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Why is Elayne's Story so criticized


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 How does she get away with manipulating an army into entering Andor (pillaging, looting and ravaging the land for fodder BTW which could kill hundreds and make tohusands homeless) and then tells people that she has done this?

What are you on about? If you are referring to the Borderlanders that isn't what happened at all.

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They could not have fed 100,000 soldiers and all their followers hundreds of miles from their homeland without resorting to living off the land in a medieval setting. This involves looting, stealing and raping and deaths as people try to keep what they have. Elayne doesn't even keep this a secret (in the real world people would have found out that Elayne was there of course; anyone in contact with the borderlanders would have learned) and cockily tells her allies she did this... 

 

Even if it didn't. She twisted a foreign army into invading. How does that not piss off the nationalistic Andorans or cause her followers to question her?

 

 

Frankly, she should have ended up like Cersei given some of her "smart" decisions.

Edited by False Dragon1991
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You aren't understanding the situation at all.

 

1. They didn't invade.

 

2. She wasn't trying to keep it a secret, in fact just the opposite. That was the point.

 

3. KoD

  “I expected them to be into Murandy by now myself.” Elayne said. “But I believe their reason for sitting in one place is a fear of sparking a war if they come too near Caemlyn. They seem to be trying to find a way to Murandy using country roads. You know what condition those are in this time of year. They want no war with us. When I gave them permission to cross Andor, they told me they were looking for the Dragon Reborn.”
   Ellorien spluttered, and chips of ice should have come from her mouth. “When you what} You prate of how you have no right to sit on the throne-yet-and then you arrogate to yourself the right of-!”
   “Of an Aes Sedai. Ellorien.” Elayne held up her right hand so they could not miss the golden Great Serpent encircling the third finger. Her own voice was frosty despite all she could do. “I did not speak as Daughter-Heir or even High Seat of House Trakand. I spoke as Elayne Aes Sedai of the Green Ajah. Had I not, they would have come anyway. They were very short of food and fodder. Had I tried to stop them, had anyone tried to stop them, there would have been war. They are determined to find the Dragon Reborn. It would have been a war Andor had faint chance of winning. You speak of acting together, Luan? Gather all of Andor’s strength, and we could nearly match their numbers, but two in three of ours would be men who can handle a halberd or spear but spend most of their days behind a plow. Every man of theirs is a long-serving armsman who would not be surprised to face Trollocs any day of his life. Instead of a war that would soak Andor in blood and cripple her for a generation, we have the Borderlanders crossing our nation peacefully. I have them watched. They pay for the food and fodder they need, and pay well.” Another time, with other listeners, she would have laughed over that. Andoran farmers would try to pry high prices out of the Dark One. “The worst they’ve done is flog a few horse-thieves, and if they should have been handed over to a magistrate, I can’t fault the Borderlanders for it. Now tell me, Ellorien. What would you have done differently, and how?”

 

You consistently show a lack of understanding concerning many of the details, don't let that get in the way of your rants however.

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Also, it is hard to take the situation seriously when Elayne could just single-handedly destroy her opponents with the OP (she even thinks this). But apparently the people are fine with an Aes Sedai queen but object to her using her power to defend them. Obviously.  

 

You're being very one-dimensional about this.

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Also, it is hard to take the situation seriously when Elayne could just single-handedly destroy her opponents with the OP (she even thinks this). But apparently the people are fine with an Aes Sedai queen but object to her using her power to defend them. Obviously.  

 

You're being very one-dimensional about this.

 

 

What could possibly go wrong with the first openly AS Queen in how long lashing out at her own subjects(non shadowspawn/df's no less) with the OP? :rolleyes:

 

Additionally she would be crippling Andor's armies just in advance of TG...ace plan that.

Edited by Suttree
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You only sell food if you have a surplus and people are willing to sell. Given that there was a much longer winter and the impact of the dark ones touch there really shouldn't be any crops to feed a force of 100,000 men from the surplus. If theres going to be a famine, local farmers do not sell their produce. In fact it was physically impossible for any army before the modern era to not live off the land (much less one 100,000 strong). So the author having a polite purchase of produce by this army as it peacefully moves through Elaynes country is absurd. It is a plot device to make her seem smart when in fact what she just did should have gotton thousands of people killed and driven many times that into famine. An army that size should and would strip the land bare at the very least. This is why her arc is bad, she never puts a foot wrong and faces mistakes.

 

To make a comparison to Song of Ice and Fire. Danys inaction and her slaver crusade directly leads to the destruction of Astapor and the death of 250,000 people. So, to me, Elaynes arcs comes across as her just winning and the plot providing circumstances that make her seem oh so so smart with all the possible negative consequences of her actions not even considered or airbrushed. 

 

 

Also, how is use of the OP on her subjects worse than hacking them up with bits of metal or shooting them full of holes until they bleed to death? I really don't get fantasy writers obsession with equating use of nuclear and chemical weapons to use of magic. Its just another tool, why would it be viewed any differently? Elayne isn't killing defenceless civilians, she is fighting people intent on killing her and sacking Caemlyn.

Edited by False Dragon1991
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In terms of the OP use you are once again missing the point entirely.

 

As for the rest it's really difficult to have conversations on these topics when you move the goal posts so frequently.

Edited by Suttree
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Discussions move on. 

 

What do you mean goal posts? I say its silly that Elayne bringing in the borderlanders would have killed thousands because they would have had to pillage the land to feed themselves. You point out there is a line saying they bought their food. I say thats ridiculous and a contrivence of the plot to not make Elayne look bad so that she can dismiss the childish protests of her advisors. In the real world, an army that big would have been like a plague of locusts and pushed an already weary land into famine. Hence, its still about the original point of Elaynes arc being dumb and unrealistic and therefore bad.

 

Don't be cute.

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In addition to the personal political scandal it would create that you refuse to see, it would seriously damage the reputation of the Tower for an Aes Sedai to use the power as a weapon. The faith of nations rests in that guarantee. In addition to the problems it would make for the educated, the uneducated millions would have their worst fears about "witches" confirmed.

 

 

 

It would seriously undermine Egwene's authority with the rebels, too. I could see the Tower normally stilling for such crimes, too.

Edited by Agitel
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Elayne using Travelling to get her retainers into the city doesn't fit the requirements for "deus ex machina" at all. Travelling is magical ability established few volumes earlier, and that the daughter-heir and High Seat of a Major House would have thousands of retainers coming to aid her is to be expected and plausible.

 

They could not have fed 100,000 soldiers and all their followers hundreds of miles from their homeland without resorting to living off the land in a medieval setting. This involves looting, stealing and raping and deaths as people try to keep what they have.

It's explicitly stated that nothing like this happened, the quote was already posted. Is it unrealistic? Sure. Logistics isn't an area in which Jordan made any serious attempt at realism throughout the series. But the characters act in accordance to the rules of their universe so for Elayne it was the right decision. The Borderlanders would've moved into Andor anyway - they've come so far already. Better do it peacefully and use it to shorten the succession war than start a full scale conflict between two huge armies right on the eve of the Last battle. Sure, if you care so much about logistics - you are welcome to complain. But it's really not big of a deal.

 

As for why Elayne didn't use the Power to blast the enemy army to pieces - first, she's not strong enough for that, she can't beat a 20 000 strong army by herself without a sa'angreal, second, as an Aes Sedai she can't do unless she's in direct and immediate danger for her life and standing on the city walls and blasting those below doesn't qualify, third, it would've been a disaster politically. It's a civil war with unwritten rules, not total war, both sides try to keep casualties low and convince those who are neutral to declare for them. Not using the One Power as a weapon has been a tradition for 2000 years. Basically it will cause more problem for Elayne than it will solve.

 

BTW, do you really have to make comparisons (a lot of them really tenuous) to ASOIF in every thread? It's distracting, not to mention you've surely spoiled some people who hasn't read ASOIF yet.

Edited by David Selig
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In addition to the personal political scandal it would create that you refuse to see, it would seriously damage the reputation of the Tower for an Aes Sedai to use the power as a weapon. The faith of nations rests in that guarantee. In addition to the problems it would make for the educated, the uneducated millions would have their worst fears about "witches" confirmed.

 

I don't. Beslan has no problem with the Seanchan using channelers and the One Power to kill; nor do any of their other allies. If people object so vehemently to the idea of women using the power to kill then why does nobody have a problem with them doing it more than anyone else. People don't seem to mind it at all. Plus, I am sorry, but if they accept the dragon having an army of men who can channel who he uses as weapons on his enemies then I fail to see how Elayne doing so would cause a fateful loss of respect for the WT; nor do I believe that would happen in the story. When has the reputation of these characters because of their actions ever mattered? Aes Sedai are already despised supposedly and nothing assauges that belief. Weighing the opinions of people who already hate you against alleviating the suffering of people in Caemlyn should have been an issue for Elayne. But no,instead she is handed a plot device to bring in food from Tear and so its never a problem.

 

List one mistake that Elayne makes in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better? 

Edited by False Dragon1991
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List one mistake that Elayne does in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better?

 

Wait, wasn't she captured...no, that just let her capture all the Black Ajah and put her cavalry right behind the rebel army....

Edited by False Dragon1991
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 Don't be cute.

 

Nope you had details wrong about the story, when that was pointed out you moved the goal posts to it being unrealsitic. This is somehting I have seen you do throughout a variety of threads mind.

 

As for the OP discussion(especially bringing the Seanchan in as a comparison) it is really hard to believe you are being anything besides purposely obtuse in ignoring the intricacies.

Edited by Suttree
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What are those intricacies and nuance exactly?

 

List a single mistake Elayne makes that doesn't turn out for the better? I have asked this several times but nobody seems to have an ansawr because she doesn't make any.

 

 

@Suttree. Don't be cute. My response acknowledges you were right about the detail of the borderlanders being able to purchase the vast stocks of food available in Andor without resorting to pillage. It does not change my general opinion about Elaynes arc being a load of mary sue nonesense. Your point only clarifies that because it is one of several instances in which the plot creates circumstances which make her look good and smart. You don't seem to get that the point of a discussion is that two people have a position and they go back and forth with different evidence and rapidly evolving takes on the situation. What, you expect that with one line I should accept Elaynes arc is perfect OMG best thing evaz and stop commenting on the thread? Thats just silly and not a discussion. 

 

You want to hear me say you're right? Is that it? Whatever. You are right about the thing about channeling being a political disaster. Don't know why I brought it up from another thread. Don't care about it in Elaynes arc. Don't care to talk about that issue in Elaynes story either. Just part of a general trend in the series that annoys me and not particular to her arc. 

Edited by False Dragon1991
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List one mistake that Elayne does in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better?

 She didn't bring Elenia and Naean to the capital through Gateway, which allowed Arymilla to capture them and increase her army and political support by a lot.

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List one mistake that Elayne does in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better?

 She didn't bring Elenia and Naean to the capital through Gateway, which allowed Arymilla to capture them and increase her army and political support by a lot.

 

 

She gets more troops for an army which can't besiege a city where the enemy ship all the supplies it wants in? Political support only matters if Elayne would actually step down if another candidate got enough votes to be made a Queen; else it comes down to a military confrontation. Arymilla can't affect things or people inside the capitol so her political support doesn't increase her position in the siege. Basically this makes no real or significant impact to the course of events and its a fairly minor mistake. It just means X number of troops have joined an army X numbers strong and are able to do what they've already been doing unsuccessfully for several books.Not really a game changer. I don't even remember that happening or who Elenia and Naean are. Its also totally countered by Elayne getting a bigger army all the time with her travelling and support from the old queens guard and other houses as well as recruitment of levies. So its a mistake that doesn't really change anything in the plot.

 

Also, that sounds more like an oversight than a mistake. Something she could not have foreseen. Plus, I can't see why she wouldn't use a gateway anyway. Sounds very contrived that she wouldn't. IMO its just to provide some imagined setback and make it seem like she is facing difficulties when really her situation stays the same.

 

 

Any other mistakes? Big ones which cause big shifts in her arc?

Edited by False Dragon1991
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List one mistake that Elayne does in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better?

Impersonating a forsaken got her stabbed and a fox head medallion lost.

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List one mistake that Elayne does in her arc that doesn't turn out for the better?

Impersonating a forsaken got her stabbed and a fox head medallion lost.

 

 

When was that? In Caemlyn? Was that when the Black Ajah captured her? Though that does remind me of the knife assasians in the throne room to gain her trust where another reason is provided why she can't channel.

 

 

Yeah, the plot does make out that Elayne should take Birgittes advice about personal safety seriously. Though since she comes out of every captivity uninjured due to healing and her enemies not just cutting her throat when the opportunity presents itself and never learns this lesson about personal unnecessary risk I don't really see the point of that sub plot. So thats more about the personal relationship between them rather than a failing of Elayne which gives her enemies a huge advantage over her. 

Edited by False Dragon1991
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That isn't the incident with the Windfinders. 

 

It is in ToM where she gets stabbed and the Darkfriends escape with a medallion. 

 

It causes her to freak out and think about her safety and tone down her recklessness. 

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Well then, yeah, thats not really a failure of her as a leader its just a slip up to make her realise Birgitte was in the right and resolve that little sub plot. This would be after she is secure as Queen then? Don't know how she avoided a stabbing affecting her children either, with healing this just leaves her walking away unscathed.

 

ps- So this is another instance where Elayne being able to blow people up with her mind is ignored then? How no plucky darkfriend never decided to just stab Ishmael or Lanfear for gain is beyond me if its this easy to attack a strong channeler. 

Edited by False Dragon1991
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Have you read Towers of Midnight? From what I gathered in your posts, you have.

 

I suggest you re-read the passage. 

 

If you haven't read the passage, it would be best to wait until you have. 

 

It is hard to have a discussion if you don't know what happened in the examples that are talked about. 

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I still fail to see how it could have altered her circumstances enough to be a great failure. She is Queen of Andor and Cairhein. She resolves all of the disunity and discord in these countries and unites them for the Last Battle. Her circumstances aren't changed and her victory is still virtually total by the end of ToM. 

 

I didn't read that scene but the repercussions seem non-existent. All that came from it is that Elayne realizes that Birgitte was right to watch over her and that she should be more cautious. Though TBH, her behavior and role in MoL seems to make even that resolution seem tenuous at best.

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