Follow TV Tropes
I'm up to episode five of the second season and I'm starting to think King Harrow wasn't very good at his job. Helping out starving people is fine, but he should have sold the food to the other kingdom so his subjects would be compensated.
Yeah, Harrow was an absolutely awful king. He was a good man, but being a good man and a good ruler are two completely different things. Example: choosing to die out of honor...and leaving the kingdom with an inexperienced, untrained nine-year-old as its only ruler.
Do we know what the monetary system of their world even is? For all we know it could all just run on the honor system.
If it's a feudal society, it would mostly run on barter instead of a simplified monetary system. It'd make the transaction pretty complicated.
Of course, Harrow threw all that out the window and just outright gave the food, but still. Bartering half your country's food would be an interesting trade.
Runaan said "only humans can be bribed" so presumably, money is useful.
I keep watching Human Rayla over and over again. It's just so adorable.
I am curious if we're supposed to believe Harrow actually was a bad king or not.
I don't think the show has gone out of its way to show how his rule has been for the people. Just for his family and close friends.
Harrow's morale was strange.
He knew that he would not survive, so he knew that potentially 200 soldiers would die in vain.
But instead of allowing the death of a single soldier to have meaning, he let almost 200 die in vain.
Edited by JoLuRo075 on Mar 14th 2019 at 1:30:36 AM
Harrow makes these large blanket morality decisions without considering their practicality, and when they inevitably blow up in his face he runs to Viren, who suggests these selfish plans which have short term success but never consider long term diplomatic considerations, which means they inevitably blow up in their faces.
Well... it doesn't do you any good to sell the food instead of giving it, if they're in a country-wide famine.
I mean, there is still going to be a finite amount of food, that is not enough for everybody. Receiving money in exchange for the food doesn't stop you starving if there just plain is no more food for you to buy with that money.
There's three other kingdoms that he could be buying food from with that money though.
Yeah, the Raj did the whole "exporting food in the middle of a famine" thing a bunch of times, and it, uh, ended up killing millions of people.
I really want the series to deconstruct people like Harrow and show that being a good person in principle is not the same as doing what's best in the situation, and maybe explore the idea that once you're holding that kind of power, you can't do your work without a bit of pain and suffering on your hands. But that might be a bit too mature for a kids' show, iunno.
Edited by eagleoftheninth on Mar 14th 2019 at 8:42:39 AM
Given the show's treatment of very easily justified dark magic trades like one golem for ten thousand humans or one deer for a cure to paralysis, I don't think it's going to go there.
I mean, I think there were actual ethical considerations to think about with the golem, and I don't think we're at least supposed to sympathize with Claudia there.
I don't think that the show was making any kind of moral equivalence at all with the Magma Titan. Sarai goes along with it readily once it's clear that it's the only option. She does ask Harrow to look at the circumstances, whether it was a someone, and what killing it would really mean. Sometimes the lesser evil is still evil, and you can't whitewash the deed if you want to keep yourself from falling off the slippery slope.
Not going to lie, the fact that killing 5,000 random humans to save 5,000 other random humans wasn't an ethical debate but killing one golem so that there would be no other deaths would is pretty wonky morality.
Like, if anyone but Viren had called him out on that it wouldn't bother me nearly as much.
Edited by IniuriaTalis on Mar 14th 2019 at 11:59:20 AM
Wait, when was that? You mean the whole food shortage thing to begin with? Because, yeah, that was really stupid on Harrow's part. But things like that go back to my question of whether or not we're supposed to think that Harrow was a good king or not.
Also, I don't know if it helps or hurts any point, but wasn't it 100,000 people?
Edited by LSBK on Mar 14th 2019 at 11:00:43 AM
Oh yeah, you're right. Sarai thought that it would be fine to kill 50,000 of their citizens, but not one golem. Way better.
And yeah, taking food from his citizens' mouths to feed others for no benefit is terrible ruling.
Sarai was right to question whether they were callously disregarding its life so they could sacrifice it. Especially with lack of knowledge on being the last of its species or, y'know, sapient. So if they were going to sacrifice it, treat it as one. Don't disregard it as just fuel for a spell.
Which Viren casually does to magic creatures like the butterflies
Edited by OmegaRadiance on Mar 14th 2019 at 9:12:21 AM
But Harrow did callously disregard the lives of his citizens, and Sarai didn't care.
I feel like it's not inherently bad to make a distinction between 'people dying because you chose to save someone else instead' and 'people dying because you set out with swords to kill them'?
I mean, I'm not saying that one is inherently worse than the other or anything. And that's leaving aside the fact that it's one life versus 50 000.
But I can see why choosing to pick up a sword and kill something/one feels worse and harder to justify.
I mean, I thought her position was "find another way" not "just let them all die". She did, after all, still come along and help in spite of her misgivings.
Saying she didn't care is distorting things a bit.
Edited by LSBK on Mar 14th 2019 at 11:32:47 AM
She goes out of deference to Harrow, not because she agreed. And she had no other way, she never suggested she did.
Hence, "find another way". And yes, she still didn't agree, that doesn't somehow diminish her helping.
Look, I get your point about trivializing human lives, because that tends to crop up in fantasy shows like this, but that doesn't mean the point she was making was invalid.
Edited by LSBK on Mar 14th 2019 at 11:48:34 AM
Community Showcase More