Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY
Luckers

Ask A Simple Question, Get a Simple Answer (No AMoL Spoilers)

Recommended Posts

Does the continued... prolonged... boring... endless... repetitive... nausea inducing...tooth grindingly irritating humiliation of the Aes Sedai EVER... EVER end? How long has it been going on now, at least 4 books! In my weaker moments, it kinda makes me wanna quit the series. it really does

What part in the series are you?  Some of the AS do get a few minor moments of awesome, but in general things keep going downhill for them in some ways.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Boring/etc or not pretty much depends on reader opinion.  Different readers might have different opinions; and opinions might change during re-reads.

As far as I recall, I was not bored with any scene during either time through this series.  Read this series 2 times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I say boring because it's a reiteration of the same thing over and over again. Nothing new is said whenever it happens. I get it, windfinders and wise ones are just as strongheaded as aes sedai. Yes, aes sedai do not know everything. Move on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The repetition seems to lessen in the books written by Sanderson.  lessen but not disappear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why would anyone want to be Aes Sedai?

 

You get to become cold, calculating, a jerk, a manipulator, feared by everyone, segregated from the rest of society in one manner or another. You get to lose all of your friends and only make new ones in order to use them callously. You get to become condescending and detatched.

 

Does this really sound appealing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There seems to be few Aes Sedia where all of those apply.  Many Aes Sedia seem to interact with at least part of the rest of society.

 

Losing friends and gaining new friends seems to be a general part of any character's life.  And few seem to treat new friends callously.

 

The general behavior of Aes Sedia seems to change during Towers of Midnight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just don't think you'd ever see an aes sedai just loitering in a local tavern having a few brewskis and chilling without acting all authoritative and bossy all the time is all.

 

An aes sedai you could just walk up to and be friendly with without them pulling any kind of manipulation or subterfuge whatsoever

Edited by EmperorAllspice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why would anyone want to be Aes Sedai?

 

You get to become cold, calculating, a jerk, a manipulator, feared by everyone, segregated from the rest of society in one manner or another. You get to lose all of your friends and only make new ones in order to use them callously. You get to become condescending and detatched.

 

Does this really sound appealing?

I think that the average Randlander still sees AS as we did in the first book - mysterious, powerful, admirable (in some countries).  The Two Rivers girls (apart from Nynaeve) are all very excited about the idea of becoming AS.  They see how much respect AS are treated with, and look up to them.  As the reader, we have a lot more insight into the flaws of the AS which are concealed from the average Randlander.  If you're from a country that likes AS, then its something to aspire to; if you're from a country that doesn't like channeling, e.g. Tear, you may be sent to the WT without being given a choice.

 

I think by the end of the series the general populace is gradually being exposed to other channeling cultures, e.g. the Wise Ones, Windfinders, the Kin, and even Damane, so they would be able to compare and make some educated decisions.  I think the issue is that for a lot of Randlanders they i) have no choice other than the AS if they can channel/want to channel/want to learn about channeling, and ii) the WT hides all its flaws from the world so no one knows about them until they are firmly part of the institution.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's mentioned that people are afraid of even the female power. Why? I get why Saidin is feared. But what about Saidar. Surely the fact that the WT isn't full of nutcases is testament enough to the fact that the power alone isn't evil or wrong.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I suppose maybe because most people can't wield the OP, and are therefore at a disadvantage.  And then there are people with Masema's views or the Children of the Light's views (that only the Dragon should channel/that channeling is a sin), and while they are the extreme cases there are those who may err towards one or other of those viewpoints.  A lot of people may not know a great deal about the OP, other than that it was used to break the world before.  Add to that that AS are considered witches in Amadicia, and aren't liked much in other countries, so fear of the AS could easily shift to include fear of channeling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hawkwings stance on them towards the end of his rule certainly didn't help views of them

Indeed. Ishy took the crack that was Hawkwing's relationship with Bonwhin and turned it into a chasm in which all AS were sacked from their governor positions, his advisors dismissed and he refused healing on his deathbed. That had to have trickled down to the general populace somewhat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What IS Balthamel's skillset?

 

I ask because, it really does seem like, for a group of supposed master manipulators and spies, some of the Forsaken are AWFUL at keeping their emotions masked while working.

 

Look at Balthamel, he was openly angry at Egwene just because she didn't want his help with her headaches? Yes, I get why he'd be frustrated and angry but he was in the middle of his act and he openly showed anger. Dude, your cover?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What IS Balthamel's skillset?

 

I ask because, it really does seem like, for a group of supposed master manipulators and spies, some of the Forsaken are AWFUL at keeping their emotions masked while working.

 

Look at Balthamel, he was openly angry at Egwene just because she didn't want his help with her headaches? Yes, I get why he'd be frustrated and angry but he was in the middle of his act and he openly showed anger. Dude, your cover?

 

Balthamel was a historian that that specialized in vanished cultures. He was a gambler and rake that had a terrible temper. The temper combined with his strength in the OP almost earned him a sentence of being bound with the OP to do no violence in the AoL.

Edited by Suttree

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why don't these people go off and do things that they're actually good at?

 

Who made Aginor a spy? Why make the man with an uncontrollable temper a spy? Why would the weak master spy fight in an open battle?  Why make the goddamn SADISTIC MASTER OF TORTURE A SPY TO A YOUNG WOMAN?

 

Does NO VILLAIN in this story play to their strengths!?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not 100% sure where you are in the series but without going into specifics I would say that Graendal, Mesaana, and Moridin are all fairly effective at utilising their skills.  Rahvin was also fairly effective, and some people seem to think that Moghedian had the right idea but bad timing, bad luck.  I think the first few Forsaken we saw (the ones initially killed off in tEotW-tDR) are the weakest in the sense that they just come across as fairly generic villains, particularly in their first incanation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually, what's Lanfear's skillset? I know she's the strongest female chaneler in the world (was anyway) but aside from raw power and knowledge of Lews, what did she bring to the Shadow's table?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually, what's Lanfear's skillset? I know she's the strongest female chaneler in the world (was anyway) but aside from raw power and knowledge of Lews, what did she bring to the Shadow's table?

 

She was a researcher at the Collam Daan. We see her lust for power and character flaws showing up even back then however. Despite being as powerful as a woman could be she didn't distinguish herself enough to earn the coveted third name. She also is very skilled in Tar obviously.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question about why Lan wanted to ride off to the Blight/Borderlands/Gap in KoD.  In the Golden Crane chapter, Lan is frustrated that Rand won't send men to the Borderlands to fight.  Nynaeve accepts that this is a legitimate concern and is willing to send Lan off to do this.  However, if she hadn't tricked Lan into going to World's End and riding all the way to Tarwin's Gap, and sent her message via the merchants, Lan would have basically ridden up to the gap on his own.  We see his extreme reluctance to take men with him on route.  Have I missed something here, or do Lan's actions really not make any sense?  He wants the Borderlands to be protected, but his plan is to go to the Gap himself, and what?  Kill twenty trollocs and a couple of myrdraal before being slaughtered?  How does that help hold back the Shadow at all?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Remember Lan is still being affected by the Warder Rage. In fact, until Moiraine bonded him, he fully planned to die in the Blight. His actions were not logical, they were fully emotional. He felt it was his duty to die fighting a hopeless fight in the Blight. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why don't these people go off and do things that they're actually good at?

 

Who made Aginor a spy? Why make the man with an uncontrollable temper a spy? Why would the weak master spy fight in an open battle?  Why make the goddamn SADISTIC MASTER OF TORTURE A SPY TO A YOUNG WOMAN?

 

Does NO VILLAIN in this story play to their strengths!?

 

Semirhage was a savant at Healing. Her skill at manipulating the human body and her morbid curiosity gave rise to other indulgences . . . Not all of the Forsaken had very applicable talents. Aginor was essentially without skills when thrown into a relatively primitive society. Asmodean's talent and interest was composing music. Balthamel was a historian and known womanizer. Graendal was essentially a first class psychologist/psychiatrist and renowned philanthropist whose developed a talent for compulsion. Mesaana was a decent administrator who coveted a research position. Ishamael was a philosopher and theologian. Moghedien was a spy/informant (she typically didn't throw herself into battle, that was once, and against a "primitive" with a block. It's not like she ran around seeking confrontation by force). A few distinguished themselves as generals and as governors of territories during the War of Power.

 

I think the point is that these guys were certainly evil, but it's not like they dedicated their lives to single combat and war or to things that would be useful to being a bad guy. It's perhaps a bit more realistic, though I agree that it seems underhwelming, at least with how Jordan handles it. There's a lot of stuff that goes on behind the scenes and when it's finally revealed you've absorbed and lost so much information you don't connect the dots about who did what and when. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question about why Lan wanted to ride off to the Blight/Borderlands/Gap in KoD.  In the Golden Crane chapter, Lan is frustrated that Rand won't send men to the Borderlands to fight.  Nynaeve accepts that this is a legitimate concern and is willing to send Lan off to do this.  However, if she hadn't tricked Lan into going to World's End and riding all the way to Tarwin's Gap, and sent her message via the merchants, Lan would have basically ridden up to the gap on his own.  We see his extreme reluctance to take men with him on route.  Have I missed something here, or do Lan's actions really not make any sense?  He wants the Borderlands to be protected, but his plan is to go to the Gap himself, and what?  Kill twenty trollocs and a couple of myrdraal before being slaughtered?  How does that help hold back the Shadow at all?

By drawing Rand's attention north. Rather than a bunch of strangers that Rand doesn't know or have to think about fighting and dying, it's Rand's friend, making it harder for him to ignore the problem - he commits forces to save or avenge Lan.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Why don't these people go off and do things that they're actually good at?

 

Who made Aginor a spy? Why make the man with an uncontrollable temper a spy? Why would the weak master spy fight in an open battle?  Why make the goddamn SADISTIC MASTER OF TORTURE A SPY TO A YOUNG WOMAN?

 

Does NO VILLAIN in this story play to their strengths!?

 

Semirhage was a savant at Healing. Her skill at manipulating the human body and her morbid curiosity gave rise to other indulgences . . . Not all of the Forsaken had very applicable talents. Aginor was essentially without skills when thrown into a relatively primitive society. Asmodean's talent and interest was composing music. Balthamel was a historian and known womanizer. Graendal was essentially a first class psychologist/psychiatrist and renowned philanthropist whose developed a talent for compulsion. Mesaana was a decent administrator who coveted a research position. Ishamael was a philosopher and theologian. Moghedien was a spy/informant (she typically didn't throw herself into battle, that was once, and against a "primitive" with a block. It's not like she ran around seeking confrontation by force). A few distinguished themselves as generals and as governors of territories during the War of Power.

 

I think the point is that these guys were certainly evil, but it's not like they dedicated their lives to single combat and war or to things that would be useful to being a bad guy. It's perhaps a bit more realistic, though I agree that it seems underhwelming, at least with how Jordan handles it. There's a lot of stuff that goes on behind the scenes and when it's finally revealed you've absorbed and lost so much information you don't connect the dots about who did what and when. 

 

But none of the forsaken come off as stupid. They don't seem to get by PURELY via their power. As you mentioned, they do a lot of work behind the scenes and are capable of showing ingenuity and impressive planning.

 

The problem is that Jordan never bothers to let us see this on page. The Forsaken seem to act markedly dumber on page. Or we're only ever shown the Forsaken during scenes where they're being tortured or enraged or beaten or mirred by dramatic irony. The competence of one's villains should not be applicable only if you analyze teh text. I don't need to study the text to see that Cadsuane is smart. It's spelled out. Front and centre. You can't miss it. So why should I need to for someone like Semirhage?

Edited by EmperorAllspice

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...