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HBO - Song of Ice&Fire Series -Varsity Thread - no TV only whiners


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8 minutes ago, Kraft... said:

The Jora scene was pretty awful in that regard. 

It was pretty much all bad. But the worst was making time travel a real thing. This could have been the jump the shark episode. And if this trash was coming from Martin, I can understand why he's having problems finishing the books.

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I was wondering if we'd ever see the Blackfish again. He was too important of a character when he was introduced with his arrow shot to the pyre barge to be basically forgotten for a couple of seasons.

Brienne being sent to the Riverlands to find him? Maybe Stoneheart is still in play after all. Seeing undead Cat meet up with Brienne  would be an epic Episode 9 "Holy Sh#t!!" reveal.

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46 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

It was pretty much all bad. But the worst was making time travel a real thing. This could have been the jump the shark episode. And if this trash was coming from Martin, I can understand why he's having problems finishing the books.

The show people said that origin for Hodor came directly from Martin, that was his vision from the beginning.

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46 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

It was pretty much all bad. But the worst was making time travel a real thing. This could have been the jump the shark episode. And if this trash was coming from Martin, I can understand why he's having problems finishing the books.

The show people said that origin for Hodor came directly from Martin, that was his vision from the beginning.

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6 minutes ago, Spin said:

The show people said that origin for Hodor came directly from Martin, that was his vision from the beginning.

I saw that mentioned in the other thread. Disappointing if true.

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4 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

I saw that mentioned in the other thread. Disturbing if true.

It sets up the stage to have Bran be behind all the "voices" throughout the story.  Mad King was hearing Bran whisper, etc.

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3 minutes ago, Spin said:

It sets up the stage to have Bran be behind all the "voices" throughout the story.  Mad King was hearing Bran whisper, etc.

Which would be bad writing, opening up a whole bunch of problems.

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1 hour ago, Gr00vus said:

It was pretty much all bad. But the worst was making time travel a real thing. This could have been the jump the shark episode. And if this trash was coming from Martin, I can understand why he's having problems finishing the books.

Agree here.  Disappointed to see that the Hold the Door is from him. 

I was down with Bran at the start of the season.  I thought it would be cool enough to use him for flashbacks and warging.  That would be plenty.  Mix in all this being able to talk to and effect the past BS and it will go downhill quickly. 

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Just now, Chadstroma said:

I am surprised no one has talked about the very nice boobs we saw this episode. (or did I miss that conversation?)

The other thread has that covered pretty much. But, yes, between stupid play Sansa, the new Red Woman, and the crummy writing, it was a good episode for busts.

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1 hour ago, Gr00vus said:

It was pretty much all bad. But the worst was making time travel a real thing. This could have been the jump the shark episode. And if this trash was coming from Martin, I can understand why he's having problems finishing the books.

I don't think anyone actually traveled through time.

 

I personally thought the Hodor thing was brilliant.  

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Just now, shuke said:

I don't think anyone actually traveled through time.

 

I personally thought the Hodor thing was brilliant.  

Someone has the ability to effect/alter events that happened in the past. it may not be time travel per se, but it's a lousy storytelling device that rarely gets used well and usually results in lots of believability problems.

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1 minute ago, Gr00vus said:

Someone has the ability to effect/alter events that happened in the past. it may not be time travel per se, but it's a lousy storytelling device that rarely gets used well and usually results in lots of believability problems.

This is one example of a time paradox (I doubt we'll see another) and the show seems to handle it well enough.  What happens, in the past, the present, and the future is fixed.  Hodor's fate isn't the result of any aspect of Bran's agency.  It's just something that was supposed to happen.  Not much "wimbly wombly timey-wimey" hand waving needed.

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4 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

Someone has the ability to effect/alter events that happened in the past. it may not be time travel per se, but it's a lousy storytelling device that rarely gets used well and usually results in lots of believability problems.

The writers are walking a tightrope with this and every other element of magic on the show. Very easy to over do it. 

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The narrative in which this season has presented Bran's ability leaves me to think that this simply isn't "what happens, happens".  I don't think they go thru the trouble of having the Three Eyed Raven specifically tell him you can't alter the past and then (in two instances) give us situations that might contradict that.  

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9 minutes ago, Ramsay Hunt Experience said:

This is one example of a time paradox (I doubt we'll see another) and the show seems to handle it well enough.  What happens, in the past, the present, and the future is fixed.  Hodor's fate isn't the result of any aspect of Bran's agency.  It's just something that was supposed to happen.  Not much "wimbly wombly timey-wimey" hand waving needed.

Willas doesn't become Hodor unless Bran, who wasn't even born at the time, wargs into him while traveling in the past to the extent that Willas/Hodor can hear Meera from the future continually yelling "hold the door" to him and gets to see his own death. Whether it was "supposed to happen" or not, the mechanism by which it does happen (Bran - or anyone - having the ability to effect past events) is poorly conceived and results in weakening the believability of the story.

And some of the other elements of the story (acts of the Red Priestesses, the faceless men, the whitewalkers/others, dragons, etc.) were already taking a lot of license with believability, which I was ignoring/accepting because he'd done such a good job of writing the characterization, development and interactions of the "normal" human beings in his world. When the books started it seemed like that would be the main focus and the main driver of events. Now it's becoming a zombie vs. dragon vs. time bender dragon lance story.

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1 minute ago, Thunderlips said:

The narrative in which this season has presented Bran's ability leaves me to think that this simply isn't "what happens, happens".  I don't think they go thru the trouble of having the Three Eyed Raven specifically tell him you can't alter the past and then (in two instances) give us situations that might contradict that.  

But Bran didn't alter the past. 

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13 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

Someone has the ability to effect/alter events that happened in the past. it may not be time travel per se, but it's a lousy storytelling device that rarely gets used well and usually results in lots of believability problems.

What event did Bran alter? 

Didn't the 3 eyed raven tell him that there was no past/present/future?  Bran didn't cause that seizure, he just witnessed it.  He didn't warg into Hodor in the past, only the present.

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1 minute ago, Gr00vus said:

Willas doesn't become Hodor unless Bran, who wasn't even born at the time, wargs into him while traveling in the past to the extent that Willas/Hodor can hear Meera from the future continually yelling "hold the door" to him and gets to see his own death. Whether it was "supposed to happen" or not, the mechanism by which it does happen (Bran - or anyone - having the ability to effect past events) is poorly conceived and results in weakening the believability of the story.

I get that everyone draws their own lines somewhere, but I just don't see how you can be fine with greenseers having the ability to warg and for greenseers having the ability to witness events in the past and then draw your line at what happened here on the grounds of plausibility. 

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9 minutes ago, Ramsay Hunt Experience said:

I get that everyone draws their own lines somewhere, but I just don't see how you can be fine with greenseers having the ability to warg and for greenseers having the ability to witness events in the past and then draw your line at what happened here on the grounds of plausibility. 

I edited my post above such that it addresses this notion. To reiterate, I enjoyed the story up to this point in spite of the fantasy stuff, as it was kept mostly on the periphery, because the characters and the rest of the setting/history were so interesting. But introducing a character that can alter history, speak to people in the past, affect past events is a pretty sharp dividing line for me, yes. It's the boundary between implausible and slightly dumb.

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I guess it's always seemed clear to me, from the books and the show, that the "realistic"  elements would gradually be overtaken.  That's the theme of the series.  Characters and houses that are focused on pragmatic, political conflicts while very few characters realize that there is actually a much bigger conflict to be resolved.  The books and the show begin with the white walkers. 

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5 minutes ago, Ramsay Hunt Experience said:

I guess it's always seemed clear to me, from the books and the show, that the "realistic"  elements would gradually be overtaken.  That's the theme of the series.  Characters and houses that are focused on pragmatic, political conflicts while very few characters realize that there is actually a much bigger conflict to be resolved.  The books and the show begin with the white walkers. 

You may be right. I thought Martin had said a main driver for the story was that it would be a hopped up war of the roses on a global scale. All I know is, when I watched the first episode, before ever having read any of the books, I almost turned it off immediately thinking, "oh great another ####### zombie show." Fortunately I stuck with it, because the non-fantasy parts of the book and show have been pretty great. And I could live with a zombies vs. dragons emphasis to the end game. But if this is going to become back to the future at this point, I'll definitely have a lower opinion of the remainder of the story. :shrug: 

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12 minutes ago, shuke said:

What event did Bran alter? 

Didn't the 3 eyed raven tell him that there was no past/present/future?  Bran didn't cause that seizure, he just witnessed it.  He didn't warg into Hodor in the past, only the present.

I'm not sure about this.
Bran warged into young Willas in the past, so that present Bran & Co can escape. This fried Hodor's brain from that point forward. 
I suppose we can dismiss this as "it was destined to happen" as to not give too much power to Bran.  

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2 minutes ago, EYLive said:

I'm not sure about this.
Bran warged into young Willas in the past, so that present Bran & Co can escape. This fried Hodor's brain from that point forward. 
I suppose we can dismiss this as "it was destined to happen" as to not give too much power to Bran.  

I don't think he warged into young Willas. :shrug:

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Let's be clear what "changing the past would mean."

It would mean that there is an event that we all know has happened in the show or hasn't happened in the show that will now be changed.  That hasn't happened.  Hodor was struck dumb in the show.  Whatever Bran does in the Tower of Joy flashbacks, it's not going to change who John is.  Ned will still come home with him.  We're not going to have some change happen where Jaime never kills Aerys.  Greenseers aren't active agents changing history.  Otherwise, Bloodraven would have been just fixing things for the past hundreds of years.  Greenseers are servants of history, the Old Gods, fate, whatever you want to call it.  They are no less pawns to it than Hodor was. 

 

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7 minutes ago, shuke said:

I don't think he warged into young Willas. :shrug:

Regardless, young Willas got Hodored back when he was young Willas, before Bran was born, as a result of Bran warging into Willas/Hodor. So whatever Bran did, it effected something/someone in his past that he was able to access via his tree powers (seeing it in writing like that just makes it more evident how dumb/sloppy this is). Any way you slice it, I can't buy it and it casts the meaningfulness of rest of what happens in the story into doubt because of the repercussions of the notion that there are people with that capability.

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Just now, shuke said:

I don't think he warged into young Willas. :shrug:

Then the question becomes, why did Willas's eyes go white and fall down at that moment in the past? And why did he yell "Hold the door" as he shook? Something connected those actions with the present events. If not Bran, than what's the cause?
I'm gonna have to rewatch that episode to see if I missed anything.

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Just now, Gr00vus said:

Regardless, young Willas got Hodored back when he was young Willas, before Bran was born, as a result of Bran warging into Willas/Hodor. So whatever Bran did, it effected something/someone in his past that he was able to access via his tree powers. Any way you slice it, I can't buy it and it casts the meaningfulness of rest of what happens in the story into doubt because of the repercussions of the notion that there are people with that capability.

That's why I'm hoping it's a "destiny" thing rather than an active ability. Bran would be overpowered if he can go back and change stuff.

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2 minutes ago, EYLive said:

Then the question becomes, why did Willas's eyes go white and fall down at that moment in the past? And why did he yell "Hold the door" as he shook? Something connected those actions with the present events. If not Bran, than what's the cause?
I'm gonna have to rewatch that episode to see if I missed anything.

Maybe Willa's had the power and saw his own future.

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7 minutes ago, Ramsay Hunt Experience said:

Let's be clear what "changing the past would mean."

It would mean that there is an event that we all know has happened in the show or hasn't happened in the show that will now be changed.  That hasn't happened.  Hodor was struck dumb in the show.  Whatever Bran does in the Tower of Joy flashbacks, it's not going to change who John is.  Ned will still come home with him.  We're not going to have some change happen where Jaime never kills Aerys.  Greenseers aren't active agents changing history.  Otherwise, Bloodraven would have been just fixing things for the past hundreds of years.  Greenseers are servants of history, the Old Gods, fate, whatever you want to call it.  They are no less pawns to it than Hodor was. 

 

You're making an irrelevant distinction. Yes, we're seeing the story as it played out - as a result of whatever Bran and others like him did to alter events through time. That doesn't change the story for us, the readers/viewers. But it definitely changed things from how they likely would have been for the people in the world of the story. Who's to say whether the previous green seers didn't effect past events? How would you know? The mechanism of allowing people the capability to alter/effect past events creates tons of plot holes, results in insolvable conundrums, etc. that make the work lesser.

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24 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

Regardless, young Willas got Hodored back when he was young Willas, before Bran was born, as a result of Bran warging into Willas/Hodor. So whatever Bran did, it effected something/someone in his past that he was able to access via his tree powers (seeing it in writing like that just makes it more evident how dumb/sloppy this is). Any way you slice it, I can't buy it and it casts the meaningfulness of rest of what happens in the story into doubt because of the repercussions of the notion that there are people with that capability.

OK.  See you next week.

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22 minutes ago, EYLive said:

That's why I'm hoping it's a "destiny" thing rather than an active ability. Bran would be overpowered if he can go back and change stuff.

What if he thought he could go back and change things ala him trying to talk to the Mad King but being the cause of the Mad Kings madness?

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1 minute ago, Gr00vus said:

You're making an irrelevant distinction. Yes, we're seeing the story as it played out - as a result of whatever Bran and others like him did to alter events through time. That doesn't change the story for us, the readers/viewers. But it definitely changed things from how they likely would have been for the people in the world of the story. Who's to say whether the previous green seers didn't effect past events? How would you know? The mechanism of allowing people the capability to alter/effect past events creates tons of plot holes, results in insolvable conundrums, etc. that make the work lesser.

There is no alternative past and no alternative future.  We're talking about a world of prophecies.  Where the future can be seen in the flames (even if it is often misinterpreted).  Within the universe that has been created, that future is every bit as fixed as the past.  We've even had characters tell us that.  There is no version of history that has or could exist where Bran does not strike Hodor dumb.  That is Bran and Hodor's destiny.  Whether that effects your enjoyment of the work or not, it's an essential theme of the story Martin is telling.  The universe is ambivalent to his character's free will.  It is ambivalent to whether a person is a good or evil (the Many Faced God delivers death to both). 

It doesn't matter whether John wants to be Azor Ahai reincarnated or not.  It's his destiny (and not Stannis's destiny no matter how much he wanted it to be).  It's not a possible conclusion provided John makes the right decisions.  It is what will definitely happen.  Even John's death and abandonment of the Night's Watch cannot change his destiny.  This is what the even the best "players" in the Game of Thrones do not understand.   It's specifically what the Red Priestess lectured Varys about in the episode.

 

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16 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

You're making an irrelevant distinction. Yes, we're seeing the story as it played out - as a result of whatever Bran and others like him did to alter events through time. That doesn't change the story for us, the readers/viewers. But it definitely changed things from how they likely would have been for the people in the world of the story. Who's to say whether the previous green seers didn't effect past events? How would you know? The mechanism of allowing people the capability to alter/effect past events creates tons of plot holes, results in insolvable conundrums, etc. that make the work lesser.

They didn't alter the events as we witnessed them.   There may be other quantum universes where other things happen but we are seeing a single threaded universe where those things did/will happen.   Given the three-eyed raven's reaction either it's never happened before or there are bad things that can happen from it.   Regardless, it's not common or easy and unlikely to be overused.   In fact, the way it was used, in that one small but significant moment speaks more to the brilliance of the writing.  

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24 minutes ago, Ramsay Hunt Experience said:

There is no alternative past and no alternative future.  We're talking about a world of prophecies.  Where the future can be seen in the flames (even if it is often misinterpreted).  Within the universe that has been created, that future is every bit as fixed as the past.  We've even had characters tell us that.  There is no version of history that has or could exist where Bran does not strike Hodor dumb.  That is Bran and Hodor's destiny.  Whether that effects your enjoyment of the work or not, it's an essential theme of the story Martin is telling.  The universe is ambivalent to his character's free will.  It is ambivalent to whether a person is a good or evil (the Many Faced God delivers death to both). 

It doesn't matter whether John wants to be Azor Ahai reincarnated or not.  It's his destiny (and not Stannis's destiny no matter how much he wanted it to be).  It's not a possible conclusion provided John makes the right decisions.  It is what will definitely happen.  Even John's death and abandonment of the Night's Watch cannot change his destiny.  This is what the even the best "players" in the Game of Thrones do not understand.   It's specifically what the Red Priestess lectured Varys about in the episode.

 

So it's all pointless then - why bother with the time travel at all? It just becomes a crummy exposition mechanism, while still undermining believability. So, throwing seeming time travel into the mix is an even worse writing decision than I already thought. I'm not sure I buy your whole determinism thing, but if you're right that doesn't really make things better in regard to this.

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I choose to see it like this when watching shows that flirt with time travel.  

Time in the show isn't linear.  Everything that happened, happened (where did I hear that before). All time is happening at once and we just perceive it linearly. 

This prevents someone like Bran from going back and "changing" things but doesn't preclude him from being the cause of things that we already know happened. Like the Mad King. 

The line of believability for me gets crossed if the character actively knows he can change the past and tries to. Because in that case if his first attempt isn't trying to stop the creation of the White Walkers and instead some other thing that fits into the narrative of the story (like being the Varys voice) then it crosses into unbelievability. 

I thought the Hodor part was very well done and did not cross that line. 

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23 minutes ago, Drifter said:

They didn't alter the events as we witnessed them.   There may be other quantum universes where other things happen but we are seeing a single threaded universe where those things did/will happen.   Given the three-eyed raven's reaction either it's never happened before or there are bad things that can happen from it.   Regardless, it's not common or easy and unlikely to be overused.   In fact, the way it was used, in that one small but significant moment speaks more to the brilliance of the writing.  

Right, and in this universe, those things happened because a guy travelled back to a time he before he was born, mind ####ed a kid into becoming a halfwit by having his pal yell at him to hold the door and witness his own death at the hands of zombies so he could save said kid 40 years later. One instance of that is dumb enough, whether or not it becomes common or overused subsequently. It already pokes holes in the believability of the whole universe being presented.

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5 minutes ago, Gr00vus said:

So it's all pointless then - why bother with the time travel at all? It just becomes a crummy exposition mechanism, while still undermining believability. So, throwing seeming time travel into the mix is an even worse writing decision than I already thought. I'm not sure I buy your whole determinism thing, but if you're right that doesn't really make things better in regard to this.

You're way too worked up over this.

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