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View Full Version : Reasoned Thoughts and Cautious Conclusions... (Spoilers)


Kurtz
01-14-2013, 04:19 PM
...will not be entertained in this thread.

I wasn’t sure where to put my thoughts on the End so have just started my own thread. Delete as applicable (don’t even dare). This is mostly catharsis.

Rest assured I have read every single one of the comments on the board regarding the book and have in no way barrelled in here to get my thoughts heard without regard for what others have said.


- My overwhelming feeling about the book is one of profound sorrow. That it’s over mostly, and that some of my favourite characters perished. The brutality of it shocked me. This series is so brilliantly layered and well developed. Its pace has (generally) been excellent. At the heart of it though it thrived on its cleverness, its dedication to the world and it’s charm. But I think we can all admit it has always been a little bit twee. The violence of this one shook me, it seemed completely at odds with what had gone before. Parts were merciless and unrelenting, and even unfair. Deaths occurred without any redemption – pointless, terrible deaths. The minor deaths - Kwamesa burned from the Pattern, Doesine’s head blown off. These things affected me, and i’m a stone cold LAD. Siuan’s death gutted me. Her and Bryne's had been one of the only well developed relationships in the series. And their deaths were lonely, and gainless. Siuan was seriously likeable, which was refreshing really, but only added to the sorrow.

- It’s been an ongoing and uncomfortable theme of the series that ‘the rubble needs to be cleared away’ – the Dark One’s seals for one - but Siuan, Moiraine, Elaida, Niall, Morgase, Bashere, Agelmar, Bryne, the Empress, and the rest of the old order as well.

The treatment of the Great Captains was ruthless. Ituralde is Sando’s boi, so he got off the hook, but Agelmar deserved better and Bashere’s death was a bitter one. Bryne's character was just annihilatedhttp://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu332/IIJM/forum/freaked-1.gif They deserved their legacies and some smarter Aes Sedai to protect their minds.

- My favourite parts were the romantic scenes. Some of them were so sexy I had to put the book down and go for a walk just to compose myself. That bit where Tuon tugged at her leotard and her boobs popped out like two pingpongs being shuck from a damp sock. Phwoar, stand aside Anais Nin!

- I adore Moiraine, she was probably my favourite character in the books, but her return was a disappointment. She was an actress whooshed on stage to say her lines, perform a bow, and receive her applause. A spectre of her former self. What the hell was that little POV we had from her? A terrible waste. Even worse, her reappearance pushed Nynaeve and Cadsuane to the peripheries. Only one woman can talk to Rand at any given time evidently. Keenly awaited meetings with Lan and Cadsuane didn’t materialise. The hug with Nynaeve was just awkward. Rand touching her face was pretty tender, but other than that she was an awful bore sadly – all little arm squeezes and motherly reassurances.

- And Nynaeve. That wonderful, brilliant, dynamic warrior of a woman spent the entire last battle clinging to a fucking staligmite. In many ways her utter absence from the book probably saved Lan’s life. No point in killing him if it isn’t going to create some drama involving his wife.

- The gays really came to be the fore in this book. The can be well chuffed with their efforts. It’s incredible that they can operate in the Borderlands and Black Tower, just like normal people!

- Tam – what a legend! A disgrace they didn’t manage to get him a woman. I’m sure he’ll find out Rand lives soon enough. The girls were already doing a dreadful job of covering it up.

- Gawyn – not surprised to see more whooping and hollering from the heartless thugs on this place. His is a sad tale. Very cruel to give him such a pathetic, honourless death. He was painstakingly written to be a relentless dork and i’m a bit unsure as to why. He was a good character up until RJ died but has been a complete melt ever since. For all of that, I still liked him and urged him on. He should have been able to beat Demandred though. The disintegration of a young man unable to reconcile to his station in life is totes deep and shit, but leave that to Philip Roth and other boremongers. For this series, it was dishonest in its honesty. Everything in this series happens for a reason, but the manner of his death served no purpose, which suggests an unfair contempt on behalf of the author. I heavily dislike the lingering insinuation that Warders are hindrances also. Another needle against the White Tower, which i’ll mention more about in a bit.

- Sleete http://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu332/IIJM/forum/uhno.gif

- Galad is so awful, he is the one character I could never like. Piss off Galad. Him surviving just showed the whimsy involved in this book. Sando cast his merciful gaze over him, when in the context of the Gawyn/Galad/Lan series of duels it would have made for more sense for him to have his head lopped off.

- Brooding and introspection should have been balefired early in the series. Logain was dour and uniteresting. He did....nothing. Smashed those seals with gusto though. Top, top smashing http://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu332/IIJM/forum/Grindit.gif

- Mat. I have always disliked Mat the same way that lesser folk dislike Egwene. Egwene is a character, Mat is a device - a cruel laboratorial experiment. In fairness to him he was making something of himself in Ebou Dar but since RJ died he’s just become a cartoon. The fact that losing an eye didn’t affect his personality or ability shows how much of a 2 dimensional character he always was. He could have lost his two eyes, an arm and a leg and he’d still kill a dozen Fades with one whip of his mighty spear. His patter has become obnoxious and tedious. When Min joined Mat and Tuon the whole episode slided dangerously close to Sitcom spinoff territory. Pinky, Elmindreda and the Brain, brain, brain.

- Pevara and Androl was good. Had no problems with that. A book too late though, it worked as an odd sideshow to the stuff that actually mattered. I like Pevara, she’s been a solid character.

- The big meeting at the start was a pretty terrible. Felt so glib and borderline comical. It’s an annoying theme of the latter series that characters who seem to have reached a level of maturity and understanding just regress to moronity. No one really changes. Perrin will defeat a legion of enemies, heroically leading his people, yet every chapter will begin with him huddled under a cart doing something practical. The lead characters have never been able to interact with each other to any degree of coherence.

- Demandred was immense. He changed the book, made it into something far grimmer. The rest of the Forsaken had just been having a bit of a lark, but he was super serious. He was all that the Forsaken should have been. The exchange with his Ayyad lady jarred a little though. I literally didn’t care about the Sharan’s motivations and one woman’s input wasn’t going to be convincing anyway

- Faile has always been a terrific character. Glad she didn’t die. Being queen is an unfortunate inconvenience. If she was 10th in line for the throne, 9 people would have been methodically bumped off. Olver and the Horn was nicely done as well.

- Elayne was a bit frustrating to be honest. She did well organising the battle, but you just knew Mellar and his merry band were going to arrive at some stage. I feel we’d moved beyond mere Darkfriends being worthy opponents and he is just so irritating in his crotch-grabbing leery way. They failed to really give her a decent nemesis and pretty much just continued repeating the same scene with the same baddies over and over making her just seem like a bumbling clutz despite it being totally at odds with her character. Perhaps Moghedien would have been better suited in Elayne’s camp? Birgitte’s death was shocking in it’s immediacy and barbarity, but the ending of the encounter was quite neat with her return.

- Aviendha killing Rhuarc was sad, but it may as well not have happened as we don’t see the reaction to it. No chutzpah to be had without that. Did Amys make it? I can’t remember.

- I’m not sure i’m comfortable with a second woman getting her just desserts via the a’dam. In many ways I think the latter books have been far too sympathetic towards the Seanchan altogether.

- And to Egwene. I can’t believe there are people who don’t (didn’t http://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu332/IIJM/forum/icon_sad_low.gif ) like Egwene. I can confidently confirm these people are either jealous or misogynists, depending on the gender. She has been supreme in the latter books and is Sanderson’s greatest success.

The Aes Sedai are the triumph of the series – they are the lifeblood of it and Egwene was the very best of them at the end. Her death was the most shocking to me. This wasn’t even her battle, her’s was to come afterwards. Rand, Mat, Perrin or Nynaeve dying would have been tragic, but Egwene’s actually mattered. She was going to be the driving force in the New Age. Everything was going to be through her – the new Tower initiates, the Sea Folk/Wise One’s alliance, the Seanchan. It was she who had been perfectly sculpted to understand the dynamics of the new world. It doesn’t work without her. Cadsuane will be a shite Amyrlin and be dead in a few years anyway.

I have actually grieved for Egwene. Not like i’d grieve for a loved one, but more like how one might grieve for a small household pet – such as beloved hamster that has been sucked up by the hoover. I'm still pretty upset.

- She was the great chameloeon of the series, and in her last glorious piece of mimickry she stole Nynaeve’s death. The straight-backed, determined, all or nothing passion; the will to find the opposite, the cure, the purity that would challenge the destruction of balefire. That was pure al’Meara. Egwene died because she chose her own path in the world. Her demise was the series’ great death blow to free will and individualism.

- The White Tower has been targeted throughout the entire series. It suffered where everyone else thrived. It is the most vibrant, coloured and developed group of characters by far. In comparison the Wise Ones are just a homogenous lump, a four headed Cerberus characterised by Amys, Bair, Sorilea and Melaine. The Sea Folk (after the trip to Tarabon) were mere bargain-crazed caricatures. The Tower was the most fully realised aspect of the series, and this was then used to pillory it. Every flaw in the White Tower has been highlighted, every positive diminished. When it came to the end, the Wise One’s did fuck all and the Sea Folk, en masse, held back some inclement weather. The Aes Sedai, fought, and held, and died in massive numbers. They stood and fought while their very souls were being burned from the pattern. They didn’t deserve Egwene’s death, but the Tower can never be seen to prosper. The White Tower lost it’s ‘rubble’ and it’s re-forger. The fascism of the Seanchan and the militarism of the Aiel have gained precedence over the politicking of the WT. I’m insanely bitter about this. Egwene's death overshadowed the climax of the book for me as everything else went by numbers anyhow http://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu332/IIJM/forum/1.gif

- Rand escaped amazingly unscathed. His father and lovers surviving, his mentor returning. He seemed to suffer very little and actually increased his limb tally in the Last Battle.

- I did enjoy the book. And hi all, it's been a while.


Also, I ain’t even mad that i’m still a lowly Ancient. Not even gonna mention it.

Crispin's Crispian
01-14-2013, 05:50 PM
This is... I love this.

I want to rep you like 30 times. Wait, that sounds weird. I mean, you deserve a lot of points for this.

ShadowbaneX
01-14-2013, 06:45 PM
Man, I so wanted to leave this alone, but I have to disagree about the Egwene thing.

First off, I don't want to turn this in to an Egwene thread, so please, let's not do that.

That said (and likely ignored) someone that refers to themselves in the third person ain't all there. Someone that refers to themselves in as two separate entities in the third person...man, I'd really hoped that wasn't going to show up after the last book.

Also, Egwene's treatment of Siuan. That was utterly atrocious. That was supremely childish of her and just should never have happened. Given a situation (ie Seanchan attacking the Tower) the absolute worst thing Gareth & Siuan could have done was to do nothing. To act like a spoiled child, give an even more atrocious speech about it afterwards and make Siuan feel horrible and say that she was going to have to rebuild her trust, was one of the worst moments in the series and proves that she's not worth the loyalties she was given. I get that she's pissed, she thinks she's got the situation nearly wrapped up and now she's pulled out of it. Ok, she can get pissed about that, but she should not take it out on her subordinates. They acted to the best of their knowledge and it was appeared to be a very dire situation. You cannot fault them for that and to do so just proves how bad of a leader she is.

If you believe that she's a great character for acting like I pray you never wind up in a position of authority because it's going to be hell for the people working under you.

Tollingtoy
01-14-2013, 06:55 PM
Even if you take your feelings about Egwene out of the equation(I've always really liked her), it really doesn't make sense for her to die. I honestly don't see how it furthered the story in any way, except maybe if you really don't like Egwene. What was the point of making her Amyrlin and having her change how AS and the WT operate if she's just going to get roasted in the LB anyway?

Kurtz
01-14-2013, 07:13 PM
Also, Egwene's treatment of Siuan. That was utterly atrocious. That was supremely childish of her and just should never have happened. Given a situation (ie Seanchan attacking the Tower) the absolute worst thing Gareth & Siuan could have done was to do nothing. To act like a spoiled child, give an even more atrocious speech about it afterwards and make Siuan feel horrible and say that she was going to have to rebuild her trust, was one of the worst moments in the series


For me personally I think there have been worse things happen in the series.

Like when Perrin physically humiliated his wife. Or when Perrin enslaved hundreds of women. Or when Perrin tortured a prisoner. Or when Rand forced Aes Sedai to obey his will. Or when Rand forced himself on Min. Or when Rand burnt hundreds of souls out of existence. Or when Mat shot a terrified fleeing woman in the back.

Personally I felt these were worse than Egwene issuing a mild rebuke to a trusted subordinate. She said far worse to Gawyn and she married him a few days later. It was a shot across the bows, Siuan would have done the same thing.


If you believe that she's a great character for acting like I pray you never wind up in a position of authority because it's going to be hell for the people working under you.

Well this is slightly alarmist! Graendal is a great character but i'm not sure working under her would be that terrific (wait, scratch that...)

The difference being Egwene was supposed to be in a position of absolute authority and those closest to her were the ones most frequently usurping it.

She isn't/wasn't perfect, but I don't necessarily see it as being a major flaw in her personal character, let alone detrimental to the fictionalised character she is supposed to be in itself.

ShadowbaneX
01-14-2013, 07:16 PM
One of the Five had to die, otherwise it's too Wayne's World Happy Ending.

It seems that the boys were protected, although I would have been ok with Rand dying. The cop out seemed a little too easy. Nynaeve was the obvious choice to die, which is why she didn't. From that point of view I give some respect to Sanderson, he made the non-obvious choice.

Terez
01-14-2013, 07:17 PM
Or when Rand forced himself on Min.
But he didn't. He just thought he did in retrospect because he was crazy and paranoid about hurting people. No real objection to anything else in your list, but this one is just wrong. Min ripped his clothes off; he was delusional to think that didn't imply consent. The real problem here is that he was so detached from what was happening that he was able to convince himself he'd raped her.

ShadowbaneX
01-14-2013, 07:18 PM
Well, above you called me a misogynist and I thought Reasoned Thoughts and Cautious Conclusions weren't to be found here.

Kurtz
01-14-2013, 07:23 PM
One of the Five had to die, otherwise it's too Wayne's World Happy Ending.

It seems that the boys were protected, although I would have been ok with Rand dying. The cop out seemed a little too easy. Nynaeve was the obvious choice to die, which is why she didn't. From that point of view I give some respect to Sanderson, he made the non-obvious choice.

You wouldn't want to see the teary, ranty essay this would have become if Nynaeve had died. I'd be a shell of a man.

Kurtz
01-14-2013, 07:26 PM
But he didn't. He just thought he did in retrospect because he was crazy and paranoid about hurting people. No real objection to anything else in your list, but this one is just wrong. Min ripped his clothes off; he was delusional to think that didn't imply consent. The real problem here is that he was so detached from what was happening that he was able to convince himself he'd raped her.

Listen Terez, if I shoot someone in the head and they just so happen to be suicidal i'm still going to cop the flack, no matter what the extenuating circumstances.

Rand just got lucky that Min happened to reciprocate his savage intentions.

Musenge_09
01-14-2013, 07:27 PM
I have not got anything worthy to add to this discussion at the moment, sorry. I just wanted to say that I've been lurking all over the place since I finished this book and this is the best response to it I have yet read.

That is all.

ShadowbaneX
01-14-2013, 07:30 PM
Then be happy it was only Egwene that died?

Tollingtoy
01-14-2013, 08:31 PM
One of the Five had to die, otherwise it's too Wayne's World Happy Ending.

It seems that the boys were protected, although I would have been ok with Rand dying. The cop out seemed a little too easy. Nynaeve was the obvious choice to die, which is why she didn't. From that point of view I give some respect to Sanderson, he made the non-obvious choice.


I would imagine that call came from RJ. I can't imagine Brandon having the ability to make decide the death of a major character. I'd have to think Egwene dying would be in the notes. I guess it was shocking and unexpected, if that's what you are going for.......

connabard
01-14-2013, 09:29 PM
Listen Terez, if I shoot someone in the head and they just so happen to be suicidal i'm still going to cop the flack, no matter what the extenuating circumstances.

Rand just got lucky that Min happened to reciprocate his savage intentions.

He still didn't force himself on her. There was willing consent and no "forcing" from him.

Wolfmage
01-14-2013, 09:51 PM
Like when Perrin physically humiliated his wife.

Spanking someone's bottom in retaliation to repeated slaps to the face, after the slaps continue despite verbal injunctions, is fairly proportionate. It is problematic in terms of modern gender norms, but hardly terrible, and certainly nothing to be deeply moved over considering Saldrean norms.


Or when Perrin enslaved hundreds of women.

Yep, that was terrible.


Or when Perrin tortured a prisoner.

Yep, that was terrible.


Or when Rand forced Aes Sedai to obey his will. Or when Rand forced himself on Min.

No case to answer - didn't happen.


Or when Rand burnt hundreds of souls out of existence.

That's not how balefire works. The problem with Rand's balefire was the level of use which imperilled the pattern and had a tipping effect for the Last Battle cracks etc. It's usage on people was morally irrelevant; morally speaking, killing the poor compelled workers of the estate with lightning or fire would be morally equivalent.


Or when Mat shot a terrified fleeing woman in the back.

Killing an oath-breaker and fleeing prisoner who is trying to endanger the group is relatively innocuous. That act saved a bunch of innocents from enslavement and allowed fate to work on Tuon for the cause of the Light. Calling her a terrified fleeing woman" is a cheap rhetorical sleight of hand.


Personally I felt these were worse than Egwene issuing a mild rebuke to a trusted subordinate.

It wasn't a mild rebuke she withdrew her trust from her most important mentor and someone she is completely indebted to and reset it. Indeed, she assigned it a small negative value as Siuan had to supposedly "prove" herself to earn it back - which was completely ridiculous given that the transgression was meaningless when she was giving her rebuke. She was already being invited into the Tower at that exact time! At worst, she should have said something mildly punitive in private and set a penance.

fionwe1987
01-14-2013, 11:36 PM
It wasn't a mild rebuke she withdrew her trust from her most important mentor and someone she is completely indebted to and reset it.
Except, of course, Siuan continued to be in her innermost councils, and continued to have her respect. Was Egwene angry? Sure. Did she use that to punish or in any other way reduce Siuan's role? No. Siuan continued to be her confidante. When Nynaeve made her report on Rand, it was Siuan who received it with Nynaeve. She was asked to help fight Mesaana. When Egwene passes her on the way to the Hall, she nods in respect. I'm confused at people being in a snit over this. Siuan flagrantly violated her orders, and got a little scolding, and absolutely no punishment. Why is this something that's brought up at all is beyond me.

Scrooge
01-14-2013, 11:59 PM
if I shoot someone in the head and they just so happen to be suicidal i'm still going to cop the flack, no matter what the extenuating circumstances.

Certain circumstances would acquit you the blame. Suicide by cop is an example.

probe907
01-15-2013, 12:28 AM
Yeah, a lot of people seem to love Eg and Nyn, because those were the two major characters to make their own ways in the world. Rand was the messiah squared, a messiah reborn with the memories and skills of another messiah; and Perrin and Matt were walking arsenals of deus ex machinas. Particularly Matt. Why is Matt so lucky? Ta'veren/ dagger/ 'finns. Why is he such a great general? 'finns. Why is he immune to OP? 'finns.
Eg and Nyn, on the other hand, weren't princesses, something reborns, artifact abusers, or Ta'veren - they were merely strong in the OP. Eg wasn't even as strong as the Forsaken, and Nyn had her block for a long time. They were more human than the boys.

I see two semi-plausible thematic reasons to kill off Egwene.
First, she was the only major character to never overcome her major failing, which was pride. She faced incredible challenge, but always kept her chin up, was never broken, and went out in a blaze of glory. In contrast, Rand had to accept that others (meaning, mostly, Egwene) would make sacrifices and carry the burden along with his arrogant messianic self; Perrin had to let Faile go for about 10 minutes in order to save the world; Matt had to stop shirking and play his role; Nyn finally surrendered to Saidar back in Ebou Dar; Moiraine and Cadsuane (same character really) stopped bitching at Rand on occasions, and so on. Even Galad mellowed out. But not Egwene. Paradoxically, she was not allowed to forgo her pride, because pride is the definitive characteristic of the Aes Sedai. The Amyrlin had to be proud and unbending, and so Egwene had to be the Amyrlin and the Amyrlin had to be Egwene.
The second reason is that Egwene, as Rand's mirror, ended up making the sacrifice that Rand cheated himself out of. I think the "touchy subject (http://www.theoryland.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=7703)" thread examines this conjecture to some extent. Egwene was Rand's original girlfriend; she became AS when he started channeling; they both faced the Seanchan at Falme; they were both captured and collared at various times; she became Amyrlin when Rand created the BT; she was diminished to a novice in the WT when Rand walked around dressed as a bum; they both fought cataclysmic battles against the Seanchan; they both made uneasy peace treaties with the Seanchan; they both played pivotal roles at the LB. Rand has to sacrifice himself for humanity, but survived. Egwene didn't...
I think that Tuon was, in turn, a mirror (foil?) to Egwene, a point made rather explicitly in MoL. But Tuon couldn't die due to Outrigger immunity.

A lot of people hate Egwene for her stubbornness and for the phlegmatic Salidar plot. I didn't mind Salidar as much as other plots, because, unlike the Shaido and Andor, the White Tower was actually both interesting and significant. But the plot did drag.
Nah, Egwene was much more likeable than Elayne and Faile. But, as people above say, at least one major character had to die so that the LB wouldn't look like a walk in the park. Rand had prophecy immunity, Matt had Outrigger immunity, Perrin was just too badass to die, Faile, Elayne, Min, Aviendha and Tuon had Ta'veren's lover immunities, Moiraine was recently resuscitated, and so that left little beyond Nyn, Lan, and Eg, and perhaps Gawyn and Galad. Apparently Eg became the sacrificial lamb...

That said, I don't mind her sacrifice. I expected more major deaths. Egwene's demise was emotional, but at least she went out with a bang. Besides, since she is a fictional character, she is still alive in the 14 books we have. Particularly in light of the lack of closure at the epilogue.
And I suppose that Gawyn had to go along with Egwene. He had been extremely annoying in the earlier books, but he had improved greatly, and he had never tortured us with an extended worthless plotline. I had resigned myself to Elayne's pregnancy immunity, but I did hope Faile would go... She was never more than goodie-two-shoes Perrin's damsel in distress, despite RJ's heroic efforts to inject at least some life into her character. The Shaido plot was simply unbearable, as was Andor. If I'm a "heartless thug," I blame Faile :mad: .

ShadowbaneX
01-15-2013, 12:29 AM
Because it's a very petty and childish way to treat those under your command. Funnily enough the answer comes from the next book when Gawyn's talking to Bryne about what Egwene probably really wants. Not subordinates that need to be told exactly what to do, but people under her that know what needs to be done and do those things.

Siuan knew what needed to be done, given the chaos, Egwene had to be pulled out of there lest both Elaida & Egwene be in jepordy. That's what bothers me. Yes, it is a young person's mistake, but she doesn't even know she made it and no one corrects her on it.

Ultimately, yeah, the punishment was negligible, but it's still a horrible way to treat people under your command.

fionwe1987
01-15-2013, 12:42 AM
Because it's a very petty and childish way to treat those under your command. Funnily enough the answer comes from the next book when Gawyn's talking to Bryne about what Egwene probably really wants. Not subordinates that need to be told exactly what to do, but people under her that know what needs to be done and do those things.

Siuan knew what needed to be done, given the chaos, Egwene had to be pulled out of there lest both Elaida & Egwene be in jepordy. That's what bothers me. Yes, it is a young person's mistake, but she doesn't even know she made it and no one corrects her on it.

Ultimately, yeah, the punishment was negligible, but it's still a horrible way to treat people under your command.
:rolleyes: Siuan disobeyed an order. But for the random chance of Elaida being captured, Siuan's actions would have forced a battle between the Rebels and the White Tower. Coming in just a month before the LB, fat lot of help that would have been.

Was Siuan genuinely worried? Yes, not even Egwene denies it. Was Egwene a little too closemouthed about how successful she was in the Tower? Yes, Egwene admitted to that too. None of this changes the fact that Siuan disobeyed an explicit, direct command from Egwene. That's why Bryne was so angry with her for suggesting a rescue. You do not go against your superior just because you're uncomfortable with the orders given. You're welcome to try talk them out of it, but once the order has been given, you obey. If you don't, you take what you want and pay the price for it.

To Siuan's credit, she doesn't complain about Egwene's displeasure. Its the least Egwene could have done, in that situation.

Cortar
01-15-2013, 01:58 AM
Listen Terez, if I shoot someone in the head and they just so happen to be suicidal i'm still going to cop the flack, no matter what the extenuating circumstances.

Rand just got lucky that Min happened to reciprocate his savage intentions.

Are you suggesting that its possible to rape someone while they are completely willing?

GonzoTheGreat
01-15-2013, 04:12 AM
:rolleyes: Siuan disobeyed an order. But for the random chance of Elaida being captured, Siuan's actions would have forced a battle between the Rebels and the White Tower. Coming in just a month before the LB, fat lot of help that would have been.
Let's suppose that the circumstances had been just a little bit different from how Siuan found them after charging in.
Suppose that instead of Elaida, it had been Egwene who had gotten leashed. Suppose further that Siuan had managed to arrive just in time to rescue Egwene and prevent her from being dragged of to Ebou Dar.
In that case, Siuan would have been precisely as disobedient. Do you think that Egwene would have complained?

The Seanchan attack was a totally new situation, which had not been taken into account in the orders that Egwene had given, as far as we know. She had known in theory that such an attack was coming. If she had said "don't try to rescue me, not even if the attack comes while I am still a prisoner in the Tower", then Egwene would have had a good point. But she believed that it would be months later until that attack came, because she assumed the Seanchan would come overland.

It reminds me of the (possibly apocryphal) story from the Second World War:
The Soviets and the Nazis were allies. Then Hitler started his invasion of the Soviet Union, and German troops started shooting at Soviet soldiers. Soviet commanders sent back messages to Moscow: "The Germans are shooting at us. Should we should back or not?" They did not dare take the initiative of returning fire without orders.
That is the kind of inflexibility which loses wars. That is the kind of inflexibility that Egwene expects of her most trusted lieutenants.

AbbeyRoad
01-15-2013, 06:42 AM
- And Nynaeve. That wonderful, brilliant, dynamic warrior of a woman spent the entire last battle clinging to a fucking staligmite.
Agreed. Her character deserved a better role.

- Tam Ė what a legend! A disgrace they didnít manage to get him a woman.
I'm glad he never had a love interest. RJ and BS alike didn't seem to do well with realistic romances. Besides, his whole character seemed to be so solidly independent. He loved his wife, and she died. He seemed more of a force of nature than a man, and a love interest would seem out of place to me.

- Gawyn Ė not surprised to see more whooping and hollering from the heartless thugs on this place.
How eloquent.

He should have been able to beat Demandred though.
How? He challenged one of the most powerful blademasters, channelers, and military minds in history to a duel.

- Mat. I have always disliked Mat the same way that lesser folk dislike Egwene.
Easy there, Raskolnikov.

The fact that losing an eye didnít affect his personality or ability shows how much of a 2 dimensional character he always was. He could have lost his two eyes, an arm and a leg and heíd still kill a dozen Fades with one whip of his mighty spear. His patter has become obnoxious and tedious. When Min joined Mat and Tuon the whole episode slided dangerously close to Sitcom spinoff territory. Pinky, Elmindreda and the Brain, brain, brain.
Mat's always been the prototypical Western hero, but while RJ was subtle about it, BS seemed to supplant Mat's character depth with the "Rule of Cool." And while it sometimes was, well, cool, he certainly seemed to be losing dimensions of realism.

The lead characters have never been able to interact with each other to any degree of coherence.
I think that is something the first 3 books did very well, but Mat and Rand's pissing contest was probably the most painful moment of the series for me to read, so I won't argue the point in later books.

- And to Egwene. I canít believe there are people who donít (didnít) like Egwene. I can confidently confirm these people are either jealous or misogynists, depending on the gender.

Every man who doesn't (or didn't, apparently at any point in the series) like Egwene is a misogynist. My, that word seems to be thrown around casually.

I will say that Egwene was the only character that I liked more under BS's pen than under RJ's. And her crowning moment of awesome, discovering a new weave and killing Taim, was a powerful and meaningful way to go. She had the most meaningful death in the series, and accomplished much. That being said, I disliked her character until her "captive in the WT" arc. Reasons for disliking her have been discussed ad nauseum in other threads; suffice it to say that I have no need to insinuate the magnitude of your moral character, intelligence, or lack thereof based solely on your preference of fictional character in this series.

Rand just got lucky that Min happened to reciprocate his savage intentions.
So, they both reciprocated "savage intentions..." I fail to see the problem.

The way I remember it, Min tore Rand's clothes off and was furious at him afterwards for even considering the fact that it wasn't consensual.

greebo
01-15-2013, 07:10 AM
yeah- I never post, but I have finally read someone else's thoughts that I almost wholeheartedly agree with. I love that Egwene died a hero's death, and I have always hated the constant humbling of the AS.
Thank you, as well, for not treating us to a mean spirited Sanderson bashing, as I think I have had my fill of that. This was about the story, and I appreaciate that.
I thought the book was magnificient, and I feel like I've said good-bye to friends of 24 years. Thank you Mr. Sanderson for a good send-off. I don't have to agree with everything- only that the story was well told.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 07:21 AM
Egwene sucks and I'm happy she burned in a fire.



~feels his response isnt even close to the dumbest in-thread comment and is sad because of it~

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 08:27 AM
Are you suggesting that its possible to rape someone while they are completely willing?


So, they both reciprocated "savage intentions..." I fail to see the problem.


This is kind of what i'm getting at. He gets off on a technicality. Many a potential rape charge has been scuppered through the years due to misplaced female ardour.

If you combine this Min incident with Rand's...let's call it unconventional seduction of Aviendha in Seanchan then it begins to paint a very dark picture indeed.

iirc Rand burst in on her changing, forcing her to flee, before chasing her like a demon across the ice until she fell exhausted on the virgin snow. He then confined her in a crude ice igloo, disrobed and pressed his naked body against her lush prone flesh. I don't have the passage in front of me so I can't recall for definite as to whether Aviendha woke or not before the deed was done - but if she did, it would have been with a slow, cold-addled mind. Or being snow-drunk as my mountaineering friends call it. Perhaps this passes for romance nowadays, i'm not even sure. But waking to find yourself in an icy prison, with your Power-wielding pursuer wrapped around you, naked and eager is going to flash a few doubts through even the most formidable of female minds.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 08:32 AM
Wow, you must really hate Tylin then...considering she's a serial rapist who bludgeoned Mat down and forced him to commit lewd and lascivious acts against his will.

GonzoTheGreat
01-15-2013, 08:39 AM
iirc Rand burst in on her changing,
In his room, where she'd decided to take up domicile against his objections. Do you customarily knock before entering your own bedroom if you haven't invited anyone to share it with you?

forcing her to flee,
She could have stayed. Or she could have decided to change somewhere else, if she wasn't willing to do that in front of Rand.

before chasing her like a demon across the ice until she fell exhausted on the virgin snow.
Was that snow really as innocent as you claim? :p
And, of course, she dropped through the ice into a river.

Besides, she would have died there (or been captured as a damane) if he hadn't gone after her. If that was what she wanted, then he should have let her. But I don't think it was what she wanted at all.

He then confined her in a crude ice igloo, disrobed and pressed his naked body against her lush prone flesh.
Up to there, he was still more or less in life saving mode, so I don't think you can fault him for that.

I don't have the passage in front of me so I can't recall for definite as to whether Aviendha woke or not before the deed was done - but if she did, it would have been with a slow, cold-addled mind.
From what I remember, she woke while the deed was being done. Which, admittedly, should make it rape if she decided to press charges about it.

Or being snow-drunk as my mountaineering friends call it. Perhaps this passes for romance nowadays, i'm not even sure. But waking to find yourself in an icy prison, with your Power-wielding pursuer wrapped around you, naked and eager is going to flash a few doubts through even the most formidable of female minds.
Probably, but it didn't bother Aviendha. :D

Terez
01-15-2013, 08:41 AM
Wow, you must really hate Tylin then...considering she's a serial rapist who bludgeoned Mat down and forced him to commit lewd and lascivious acts against his will.
She got what was coming to her.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 08:51 AM
She got what was coming to her.

No punishment is too severe for a violent rapist.

Terez
01-15-2013, 09:05 AM
Or an ex-girlfriend.

GonzoTheGreat
01-15-2013, 09:30 AM
Or an ex-girlfriend.
For Mat, there's no difference, is there?

Terez
01-15-2013, 09:34 AM
For Mat, yes. For Tylin, apparently not.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 09:58 AM
I'm glad he never had a love interest. RJ and BS alike didn't seem to do well with realistic romances. Besides, his whole character seemed to be so solidly independent. He loved his wife, and she died. He seemed more of a force of nature than a man, and a love interest would seem out of place to me.

That's fair to be honest. Just that everyone else hooked up with someone and he's a peculiar loose end.


How? He challenged one of the most powerful blademasters, channelers, and military minds in history to a duel.

'Should' is probably too strong, but given what we've seen of the Bloodknives it would seem it should have been handy enough for a very talented swordsman to see off more or less anyone.


Every man who doesn't (or didn't, apparently at any point in the series) like Egwene is a misogynist.

And every woman an envious old crow with no marriage prospects.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 10:01 AM
Wow, you must really hate Tylin then...considering she's a serial rapist who bludgeoned Mat down and forced him to commit lewd and lascivious acts against his will.

She's lucky she wasn't rewarded with a ripe young body, three virile lovers and place amongst the Heroes for her vile acts!

Crispin's Crispian
01-15-2013, 11:09 AM
Hey guys...the series is over. We can stop being serious now.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 11:23 AM
Hey guys...the series is over. We can stop being serious now.

Stop? When did we ever start???

fdsaf3
01-15-2013, 11:24 AM
'Should' is probably too strong, but given what we've seen of the Bloodknives it would seem it should have been handy enough for a very talented swordsman to see off more or less anyone.

Maybe you should re-read the duel between the two and reassess your position.

Demandred recognizes either the ter'angreal or the effect it has on Gawyn (forgot the name, something like Perpetual Darkness or whatever). At that point, recognizing that he is A) a channeler of immense strength, and B) a reputed blademaster renowned to have been on the level of LTT (himself a world-class blademaster), it should be obvious that Gawyn was in trouble.

It's even more obvious how outclassed Gawyn was when Demandred comments that "has some skill" but still wields his sword instead of becomming the sword.

Gawyn stood no chance in that duel, and there's really not much justification for thinking otherwise.

Cortar
01-15-2013, 11:26 AM
This is kind of what i'm getting at. He gets off on a technicality. Many a potential rape charge has been scuppered through the years due to misplaced female ardour.

Im curious then what ISNT rape in your mind. Must both participanrs before each act of sex formally say "I willingly consent to sex" then sign a waiver with two witnesses present on each side to make sure they are both in a stable state of mind?

Davian93
01-15-2013, 11:26 AM
Maybe you should re-read the duel between the two and reassess your position.

Demandred recognizes either the ter'angreal or the effect it has on Gawyn (forgot the name, something like Perpetual Darkness or whatever). At that point, recognizing that he is A) a channeler of immense strength, and B) a reputed blademaster renowned to have been on the level of LTT (himself a world-class blademaster), it should be obvious that Gawyn was in trouble.

It's even more obvious how outclassed Gawyn was when Demandred comments that "has some skill" but still wields his sword instead of becomming the sword.

Gawyn stood no chance in that duel, and there's really not much justification for thinking otherwise.


Nightshade I believe....though I dont have the books in front of me so that's a memory guess.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 11:28 AM
Im curious then what ISNT rape in your mind. Must both participanrs before each act of sex formally say "I willingly consent to sex" then sign a waiver with two witnesses present on each side to make sure they are both in a stable state of mind?

The Dave Chapelle Love Contract is the accepted standard I believe...

http://akspray.tumblr.com/post/4944428916/dave-chappelles-fantasy-has-officially-become-a

GonzoTheGreat
01-15-2013, 11:44 AM
Nightshade I believe....though I dont have the books in front of me so that's a memory guess.
It is actually Night's Shade. Which, presumably, is not the same as rubbing nightshade all over your body.

The Dave Chapelle Love Contract is the accepted standard I believe...

http://akspray.tumblr.com/post/4944428916/dave-chappelles-fantasy-has-officially-become-a
That is very unspecific as to what precisely is and isn't to be considered "sexual relations". Julian Assange is in trouble with the Swedish justice system precisely because of such unspecificity. Though, admittedly, he didn't seem to have signed and witnessed contracts available.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 11:48 AM
Maybe you should re-read the duel between the two and reassess your position.

It's very likely I should but i'm on the pulpit now.

Being poisoned was he? Jesus, Gawyn was some plonker.

fdsaf3
01-15-2013, 11:51 AM
It's very likely I should but i'm on the parapet now.

Being poisoned was he? Jesus, Gawyn was some plonker.

I'm worried my previous response came off as condescending. It wasn't meant to be. I was just trying to say that, for me, the deck was stacked against Gawyn from the start.

I hope I didn't come across as a jerk, but sometimes I do and I don't mean to be.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 11:51 AM
Im curious then what ISNT rape in your mind. Must both participanrs before each act of sex formally say "I willingly consent to sex" then sign a waiver with two witnesses present on each side to make sure they are both in a stable state of mind?

I'm very much of the opinion that if you feel you raped someone, you probably did.

Granted Min muddied the waters somewhat, but she's from a broken home.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 11:53 AM
I'm worried my previous response came off as condescending. It wasn't meant to be. I was just trying to say that, for me, the deck was stacked against Gawyn from the start.

I hope I didn't come across as a jerk, but sometimes I do and I don't mean to be.

Now you're making me feel bad!

David Selig
01-15-2013, 11:58 AM
I'm very much of the opinion that if you feel you raped someone, you probably did.

Granted Min muddied the waters somewhat, but she's from a broken home.
Are you trolling? If not, you really need to reread the scene in question.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 12:02 PM
I'm defending Egwene's honour and this is where we have come to.

Jalyn
01-15-2013, 12:30 PM
I'm defending Egwene's honour and this is where we have come to.

I enjoy Egwene and think that she did pretty damn well considering the situations, don't think that she died because she was Rand's ex, but because she was a big damn hero that was going to take out as many forces of the DO as she could, regardless of the cost to herself. At the same time, I see no need to drag the character of Rand down into an unredeemable state by indicating that he would have raped Min if she just hadn't been so horny that he couldn't.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 12:38 PM
For ten years i've tried to poison the minds of this board against the ta'veren scourge. I'm not about to stop now, when their very victory is at hand!

LeeringCorpse
01-15-2013, 01:11 PM
First off is Min, she was a fully willing participant. Rand kissed her, realized that he overstepped his bounds, pulled away and when he did Min pulled him back into another kiss. In essence what happened between Rand and Min was not rape; it was spontaneous-sexual-combustion.



As for Avienda, she ran and fell through the ice into freezing water. Rand got her out, made the igloo and held her until she came around. He never started to have sex with her while she was unconscious. Yes, his mind wandered a bit, but when she was coming around Rand was speaking out loud how he will make her go back to the Wise Ones, that she would not have to suffer him any more. Do not forget, at this time Rand still thought Avienda hated him. When he noticed she had come around he went to pull away and Avienda held him and kissed him. If you do not what to assign blame to Avienda for what transpired, she was the one who ran and was undressed in Randís room after all, give the blame to the Wise Ones, they made Avienda stay in Randís rooms and they encouraged her to seduce Rand so they could engineer ties to the Dragon Reborn.



As for Egwene, I donít hate her, but nor do I overly like her. I thought she did a lot of good and a lot of bad as well, just like every other character in the series. For me she was the flawed ideologies of the White Tower in the flesh a good bit of the time. For all the times Egwene mentions the White Tower being servants of the people she spent a lot of time making servants out of the people around her and using them, take that rather disgusting comment she made to herself about Bryne. It is the same with her trying to tie the White Tower to every group of female channelers out in the world. She wasnít doing it for their good, after all, they got through centuries without White Tower strings pulling at them just fine, but she wanted to add the Towerís power and increase its influence. It might have been for good reasons in her mind, but that doesnít make it right to try and force your rule on others because you think it is good for them.

She was also self assured beyond most peopleís sanity. Egwene seemed to think she knew what needed to be done at all times. She spent a lot of time telling Rand off, and others, for doing the wrong thing, but never did she say what the ďrightĒ course was. Even when it came to breaking the seals she apparently knew more then anyone else about the subject. So sure of what needed to be done Egwene put her efforts into gathering people to stop Rand from breaking the seals rather then looking for a way to seal up the Dark One without needing to shatter the seals. So she was going to fight Rand rather then come up with a way to persuade him that there were other options out there.

All that said I was sad to see her die, she wasnít a bad person; she just didnít grow as much as other characters, like Nynaeve, had grown through the books. She did things that I loved her for, and things I thought her a fool and even a tyrant for. Much like I praised Rand and despised him for his choices.





But I agree with most everything else that was said. Nynaeve was wasted, as was Moiraine, those two and Min where my favorite female characters in the series and I thought they where egregiously misused and miswritten. While Androl and Pavaraís parts where nice I would have traded it all in for more from those three.

Like most others I was ready for it to end, but I think it would have been better to split this book in two and give full justice to the characters that were largely nonexistent or ignored. What writer brings a character back from perceived death only have her back for a few pages? In my mind it would have been better if Mat and Thom had failed rather then to bring Moiraine back only to be largely ignored. She did the most to bring Rand to the last Battle and for her to be, what seemed, an afterthought in this book was just wrong.

While I read I was enjoying the book, but when I turned the last page over and closed the book I was disappointed at what was missing. I canít blame Sanderson, I think he did as well as he could, it must have been extremely hard to write a book that is anotherís. I doff my cap to the man for attempting the impossible and giving the fans a bit of closure to the series. Better to have a flawed finish then to leave the series uncompleted, I think.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 01:55 PM
She wasn’t doing it for their good, after all, they got through centuries without White Tower strings pulling at them just fine


They haven't though. The Kin and Sea Folk hid to avoid the Tower, and the Wise Ones were in the Waste and governed by their curious laws of honour - which let's face it, won't last (already hasn't lasted with the Shaido). The Seanchan channellers were collared and the Sharans fell under the Shadow.

If Channellers want to be involved with the world at large, they must be bound to the Tower. The Sea Folk will have to be stomped quickly as they are already using the Power for personal gain. Elayne's use of the Kin will have to cease as well. The Oaths are everything.

The very point of the Tower is not to control and police the world, but to control and police the Power-wielder's in the World. The former just comes because they're so much smarter than everyone else.

Good post though! Agree with most of it, apart from the shameless 'blame the victim' angle in regard to poor Avi. I've also remembered that those scenes were Rand's POV so the truth is probably even worse than he let on, if that can even be comprehended!

David Selig
01-15-2013, 02:01 PM
The very point of the Tower is not to control and police the world, but to control and police the Power-wielder's in the World. The former just comes because they're so much smarter than everyone else.
Now I know for sure that you are trolling.

Kurtz
01-15-2013, 02:07 PM
Now I know for sure that you are trolling.

Haha, very true.

In fairness they are older, more experienced and more educated than pretty much everybody in the world. Stands to reason they should be involved in the decision making of the world.

Obviously they're portrayed as idiots in the series though, despite individually appearing to be quite astute.

Tollingtoy
01-15-2013, 04:55 PM
I see two semi-plausible thematic reasons to kill off Egwene.
First, she was the only major character to never overcome her major failing, which was pride. She faced incredible challenge, but always kept her chin up, was never broken, and went out in a blaze of glory. In contrast, Rand had to accept that others (meaning, mostly, Egwene) would make sacrifices and carry the burden along with his arrogant messianic self; Perrin had to let Faile go for about 10 minutes in order to save the world; Matt had to stop shirking and play his role; Nyn finally surrendered to Saidar back in Ebou Dar; Moiraine and Cadsuane (same character really) stopped bitching at Rand on occasions, and so on. Even Galad mellowed out. But not Egwene. Paradoxically, she was not allowed to forgo her pride, because pride is the definitive characteristic of the Aes Sedai. The Amyrlin had to be proud and unbending, and so Egwene had to be the Amyrlin and the Amyrlin had to be Egwene.
The second reason is that Egwene, as Rand's mirror, ended up making the sacrifice that Rand cheated himself out of. I think the "touchy subject (http://www.theoryland.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=7703)" thread examines this conjecture to some extent. Egwene was Rand's original girlfriend; she became AS when he started channeling; they both faced the Seanchan at Falme; they were both captured and collared at various times; she became Amyrlin when Rand created the BT; she was diminished to a novice in the WT when Rand walked around dressed as a bum; they both fought cataclysmic battles against the Seanchan; they both made uneasy peace treaties with the Seanchan; they both played pivotal roles at the LB. Rand has to sacrifice himself for humanity, but survived. Egwene didn't...


I obviously saw the parallel between Rand and Egwene in TGS, but I've never really thought about it in the greater context. This does make a lot of sense though, thank you!


Now that I've given this some more thought, I've come to some new conclusions. Even though Egwene was one of the first AS to realize a need for the WT to change, she really did harbor too much of the old WT attitude to be successful at it. I think her interactions with Rand and Tuon specifically show this to be true. I don't know if she would have been able to work with Logain and the BT the way a 4th Age Amrylin would need to

Crispin's Crispian
01-15-2013, 06:09 PM
The other obvious parallel is Eldrene of Manetheren, who went nuts after her husband died, drew too much One Power, killed off an army of Trollocs by herself, then died in a fire.

It's just another example of legends recurring in a different way.

Davian93
01-15-2013, 06:10 PM
The other obvious parallel is Eldrene of Manetheren, who went nuts after her husband died, drew too much One Power, killed off an army of Trollocs by herself, then died in a fire.

It's just another example of legends recurring in a different way.

Which was foreshadowed in tEotW when Mat spouted off Old Tongue (foreshadowing he'd fight a seemingly hopeless battle against the Shadow on a riverbank like Aemon) and Egwene "almost" understood hinting that she had some of Eldrene's blood in her ancestry.


Well done, RJ.

ShadowbaneX
01-15-2013, 06:55 PM
Stop? When did we ever start???

What he said.

Crispin's Crispian
01-15-2013, 10:01 PM
Well...just don't forget how to have a little fun, instead of assuming everyone is 100% serious when they don't explicitly point out a joke.

Know what I mean? Eh? Nudge, nudge?

ShadowbaneX
01-15-2013, 10:17 PM
What makes you think I was being serious?

GonzoTheGreat
01-16-2013, 04:24 AM
In fairness they are older, more experienced and more educated than pretty much everybody in the world.
With the exception of the Wise Ones, who are on average just as old, more experienced and probably just as educated, considering the Aiel love of books.
And the damane, who can be a lot older than either AS or WO.
And the Windfinders, who can combine greater age than any AS with having seen far more of the world.

The Kin also have better credentials than the AS. I can't remember all that many Darkfriends in their ranks, for instance.

Then there's the one who is oldest, most experienced and better educated than anyone else in the world: Knotai. Seems as if he should be put in charge of the White Tower.

Of course, all of this totally ignores the Black Tower, which, unlike the White, actually pays real attention to serving the world in stead of trying to "guide it" (euphemism for ruling it, just Gadaffi "guided Libya").

Obviously they're portrayed as idiots in the series though, despite individually appearing to be quite astute.
Some individuals. Others more than make up for it. And the fact that those idiots manage to rise to the top (whereas in the WO organisation they don't even seem to make it to WO unless they're Shaido) is definitely not a good sign for the over all quality of the AS.