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Mat's Arc (Full Spoilers)


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I have to completely disagree with you, sorry.  None of us know the characters like RJ did or Harriet does, regardless of how many times we've read the series.

 

Jordan? Sure. Harriet. Well, sorry to break it to you, bro, but that's pretty dubious

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Yes, it felt like Mat to me.  Harriet was RJ's wife, confidant and editor from the very first drafts in the 80s until the day he died.  If she doesn't know the characters then we as mere readers don't know them.

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I really liked Mat's story arc. I think he probably changed the most from start to finish. 

 

I would have loved seeing Mat go on-on-one with Demandred at the end with his quarterstaff. It would have relly brought the series full circle. But Mat didn't have his medallion. I think a Mat vs. D showdown was what Ghalad was thinking when he gave the medallion to Berelain telling her to give it to Mat because he was their only hope. Instead, she gave it to Lan. *shrug*

 

Now I guess Mat and Tuon go on a Seanchan conquest as per the outrigger novel.

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I really liked Mat's story arc. I think he probably changed the most from start to finish. 

 

I would have loved seeing Mat go on-on-one with Demandred at the end with his quarterstaff. It would have relly brought the series full circle. But Mat didn't have his medallion. I think a Mat vs. D showdown was what Ghalad was thinking when he gave the medallion to Berelain telling her to give it to Mat because he was their only hope. Instead, she gave it to Lan. *shrug*

 

Now I guess Mat and Tuon go on a Seanchan conquest as per the outrigger novel.

 

I'm pretty sure that the text referred to Galad's medallion as one of the copies.

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Q: Why wait until dawn to restore the river and split the DF battle line? Could be used to good tactical advantage earlier. Same with the cannon/gateways. Only residue readers could have located them, and in the meantime they could have been doing massive damage until the ammo ran out.

 

Mat had Grady open the gateway to the cursed village were everyone fought all night and came back to life the next morning.  He had to wait until the next dawn so the citizens would have already woken back up in their beds and been ready to attack again.  This was a pretty good scare tactic since at least the Dreadlords would have recognized them as the exact same villagers.

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Q: Why wait until dawn to restore the river and split the DF battle line? Could be used to good tactical advantage earlier. Same with the cannon/gateways. Only residue readers could have located them, and in the meantime they could have been doing massive damage until the ammo ran out.

 

Mat had Grady open the gateway to the cursed village were everyone fought all night and came back to life the next morning.  He had to wait until the next dawn so the citizens would have already woken back up in their beds and been ready to attack again.  This was a pretty good scare tactic since at least the Dreadlords would have recognized them as the exact same villagers.

I have to say, I appreciated the use of Hinderstrap as a tactic. It had a point! Bloody brilliant.

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Q: Why wait until dawn to restore the river and split the DF battle line? Could be used to good tactical advantage earlier. Same with the cannon/gateways. Only residue readers could have located them, and in the meantime they could have been doing massive damage until the ammo ran out.

 

Mat had Grady open the gateway to the cursed village were everyone fought all night and came back to life the next morning.  He had to wait until the next dawn so the citizens would have already woken back up in their beds and been ready to attack again.  This was a pretty good scare tactic since at least the Dreadlords would have recognized them as the exact same villagers.

I have to say, I appreciated the use of Hinderstrap as a tactic. It had a point! Bloody brilliant.

 

 Yep. I originally hated the Hinderstrap scene. Mat was so off and it seemed so out of place. Then when I realized what was happening I was pleasantly suprised.

 

 There were two referances to Talmanes joking/smiling that stuck out to me.

 

 One seemed forced to show Talmanes was back on track with the morbid "joke".

The other was when Talmanes smiled after blowing the heck out of packs of trollocs and his fellow soldier asked if he were smiling, that I thought was terrific.

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Yes, it felt like Mat to me. Harriet was RJ's wife, confidant and editor from the very first drafts in the 80s until the day he died. If she doesn't know the characters then we as mere readers don't know them.

Sanderson admitted flat out that he botched Mat very badly in TGS and that got in to the books. Your are totally off her with the Harriet angle. Brandon had to create from scratch far more than anyone previously suspected and it isn't a if she is infallible. The scene between him and Rand was 100% cringe. That has no place in this series whatsoever.

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Yes, it felt like Mat to me. Harriet was RJ's wife, confidant and editor from the very first drafts in the 80s until the day he died. If she doesn't know the characters then we as mere readers don't know them.

Sanderson admitted flat out that he botched Mat very badly in TGS and that got in to the books. Your are totally off her with the Harriet angle. Brandon had to create from scratch far more than anyone previously suspected and it isn't a if she is infallible. The scene between him and Rand was 100% cringe. That has no place in this series whatsoever.

While you could tell the difference between the "two Mats," I think Brandon got him better than most people give him credit for.

 

I remember first reading tGS and reading Mat's very first paragraph where he is talking to Talmanes about women, and I thought, "Huh, this seems a little different from the Mat I remember." But then I remembered that Mat just got married and is now a nobleman. The two things he promised never to do and never to be had suddenly occurred. In that light, this new Mat makes a lot more sense. He's somewhat lost his place in the world, but is trying to just ignore it. However, he can't.

 

Tuon affected him more than he wanted her to, and it forced him to reevaluate his life, except Mat didn't want to reevaluate. He wanted to stay Mat the rogue (and we as the audience wanted him to stay Mat the rogue), but he had to become something more. Not only did he have to deal with the problems with the gholam, not only did he have to fight his way back to Andor, not only did he have to worry about saving Moraine, but he also had to reevaluate his very core. I don't know about everyone else on here, but when I'm dealing with personal problems (especially personal identity problems) it is very hard for me to act like myself or do anything that I normally do. Everything feels off.

 

Now it could be that I'm just making hella excuses for Brandon, and maybe I am, but the way Mat was written made some sense to me. I, as the reader, still enjoyed reading Mat's story and point of view. While it wasn't perfect, it was fine to me.

 

Back to this Mat though, in this book, I enjoyed the story. I didn't particularly like how he had to rely on Demandred dying to beat him. It makes it so Demandred is the better general. While I understand Demandred was supposed to be the best of the best in terms of general-ing, I would have liked to see Mat perform a little better before Demandred died.

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Mat became something less. He went from a rogue to the court jester. Brandon said it best himself after tGS and it continued to be largely true in AMoL.

 

Brandon

I didn't understand Mat. I tried so hard to make him funny, I wrote the HIM out of him.

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Hmmm... I think this is supposed to be a thread about Mat's Arc, not the endless bitching about Sanderson (who in my opinion took an impossible task on and did an AWESOME job.  Not perfect, but AWESOME).

 

Anyway, I had a question for those theory minded...

 

When Mat is talking regarding how he died on the tree to escape his bond from the horn, and he is told that his death "wasn't on the tree" but something else... what was that all about?  I don't think this was ever explained.

 

Also, the Hinderstrap plot line in the battle was AWESOME.

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Hmmm... I think this is supposed to be a thread about Mat's Arc, not the endless bitching about Sanderson (who in my opinion took an impossible task on and did an AWESOME job.  Not perfect, but AWESOME).

 

Anyway, I had a question for those theory minded...

 

When Mat is talking regarding how he died on the tree to escape his bond from the horn, and he is told that his death "wasn't on the tree" but something else... what was that all about?  I don't think this was ever explained.

 

Also, the Hinderstrap plot line in the battle was AWESOME.

The death occurred when they went to kill Ravin and then Math and Avi both were killed by lightning, but Rand ended up balefiring them back to life.

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Did anyone notice the back tracking on Mat's writing skills? Wow this letter is so much better than your last one mat!? Made me feel like Sanderson admitted that the letter to Elayne in ToM was trash then I was angry that he reminded me of it...

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Not explained? He never died at Rhuidean. It happens in Caemlyn when Rahvin killed him.

 

As an aside not sure how you can expect people to not touch on how Mat was written when discussing his arc. That is pretty unrealistic to attempt to totally spectate the two.

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Well, even Mat thought his twice lived prophecy was in Rhuidean.  But yes, he was told it was "something Rand did", so this makes perfect sense, thanks!

 

As for the BS topic, I will stick with that he took on a nearly impossible task (and frankly, after Winter's Heart and KOD I wasn't sure Jordan himself could have finished the series) and accomplished in pretty incredibly well.  

 

There were spots the writing was weak with BS (the Rand/Mat scene in Ebou Dar was astonishingly off character for them both), however, the story was told, it was told VERY well (not perfectly) and where it was weak, I'm imaginative enough to understand the *point* of the story even if I dislike (a very small portion of) the writing in spots.  

 

I applied this technique to both RJ and BS, to look at the positive side (because 99.5% of it IS positive).  

 

The 0.5% that is weak, well, you know what, both authors really sucked balls in a very few spots, what are you going to do about that, really? They did an otherwise BRILLIANT job all around.

 

A++.

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Yes, it felt like Mat to me. Harriet was RJ's wife, confidant and editor from the very first drafts in the 80s until the day he died. If she doesn't know the characters then we as mere readers don't know them.

Sanderson admitted flat out that he botched Mat very badly in TGS and that got in to the books. Your are totally off her with the Harriet angle. Brandon had to create from scratch far more than anyone previously suspected and it isn't a if she is infallible. The scene between him and Rand was 100% cringe. That has no place in this series whatsoever.

While you could tell the difference between the "two Mats," I think Brandon got him better than most people give him credit for.

 

I remember first reading tGS and reading Mat's very first paragraph where he is talking to Talmanes about women, and I thought, "Huh, this seems a little different from the Mat I remember." But then I remembered that Mat just got married and is now a nobleman. The two things he promised never to do and never to be had suddenly occurred. In that light, this new Mat makes a lot more sense. He's somewhat lost his place in the world, but is trying to just ignore it. However, he can't.

 

Tuon affected him more than he wanted her to, and it forced him to reevaluate his life, except Mat didn't want to reevaluate. He wanted to stay Mat the rogue (and we as the audience wanted him to stay Mat the rogue), but he had to become something more. Not only did he have to deal with the problems with the gholam, not only did he have to fight his way back to Andor, not only did he have to worry about saving Moraine, but he also had to reevaluate his very core. I don't know about everyone else on here, but when I'm dealing with personal problems (especially personal identity problems) it is very hard for me to act like myself or do anything that I normally do. Everything feels off.

 

Now it could be that I'm just making hella excuses for Brandon, and maybe I am, but the way Mat was written made some sense to me. I, as the reader, still enjoyed reading Mat's story and point of view. While it wasn't perfect, it was fine to me.

 

Back to this Mat though, in this book, I enjoyed the story. I didn't particularly like how he had to rely on Demandred dying to beat him. It makes it so Demandred is the better general. While I understand Demandred was supposed to be the best of the best in terms of general-ing, I would have liked to see Mat perform a little better before Demandred died.

Man I got to disagree with this. Through out Jordan's books we see a gradual maturing of Mat. He starts out by being a little bit of a screw up, still letting badgers out on the green, and taking the dagger from Shadar Logoth. yeah the dagger was a big mistake but then we see him put his neck out on the line to save the super girls in tear. Later he steps up to save the cairhien and tairen forces in the battle with Couladin. The guy takes on the Band of the Red Hand as their leader and is responsible for their safety, shoot he even adopts Olver. When he learns that Tuon is the daughter of the nine moons he is freaked out but he still earnestly pursues Tuon. He accepts the change that is coming, he may not like some aspects of it but he doesn't revert back to whiney GH Mat as a result. Around the same time he has to give the order to kill Renna. I really wasn't sure if he was going to do it but he did and he took it pretty hard on himself but he accepted that it was necessary. Mat's character at this point was one that was still the rogue and the trickster but he was mature enough to accept responsibility and change without acting overly excitable, his schemes had grown in scope he wasn't unleashing badgers on the green instead he was unleashing windfinders and capturing the heir to the Seanchan throne. I think that if Sanderson had toned his mat down a little more, made him less childish maybe a little bit more mature then he would have been more believable. 

 

I suppose I didn't have a problem with mats bigger decisions in the last three books those made sense to me. Rescuing Moraine, building the dragons, fighting the Gholam are all things I could have seen RJ's Mat doing, hell even being confused about Tuon was fine with me. It's the little things that made me enjoy reading Mat though and they just felt off under Sanderson. 

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I'm not sure if anyone has discussed this.. but what did Moiraine mean when she said that Mat is probably the oldest among them all?

 

When Tuon compared Mat to chaos, I immediately thought of it... but other than that I have no idea where this came from... any other ideas?

 

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Mat should have out-General-ed Demandred before he died. 

 

His plans ultimately came to nothing when Demandred died, and tactics went out the window. Many sacrifices were left seeming unnecessary. 

 

However, he did save everyone by keeping toe-to-toe with Demandred tactically. Demandred would have slaughtered them if not for Mat. 

 

Still, Mat's plans -specially sending the Seanchan away while everyone else died- were useless when Lan killed Demandred. Mat couldn't have predicted it, and he did the right thing, however, seeing it all go to waste in the end left a bitter taste in my mouth. 

 

I think you're under the misconception that Mat could have won in the first place. He was horribly out numbered.

What Mat did was keep Demandred at bay long enough to give his forces a chance.

Everything he did, from pulling his forces off the heights at the start to retaking them later was to set the battles final stand on his terms with the most advantage he could get. Where the main body of Trollocs would be split by the returning river. Where the return of Seanchan forces could do what they did to those split Trolloc forces. Where the Dragons, through gateways fire, could concentrate their returning fire.

It was all, right from the beginning, to be in that place at that time. To provide him with the very best chance of winning, even if that chance was still small.

It was pure genius, he maneuvered Demandred right into it.

Recall Mat's thoughts about painting a picture, using just a little too much red in one spot. His conversation with Elayne about losing. He knew what he was about and exactly what picture he was painting. One so elaborate that not even Demandred could see it or at least it was so subtle that Demandred would dismiss it considering his own strength.

Bottom line and the easiest way to put it, Mat gave Demandred a bet he couldn't resist.

 

Lan killing Demandred and then the Horn being blown was the moment Mat needed to make it all come to fruition.

He knew right from the beginning that without that something extra at the right time, he could not win.

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I'm not sure if anyone has discussed this.. but what did Moiraine mean when she said that Mat is probably the oldest among them all? When Tuon compared Mat to chaos, I immediately thought of it... but other than that I have no idea where this came from... any other ideas?

 

She said that it was something she shouldn't know but does.

She knows that Mat has the memories of thousands of men and well over a thousand years in his head.

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I'm not sure if anyone has discussed this.. but what did Moiraine mean when she said that Mat is probably the oldest among them all? When Tuon compared Mat to chaos, I immediately thought of it... but other than that I have no idea where this came from... any other ideas?

 

She said that it was something she shouldn't know but does.

She knows that Mat has the memories of thousands of men and well over a thousand years in his head.

hmm..  I may be wrong but didn't most of Mat's memories came from people who lived after the Breaking? In which case, I would think that LTT would still be considered older... I guess if you add all the memories ?  :)) 

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I'm not sure if anyone has discussed this.. but what did Moiraine mean when she said that Mat is probably the oldest among them all? When Tuon compared Mat to chaos, I immediately thought of it... but other than that I have no idea where this came from... any other ideas?

 

She said that it was something she shouldn't know but does.

She knows that Mat has the memories of thousands of men and well over a thousand years in his head.

hmm..  I may be wrong but didn't most of Mat's memories came from people who lived after the Breaking? In which case, I would think that LTT would still be considered older... I guess if you add all the memories ?  :)) 

 

Yes, Mat's memories are from just after the Breaking to Hawkwing's rise, roughly 1500 years worth.

For the context of that conversation, Mo was right on the money.

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I am a huge fan of Mat, and thought Sanderson wrote him well. Maybe in the first couple of chapters he was off, but once he entered onto the picture with an army at his back, I truly felt like it was him.

 

As for his tactics, Mat did brilliantly. He lost alot of men, but he was always going to lose alot of men. It was the Final Battle, they were hopelessly outnumbered and with Demandred were hopelessly outgunned, and still he managed to get a victory. Sure, it requires Lan to do some crazy unexpected stuff, but Mats always been that way.

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