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In Terms Of Writing...Which Forsaken Were Given The Best Character-Development?


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Whats Your Opinion ... To me, it seems like with a 2012 release probable of The Very END of the series, that we can definitely look back (or START to, at lease) and form some opinions, which I think is a whole lot of fun to do as fans. And One subject I like to think about is:

 

In Terms Of Writing...Which Forsaken Were Given The Best Character-Development?

 

I will give MY opinion first, because I know most World Leaders sitting around waiting breathless on MY take on things:

 

I think...Asmodean.

 

I really do. Look at Books 4-5. SOOO Much Asmodean. It almost reads like ''The Tragedy of Asmodean'' in those two massive books. So much about him is covered. And of course, it certainly helps the reader to learn more about him and feel closer to him because of his proximity to the main character (Rand) for most of those two books.

 

And, dare I say it, there were things I LIKED about Asmo - in a contemptable sort of way. He made NO BONES about the fact that he was a coward. Compared to other Chosen he was also a rather weak channeler. His love of music was cool too.

 

Contrast this with like...Semirhage who we only see a very few snippets of until Book 12 and then she gets herself all Toasted-Up.

 

Moggy seemed very servile to me...Lanfear, imo, had ALOT of character development worked upon her by Mr Jordan, but then, she gets Finned with Moiraine Sedai and when she turns back up it is as Cyndane.

 

Demandred has been MR INVISIBLE. Sammael was Toasted halfway through the series after a few glimpses.

 

I liked Rhavin because he was kinda a Stud (doing the Bad Things with Morgase every night gets him LOTS of Points in my book, lol)

 

Messana too ''behind the scenes'' - I mean, what do we know about her other than she is in the WT and likes books?

 

 

The 'Gars never really caught my interest...Im sorry :(

 

I like Graendal alot because she is HOT. But is that really the same as ''Character Development???'' ... We know she is behind the scenes in Arad Doman and is a bit slutty...what else?

 

...........................So, My final take is Asmo and Ishy. These two seem just INCREDIBLY well drawn-out characters to me. Wish we could have had more involvement with the other Chosen, but I understand there were only so many pages for Mr Jordan to work with.

 

Which Chosen do YOU think were treated to the most Character Development in Bks 1-12?

 

 

Fish

 

 

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Totally agree with you.

 

I would say Ishy more than Asmo though.  He really is very interesting, and he's the only character besides Rand (Lews Therin) who has been in the story since the very first prologue.  Though he did go away for a bit there, he's always been very involved in the story.

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I agree with Asmodean.

 

my reasoning is, I was hoping Rand could turn him to the Light.

I was even starting to believe that he did, right up until Asmo had his POV death scene where he said he still chose the Great Lord.

 

He seemed redeemable to me.

the others don't, and I like characters with shades of Gray.

 

I don't like that RJ's world is so black and white.

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I agree with Asmodean.

 

my reasoning is, I was hoping Rand could turn him to the Light.

I was even starting to believe that he did, right up until Asmo had his POV death scene where he said he still chose the Great Lord.

 

He seemed redeemable to me.

the others don't, and I like characters with shades of Gray.

 

I don't like that RJ's world is so black and white.

 

I have trouble seeing how people can claim that RJ's world is "black and white" when the heros do things like destroy an entire palace full of people in order to kill a single "bad guy."  There are most definitely characters with shades of gray; in fact, I would say hardly any character is pure white.  The Darkfriends tend to come across as "pure black," but I think this is deceptive: keep in mind that any Darkfriend has been forced to commit dastardly deeds or die from the moment s/he was invited in.  There aren't that many purely "black" characters; the only ones I can think of offhand are the Forsaken and Padan Fain.  But if you want no purely black characters, I suppose I can see the objection.  (I don't agree, but I can see the point.)

 

On topic: my favorite of the Forsaken were/are probably Ishamael and Lanfear.  Asmodean's character development was interesting, but 1) I find it impossible to like him and 2) we never got to see him do anything interesting as an independent agent; the closest we came was "let me inflate this idiot's ego and set him to distract Rand while I go off and grab a ter'angreal."  Even Be'lal had a more interesting plot than that.

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I thought Sammael had pretty decent plot development too. From books 4 - 7 he was featured quite often and the verbal sparring matches between him and Graendal were always amusing. But yeah, would probably be Asmodean, Ishamael and Lanfear. Although I disagree that Demandred hasn't had any character development; almost every Forsaken meeting even when he isn't present he is mentioned. He is the one who Graendal always closely watches and Sammael talks about him endlessly like he has some sort of boycrush on him.

 

Be`lal, Bathamel and Aginor = zero character development. Bathamael has recieved some through Aran`gar I suppose, but still.

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Im going to agree with most people here.

 

1)Ishmael first definitely. - He is the only one (so far) that is not acting foolishly (he died in the others, yes, but i wouldnt call it foolish) he actually has an agenda, not just a spoiled evil child.

 

2) Asmodean - I loooooove the Asmodean/Rand plot in FoH, one of my favorite along with Mat in tSR.

 

3.) Lanfear - On the same note as Ishmael, she (to a lesser extent) is not just a spoiled evil child. I like the fact she seems ambiguous, she helps Rand out because of her love of him (or his power).

 

4) Demandred - Now, before you all start objecting and saying we havent seen him at all, lets look at what we HAVE seen of him.

1. His role in LoC, the first real mention of him, shrouded in mystery, we get an insite into his thoughts.

2. Almost ALL of the other Forsaken mention him. Graendal, Sammael, Semirhage, Asmodean, Moridin. They each have something to say on him, little things, but put together, we start to get a picture of who he is.

3. His alliance with Messaana and Semi. that in itself says something.

4. Graendal's PoV regarding him, hes made out to be one of the msot dangerous characters.

5. Demandred hates LTT, arguably more than any other Forsaken, yet he has not done as many of the others have -attaack him outright (and die). His PoV in WH, he admits Rand's intelligence, a rare thing among the forsaken, especially since he is the one that hates LTT personally.

6. We dont know where the hell he is or what the hell is he is up to, or really, who he is.

 

Now, I say that he is one of the most developed characters "BASED ON WRITING" as the title says, not on their personality or how much time they have on screen. IMO Demandred and Moridin are the onyl characters that we are ultimatly unsure of. To create a character who has been so discussed with only a limited amount of information available, and is still being discussed with interest, well, that says something about the writing of that character.

 

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Moghedien. We get to see her from so many angles, when she's commanding Darkfriends, or seeking vengeance against Birgitte, spying on Forsaken, leashed in T'A'R, held prisoner in Salidar, abused by Shadar Haran and mindtrapped, trying for more vengeance against Nynaeve, and refusing to fight at the Cleansing. She seems the most like a real person of all the Forsaken.

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I'd say Ishamael is at the top.  Good call on Asmodean, too-now that I think about it, he was well developed, even though it was only for two books.  I liked Lanfear's development, too.

 

While much attention is given to how sexy Graendal is, I think she's had decent plot motivations, watching her temporary alliances shift from Sammael to Graendal.

 

Be'lal was given the worst character development-killed off too early to be given any development.

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I agree with many of you - Ishamael and Asmodean are the ones I found most interesting. I really appreciate Ishamael / Moridin for his altruistic nihilism. Despite - or rather because of - his madness, he is actually the only Forsaken who is rational.

 

Disagreed on Lanfear. A cardboard femme fatale. Moggy is relatively well developed, though completely unlikeable. Graendal was meh; Demandred is intriguing. Others are unremarkable.

 

In general I find the Forsaken difficult to understand for one very simple reasons. They're not the brightest lights in the box, but they're quite intelligent, very cunning, distrusting. Why on Earth they believe the DO will give them power, despite all the evidence to the contrary, is beyond me. That's why Moridin is cool - he gets it, and serves the DO *because* of it.

 

I don't like that RJ's world is so black and white.

 

Agreed.

 

I have trouble seeing how people can claim that RJ's world is "black and white" when the heros do things like destroy an entire palace full of people in order to kill a single "bad guy."

 

These are unrealistic requirements to be considered "white". It was full of people who were essentially living dead. Even if they weren't, it would still have been justified as collateral damage - in the same sense that bombing enemy HQ's and armaments factories is justified in a total war.

 

4) Demandred - Now' date=' before you all start objecting and saying we havent seen him at all, lets look at what we HAVE seen of him.[/quote']

 

That's a very good point. I remember reading in a book on writing that describing a character from the POV's of others is very effective.

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Ishamael/Moridin and Lanfear for me.

 

Ishamael/Moridin because has has been such a big part of the story, shaping events around him, shaping characters also (Rand, Moghedien, Cyndane etc...). Plus, he is without a doubt to me the coolest guy. I love his attitude toward his own master, toward Rand, toward the world of WoT in general. He really has deeper thoughts.

 

Lanfear because when she was still Lanfear she really kicked some serious asses, always letting the window open for turning back to the Light in her own specific way, pulling strings on her own much more efficiently then other forsakens. Alas, her come back as Cyndane and her blind hatred for Rand kinda has killed her mojo.

 

The others are too secretive or useless as for now.

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I have trouble seeing how people can claim that RJ's world is "black and white" when the heros do things like destroy an entire palace full of people in order to kill a single "bad guy."  There are most definitely characters with shades of gray; in fact, I would say hardly any character is pure white.  The Darkfriends tend to come across as "pure black," but I think this is deceptive: keep in mind that any Darkfriend has been forced to commit dastardly deeds or die from the moment s/he was invited in.  

 

RJ's world is black and white. pure and simple.

darkfriends, Fain, Trollocs, Fades, Shadowspawn, Forsaken, the Dark One, Black Ajah - They're ALL black.

Rand and company fighting the evil guys -  they're ALL good.

 

You cannot name a single thing that any character has done that wasn't for the greater good, or for the greater bad.

That doesn't mean the characters aren't flawed, or even somewhat realistic, it just means they're the sports teams you love to love, and love to hate.

 

it's not a bad thing. RJ himself said that he loves the fantasy genre because you can have good verses evil.

Don't claim that RJ's world has shades of gray. There are lots of fantasy series out there with shades of gray.

Wheel of Time isn't one of them, and neither was Tolkien's world; and no one is complains about Middle Earth.

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Elaida not evil but has done some pretty black things or thought about implementing them. Some of the Whitecloaks can't be classed as being black but they aren't really on the light side either despite what the think.

Then there's Noal, Elyas, Aram, Measama and I'm sure there are others.

 

And also Sammael was the coolest.

 

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Fisher King, is it just me or do u reeeaally like the caps lock button?  :P

 

But i agree that Asmo, Lanfear, and Ishy as Moridin. we didnt see that much of Ishy as himself, he was sorta insane, at least that i remember. but as Moridin we see all the other sides to him especially with the chapter in TGS of he and rands coffee hour

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You cannot name a single thing that any character has done that wasn't for the greater good, or for the greater bad.

 

What about Semirhage sending trollocs to help fight against others in the Stone in TDR?

 

But more to the point, if the world was ending wouldn't you probably do everything in your power to stop it, if that were possible. Or maybe you would fight to end it, but either way, you wouldn't help the other side.

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In general, it is a black and white story. The DO v Champion of Light.

 

However, people dont do things always for the greater good or evil.

 

Take a look at most of the DF, Sheriam wanted power, she didnt really want to free the DO.

 

The forsaken, all had a reason for turning, jealously, oppertunity, whatever.

 

Look at the Seanchan, they are not evil, but there is still a war bwtween them and the westlands, they do some pretty dark stuff.

 

Look at the Finns, not evil, but not good. Just alien.

 

Look at the Great Game. Half the series has been Rand fighting against petty nobles trying to carve out their own power bases, not all of them are DF's.

 

So, if you look at the general overarching storyline, yes, it is good v evil, but then, so is almost every other fantasy book out there. GRRM has the Cold Ones v the world. Erikson has the Crippled God v the world.

 

But, looking at every individual character, while RJ might not have the totally unknowable, crazily bloodthirsty and shifty world of GRRM or Erikson, it is NOT black and white. Not like Tolkien, there was no middle ground, no DF's (except Saruman), it was basically East v West with no exeption.

 

SO really, i owuld say WoT is in the middle of black and white and being totally grey.

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RJ's world is black and white. pure and simple.

darkfriends, Fain, Trollocs, Fades, Shadowspawn, Forsaken, the Dark One, Black Ajah - They're ALL black.

Rand and company fighting the evil guys -  they're ALL good.

 

You cannot name a single thing that any character has done that wasn't for the greater good, or for the greater bad.

That doesn't mean the characters aren't flawed, or even somewhat realistic, it just means they're the sports teams you love to love, and love to hate.

 

it's not a bad thing. RJ himself said that he loves the fantasy genre because you can have good verses evil.

Don't claim that RJ's world has shades of gray. There are lots of fantasy series out there with shades of gray.

Wheel of Time isn't one of them, and neither was Tolkien's world; and no one is complains about Middle Earth.

 

While you are correct to some extent, the Whitecloaks are pretty close to being "grey." Geofram Bornhald and Pedron Niall for instance are incredibly grey characters in terms of morality and thoughts concerning the world.

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