Jump to content

DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

AMOL worries


TyphoonBlade
 Share

Recommended Posts

Let me just start this post off by saying that I am glad and thankful that Brandon Sanderson decided to spend his time and energy finishing the Wheel of Time series that RJ started. I'm realllly looking forward to finally finding out how the series ends and for that Sanderson gets my respect.

 

That being said I'm still kinda worried about amol, specifically when the characters actually all meet up again. It's been said by a lot of people in a lot of threads that BS has a tendency to put plot gratification above actual characterization, and though it pains me to agree...I agree.

 

There have been times when some characters have come off as caricatures of themselves (mat, egwene, cadsuane, joline, the hall, berelain, talmanes). The worst part about that is there are times when a character seems stripped of their common sense and personality in order to make another look better. Egwene suddenly having supreme knowledge of everything that's ever happened in the tower ever in only a few months of teachings is probably the best example, especially considering how dumb the hall and really all other aes sedai look whenever they interact with her.

 

My biggest worry for amol is that when everyone finally meets together after so many books of seperation, characters personalities will be skewed and them actually meeting together will be underwhelming.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 107
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Valid point and it is a crutch Brandon leans on all too often. We see it numerous times with Egwene and the AS and then in turn with Rand and Egwene(both instances play to fan gratification first seeing the AS and then Egwene get played). I truly hope this is an area in which we see some growth from him as an author. There have been far too many scenes in which this type of lowest common denominator plotwork has been allowed to carry the narrative.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

regarding eggy, rj already started that trend by making her a master manipulator insalidar and her early time as a prisoner in the wt. it might have been more obvious in the last two books, but i don't see how rj could have handled those scenes with eggy any differently. she needed to be able to manipulate and use the secret histories unless we wanted some chapters of her studying or siuan telling her.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

regarding eggy, rj already started that trend by making her a master manipulator insalidar and her early time as a prisoner in the wt. it might have been more obvious in the last two books, but i don't see how rj could have handled those scenes with eggy any differently. she needed to be able to manipulate and use the secret histories unless we wanted some chapters of her studying or siuan telling her.

 

The difference between Egwene manipulating the hall in Salidar and manipulating the hall in the tower is that Egwene in Salidar was wayyyy more believable. In Salidar she managed to manipulate the hall in a clever way that didn't make them look like idiots, but Egwene in tower suddenly had more knowledge in both politics and tower law than any member of the hall. After what? Around 4-5 months being taught by siuan. Some of those people have been in the hall for several decades, and have been in the tower even longer. So IMO it does makes them look bad.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

regarding eggy, rj already started that trend by making her a master manipulator insalidar and her early time as a prisoner in the wt. it might have been more obvious in the last two books, but i don't see how rj could have handled those scenes with eggy any differently. she needed to be able to manipulate and use the secret histories unless we wanted some chapters of her studying or siuan telling her.

 

The point being it is highlighted way more when we have situations like Brandon dumbing down AS for Eggy(what the fans want to see) and then turning right around and dumbing down Eggy for Rand(what the fans want to see even more). He also does this with Cads and Tam(again playing to fan gratification) and on and on. Their are whole threads dedicated to how badly he overuses this technique.

Edited by Suttree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Valid point and it is a crutch Brandon leans on all too often. We see it numerous times with Egwene and the AS and then in turn with Rand and Egwene(both instances play to fan gratification first seeing the AS and then Egwene get played). I truly hope this is an area in which we see some growth from him as an author. There have been far too many scenes in which this type of lowest common denominator plotwork has been allowed to carry the narrative.

 

I completely agree, and it really takes away from the book and characters (like rand and egwene) interacting if one of them always has to sacrifice all sense just so another one can look better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I reckon that the only way we could know for certain what is Jordan and what is Sanderson would be to see Jordan's notes. Without having seen that, it is impossible to be certain. For instance, saying that Jordan wrote a scene in a more believable way could easily come down to bias against Sanderson, even unconscious bias, and not necessarily poor technique.

 

As for the dumb-ing down; I disagree. Sanderson does hit you over the head a bit; leads you by the nose; whatever you want to call it; but I don't think he purposely makes a character look bad to make one look good.

 

For example:

Rand vs Egwene in the tower. Rand is one of the most powerful ta'vern - ever - and the Dragon besides. He walks into the tower, uninvited, without being threatened, cajoled, manipulated etc, without an armed guard, politely asks to see the Amyrlin, and calmly waits for an audience. Now that must have scared the willies out of the Aes Sedai, who are so used to threatening, cajoling, manipulating etc that someone who comes along and does what they want without any of that must leave them a bit...deflated. It's like going out with the intention of starting a rip-roaring debate in which you expect to have to drag people kicking and screaming to your soapbox; except when you arrive, everyone is already there, calmly sitting and waiting for you. That'll take the wind out of you. It'll also scare you. You'd wonder what these people know that you don't. Then they announce they they are going to have the debate some place else, and just walk off. That makes you look stupid, because in reality they have completely outmaneuvered you. It's classic shock-and-awe. Rand takes the initiative right out of the Aes Sedai's hands by doing the last thing they would possibly expect him to do, then acting in a manner that they would not expect him to, then making an announcement that he's intending to do the last thing anybody, anywhere would expect him to do - an announcement that stuns them into silence - and then leaves before they can collect their wits. The sheer boldness of it shocks the Aes Sedai into inaction. Beautifully, neatly done. And none of it down to contrivance.

 

You can make much the same argument regarding all of the other cases.

 

Anyway, those're my two cents.

Edited by BoerVanBreda
Link to comment
Share on other sites

one thing I learned very quickly is that just because something seems out of place, or contrived, or whatever does not mean that it is. It is only a mistake if you cannot find a logical explanation for it: remember, the author knows more about the world they are writing in than you do. Yes, Sanderson's characters are different, but they were always going to be. He is not Jordan. His style is different. Ergo, these last few books are not Jordan's Wheel of Time - but Sanderson's. Jordan's Wheel of Time died with him.

 

Just because something seems out of place, or contrived, or whatever doesn't mean that it isn't, either. Additionally, you can't chalk up everything to ta'veren (which RJ himself may have overused a tad), since a lot of those sorts of things happen with characters that are nowhere near a ta'veren. RJ's details gave insight on why characters both major and minor might act the way they do, so even if they're wrong or acting foolish you can ascertain why. The thing is that Brandon took many shortcuts with writing this and it's disappointing. Bloody Ashes.

 

Yes, these last two books are obviously not Jordan's Wheel of Time and nor will AMoL be despite their 'getting it right' claims; I'm basically hanging around for that last portion that he did write, because I loved 99% of the stuff in books 1-11 after a reread or two.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually most of the plot feeling "rushed" starts in KoD. But I think this was done on purpose. I mean after tFoH the plot slowed down significantly so there was only ONE important thing per book, KOD a *lot* gets wrapped up, this happens more so in TGS and TOM.

 

I'm just glad we were not constantly introduced and described to each of the main characters in turn at the start of each book anymore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can make much the same argument regarding all of the other cases.

 

Anyway, those're my two cents.

 

Let' say just for the sake of argument that you are correct about Rand and Egwene. I would love to see you try and apply that to Cads/Tam, it doesn't fit in the slightest.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simple Suttree, people have even explained it before to you, you just refuse to accept said explanation. Her very last attempt to save Rand and the World seems to have just gone down the gutter, from one failure to another over the last months, she finds out that her last attempt also failed, because Tam spoke of something he was ordered not too.

 

You know, there is a reason why infantry in the military get drilled so hard in discipline, and in doing certain tasks mindlessly over and over again. Because when you are out there on the third day with no sleep and in a stressful situation, people begin snapping at each other over the smallest thing. A lot of stress over a prolonged period do that to people.Cadsaune isn't super human.

 

I've personally experienced it and seen it happen several time during my draft period in the army, friendly and cheerful people suddenly snapping and yelling at not only each other, but also at their superior officers, after they've been exposed to enough stress/lack of sleep.

Edited by Manscher
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simple Suttree, people have even explained it before to you, you just refuse to accept said explanation.

 

Sorry Mansch but you know very well that is not the case as evidenced by Luckers, Ares, etc all continuing to have the exact same issue for the same reasons. Your excuse here as always rings hallow. In addition she had been successful until Semi so not sure the one "failure to another" even refers to?

 

Not to mention you don't go from "coldly" asking a question to lashing out with the power in one sentence. She has not used the OP once in the entire series in that manner and would be horrified at any AS that did. At the very least even if you don't agree with me you aren't arguing she that she wasn't turned into a caricature are you? Even Brandon has admitted he may have not handled her so well and yes as many others besides myself have pointed out it was shoddy writing.

Edited by Suttree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

She's used it teach Rand manners, or do I remember wrong? And my argument was that lashing out there, isn't outside the possibilities, as she is just a human being. A badass one, but still just a human being.

 

As for the various failures, I was referring to her attempts to teach Rand to laugh and cry again, not her various other endeavours.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As for the various failures, I was referring to her attempts to teach Rand to laugh and cry again, not her various other endeavours.

 

A bad ass human being who has been tempered by both success and failure over her 300 years(which basically makes her more than human). Per RJ's notes she is "remarkably adaptable" and if you read them as others have pointed out to you in old threads you would know how off base you are.

 

As for all the success she was achieving until Semi, with her mission in teaching Rand, it has been well documented. Check the "Subtleties of Cadsuane" thread if you would like to read up on it.

Edited by Suttree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A bad ass human being who has been tempered by both success and failure over her 300 years(which basically makes her more than human). Per RJ's notes she is "remarkably adaptable" and if you read them as others have pointed out to you in old threads you would know how off base you are.

 

And that makes her infallible? She's a human being, humans fuck up at times, it's who we are.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A bad ass human being who has been tempered by both success and failure over her 300 years(which basically makes her more than human). Per RJ's notes she is "remarkably adaptable" and if you read them as others have pointed out to you in old threads you would know how off base you are.

 

And that makes her infallible? She's a human being, humans fuck up at times, it's who we are.

 

There is a huge difference between saying someone is infallible and someone acting totally out of character. In fact in what you quoted I said "tempered by both success and failure over her 300 years". Regardless I see you aren't even trying to argue that she was not turned into a caricature of herself. Your halfway there Mansch...our side will get you the rest of the way eventually. Have no fear. :wink:

Edited by Suttree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The point being it is highlighted way more when we have situations like Brandon dumbing down AS for Eggy(what the fans want to see) and then turning right around and dumbing down Eggy for Rand(what the fans want to see even more). He also does this with Cads and Tam(again playing to fan gratification) and on and on. Their are whole threads dedicated to how badly he overuses this technique.

I see the problem when Egwene becomes a better member of all six Ajahs in the loyalist tower than any of the Ajahs' own members. And when one of the Aes Sedai orders someone to use bows against damane, as if anyone would need to be told that. But it's too easy to make this criticism, and I think it's spreading and getting applied universally without evidence.

 

Cadsuane as RJ wrote her is completely unrealistic. She's a bully whose plans never fail, because the author loves her so much. (He also shows her able to use non-bully tactics, but that's irrelevant. Whether she's a bully 97% or 100% of the time, she's a bully more often than should be productive, but the author waves his hands and makes it work for her.) Brandon still made her intelligent and capable, which we see when she accepts Nynaeve's help, and agrees with Min about Callandor, and subverts Rand's exile and still works on her plans. Brandon just also had her make the occasional mistake, which RJ was unable to do. It must be like writing gay characters. RJ would admit they exist, but wouldn't write them. I'm sure RJ would admit Cadsuane could make mistakes too, but he'd never write it happening. Brandon wrote it. RJ must've neglected to leave notes saying that Cadsuane is an author favorite and can never screw up.

 

It's premature to say whether Egwene was dumbed down vs. Rand. I thought she did a good job of sticking to her principles and letting him go. She was tempted to use his madness as an excuse to hold him, but she decided against it, which shows that she's better than Elaida. "Fan gratification" would have been her believing him and signing up for all his plans. Instead we see her considering his memories as madness, and opposing him.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

RJ was certainly able of writing scenes where Cadsuane makes horrible mistakes. It was just done in character -- her being so couth that she's completely missing what she's doing wrong (which is the way you pull one over on someone such as Cads). just take a look at her first encounter with Sorelia. Using the Power to intimidate others, however, is a horse of a different color. It's a behavior that reminds me of the newly-tested Moiraine (recall Lan thinking "AS are never childish"), not a sister of 300+ years.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Really don't see a problem with Cadsuanes reaction toward Tam. She had just realized that her arranged meeting had gone the exact opposite way than expected/hoped which more or less doomed the outcome of the last battle. A heavy burden to handle and I would have had a much bigger problem with the scene if she was reacting in a posed manner. I don't think I can stress this enough, if you personally have been pushing for something that virtually led to the destruction of the world, maybe, just maybe, this is the time to step out of your composed bubble and let some emotions show...

 

I'm hoping for a reunion of the three ta'verens and I do worry about the outcome. I have really missed a big theme in Wheel of Time and that is friendship. I do hope that Mat, Perrin and Rand can spend time together and not feel like strangers. The Egwene - Rand meeting didn't ease my worries to put it lightly. I'm clinging my hopes on the friendship Nyn and Rand managed to develop (maybe it was more show) in the last couple of books.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

RJ was certainly able of writing scenes where Cadsuane makes horrible mistakes. It was just done in character -- her being so couth that she's completely missing what she's doing wrong (which is the way you pull one over on someone such as Cads). just take a look at her first encounter with Sorelia. Using the Power to intimidate others, however, is a horse of a different color. It's a behavior that reminds me of the newly-tested Moiraine (recall Lan thinking "AS are never childish"), not a sister of 300+ years.

 

This for me is what I have the biggest problem with. Cads would be appalled at any AS needing to resort to that, again while Cads has been a bully, she has never been a "dumb" one. Brandon most certainly did not make her intelligent.

 

As for how often she resorts to bullying Morsker is right, a percentage doesn't matter. We see her assess situations and use the best possible tactic at any given time. She almost unfailingly treats those based on their actions and change her plans accordingly. It matters little that bullying is the tactic we see the most. Especially considering we often see her not bullying those weaker than her. This more than anything is proof that the tactic does not define her character.

 

In addition no idea what the point is about RJ in the post above. Cads made her share of mistakes in the early books. They are plain in the text for anyone to see. In addition we know of her many failures over 300 years that have helped shape her. Lessons learned at the hands of a wilder, coming up short on bringing down the BA, etc. All of these things are part of her back story along with the success she has had. Again anyone who has lived her life is going to seem almost super human to those around her. We see her size up situations and decide on the best course of action. Consider when she sees Rand has made his mind up about the cleansing. She analyzes risk/reward and then backs him to the hilt. RJ made an utterly realistic character for someone that has lived her life.

Edited by Suttree
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As for how often she resorts to bullying Morsker is right, a percentage doesn't matter. We see her assess situations and use the best possible tactic at any given time. She almost unfailingly treats those based on their actions and change her plans accordingly. It matters little that bullying is the tactic we see the most. Especially considering we often see her not bullying those weaker than her. This more than anything is proof that the tactic does not define her character.

 

 

 

If this assessment holds true and she almost every time resorts to bullying it speak volumes about the other characters in WoT. It's a sad day when the best way of getting things done is by bullying and not having an adult conversation backed-up with reasoning.

Edited by Mange
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What else is new? Isn't a sad day when people who know for certain their world will come to an end without someone still conspire to assassinate him? When military commanders don't mind to consign two youths to a violent death just to preserve their command structure? When friends can't be bothered to inform one another about issues on which the fate of the world depends? When a leader of an ancient organization prefers her personal short-term priorities to the survival of the organization? Need I go on?

 

Yes, it's sad that so many people react best to bullying. You just have to note that when Cads deals with someone who'd react better to a different method, she doesn't hesitate to use that instead.

Edited by yoniy0
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Noted. However I believe that the worst thing you could do is to try bullying your way with Rand. He doesn't seem to respond very well at that particular treatment (of course, depending on what you want to achieve). In this case it was to make Rand allow himself to feel emotions again and I don't think Cadsuanes bullying was anywhere near of making him do just that.

 

That is why I commented on the statement that Cadsuane always assess which method would work best. Maybe it's true for just her that in most situations bullying is the most effective method but she probably takes into account her own skills in handling the different tools. If you are an extremely good bully, bullying will more or less always be your preferred method of choice.

 

Think like this. One of Luckers complaints about Brandons writing is that he doesn’t try to write in areas he isn’t comfortable with. Brandon wants to write like he always does because that is when he feels he's in control. Well that same argument could be said about Cadsuane and her willingness to try another tool. What about listening to the person in question and then try reasoning with that person? I know, I know, people talking with each other and not at each other is a bit of a stretch but it would be refreshing to actually see it.

 

Disclaimer: my personal opinion has changed quite a bit about Cadsuanes since I did a reread last autumn. I still think she is a nag but I understand her better now, I don’t loathe her like I used to.

Edited by Mange
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share


×
×
  • Create New...