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Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Darkstream: the Game of Thrones finale


My take on the finale of A Game of Thrones relied somewhat upon this article on Scientific American explaining the way in which the shift from George Martin's sociological storytelling to Hollywood's psychological storytelling all but ruined the HBO show, but allowed for a moderately satisfying end to the saga nevertheless.
It’s easy to miss this fundamental narrative lane change and blame the series’ downturn on plain old bad writing by Benioff and Weiss—partly because they are genuinely bad at it. They didn’t just switch the explanatory dynamics of the story, they did a terrible job in the new lane as well.

One could, for example, easily focus on the abundance of plot holes. The dragons, for example seem to switch between comic-book indestructible to vulnerable from one episode to another. And it was hard to keep a straight face when Jaime Lannister ended up on a tiny cove along a vast, vast shoreline at the exact moment the villain Euron Greyjoy swam to that very point from his sinking ship to confront him. How convenient!

Similarly, character arcs meticulously drawn over many seasons seem to have been abandoned on a whim, turning the players into caricatures instead of personalities. Brienne of Tarth seems to exist for no reason, for example; Tyrion Lannister is all of a sudden turned into a murderous snitch while also losing all his intellectual gifts (he hasn’t made a single correct decision the entire season). And who knows what on earth is up with Bran Stark, except that he seems to be kept on as some sort of extra Stark?

But all that is surface stuff. Even if the new season had managed to minimize plot holes and avoid clunky coincidences and a clumsy Arya ex machina as a storytelling device, they couldn’t persist in the narrative lane of the past seasons. For Benioff and Weiss, trying to continue what Game of Thrones had set out to do, tell a compelling sociological story, would be like trying to eat melting ice cream with a fork. Hollywood mostly knows how to tell psychological, individualized stories. They do not have the right tools for sociological stories, nor do they even seem to understand the job.
This is why it's going to be challenging to make A Throne of Bones properly. But we'll find a way to do it, and the success of A Game of Thrones is why we'll have the opportunity.

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66 Comments:

Blogger Nostromo May 21, 2019 3:51 AM  

Making a film version of ATofB? Here! Take my money! Take all the money!

Blogger Miguel May 21, 2019 3:53 AM  

OT:

King Lobster is now quoting the Talmud.

Blogger JAG May 21, 2019 4:05 AM  

If you film any of AToB in the States, and you need some warm bodies to play third orc on the right, or generic loud-mouthed ruffian who gets his ass whipped by the hero of the moment in the local pub, put the word out on the blog. Will work for food.

Blogger Harambe May 21, 2019 4:10 AM  

Can I be the Dwarf gladiator who kills those rabbits?

Blogger PG May 21, 2019 5:20 AM  

Is it odd that I've never watched game of thrones? Others seem enthusiastic about it, but I've never felt the urge to investigate. As a result, there is a whole raft of meme I don't get, but from the positive responses, it appears they are hilarious.

Blogger Silent Draco May 21, 2019 5:29 AM  

I paid passing attention to the series, after giving up on the books at #3. The sociological base is more male-oriented, but repellent because it's written from an anti-Christian and anti-West perspective. When the books stopped and it went to writer only with a waning timeline, Hollywood naturally wrote it as female psych-oriented. It's the only trick they have, writing for gamma or grrl power.

AToB will need bards to write the screenplay, matching text and ideas to 7-10 minute visual segments. May have to use non-standard writers and artisan talent for this.

I'll hold out for Bessarius. The possibilities for extreme humor and terror, due to misinterpretation of a footnote somewhere ...

Blogger Silent Draco May 21, 2019 6:18 AM  

Apologizing in advance for the second post: not enough caffeine, but also wanted to highlight a point from the Darkstream. "Leader dies heirless" or "Leader dies with minor heirs" are two recipes for disaster. A lot of European monarchies suffered this way. Regents or guardians must be selected with care. It takes a particularly good and God-fearing man to handle the duties well. Not necessarily a cleric, either, who may be someone's uncle or younger brother; Frederick Barbarossa, the Holy Roman Emperor, never forgave his miserable time as a ward of Pope Innocent III.

A big part of Circe's downfall was her clinging to power as her sons' Regent, and attempting to rule in their name. The same with other lords arranging child or young marriages to secure wealth and power, but if the youngsters died before majority? Well, can't just let that inheritance or dowry just sit there ...

It brings home Vox's point about the absence or near-absence of Church, Christianity, or Christian ethos in most epic fantasy. ASoIaF began as amoral, and quickly dropped to banal evil. No judgement, forgiveness, or redemption. Just let the Ice King grind it all away.

Blogger GammaCatch May 21, 2019 6:27 AM  

The denial is strong. Just as with The Last Jedi, there are thousands of creeping defenders of this garbage...but this time they are on the Left and Right. Shows how effective the propaganda is. They created something so compelling that people can't spare the thought that that have, INTENTIONALLY, been insulted (as was any good in this mess), and arranged so that that which is, is not. And IN THAT ALONE, people like Ryan Johnson, Martin, and R&R claim brilliance.

Blogger Garuna May 21, 2019 6:34 AM  

OT:

On Unauthorized.tv, the Darkstreams and Owen's livestreams are gone.

https://imgur.com/a/VniTyNZ

Blogger Matt May 21, 2019 6:34 AM  

I didn't like it at all, but there were some upsides. The Starks now technically run Westeros. Jon at Castle Black, Sansa in Winterfell, and Bran on the throne. In a roundabout way, all 4 got a somewhat happy ending.
By, how freakin hot did Sansa look the past 2 seasons, especially in the white gown as Queen

Blogger Paul M May 21, 2019 7:04 AM  

It's similar, in an odd way, to Gordon Ramsey's "Kitchen Nightmares". The earlier episodes are about business, money, menu. But people (americans?) can't relate to that. As the show progressed, it became about personal virtue. Less about businesses being turned around, and more about people being redeemed from their wicked ways.

Blogger marco moltisanti May 21, 2019 7:11 AM  

@PG "Is it odd that I've never watched game of thrones?"

No, "never watched/don't care about GoT" is a whole subculture. I'm one too. When the books first got big I heard the "American Tolkien" hype and tried the first one. I very much wanted to like it but found it just terribly written. Never felt like trying the TV show because of that. It didn't help that the people I know who are most into GoT don't like Tolkien because they find him boring or say that he "uses words that are hard to understand." Martin's obesity and inability to finish what he started are turn offs too.

Blogger Doktor Jeep May 21, 2019 7:14 AM  

I too would like to volunteer for AToB extra. I'll even bring my own sword.

Blogger PJW Gent May 21, 2019 7:18 AM  

If you need to cast a tall, thin, crusty old cleric with an acerbic wit who sports an excellent beard, I will work for free.

Blogger GammaCatch May 21, 2019 7:18 AM  

Game of Thrones/ASoF was intended as the Leftist Lord of the Rings 20 years ago, so of course the show to that tune will reflect that. As this disaster has progressed, they began to shed the basic tenants of how life works in favor of promoting not only the philosophies of Feminism and the superiority of State Control, but by saying that adversity and experience are arbitrary IN FAVOR of those ends. THAT is why DT must be not only a Feminist icon, but hated and reviled. Real tragedy only works with Redemption. ASoIaF is failure without a lesson. It is a message that failure and corruption and misery can be the only result of triumph, passion, good and love. JS's entire life built toward nothing. DT had been set up to have all the cards, so they had to flip the table. The last thing they can take is a character's heart and mind.


Allow me to explain the points of the show. There are multiple life lessons to be had, like nothing changes. It doesn't matter what you do, what matters is how you are born or if some supernatural entity has need of you. Even if you try, you'll fail because you tried in the first place. Everything happens for a reason. You don't need to know the reason, you have no say in it, you are simply a tool for the powers-that-be to use and then discard. If your blood is not good enough, too bad, you become randomly insane. If your name is Stark you eventually get everything on a silver platter, just have to survive to the end. Ambition is bad, you shouldn't want anything and if you really want nothing you'll eventually get everything you've ever not-wanted. Don't care about people, since they will all eventually betray you or die. Nothing matters and yet everything matters, since the almighty powers-that-be will throw 6 things out there, ignore 5, use 1 later and call it foreshadowing (hence anything is foreshadowed and other things are ignored like they never happened). See? That's what I learned! Nihilism at its finest!

Blogger Aeroschmidt May 21, 2019 7:19 AM  

Is someone creating Joe Abercrombies epic in film?

Blogger Paul M May 21, 2019 7:19 AM  

Reading that Scientific Amercan article, I'm reminded of the quote that (approximately) goes: "Great minds focus on ideas, medeocre minds on events, and small minds on people".

There are two, IMO, central sicknesses in Westerosi society. The first is that might makes right. That moment when Joffrey outlawed trial by combat there was hope that in Joffrey, for all his personal flaws, Westeros might have had the king it needed.

The second is the notion that a man can surrender his honour and give it over into the care of someone else. The vassal can say "my lord told me to secure the area, so I did what was necessary to do that", and the lord can say "I never ordered my men to slaughter families". And everyone decides that their hands are clean and they can move on. In our own time, this is called "I was just following orders".

Blogger Matt May 21, 2019 7:24 AM  

I too thought it was about the best I could hope for given the rest of the season was so poor.
A somewhat satisfying ending, even if the run-up to it wasn't very good.

Blogger Alen May 21, 2019 7:24 AM  

I also noticed a few minor, shall we say unconvincing, details in this last season.

1) Arya jumping up on the Night King while screaming. Couldn’t this have been done much more effectively? As in, NOT screaming probably would have finished the job quicker, as there’s less chance of him noticing you

2) At the end they walk out from the gate in the Wall and into the forest. I thought the ice-dragon (if that’s how you spell it, like ice-cream?) destroyed the Wall in the beginning of the season. Was it rebuilt, or he just destroyed one small chunk of it?


I watched 2 minutes of Ben Shapiro’s review and he started it by ridiculing Jon Snow for being totally useless. So I knew he actually was useful, like when he played around with the ice-dragon while the other characters were doing their important stuff. Someone has to occupy that thing, and I thought he did a pretty good job of it, running away from it and waving his arms and stuff. Also, he kills the tyrannic queen at the end and saves the world, so how is that useless? He pretty much ended that whole allegorical story line of the rise of idealistic tyranny and communism, if that’s what that was.

Blogger Desdichado May 21, 2019 7:27 AM  

Miguel wrote:King Lobster is now quoting the Talmud.

All kinds of people quote the Talmud, mostly because they get bits and pieces of it without any context and think that it's a nice quote here and there. The thing about King Lobster is that anything he says isn't particularly deep or well-thought out. He's like the fortune cookie of philosophy. If you get your fortune cookie from burnt out hobos living behind the local Seven Eleven.

Blogger Cataline Sergius May 21, 2019 7:37 AM  

Can Bran Stark have kids?

Westeros just finished a series of succession wars that left the country in ruins and the solution is a king who will be the first and last of name.

Guaranteeing another set of civil wars when he dies presumably between Sansa and Arya's children.

Or did I miss something?

Blogger Azure Amaranthine May 21, 2019 7:42 AM  

"He pretty much ended that whole allegorical story line of the rise of idealistic tyranny and communism, if that’s what that was."

It was ending the rise to power of anyone who believed in anything being good or evil at all. As others have pointed out, the entire series is brutally nihilistic and malefic. Nothing really matters, nothing is actually good or evil. There is no purpose. There is no pattern.

Notice one of the core themes of much of modern entertainment: Anyone who actually believes in anything beyond themselves necessarily becomes evil in pursuit of it. It's the sort of parable told by people wailing about ends not justifying means, intentionally ignoring that the means themselves have no value without external context. Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die.

Blogger Parrothead Al May 21, 2019 7:43 AM  

A small part of the wall was destroyed by the ice dragon, well east of Castle Black. Almost all of the wall was left intact.

Blogger Станислав Бартошевич May 21, 2019 7:43 AM  

@19
The undead dragon only destroyed a section of the Wall.

@21
Bran Stark is currently a shell inhabited by a body-hopping sorcerer (which is easy to miss in the TV series, because the sorcerer in question, Bloodraven, is virtually a non-character there), he will probably arrange another host once his current body is too old.

Blogger GammaCatch May 21, 2019 8:04 AM  

To think this used to be the show that had a small 2 minute scene between Varys and Tyrion with the riddle of power, a deep lesson about the nature of power. Power resides where men believe it resides, it's an illusion. And the show which had the only fictional character I ever thought was like me. That's how well crafted the characters were.

And it is in their destruction that Martin and D&D's self-congratulation and INTENTION lay. It only makes it worse. In order to make nothing, something, they, knowingly, took ideas that people naturally have a deep connection with, made them human, and then quickly told us we were fools for believing in them in the first place. Post Modernism 101.

Blogger Nate May 21, 2019 8:05 AM  

bran was the most boring choice. and it was executed in the most boring way.

Blogger Zaklog the Great May 21, 2019 8:25 AM  

Hmmm, are comments back to real-time again? Let's find out.

Blogger The Only Cigar in the Box May 21, 2019 8:40 AM  

I thought the last season, and in particular the last two episodes, was a morality tale about what happens when:

1) Women are in charge.
2) You bring lots of foreigners into your country.

Blogger CM May 21, 2019 8:43 AM  

One of the interesting things about the criticism GOT is getting for some of the characters is that symbolism and meaning or narrative is still desired in story telling - not to score political points, but to make their lives and deaths matter more than a statistic.

When normal people die, we look for a sense of meaning in their lives, even if the narrative is narrow in scope. It shows we still long for something that inspires us to live for something above the mundaity and senselessness of the real world. Story telling and real art give us that.

They wanted Jamie to be redeemed. They wanted a symbolic death for Cersei that mirrored her life choices. They wanted Jon to mean more to the story than a useless know-nothing/do-nothing.

It doesn't appear that the supposed realism of pointless and meaningless death appeals to the consumers of stories.

Blogger Mr.MantraMan May 21, 2019 8:45 AM  

Sansa the Frustrated once I heard who became queen of the north or whatever. She goes to rule and not a single alpha in the land on her station, she observes her ladies of the court getting their toes curled by the alphas of their station and falls into the oldest trope of all, woman burning it all down, just becuz it's all about her.

I did try to watch this DS on Unauthorized?

Blogger Brick Hardslab May 21, 2019 8:51 AM  

The designer for the last season appears to be be influenced by the Hellraiser franchise s&m look. Sansa and cerci looked like madams in dungeon themed brothels.

Blogger Christopher May 21, 2019 8:54 AM  

Story ideas after watching Finale and Vox’s Darkstream:
1. In response to Sansa’s insistence that the North be and remain independent: “Fine, but you shall consummate your marriage to Tyrion Lannister, my Hand. You and The North shall require an heir and the great House of Lannister needs one too.” This would bring the story full circle but with roles flipped a bit; Tyrion as Ned Stark. Bran as the compromise King, but totally celibate and sober. Sansa as the Stark in the North, the wife and mother ruling in place of her husband. This will also settle things down in terms Tyrion's reputation. Further, it sets up another obstacle to any guys with predatory designs on Sansa and the North. Plus it puts Sansa on the spot dramatically: You can’t have it all, do you want the North and the North Independent, or do you want options with regard to a mate? Just the counter-offer sets up a lot of drama.

2. Arya says she’s ‘late.’ Shotgun marriage to Ser Gendry?

3. Jon Snow as King. Because Bran has to control the surviving dragon. “I can’t, Drogon may yet live for 50 years. I have to watch him. And others....”

4. The Unsullied dissipate and dissolve as a force after Danaerys dies. Grey Worm and a few others still loyal to him beg for a mission worthy of Daenerys’ dream. Jon assigns Arya’s dream to them, and directs them to sail West.

5. Bronn announces that Cersei, and probably Tywin Lannister, had excellent foresight Winter wise, and that there are secret stores of grain, sufficient for the realm. On the other hand, according to the last reports from before the battle and sacking, Cersei had made some awfully big promises to the Iron Bank. They might show up demanding some of that grain. Bran says, “negotiate but do not agree to anything.” Bronn says, “What if they insist to their own terms? The realm is not ready for another war.” Bran says, “And the Iron Bank agents aren’t ready for the Iron Fleet.” Bronn: “Aye, but they might be ready to pay a better fleet, and soon.” Bran: “And will that fleet be ready to shoot down Drogon from a rolling sea?

Blogger pyrrhus May 21, 2019 9:04 AM  

Very interesting point about individual stories versus sociological/societal stories...This is precisely why Nolan's 'Dunkirk' is so different from other movies about war. Nolan focuses on the overall context, not the individual...

Blogger Nate May 21, 2019 9:09 AM  

I would argue though the most obvious evidence to this switch from the sociological to the psychological is how lost the writers were with the Bran character. They didn't understand the character psychologically so they had no way to write anything for him... so he became less a character and more a prop.

Blogger Gregory the Great May 21, 2019 9:09 AM  

Nostromo wrote:Making a film version of ATofB? Here! Take my money! Take all the money!
Used to be a time when people would leave all their money to the church in their wills. With what is going on in churches these days one tends to hesitate. Now we finally found an excellent alternative!

Blogger pyrrhus May 21, 2019 9:12 AM  

But Hollywood did make an excellent point, inadvertently I suppose, which is that rule by women leads to disaster because of their emotional instability...

Blogger Matt May 21, 2019 9:13 AM  

Her outfit , and also her makeup. They played up her naturally icey qualities, sharp features, and pale blue eyes.

Blogger Unknown May 21, 2019 9:59 AM  

They needed to add a sentence after Danaerys was stabbed, "But Jon, I'm having your baby!".

Blogger Constantin May 21, 2019 10:22 AM  

So the Ice Zombies that were build from the very beginning of the story really were ultimately pointless. Just like everything else in this show. My expectations for the ending were buried in the ground yet somehow still managed to surprise me at how utterly stupid and nihilistic it was. I suppose congratulations to Martin and the Show Runners is in order.

Blogger Dan May 21, 2019 10:30 AM  

Vox, you said in the video that you expected GRRM to make Tyrion king... but I think that the show has put emphasis on the position of the hand being potentially more important than the king himself, considering Robert's abdicating attitude with Ned, and Tywin essentially ruling for Joffrey. They wheel off Bran to play IRL vids warging all day, then the real work of ruling the kingdom starts, arbitrated by the hand... the secret king Tyrion.

Blogger electricsheeple May 21, 2019 10:30 AM  

Write another Game of Bones with a new ending for Game of Thrones.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 May 21, 2019 10:32 AM  

Vox, I do hope you finish your Arts of Dark and Light series before it goes into any kind of television or movie production.

But there is definitely a good chance of that right, given how current Hollywood is run by anti-Christian pagans.

Blogger SidVic May 21, 2019 10:44 AM  

I found Vox the most likable I've found him discussing GOT.

Blogger Nate May 21, 2019 10:45 AM  

the other thing to remember... A Song of Ice and Fire makes a lot more sense if you realize that GRRM was apparently writing Anime the whole time.

He said he was working off of the War of the Roses. Sure... but it was the Anime version of the War of the Roses.

Blogger dienw May 21, 2019 10:46 AM  

@20
All kinds of people quote the Talmud, mostly because they get bits and pieces of it without any context and think that it's a nice quote here and there.

Yes. I run into that with modern bible commentators.

Blogger Christopher May 21, 2019 11:25 AM  

Just occurred to me that Martin is British. The King is not president. He's more ceremonial ---can literally just be wheeled out. It's the prime minister/hand who runs the government

Blogger OGRE May 21, 2019 11:44 AM  

re Bran not being able to sire an heir...
It appears that the Westerosi lords instituted a Kingsmoot similar to what the Iron Islands used for choosing a monarch, so it would not be unprecedented or a wholly foreign concept for them to choose a successor king this way. Not having the successor chosen prior to the Kings death/abdication runs risk of chaos in the transition, of course. For real world examples of a monarchy not relying on blood lineage we can look to the Nerva and Antonine dynasties of Rome, where the Emperor adopted his heir; in essence it became a system where the monarch chose his own successor without regard for blood lineage. Rome enjoyed a long period of peace and prosperity during this time, although there were certainly factors other than succession involved for this; but its notable that Marcus Aurelius appointing his own son by birth as his successor rather than adopting a more suitable heir was the beginning of a period of steep decline for Rome.

Blogger Damelon Brinn May 21, 2019 11:56 AM  

That's an interesting point. One thing that kept the book series interesting (for 3-4 books, anyway) despite Martin's penchant for killing off the characters you liked, was the socio-political backdrop, the interplay between forces and courts intensified by "winter is coming." Take that away and you have a lot of unpleasant people doing unpleasant things to each other.

I've thought for a while that Hollywood's habit of promoting people based on nepotism and the casting couch has produced a generation of directors and writers who are just too dumb to tell a complicated, coherent story without loads of mistakes. They can't even find continuity people capable of noticing trash on the set. Continuing Martin's story at the same quality level it started at was too much for him, so no surprise it was way too much for them.

Blogger Rick May 21, 2019 12:05 PM  

Vox - is the movie "Rocky" a beta wish-fulfillment movie? I thought of it watching one of the Voxiversity vids "gammas" where Revenge of the Nerds is described as a gamma wish-fulfillment movie.
Rocky is not an alpha -- although a strong man and the lead character, he idolizes other fighters (Rocky Marciano, Creed included, if not especially) and he pedestalizes Adrian. He also doesn't like his status threatened (this continues through the sequels) which is a an alpha trait but also (falsely) a gamma trait.

Blogger InformationMerchant May 21, 2019 12:21 PM  

The writers are doing the next Star Wars trilogy. It'll be interesting to see if they manage to do worse than the current trilogy.

As for Game of Thrones itself, it went downhill fast after season 4. The last episode of that season wraps quite a bit up, all the strong male leaders are dead. Season 5 was bad, even the male leader being controlled by a woman dies. The weak men have a bad season and even Jon Snow dies. Sansa starts draining the intelligence of the intelligent men that aren't even leaders. Almost every storyline in this season is bad:

Stannis burning his own daughter alive is one of the least bad parts of this season.
Sansa to Bolton's Winterfell is terrible, the sparrow line is terrible, the Dorne line isn't stupid but everyone hates it. Even Arya in Essos and the uprising in Mareen aren't that great.

Season six continues with the descent into cringe. Battle of the Bastards was predictable and stupid, with Ramsey's intelligence also being drained by Sansa at the end. At least Bran's story reveals interesting things about Hodor and Jon Snow. The rest of the season is the conclusion to everything set up in season 5. Another boy king dies, Cersei becomes Queen despite having no claim to the throne, the woman vs woman battle for the iron throne is set up.

Season 7 is completely stupid and pointless. Season 8 was even worse than season 7. No possible finale could save it. The Jon and Dany scene was predicted by someone that threw together every possible cliche he could think of. (https://www.reddit.com/r/freefolk/comments/bqpjyb/one_week_ago_i_made_a_shitpost_about_danys_death/)

Almost nothing ended up mattering, Character arcs got thrown out, abilities that took seasons to acquire were never used. Even Jon Snow's big secret only mattered because half of the people that knew it got messed up by it.

Blogger lowercaseb May 21, 2019 12:35 PM  

Nate wrote:bran was the most boring choice. and it was executed in the most boring way.

I can't argue that...but in a way it was also Tyrions most ruthless act. By getting a weak king who spends most of his time in the past or chasing dragons on the throne, he and the small council pretty much run Westeros now. Sansa deciding she want nothing to do with that shitshow makes sense now.

Blogger VD May 21, 2019 12:36 PM  

It appears that the Westerosi lords instituted a Kingsmoot similar to what the Iron Islands used for choosing a monarch, so it would not be unprecedented or a wholly foreign concept for them to choose a successor king this way.

Except there are six different kingdoms involved, all of whose interests will be at odds. It would devolve into yet another war very quickly.

Blogger OGRE May 21, 2019 12:56 PM  

@52 Probably. But that wouldn't change whether the new King could birth an heir or not. I found it odd that they even went with a King in the end, my prediction had always been Tyrion (as a Targaryen) becoming the de facto leader and either abolishing the confederation of kingdoms or instituting some egalitarian system of democratic government. It was the Targaryens and their unstoppable dragons that had united the various kingdoms in the first place after some thousands of years of independence; with the threat of dragonfire gone theres little incentive for the kingdoms to remain together. Especially as there doesn't appear to be any force strong enough to subjugate any rebelling kingdom. It was also odd that in the show neither Dorne or the Iron Islands pushed for independence after Sansa claimed independence for the North; Yara had even conditioned her support for Dany on independence but apparently forgot about all that.

Blogger Christopher May 21, 2019 1:20 PM  

Pardon, correction. He's not British. Merely modeling it after British history.

Blogger Anthony May 21, 2019 1:29 PM  

Seen on Twitter:
True Daenerysism hasn't been tried.

Blogger doctrev May 21, 2019 2:17 PM  

VD wrote:It appears that the Westerosi lords instituted a Kingsmoot similar to what the Iron Islands used for choosing a monarch, so it would not be unprecedented or a wholly foreign concept for them to choose a successor king this way.

Except there are six different kingdoms involved, all of whose interests will be at odds. It would devolve into yet another war very quickly.


You sound very confident that the greenseer on the throne will let any of his vassals have private thoughts, much less plan for a succession crisis.

Blogger S1AL May 21, 2019 3:03 PM  

I refer the people above to the long history of "elective monarchies". Including the very interesting situation whereby a Lithuanian Convert became the ruler of Poland.

Blogger Cataline Sergius May 21, 2019 3:05 PM  

I think my biggest reason this thing ended up a smoking hole in the the ground has been this pretentious obsession with subverting audience expectations.


Subversion is a tool for sophomores whose eyes are bigger than their stomachs. You may think you are a genius for using it when you can’t come up with an ending that has real punch. But the fact is you just couldn’t come up with something that would wow the audience with your brilliance so you opted to enrage them with bullshit.

Most writers recognize this as a phase in their development and grow out of it.

But Gamma’s simply cannot grow.

Note to George RR Martin. George if you are reading this and want to subvert your audience’s expectations…turn the whole thing over to John Ringo.


Honestly the only real way you could have shocked the Game of Thrones audience at this point was if the good guys had all had happy endings.

Blogger Cataline Sergius May 21, 2019 3:13 PM  

There is no getting around it.

I feel a cruel smile finding it's way across my face when think about how that fat evil little goblin now gets to look at his magnum opus and see it ruins.

He's still promising two more books and at this point no one is going to care in the least what the "real ending" is going to be when (and if) he finally publishes them.

The only one they will remember is the one from the TV show.

The one he clearly hates.

Blogger Damelon Brinn May 21, 2019 5:36 PM  

I didn't figure Martin would ever finish the series. If he followed the show he would just be writing a novelization; and if he didn't, the fans of the show would reject it. But maybe now that the show pissed them off so much, he can be their hero by writing the stronk-wahmen version they wanted where Daenerys personally faces off with Cersei and maybe some other queens of Westeros, vanquishes them with her wonderfulness, and takes the throne while all the men kneel and offer themselves as consort.

Blogger doctrev May 21, 2019 6:17 PM  

Cataline Sergius wrote:
He's still promising two more books and at this point no one is going to care in the least what the "real ending" is going to be when (and if) he finally publishes them.

The only one they will remember is the one from the TV show.

The one he clearly hates.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Q9nRlkdSfE

They call him Barristan the Troll.

Blogger GammaCatch May 22, 2019 12:09 AM  

You guys notice an unusual amount of support for this nonsense? The insane amount of comments all across the net that an audience dare not complain about narrative failures and propaganda?

Almost EXACTLY like what happened after The Last Jedi, eh?

Sycophants and paid operatives are ALWAYS ready to go support The Leftist Narrative.

"Sit down and shut up, plebs! You have no say, be grateful for your scraps!"

Right?

Well, where I come from, if we make a crappy product, we have a recall.

I expect every Leftist clown supporting this garbage and insisting that we shut up about it eat some chocolate with glass in it. You know, to curb hypocrisy.

Of course, if you are here, VD has already schooled that school of thought. Pointing out their hypocrisy is no way to win.


After all, it may be more than Orks that need killing.

Blogger Glaivester May 22, 2019 3:08 AM  

By the way, when are we getting more Alt-Hero, or hardcopy versions of AHQ and the latest Quantum Mortis?

Blogger Станислав Бартошевич May 22, 2019 4:32 AM  

The show was a trainwreck for seasons and I've lost all emotional investment in it years ago, so with the finale I just sat and enjoyed anal devastation across the Internet.

The most interesting part about it is what it tells about the finale of the book. There is very little doubt that final outcomes for all the major characters were taken from Martin's notes, that's why plot lines for so many of them took U-turns in the last season.

And what miserable outcomes these were. The closest thing to achieving anything at all anyone gets is Tyrion. But Tyrion's two goals were, to simplify somewhat, obtaining personal power to get from under the shadow of his father, and finding a woman with at least 8/10 figure who will love him unconditionally for being the ugly bad-tempered gargoile he is. He ended up alone, and his first goal was fulfilled Abercrombie-style - by appearances he achieved the goal of his quest, becoming the real power behind the throne of the crippled puppet king, but in reality that king is the undying sorcerer Bloodraven (or fusion of Bloodraven and Bran Stark, who inherited enough from the former to let his nominal allies do things that will lead to their deaths while pretending to be emotionless), and Tyrion still lives in the shadow of someone more powerful and smarter.

And Arya, another character who seems somewhat short of being utterly screwed, kills the big bad who had nothing to do with her personal quest, while abstaining from killing the big bad who was at the heart of that quest, which strongly suggests that in the books the Faceless Men will succeed at erasing her personality.

Everyone else goes (back to) full villain, and/or ends up alone and miserable. I cannot help but think that this
https://imgur.com/ULQ1vG4
(sorry, not retyping a very long post from the screenshot) was the correct assessment of Martin's character as a writer.

Blogger Ian1418 May 22, 2019 2:06 PM  

Shapiro hates Jon Snow because Snow is a Christ figure. That's the same reason why Snow doesn't become king at the end because Martin, as an atheist, wanted to subvert the Christ figure trope by having the Christ figure fail to reign following his resurrection.

Blogger Northpal May 22, 2019 11:32 PM  

Hmmm.........10 year railing on the Patriarchy ***YAWN***.
Suggestion of Democracy ridiculed but settled on Electoral College system, not bad.

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