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Old June 5 2012, 04:47 PM   #766
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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Because no one has ever made a rash decision in a moment of weakness, especially not a teenage boy with a girl offering herself to him.
That's precisely my point - in the book he's a teenaged boy. Since the TV series Robb is a bit older (and very clearly not teenager), it's a less plausible thing for him to do.
How is it more plausible that he would clearheadedly decide to throw away an alliance for some chick than that he would have sex in a moment of despair and then do what society ordains as the honourable thing in the aftermath?
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Old June 5 2012, 04:52 PM   #767
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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How is it more plausible that he would clearheadedly decide to throw away an alliance for some chick than that he would have sex in a moment of despair and then do what society ordains as the honourable thing in the aftermath?
Because he's not enough of an idiot to do something impulsively on account of hormones, but he is enough of an idiot to do something premediated on account of romance.

It's a different kind of idiocy that assumes he's old enough to make one mistake less plausible, but doesn't mean he's somehow above making terrible choices.
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Old June 5 2012, 05:16 PM   #768
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

I don't buy that at all. A single moment of weakness (which is not something I find less plausible now that he's a few years older; people still impulsively hook up) is inherently much more plausible than this exceptionally calculated act of ruin.
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Old June 5 2012, 08:00 PM   #769
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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I think they'll do what they did with Jaime this year - show him in several episodes, suffering at the hands of Ramsay, trying to escape, get caught, suffer some more. ADWD runs in parallel with AFFC and Theon's imprisonment actually starts much earlier. There's no need to make him disappear for two years.
They went out of their way to avoid introducing Ramsay this year, and there's been no word on casting him, so I suspect he actually may not show up until Season 5.
Roose mentioned his bastard a few times and the ending scene in Winterfell needs some explaining for the viewers who didn't read the books.
Agreed. My wife asked me if Theon's people torched the castle when they left (she hasn't read the books) and I explained the Bolton/Snow sub-plot to her. It just doesn't make sense that a handful of 20-some guys, surrounded by hundreds, would take the time to torch the ENTIRE place before escaping. I think this is why they didn't specifically show who did the deed.

However, I actually do agree that it should be kept a mystery for now. To the non-book-reading TV-watching audience, showing the Bolton betrayal this late in the season would leave the majority of the viewers scratching their heads and saying "WTF?? Wasn't Roose supposed to be Robb's ally?" With all the other things going on, there wasn't enough time for the exposition necessary to explain the motive behind sacking Winterfell.
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Old June 5 2012, 10:15 PM   #770
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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I don't buy that at all. A single moment of weakness (which is not something I find less plausible now that he's a few years older; people still impulsively hook up) is inherently much more plausible than this exceptionally calculated act of ruin.
I wouldn't call it an exceptionally calculated act of ruin. He just doesn't give a fuck about the Freys and thinks that they should be happy to shut up and take what he gives them. And he's right. All of Walder Frey's potential recourses do nothing but fuck the Freys over. He doesn't consider the possibility that Walder is spiteful enough to destroy his own house just to get revenge for a minor slight (and make no mistake, the Red Wedding did destroy House Frey; everyone hates them and no one trusts them, it's only a matter of time now before they fall).

Rob didn't want to marry the Frey girl. He never really intended to marry her. He agreed to it because he needed to move his army over the river, but both sides knew that he had absolutely no reason to keep his word once his army had moved through, particularly since the price was unreasonable in the first place.
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Old June 6 2012, 03:29 AM   #771
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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He never really intended to marry her. He agreed to it because he needed to move his army over the river, but both sides knew that he had absolutely no reason to keep his word once his army had moved through, particularly since the price was unreasonable in the first place.
That isn't true at all. He intended to marry her, and it was hardly unreasonable. Frey didn't just let him cross a bridge, he gave him thousands of soldiers in alliance (he's House Tully's largest bannerman), and committed his House to Robb's cause. Even if Frey hadn't gone the route of the elaborate betrayal, he could just as easily have just joined Tywin openly and denied Robb the use of his fortress, severely impeding his army.

It's suicidal for Robb to cavalierly break oaths like that, and contrary to the Stark character. It's the reason nations don't discard treaties on a whim; it means your word has no value. In-show, he'll get pretty much what he deserves.
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Old June 6 2012, 09:03 AM   #772
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

Hyzmarca has a point. Robb's marriage to Jeyne or Talisa is a direct slight to the honour of House Frey and all that, but killing those who are your guests is even worse. (Honestly, the Red Wedding has shades of the Massacre of Glencoe to me). The books have been implying for a while that it has long-term toxic implications for House Frey, even the judicious Tywin was sure to publically distance the Lannisters from the act.

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It's suicidal for Robb to cavalierly break oaths like that, and contrary to the Stark character. It's the reason nations don't discard treaties on a whim; it means your word has no value. In-show, he'll get pretty much what he deserves.
All of this is true for the novels, mind. He cavalierly breaks his oath, and he reaps what he sows.
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Old June 6 2012, 09:09 AM   #773
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

You're missing the difference between a moment of weakness, taken advantage of by interested parties, that snowballed into him having to make a choice between two dishonorable deeds and choosing the one that gave him the most personal happiness, and a clear decision -by a grown man who should fully understand the impact of his actions- to renege on his promise just because he met a pretty girl a few weeks ago.

If they chose to portray Robb as increasingly brash and arrogant over the course of his arc, it might make sense. A feeling of "I am their King now, so they'll just have to deal with it." would go a long way to convincing me these are the actions of the same young man we've been watching for two seasons. A young man given too much power before he is ready and led astray by overconfidence.
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Old June 6 2012, 02:39 PM   #774
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

I just started reading the books. I know I have horribly mangled the names but bear with me...

About the books and Ned + Lyanna and the Rhaegar business. Ned does not seem to hate the Targaryns the way Robert does. 1. Ned argued againsts Robert's plan to have Dany killed. He even quit being the Hand because he objected. 2. In the book when he is looking for Robert's bastards - Ned muses that Rhaegar was not the type to whore about. So - he does not seem to hate the man that for as far as the world knows kidanpped his sister. I think Rheagar had to marry Elia of Dorne for the kingdom but he loved Lyanna and she possibly loved him. Otherwise - why would Ned not hate the Targaryns the way Robert did?


Also, Ned remembers finding Lyanna in a room that smelled of blood and she was feverish. Dying from childbirth? He reflects on how what he promised her cost him. Was it that he claimed her child as his own to shield her from disgrace in death and to keep Robert from killing Ned's nephew because he is a Targaryn?

Jon may really turn out to be just Ned's, but I don't get that vibe from the books or even the TV show. There is a reason why we see so much of Jon (and I don't think it is solely to showcase the lands beyond the wall). And I noticed in the credits - Kit Arrington (Jon) gets noted singly while the other Stark children are lumped together. When an actor gets good billing that is always a sign. IMHO.

Sorry. Just had to get that out. On the board that post about the TV show, the other ladies have not read the books and I don't get a chance to just ramble.
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Old June 6 2012, 02:46 PM   #775
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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It's suicidal for Robb to cavalierly break oaths like that, and contrary to the Stark character. It's the reason nations don't discard treaties on a whim; it means your word has no value. In-show, he'll get pretty much what he deserves.
Breaking a betrothal isn't quite as severe as breaking a treaty, and isn't that big a deal. No one complained when Joffrey broke his betrothal to Sansa, after all.

And a couple thousand soldiers isn't wroth a queenship. Other bannermen were contributing similar number. If it were tens of thousands of soldiers, maybe.

Furthermore, Robb could have taken the Twins with relative ease, he just didn't have time for a siege because he wanted to save his father. Walder didn't give Robb anything that Robb wouldn't have gotten after a couple months of sieging.


The Freys aren't royalty, and any political marriage is better suited to a royal or a paramount lord. That means that from a purely political perspective Robb was better off going for Shireen Baratheon, Myrcella Baratheon, or the daughter of one of the other Paramount Lords, perhaps Margaery Tyrell (Cat should have pounced on her as soon as Renley died, but really wasn't in a state of mind for political intrigue).

Nah, no one expected Robb to actually go through with it. The surprise was that he married someone of even lower station than his betrothed, instead of going higher and using the marriage to cement a claim on the Iron Throne. Now that was a slap in the face to Walder.

And if I remember correctly, Robb didn't make an agreement to marry the Frey girl. Cat made it for him. So technically he isn't breaking his word.
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Old June 6 2012, 02:56 PM   #776
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

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You're missing the difference between a moment of weakness, taken advantage of by interested parties, that snowballed into him having to make a choice between two dishonorable deeds and choosing the one that gave him the most personal happiness, and a clear decision -by a grown man who should fully understand the impact of his actions- to renege on his promise just because he met a pretty girl a few weeks ago.
I'm not. I'd detailed above how I felt the latter made more sense for an older Robb, the argument at least assumes I consider them substantively different. But a Robb breaking his oath because he'd had a ravished a maiden is not inherently more honourable or, in the feudal sense, less deserving of the Frey's wrath than a Robb breaking his oath because he met a girl.

To phrase this another way, taking the virginity of a noble maiden is in itself also a dishonourable act. Robb is not caught between two abstract dishonourable choices in the books, he makes a rash, impulsive, and hormonally addled choice of action that is dishonourable and leaves him with different recourses, either of which compounds the existing dishonour.

Now, that something is dishonourable is not the same thing as saying it isn't something we might excuse as the impulsiveness or the weakness of a teenage boy... but that doesn't stop it from being what I said above.

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Breaking a betrothal isn't quite as severe as breaking a treaty, and isn't that big a deal. No one complained when Joffrey broke his betrothal to Sansa, after all.
Joffrey's breaking of his oath to Sansa works because they covered their asses thoroughly. The justification that Sansa's family had betrayed the crown is given as just cause (the Freys are not in open rebellion against the Starks, on the other hand) and on top of this Joffrey gets the special dispensation of the High Septon to go back on his vows.

It's a feudal society. Marriage is politics is marriage.
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Old June 6 2012, 04:05 PM   #777
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

hyzmarca wrote: View Post
CaptainCanada wrote: View Post
It's suicidal for Robb to cavalierly break oaths like that, and contrary to the Stark character. It's the reason nations don't discard treaties on a whim; it means your word has no value. In-show, he'll get pretty much what he deserves.
Breaking a betrothal isn't quite as severe as breaking a treaty, and isn't that big a deal. No one complained when Joffrey broke his betrothal to Sansa, after all.

And a couple thousand soldiers isn't wroth a queenship. Other bannermen were contributing similar number. If it were tens of thousands of soldiers, maybe.

Furthermore, Robb could have taken the Twins with relative ease, he just didn't have time for a siege because he wanted to save his father. Walder didn't give Robb anything that Robb wouldn't have gotten after a couple months of sieging.


The Freys aren't royalty, and any political marriage is better suited to a royal or a paramount lord. That means that from a purely political perspective Robb was better off going for Shireen Baratheon, Myrcella Baratheon, or the daughter of one of the other Paramount Lords, perhaps Margaery Tyrell (Cat should have pounced on her as soon as Renley died, but really wasn't in a state of mind for political intrigue).

Nah, no one expected Robb to actually go through with it. The surprise was that he married someone of even lower station than his betrothed, instead of going higher and using the marriage to cement a claim on the Iron Throne. Now that was a slap in the face to Walder.

And if I remember correctly, Robb didn't make an agreement to marry the Frey girl. Cat made it for him. So technically he isn't breaking his word.
1. Frey was deadly serious, and that was clear from the start.

2. You can't siege the twins from only one side.

3. In this world, it is clear that your parent's word is as good as your own. Robb isn't lord of Winterfell at that point and must accept his mother's promise to Lord Frey.
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Old June 6 2012, 06:34 PM   #778
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

hyzmarca wrote: View Post
Breaking a betrothal isn't quite as severe as breaking a treaty, and isn't that big a deal. No one complained when Joffrey broke his betrothal to Sansa, after all.
In Joffrey's case they covered their bases and Sansa isn't the daughter of a valued ally. It's not an issue of petty legalities, and it most definitely is as serious as a treaty, because the marriage was the basis for their whole alliance. Robb is declaring himself sovereign, which means that he is himself a nation (or rather, the nation is him), and thus his formal commitments to other state actors acquire that weight, above and beyond the honour culture that already existed even for lesser discussions.
And a couple thousand soldiers isn't wroth a queenship.
How do you judge that?
Other bannermen were contributing similar number.
Even if that were the case (and since the Freys were the largest vassal house in the Riverlands, that's debatable), that doesn't really enter into it. Robb didn't have the forces before, or access to the Twins; after making the deal, he had them.
Furthermore, Robb could have taken the Twins with relative ease
Also not true, as pointed out above. The Twins can't be besieged from one side, and if Robb hadn't been able to cross, he'd have had to either retreat or be trapped between Tywin and Jaime's armies, and he would have been unable to relieve Riverrun, which consequently would have fallen.
The Freys aren't royalty, and any political marriage is better suited to a royal or a paramount lord. That means that from a purely political perspective Robb was better off going for Shireen Baratheon, Myrcella Baratheon, or the daughter of one of the other Paramount Lords, perhaps Margaery Tyrell (Cat should have pounced on her as soon as Renley died, but really wasn't in a state of mind for political intrigue).
What does that have to do with anything? The Stark kings always married children of their own bannermen, anyway, and no one else was offering brides.
Nah, no one expected Robb to actually go through with it.
Again, where do you get this? Everyone expected Robb to go through with it. Robb expected to go through with it. That's clear from the stories.

And Robb signed off on his mother's promise, so he did break his word (quite apart from that he wasn't yet Lord of Winterfell and his mother was acting as his father's regent, and thus empowered to make those calls for him).
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Old June 7 2012, 12:27 AM   #779
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

Kosh Naranek wrote: View Post
I just started reading the books. I know I have horribly mangled the names but bear with me...

About the books and Ned + Lyanna and the Rhaegar business. Ned does not seem to hate the Targaryns the way Robert does. 1. Ned argued againsts Robert's plan to have Dany killed. He even quit being the Hand because he objected. 2. In the book when he is looking for Robert's bastards - Ned muses that Rhaegar was not the type to whore about. So - he does not seem to hate the man that for as far as the world knows kidanpped his sister. I think Rheagar had to marry Elia of Dorne for the kingdom but he loved Lyanna and she possibly loved him. Otherwise - why would Ned not hate the Targaryns the way Robert did?


Also, Ned remembers finding Lyanna in a room that smelled of blood and she was feverish. Dying from childbirth? He reflects on how what he promised her cost him. Was it that he claimed her child as his own to shield her from disgrace in death and to keep Robert from killing Ned's nephew because he is a Targaryn?

Jon may really turn out to be just Ned's, but I don't get that vibe from the books or even the TV show. There is a reason why we see so much of Jon (and I don't think it is solely to showcase the lands beyond the wall). And I noticed in the credits - Kit Arrington (Jon) gets noted singly while the other Stark children are lumped together. When an actor gets good billing that is always a sign. IMHO.

Sorry. Just had to get that out. On the board that post about the TV show, the other ladies have not read the books and I don't get a chance to just ramble.
That's pretty much the reaction I had when I read the book. I was pleased to see that most folks online agree with this interpretation.
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Old June 7 2012, 12:32 AM   #780
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Re: A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

hyzmarca wrote: View Post
Breaking a betrothal isn't quite as severe as breaking a treaty, and isn't that big a deal. No one complained when Joffrey broke his betrothal to Sansa, after all.
Those situations are hardly comparable, however, considering Ned Stark had been executed as a traitor. Of course no one would give a damn that Joffrey's betrothal to the daughter of a traitor was broken so that he could instead be betrothed to the daughter of a wealthy and powerful family in the Tyrells.

As for "relative ease" - even you point out that it would likely have taken "a couple months" for a successful siege against the Twins. Walder Frey was in an excellent position with the location of his castles not solely because Robb needed to pass to wage war against the Lannisters, but because the Twins could easily have closed against the northern army as well if it were in retreat. Agreeing to the marriage was the only way in which Robb could ensure that Walder Frey would remain loyal.

Re: the Iron Throne - Robb had no interest in staking a claim to all of Westeros. After all, his bannermen had declared him the King in the North (or King of Winter, if you prefer). Robb's interest, beyond the safety of his family, was the sovereignty of his own realm, not expanding his power to encompass as much of the Seven Kingdoms as possible.

Re: "technically didn't break his word" - Robb agreed to the marriage, having vested in his mother full authority to negotiate in his name. He broke his word, period.
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