthing Shadowbabies). And that she labours under the impression that she needs to sacrifice one or two people to achieve her goal. Pretty much like the Targaryens. Everybody else in the book sacrifices tens of thousands for nothing but the Game of Thrones.

The problem is, everything she is saying could well be wrong, manipulating and false, we don't know. She is using her Lord to justify her actions, we do not know if that's what she really believes. Some things she is saying and doing, do not speak well for her. Using her Lord is very convenient. Birthing shadowbabies is not very human. Burning the Seven for a glowing sword, does look like manipulating. Drainage of the supposed hero, does not look like an action of faith.

Either she does believe that everything that she does has to be done to fight the Great Other, and by doing her things, she believe that’s the only way to save humanity. But that raises the question, why did someone that really believes so strongly in this, does not speak of the Wall to Stannis, before Davos did? She apparently even know that it is one of the hinges of the world. People always speak about Peter and Varys, but I think Mellisandre can outsceme them both.

She actually knows what's going on

Is that a good thing? I think not.

How does she know, why aren't there more like her that know? Why didn't she take some books with her, why didn's she tell someone before? Did she investigate in this alone? It raises a lot of questions, the fact that she know, and we have only herself that can answer them.

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No killing kids is not admirable, but if it is necessary, then it is necessary.

If the Others win then all the kids are going to die.

It's not necessary. We know this, because the stuff that Melisandre believes that specific sacrifice is necessary for has already happened (i.e. Dany and her dragons which, one notes, did not involve child sacrifice). It's based entirely on her misguided, overzealous beliefs, and it will lead to tragedy that'll destroy Stannis and very probably kill Shireen in the process. A more _rational_ person would not consider child sacrifice as the immediate course to fulfilling an unclear prophecy.

Because, you know? It's not. She is, again, wrong.

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I can see why she picked Stannis too now, older brother with a infeority complex that yearns for power and recognition. He would be the perfect patsy to seduce and manipulate. His success and failures even, are windows of opportunity to broaden her influence and control. Once he becomes irrelevant to whatever stage in the game he was meant to piggyback her too he becomes expendable....I think.

Exactly, Stannis was the only powerplayer suspectible to her influence. Robert was already king, Jon Arryn Hand + Thoros was in Kingslanding to potentially expose her. Ned and Doran too secure in themself and too decent to go along with her evil schemes. Renly, too uniterested. Tywin, too selfish and intelligent to share power. The Tyrells, too chivalorous and inteligent as well (at least the women).

Also, If she's so just and rightious, why did she not approch and integrate herself with Stannis from the start? We don't have an actual timeline here but that can show us how long she has been on Dragonstone but what we can infer from cressen and Davos PoV's is as follow: Mel arrives at Dragonstone -> Mel somehow approches Selyse and gains her ear -> Mel corrupts/recruite Selyse to her version of R'hllor worship -> Mel uses Selyse to push her/R'hllor agenda onto Stannis -> Mel proclaims Stannis AA, ditches her mouthpeice Selyse to take more direct control.

I agree. It always seemed like Mel was using Stannis in her war against Rh'llor's opposite god.

Again, What has Mel actually done in this war? So far all she has done is de-stabilize Westeros.

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OK, RW, you at least try to enumerate Mel's evils. Allow me to address them:

The problem is, everything she is saying could well be wrong, manipulating and false, we don't know.

But we do. We (as readers) are uniquely privileged to see that Melisandre is pretty much spot on. There is indeed a great terror beyond the Wall. (Manipulating? Sure, so was Gandalf. So is pretty much everybody else in the Seven Kingdoms. I'll give you manipulating. But I was asking about zealot. Tywin isn't a zealot.)

She is using her Lord to justify her actions, we do not know if that's what she really believes.

Not really believing would be the opposite of being a zealot, would it not?

Some things she is saying and doing, do not speak well for her. Using her Lord is very convenient.

I'm not sure if that's meant as a criticism. "Using her Lord".

Birthing shadowbabies is not very human.

Agreed. Her magic is gross, at least some of it. That does not make her evil in any way. She's just unlucky (from a Public Relations point of view) to not have nice-looking magic. Like building a golem out of fire or something. We'd all think that cool.

Burning the Seven for a glowing sword, does look like manipulating.

This is another point that puzzles me. In a book where heads are lopped off left and right, were pretty much every king and pretender has a lot of raped barmaids to answer for, along comes Mel and OMG she's burning things made of wood! Now, from an arboreal perspective, I can understand the horror of it. But for you mammals the outrage seems to be misplaced.

Drainage of the supposed hero, does not look like an action of faith.

Only death can pay for life. Again, part of Melisandre's magic, and compatible with what the Targaryens seem to have experimented with themselves.

I still fail to see what's so bad about her. (I understand that GRRM has written her so that we side against her in the beginning. We're on the side of jealous discarded advisors who have no clue what's really going on, on the side of religious zealots who want to kill her. But still... it's like calling Tyrion an evil little monkey demon.)

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Exactly, Stannis was the only powerplayer suspectible to her influence.

No. Stannis was the rightful king. She's operating under the assumption that the rightful king of Westeros (who is clearly Stannis as far as she — and almost everybody else — can tell) will lead the war against the others. Remember that she casts his lot with him as far back as Game of Thrones.

She's completely rational. She just doesn't have all the information.

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What did Renly do to deserve his sentence? Why burn innocent people? Why destroy temples of worship? Are you a zealot because someone invades your home, kills your lord and destroys your god? I also recall Brienne recounting the event of Renlys death and her impression that it was pure evil that was worked that day. If anything Briennes word should go a long way when it comes to opinion, her having a Oathkeeper and all.

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What did Renly do to deserve his sentence?

Usurp the throne, and purposefully sent thousands to their death in the process.

Why burn innocent people?

I'm not sure whom you refer to. The yet-to-be-burned babies? To win the war against the Great Other.

Why destroy temples of worship?

Temples that themselves were built in the same way? That's religion for you. As I said before, that's a laughably puny crime.

I also recall Brienne recounting the event of Renlys death and her impression that it was pure evil that was worked that day. If anything Briennes word should go a long way when it comes to opinion, her having a Oathkeeper and all.

With regards to evaluating the death of Renly, I hardly think she counts as a neutral observant.

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No. Stannis was the rightful king. She's operating under the assumption that the rightful king of Westeros (who is clearly Stannis as far as she — and almost everybody else — can tell) will lead the war against the others. Remember that she casts his lot with him as far back as Game of Thrones.

As pointed out earlier Mel proclaims that she doesn't care who's king in Westeros. She supposedly only cares about AA and stopping the Great Other. If this was true she should have been pushing Stannis towards the Wall since early aCoK, not using her "godly" powers to push Stannis onto the throne.

On this note, Why oh why has she not pushed Stannis towards a confrontaiton with the Others? AA with his magic sword and the full support of R'hllor (through his faithful servant Melisandre) ought be laying the smackdown on the Others left and right yet what has she done besides de-stabilze Westeros and commit atrocies, That's right, NOTHING.

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Happy Ent,

But I was asking about zealot

Ah, didn't know that, I don't think she is a zealot either. But since I think she is another Other, except on the other end of th cable. The fire part. She is pure Evil.

The rest of my post was about Mel manipulating the Westerosi people in burning everything that has some godly powers.

I still fail to see what's so bad about her.

The bad thing is that she says one thing and does another.

She is saying Stannis is Azor Ahai, what she does is some magic to let his sword glow.

She says the Lord of the Light killed three usurpers, she does throw some leeches in the fire (the same fire in which she can see those events beforehand... she must have known it already)

She says shadow are warriors of the light (or somehting), she does give birth to very unhuman shadowbabies that can kill anyone on command.

She said Lightbringer is only available by burning the Seven, she does simply burn the Seven.

She is saying she can wake a dragon, what she wants to do is sacrificing a child (we don't know if she really thinks that will gain her a dragon, maybe it will gain her some sort of powerfull shadowbird, but telling that to Stannis would not make him surrender Edric Storm.

Judging on her actions alone I find her a manipulating mother of shadows.

And I can see how you can think she isn't evil, but I believe you can see as well why I think she is evil.

but since both of us cannot look in her head I prefer to believe nothing of what she is saying and only look at the things she is actually doing.

And yes, she is going to the Wall, but that can have other reasons as well, could have something to do with those inconvenient hinges of the world...

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If this was true she should have been pushing Stannis towards the Wall since early aCoK, not using her "godly" powers to push Stannis onto the throne.

I thought she found it prudent to actually make some dragons first. From stone. Trying to do that on Dragonstone doesn't seem completely nuts to me.

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The rest of my post was about Mel manipulating the Westerosi people in burning everything that has some godly powers.

No objection. She's a liar.

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Stannis was the one that caused the death of thousands, and should have supported his brother

When someone spits out shadowspawn from her nether regions and tells me to burn some kids to keep the boogey man away I run to the boogey man for help.

The Andals not the First men destroyed the Children of the Forest.

How do you stay objective about a shadow that kills people, theres no real positive spin for that unless you worship said spawn.

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