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I don't know if this counts as headscratcher so I'll put it here to be sure... It says that Dany's reputation is tarnished by the lessons she has to learn the hard way in Essos which take a long time in ADWD (along with Daario Naharis, which point I can see) and by the fact that she had a Plot Armor for quite a while. Isn't the case of the lessons simply her blunders catching up to her and her Plot Armor being rewoked, making her earlier successes a case of "beginner's luck" as well as, well, cos of dragons?
Removed from Memetic Badass:
I think Stannis's memetic reputation is about his Game of Thrones counterpart. I didn't hear any "Stannis is a badass" talk until the show came out, in which he's given more badass things to do than on the page.
I don't think a posthumous character can qualify as a Marty Stu. We only get a smattering of other people's opinions of him, which are obviously biased. Robert thinks he was a monstrous rapist. His supporters think he was totally awesome. Aren't Marty/Mary Sue characters supposed to be the main character anyway?
This seems to be a simple case of Author Appeal and Girl-on-Girl Is Hot. We get lesbian sex scenes, but Martin apparently didn't decide to write male homosexual scenes. It doesn't imply anything unfortunate. It's just what the author is into.
If the story had indulged in Girl-on-Girl Is Hot and yet implied that male homosexuality is immoral, then you would have an argument due to rather obvious hypocrisy.
Also there are gay characters (Loras) its just that the guys are pressured into marriage anyway and having kids so it isn't as apparent
Also, you know, Jon Connington.
Removed from Unfortunate Implications:
This seems more like a review than an example of the trope. You might see it as a flaw of the series to not include the POV of a simple peasant, but I think it's a bit of a jump to say that it's an unfortunate implication of some sort of classist agenda.
Does anyone have any opinions on this?
I'd say it is perhaps a flaw, but doesn't really seem like an unfortunate implication. As that example itself notes, it is seemingly a deliberate stylistic choice to show the nobles are really alienated from the suffering peasants.
This is one of those things like the status of women where in an effort at (arguable) historical accuracy, Martin's stylistic choices reflect the setting.
Also, there are characters like the Brotherhood Without Banners and the new High Septon who exist to show that while the game of thrones has been going on, a lot of lower class people are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.
The example itself mentions two important PO Vs who are lowborn (and at least one of those is portrayed as all the better for it) and discounts them just because they now find themselves in a position to actually influence world events. Perhaps it would be more democratic to occasionally drop into the head of Hot Pie, but it's hard to see how it would serve the narrative of a continent-spanning epic story.
OK, Arya's storyline could easily be transplanted to a random Flea Bottom orphan, but then what connection would she have to the rest of the characters? She'd look like even more of a First-Person Peripheral Narrator than Arya already does.
How? They captured several significant strongholds almost effortlessly. Balon's death interrupts things and Theon throws a Spanner in the Works by attacking Winterfell, but apart from that it was incredibly successful.
I think the issue is that while Balon could have gotten a lot of perks out of an alliance with Robb- he would have gotten semi-indepenence and all the wealth and saltwives that Lannisport has to offer. However, he doesn't really get anything out of hurting Robb and by implication, helping the Lannisters.
As IIRC conversations of Tywin and Cersei at their small councils bring up, the Lannisters basically are happy that Balon did their work for them, but have no interest in rewarding him (the show does a good job of bringing up that the Lannisters are still pissed since the Ironborn torched the Lannister fleets during the Greyjoy Rebellion).
Now granted, as you say the Ironborn did capture strongholds so arguably, that put them in sort of a good bargaining position- the problem is is that as far as I can tell, the Starks were the only people interested in bargaining with them/in a position to reward them, and the Starks were the people Balon attacked.
So, I'm not sure if it's necessarily stupid. It's certainly Revenge Before Reason coupled with Balon's obsession with taking the iron price rather than going semi-legit.
I think that last paragraph is an excellent summation. He wasn't thinking politically, he wanted to put one in the Starks' eye, which he achieved magnificently.
The crapsack medieval setting isn't an aesop, it's just the setting, so it's not Anvilicious.
But isn't one of Martin's intentions to show that the Middle Ages weren't a nice place to live? If so, it sounds to me like he's using the setting to send the aesop.
An aesop is a moral of the story. One of the author's stylistic intentions was to subvert the glossiness of Heroic Fantasy, that's not the same as the central point of the story being to teach the lesson that the middle ages were nasty.
Complete Monster: Some more candidates
Euron Crow's Eye seems like a pretty good candidate, seeing as how he's considered a monster even in the borderline-always chaotic evil iron islands. Viserys might be a candidate if he weren't so goddamn pathetic. Qyburn is probably one as well, though so far most of his psychotic villainy has been (barely) offscreen and he's managed to remain affably evil through it all. Aerys II probably would have qualified though we haven't actually seen enough of him to confirm it definitively. This troper also feels that Walder Frey qualifies with no ifs, ands or buts.
First, do think Qyburn should be added, but I deleted Victarion. He doesn't fit the criteria.
Here are the current criteria:
Well, he did kinda feel bad for beating his wife to death, and the Complete Monster qualifications are strict enough that 'kinda felt bad' is more than enough to disqualify you.
Remember, we're talking about the embodiment of evil here.
I don't think Qyburn qualifies. He does what he does For Science!, rather than For the Evulz, and seems to have the goal of helping people in a deeply warped way.
Edit: just realised this is over a year old, rather than a few days - oops.
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How well does it match the trope?