History Literature / AsianSaga

27th Apr '17 5:39:28 AM Galvatron29
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* ProtagonistCentredMorality: Actually averted in ''Tai-Pan'': despite being the protagonist, Dirk's well aware he's no angel and never tries to pass off what he's doing as morally right, instead viewing his dodgier actions as IDidWhatIHadToDo regardless of personal distaste. In one notable instance, when Culum rages about having Brock hanged as a pirate for trying to sink their bullion-carrying lorcha, Dirk calmly observes he'd have done the same thing in Brock's position, and that Brock's only son was failure - leaving Culum utterly flabbergasted.

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* ProtagonistCentredMorality: Actually averted in ''Tai-Pan'': despite being the protagonist, Dirk's well aware he's no angel and never tries to pass off what he's doing as morally right, instead viewing his dodgier actions as IDidWhatIHadToDo regardless of personal distaste. In one notable instance, when Culum rages about having Brock hanged as a pirate for trying to sink their bullion-carrying lorcha, Dirk calmly observes he'd have done the same thing in Brock's position, and that Brock's only son sin was failure - leaving Culum utterly flabbergasted.
27th Apr '17 5:36:53 AM Galvatron29
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Added DiffLines:

* AntiHero: Clavell's heroes tend to zigzag this trope: Blackthorne and Ian Dunross are the closest to traditional heroes, but Dirk Struan is ''very'' much this: ruthless, manipulative of his family, utterly merciless to his enemies - he actually shows '''less''' standards than the NominalVillain of ''Tai-Pan'' Tyler Brock when he uses Tyler's own daughter against him to kill his mad son. In ''Shogun'' Toranaga is so far into this trope he's practically an AntiVillain.


Added DiffLines:

* ProtagonistCentredMorality: Actually averted in ''Tai-Pan'': despite being the protagonist, Dirk's well aware he's no angel and never tries to pass off what he's doing as morally right, instead viewing his dodgier actions as IDidWhatIHadToDo regardless of personal distaste. In one notable instance, when Culum rages about having Brock hanged as a pirate for trying to sink their bullion-carrying lorcha, Dirk calmly observes he'd have done the same thing in Brock's position, and that Brock's only son was failure - leaving Culum utterly flabbergasted.
** Played straight when Struan descendants like Malcolm Struan Strain and Ian Dunross look back on and romanticize Dirk's deeds, simultaneously demonizing Brock.
14th Mar '17 8:45:21 AM CosmicFerret
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* JapaneseChristian: A recurring plot issue in ''Shogun''.

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* JapaneseChristian: UsefulNotes/JapaneseChristian: A recurring plot issue in ''Shogun''.
3rd Mar '17 10:35:14 AM Galvatron29
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* {{Hypocrite}}: At one point in ''Shogun'' Mariko is staggered to discover that the Portuguese sailors of the ship she's on contemptuously refer to all Japanese as monkeys. When Rodrigues gently calls her on this, pointing out that Japanese call Westerners barbarians to their face and have MUCH worse terms for Chinese, Indians and Koreans, Mariko's instant internal reaction is that Japanese are the children of the Gods, superior to all others and are basically divinely allowed to do this.

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* {{Hypocrite}}: At one point in ''Shogun'' Mariko is staggered to discover that the Portuguese sailors of the ship she's on contemptuously refer to all Japanese as monkeys. When Rodrigues gently calls her on this, pointing out that Japanese call Westerners barbarians to their face and have MUCH worse terms for Chinese, Indians and Koreans, Mariko's instant internal reaction is that Japanese are the children of the Gods, superior to all others and are [[InsaneTrollLogic basically divinely allowed to do this.this]].
3rd Mar '17 10:27:08 AM Galvatron29
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** His Uncle Robb was also this before the main plot of ''Tai-Pan'' gets under way.

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** His Uncle Robb was also this before the main plot of ''Tai-Pan'' gets under way. A mightily-angry Dirk solves him by giving him a pistol and telling him to either clean up or shoot himself.
1st Mar '17 11:59:54 AM Kaffepetter
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Added DiffLines:

* DirtyOldMan: Aristotle Quance. The man talks constantly about how 'delectable' the younger european ladies are, and when he's forced to [[spoiler: hide out in a brothel to avoid his wife]], he runs up a spectacular tab for services rendered. Not to mention that the Tai-Pan himself considers Quance completely trustworthy in regards to which brothels are good or not. Later on, in ''Noble House'', we find out that four of Hong Kong's best families are [[ReallyGetsAround descended]] from him.
7th Jan '17 3:07:40 AM Galvatron29
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* ContinuitySnarl: While a lot of continuity problems in the series are explainable through the events of prior novels morphing into legends that add various things or just flatout get it wrong, there doesn't seem to be any reconciling Dunross' description of Hag Struan's sons' deaths in Noble House with the very different fates revealed in ''Gai-Jin.''

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* ContinuitySnarl: While a lot of continuity problems in the series are explainable through the events of prior novels morphing into legends that add various things or just flatout get it wrong, there doesn't seem to be any reconciling Dunross' description of Hag Struan's sons' deaths in Noble House ''Noble House'' with the very different fates revealed in ''Gai-Jin.''



* DiagonalCut: In ''Shogun'', the westerner Blackthorne is accepted as a samurai and issued an old heirloom sword as a mark of Toranaga's esteem. While riding in the country with other samurai, they encounter a peasant oil seller who does not step aside to let them pass. The warlord Oni respectfully asks to borrow Blackthorne's sword, and performs the diagonal cut on the hapless peasant. He hands the sword back, explaining that a new sword must be bloodied for good luck...

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* DiagonalCut: In ''Shogun'', the westerner Blackthorne is accepted as a samurai and issued an old heirloom sword as a mark of Toranaga's esteem. While riding in the country with other samurai, they encounter a peasant oil seller who does not step aside to let them pass. The warlord Oni Omi respectfully asks to borrow Blackthorne's sword, and performs the diagonal cut on the hapless peasant. He hands the sword back, explaining that a new sword must be bloodied for good luck...
26th Dec '16 12:57:31 PM shawnmstewart
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* MamasBabyPapasMaybe: In the backstory of ''Shogun'', the dictator Nakamura had been unable to sire an heir despite having dozens of official wives and consorts, plus hundreds if not thousands of other liaisons on the side. To everyone's great surprise, and late in his life, his consort Ochiba bore him a son, then another after the first died. Pretty much everyone finds this highly questionable, even Nakamura, but at least on paper it solves the succession, so asking questions is not encouraged. [[Spoiler: The second son was not Nakamura's, and the first probably wasn't either, but not even Ochiba knows for sure on that one.]]

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* MamasBabyPapasMaybe: In the backstory of ''Shogun'', the dictator Nakamura had been unable to sire an heir despite having dozens of official wives and consorts, plus hundreds if not thousands of other liaisons on the side. To everyone's great surprise, and late in his life, his consort Ochiba bore him a son, then another after the first died. Pretty much everyone finds this highly questionable, even Nakamura, but at least on paper it solves the succession, so asking questions is not encouraged. [[Spoiler: [[spoiler: The second son was not Nakamura's, and the first probably wasn't either, but not even Ochiba knows for sure on that one.]]
26th Dec '16 12:56:59 PM shawnmstewart
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* MamasBabyPapasMaybe: In the backstory of ''Shogun'', the dictator Nakamura had been unable to sire an heir despite having dozens of official wives and consorts, plus hundreds if not thousands of other liaisons on the side. To everyone's great surprise, and late in his life, his consort Ochiba bore him a son, then another after the first died. Pretty much everyone finds this highly questionable, even Nakamura, but at least on paper it solves the succession, so asking questions is not encouraged. [[Spoiler: The second son was not Nakamura's, and the first probably wasn't either, but not even Ochiba knows for sure on that one.]]



* MightyWhitey: Subverted in ''Shogun''. While John Blackthorne does eventually integrate into Japanese society, he has a lot of difficulty learning the new ways, becomes only moderately competent, does not impress people, and is usually irrelevant, except as a SpannerInTheWorks who unwittingly [[GambitPileup derails everybody's schemes]], save for [[MagnificentBastard Toranaga]], [[UnwittingPawn who plays him]] like a fiddle. This is played a bit straighter as the novel goes on, however, as his natural bravery, coupled with his grasp of the language and Japanese culture improving, gains the respect of many Japanese characters.

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* MightyWhitey: Subverted in ''Shogun''. While John Blackthorne does eventually integrate into Japanese society, he has a lot of difficulty learning the new ways, becomes only moderately competent, does not impress people, and is usually irrelevant, except as a SpannerInTheWorks who unwittingly [[GambitPileup derails everybody's schemes]], save for [[MagnificentBastard Toranaga]], [[UnwittingPawn who plays him]] like a fiddle. This is played a bit straighter as the novel goes on, however, as his natural bravery, coupled with his grasp of the language and Japanese culture improving, gains the respect of many Japanese characters. Also basically justified in that Blackthorne is a world-class expert in several fields and the Japanese think they need to learn from him - and they also have respect for various other impressive Europeans like Alvito because they're talented, not because they're white. In general the Japanese characters are not impressed with the Europeans they encounter, finding them dirty and uncouth.
22nd Dec '16 5:16:24 AM Galvatron29
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* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: In the ''Shogun'' miniseries, used as a TranslationConvention. Portuguese (and/or Japanese and Dutch, depending on the POV character) is rendered as contemporary English. When Blackthorne and Mariko slip into Latin, however, it's rendered as Ye Olde Butchered Englishe. "I say thou art beautiful, and I love thee!"

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* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: In the ''Shogun'' miniseries, used as a TranslationConvention. Portuguese (and/or Japanese and Dutch, depending on the POV character) is rendered as contemporary English. When Blackthorne and Mariko slip into Latin, however, it's rendered as Ye Olde Butchered Englishe. "I say thou art beautiful, and I love thee!"thee!" It also occasionally crops up in translations of Farsi in ''Whirlwind'', particularly durig declarations of love.
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