A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones Spoiler-Filled Discussion

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Out Of My Vulcan Mind, Apr 21, 2011.

  1. Lapis Exilis

    Lapis Exilis Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I LOVE the Dothraki - and pretty much all the cultures Martin writes. I'm not really faulting him for some Orientalism or othering sneaking in, especially since it happens largely through the POV of Westerosi characters, which gets him off the hook a bit. Plus I really think he portrays the culture of Westeros as just as completely barbaric as any other culture he presents. The closest he gets to real racial stereotyping is his portrayal of the Summer Islanders, who, again, are largely seen the Westerosi eyes.
     
  2. Venardhi

    Venardhi Vice Admiral Admiral

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    We don't really see that much of the Summer Islanders though. We've met a few who run the shipping lanes with their swan-styled ships, and an exiled prince. We know they have the best bows in the known world, they honor sex, they use feathers for decoration and. . . that is about it. Other than the sound of the names of people and places we know of sounding sound very much like they belong in Africa, there isn't much of a racial stereotype there.
     
  3. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They changed the character to save money on having to hire actors for all the other Westerlings and do their whole betrayal subplot.
     
  4. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    There's a video of a panel with GRRM on YouTube where he explains it was his suggestion to change Jeyne Westerling's name, after the showrunners decided she was from Volantis. Why they decided she should be from Volantis, is anybody's guess though.
     
  5. Ayelbourne

    Ayelbourne Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I would too, if GRRM let me proof read TWoW in return.
     
  6. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I don't think wolfing down a fat pink mast would be worth it.
     
  7. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    No, they said they changed it because they wanted to tell a different story.
     
  8. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    The mystery I most want solved is Varys's motivation. During his conversation with Illyrio in A Game of Thrones, he seems 100% on Dany's side. Later on though, he seems to push Robert in to having her killed.

    I know he could have just been putting on a show to remove suspicion from himself, but it's a hell of a risk.
     
  9. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    Since Varys is behind Aegon, I think Dany and Viserys were basically a shell game to keep attention elsewhere, and, in Dany's case, her assassination would prompt Drogo to invade Westeros.
     
  10. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Why would Varys want the Dothraki to invade Westeros? They'd have destroyed it.
     
  11. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    Varys wants the Westerosi political order destroyed. That's the whole point of the civil war he's instigated. It's all to make it possible for Aegon to reclaim the throne. The Dothraki would have raised hell, but been defeated eventually (depending on how unified Westeros was when they invaded).
     
  12. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I understand, but the Dothraki were savages that would have raped, enslaved and killed everybody. It seems way too big a risk, even for Varys. Westerosi culture itself would have taken a huge blow.
     
  13. CaptainCanada

    CaptainCanada Admiral Admiral

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    When you're playing a starting wars that kill of tens or hundreds of thousands, that's an inherently risky business. I don't think inciting a Dothraki invasion is so much more risky than what's been done to the Seven Kingdoms in the inter-faction fighting, particularly in the Riverlands.
     
  14. superdeluxe

    superdeluxe Captain Captain

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    http://insidetv.ew.com/2013/07/17/game-of-thrones-sherlock/

    Mark Gatiss cast in Season 4 of Game of Thrones.

    Sherlock/Dr Who and Game of Thrones collide!

     
  15. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Haha, great. He gonna be the Magnar of Thenn? I'm a fan of Gatiss's acting in The League of Gentlemen and Nighty Night. Also big on his Doctor Who novel Nightshade. He's my ideal pick from the likely candidates as showrunner of Who when Moffat leaves.


    I think it's much easier to manipulate civilised factions as they have similar patterns of engagement. The Dothraki won't be beating drums and planning political strategies like Tywin or Roose, they'd just use feral brute force and tear a chunk out of Westeros.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2013
  16. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Considering how much the Dothraki are known to hate crossing the narrow sea (or any salty body of water for that matter), Varys is probably betting on them taking the shortest route across the narrowest stretch of water, which would have them land in Dorne, near Sunspear. Considering the Dornish don't seem to be terribly favored in the Realm, I suspect Varys (or anyone) wouldn't care if the Dothraki were slowed down a bit by the small Dornish army and the large mountain range separating Dorne from the Stormlands, buying the rest of the 7 Kingdoms time to muster a counteroffensive. If Dorne burns, oh well...they're all out some sweet wine for a while. By the time they started moving up into the Stormlands, they would have been stopped cold and it would have been over.

    Still a risk, but one that may be rooted in pure geography.
     
  17. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Varys was probably planning on using Dany and the Dothraki to invade and cause devastation in Westeros so that he'd have Aegon and the Golden Company come in and defeat them which would make it easier for him to win public support (he saved them from the foreign invaders).

    As well, Varys was hoping that by the time the Dothraki attacked, the Lannisters, Starks and Baratheons would all be enveloped in a Civil War that would have depleted their numbers and made it harder to put up a unified front so by the time they did try to fight the Dothraki they'd be in a better position to be saved by Aegon.

    King Robert himself explained how it would be difficult to fight off a Dothraki Invasion and the Scorched Earth tactics they'd use. As well as any Anti-Robert Pro-Targ loyalists who remain (the Martells and Tyrells possibly) aiding Dany.
     
  18. Lapis Exilis

    Lapis Exilis Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The first view of a Summer Islanders is a Jalabar Xho frightening one of Sansa's handmaidens - so a big black guy scares a white girl by just standing there. Later we meet a few others and much is made of their excessive sexuality. Figuring black people as frightening and oversexed is about as classic a racial stereotype as you can get.

    Don't get me wrong, I appreciate how Martin characterizes their sexuality as doing honor to the gods in their eyes, but it's still a classic black stereotype.


    On the subject of Varys, I'm not sure it's wise to take anything in relation to him at face value. I'm not so sure he's really doing anything as simple as just backing one particular candidate (Aegon) for the throne.
     
  19. Venardhi

    Venardhi Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Do you think a young black character who had never seen a white person before in their life would react differently? We fear the unfamiliar and unknown. Who or what is this person? why do they look like that? Are they a threat? These are entirely expected and natural questions to have when confronted with any person who looks completely unfamiliar. If he had been Ibbenese or Dothraki I expect much the same reaction would have taken place. I'll let you have the sexually uninhibited thing, but one character being scary to a child is far too broad to hold water as a criticism considering how many different peoples and clades of all skin colors have worn the 'scary' label through history.
     
  20. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I think George R.R. Martin just finds medieval white-European culture more interesting and sophisticated, so develops that aspect of the story more. I don't wanna force him in to giving the black or eastern cultures more detail, because they don't interest him or most of the readership. I wish we'd spend less time in Essos, but I don't think there's anything morally wrong about how the people there are portrayed.

    I have no real opinion on the Summer Islanders either way, as they're thankfully a relatively minor culture in the books.