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YMMV / Realm of the Elderlings

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The Farseer Trilogy:

  • Fridge Brilliance: Fitz being a Master of None becomes this when you realise just what a Catalyst is supposed to do - not act as a hero, but to enable heroism in others. Fitz's wide variety of mediocre skills makes him a sort of universal sidekick, capable enough to lend a hand in just about any situation but not so good that he outshines anyone.
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  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The Fool's initial dismissive view of Starling as someone who can't understand when a man looks at her without desire now seems terrible when Fitz learns that she was raped; first by the Raiders, then by Burl's men.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
  • Ho Yay:
    • Between Fitz and the Fool, which starts at a small scale in Royal Assassin. But the smaller moments in Royal Assassin turn into much bigger and obvious instances in Assassin's Quest.
      • Most obviously when they see each other again. The Fool practically falls over himself to hug him since he's just so glad that Fitz is alive. For a while after, the Fool isn't so teasing to Fitz either, and also gets more protective of him.
      • It doesn't help that Fitz is apparently "the Catalyst" and the Fool is the White Prophet, and is determined to follow him.
      • Starling outright says that the Fool is in love with him. She also says that the Fool is a woman, so their relationship could be Ship Tease instead. Maybe.
    • Also Burrich and Chivalry, since Burrich was completely devoted to Chivalry.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Starling is presented as a strong, independent, Ethical Slut, and the Veronica counterpart to Molly. She's an arrogant Jerkass who's interested in Fitz mostly for the legend she can write about his actions so she sells the information of the daughter that he desperately wanted to keep away from royal politics, just so she could follow him on his search for Verity. She stays enormously self-centered until a good way through the Tawny Man books.
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    • Molly herself, for some, comes as selfish and lied about not being pregnant.
  • Spoiled by the Format: Do you really suspect Fitz successfully killing Regal early in the third book?
  • The Woobie: Wow, who isn't in this trilogy? Regal, probably.
    • Iron Woobie: Fitz, poor Fitz, who probably suffers the most during the whole trilogy. He's nearly killed at fifteen, then again when he's barely eighteen (he fakes it) for possessing forbidden magic; both experiences rob him of his youth and vitality, and at the end of the series, he doesn't even get the girl. This is still not including all the other crap he has to trudge through during the trilogy.
    • Jerkass Woobie: Sure, Starling might just be interested in writing a song to make her famous but she lost her brother and since she's barren from a botched abortion, she's only interested in making sure she can take care of herself when she's older, knowing that she won't have any children to do so. Also if you read between the lines, there are hints that Starling was in love with Fitz all along but was just too scared of rejection to admit it, and much of her Jerkass behavior is due to her knowing that he'll never return her feelings.
    • Other special mentions for Woobie-ism are Burrich, Kettricken, and Verity.

The Liveship Traders:

  • Moral Event Horizon: Kennit seems to divide the fanbase. According to some, he's already irredeemable. According to others, he stays on the very edge for quite some time, but then he rapes Althea and blows all his chances of redemption.
    • Word of God is that Kennit was supposed to be an "irredeemably evil villain".
  • The Woobie: Poor Wintrow. And Vivacia. And plenty others, even if Wintrow and Vivacia take the cake.

The Tawny Man:

  • Complete Monster: The Pale Lady is The Man Behind the Man for almost every bad thing that's happened in the Farseer Trilogy, as she purchased the skill scrolls from Regal and learned the art of Forging from them. As The Tawny Man trilogy showed, she relished in the psychological aspects of forging; she loved unleashing mindless Forged ones against their own families and kinsmen. In addition, she would ransom the dead bodies of Out Islanders she'd captured to their families, with the threat that if they didn't pay she'd return them as Forged. She was behind the war between The Six Duchies and the Out Islands, using the Out Island warlord Kebal Rawbread as her Heavy. It was implied that she may have had her hands in the Jamaillian slave trade. She was a recreational Torture Technician as well. When Kebal Rawbread failed her, she chained him to a frozen throne in her ice palace, used magic to keep him alive through what would have been lethal frostbite, and fed him body parts of other Out Islanders she'd forged. Forging was a process that could be done very slowly over the course of weeks. And she tortured the Fool over the course of days for no reason other than the joy of it. Her sole motivation was the complete collapse of civilization.
  • Ho Yay: Fitz and Fool again and this time on an even bigger scale.
    • They share a few kisses in the last book, under the pretense of sharing power and giving back memories.
    • The Fool gives him the nickname Beloved. It becomes more Ho Yay-tastic when the Pale Lady reveals that married couples exchange names, and since Beloved is supposed to be the Fool's real name that means that the Fool is calling Fitz his husband. Fitz even goes as far as calling the Fool Fitzchivalry when he thinks the Fool is dead.
    • And then Fitz and the Fool almost end up together. Fitz tells him that he will choose him over Molly, but the Fool pulls a I Want My Beloved to Be Happy.
  • Tear Jerker: Late in Fool's Errand and in Fool's Fate.
  • Wangst: Played for laughs and for drama in the chapter "Elfbark" in Fool's Fate. Fitz is sneaked a massive dose of elfbark, and the drug's effects have him seesawing between bouncing-around hyperactivity and soul-crushing depression, during which he laments that everything he's ever done has been worthless.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Hap isn't the most interesting character necessarily but his relationship with Fitz isn't given nearly as much attention as this troper always felt it should be. He is presented to Fitz by Starling at the end of Assassin's Quest, with no explanation of who he is or where he came from, but with every indication that there is something significant about the child. A subplot in The Tawny Man follows Fitz's attempts to find him a job and stop him from ruining his life via an ill-advised romance, but really, you could completely remove him from the story and it wouldn't affect anything. He is further Demoted to Extra in Fitz and the Fool, being mentioned only a couple of times and barely figuring in Fitz's thoughts, despite being his son to all intents and purposes, and his only human companion for over ten years of his life.

The Rain Wilds Chronicles:

  • Hollywood Homely: Alise, with her red hair and freckled complexion, seems to be this.
  • The Woobie: Relpda in Dragon Haven's first part.

The Fitz and the Fool Trilogy:

  • Ho Yay: Fitz and the Fool, even more so.
    • In Fool's assassin Fitz says of his relationship with the Fool; "I loved that man as I have loved no one else, I do not say that I loved him more than I love your mother. But the way I loved him was different. If you have heard there was anything improper in our bond, there was not. That was not what we were to each other. What we had went beyond that."
    • When the Fool comes back to Buckeep,after being horribly tortured (Again). The two sleep in the same bed once again. For Comfort.


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