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Terez

Bits from RJ's notes

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Hi guys. I have been waiting for a few days to see if anyone would post about this here, but since no one has, I guess I have to do it. There have been enough Taimandred and Asmodean posts here over the years that I can't imagine it's of no interest to anyone.

 

Taimandred killed Asmodean. As of LOC, anyway. Then RJ changed his mind.

 

There are more bits from the notes later in the thread, if you have the patience to read through it. And Brandon has chimed in at reddit.

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You're not the first person to express that (unless you're Tom at RAFO, which seems doubtful), but it seems to me to be a strange way of looking at it. RJ always said that he didn't want to wrap everything up too neatly in the end because some things should be left up to the imagination. He created a world that was complex and rich enough to provide an endless series of paths for the future of that world. The later books contribute a great deal to that picture, and in my opinion, alternate universes don't diminish it.

 

I think that the majority of fans who knew of RJ's comments on Taimandred had a hard time believing that Taimandred wasn't true in LOC, and I think that's where RJ missed the boat. He didn't realize how much Taimandred had shaped the thematic structure of LOC, and he thought he could get away with changing it post-publication. He was wrong, but it was a human mistake, and he was still the amazing writer who produced books 1-6 when he wrote the later volumes. He just had a difficult time putting out material as quickly as he needed to in order to make that portion of the story as powerful as books 4-6.

 

There are two main reasons for that: 1) he ran out of buffer; when TEOTW was published, I believe he was already working on TDR; he really felt the squeeze with LOC, the last book in his 6-year 6-book contract; and 2) his health began to suffer from the LOC squeeze and tour and he was forced to adopt a more normal working schedule rather than writing all day every day. So he had no buffer, and he wasn't writing as much, and what should have been 3 long books turned into 5 relatively short ones (though KOD had bits that should have gone with the last 3 books; I think 12 would have been perfect if there had been a tighter structure in the middle).

 

I don't know what led him down the path of separating Taimandred, but it hasn't diminished my overall love of the story. I'm just happy to know for sure now that LOC was written with Taimandred in mind. Perhaps if this goes to film/TV one day, the story can be told with Taimandred intact and a very different ending based on RJ's notes (though there are some Brandon bits without which the story would suffer, IMO).

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Thanks for this info Terez, it means a lot to the community.. .

 

I figured it should at least mean something to Berid Bel Medar. :D

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Thanks for this info Terez, it means a lot to the community.. .

 

I figured it should at least mean something to Berid Bel Medar. :D

 :) It does indeed. 

 

I followed the Reddit conversation but was late in joining so I'll say it here. 

 

I think it fits Demandred's MO perfectly being Taim. Yes, he hated Lews Therin, but his hate was always cold and abiding, not like Sammael's hot-headed rage. He didn't just want to kill Lews Therin, he wanted to beat him. To show he was the better man. 

 

Simply beating Rand to death wasn't enough for Demandred. He wanted to prove he was better and make sure people knew it. What better way to do it than take everything that is Rand's from underneath him?

 

This brings up an interesting question to which people found an 'Odd' reaction from Taim in LoC:

 

From encyclopaedia WOT, LoC Chapter 42

 

Rand mutters back, "You're dead." Taim now looks concerned and tells Rand he must hold on to sanity.

 

and the subsequent footnote: Taim expresses a very odd series of emotions in this chapter.

 

Taim seemed genuinely concerned and somewhat civil in this chapter. It was one of the things that made me think he wasn't originally and out and out Darkfriend. 

 

Knowing that it was Demandred there makes it more interesting. I wonder if Brandon was onto something when he spoke of wanting to make the Bao plotline more tragic. 

 

Of course, that is my bias, as I never thought Demandred was as evil as the other Forsaken, merely a really messed up man in tragic circumstances. 

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thanks for the info terez,i have a question on an unrelated subject,a few years ago

you wrote your opinion about rand and the voice in his head,i tried to reread it but

failed to find it,can you help?

 

sorry barid,rand is a lot more interesting than demandred lol(in my opinion).

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thanks for the info terez,i have a question on an unrelated subject,a few years ago

you wrote your opinion about rand and the voice in his head,i tried to reread it but

failed to find it,can you help?

 

Hmm, I never wrote this up in a single theory form; it's just something that I pontificated about for several years in many different places. So I don't know what to link. I started a chapter-by-chapter analysis of the voice but never finished it.

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This is awesome news. And gives me an opportunity to say a few things.

 

First of all, thank you to Terez for digging out this information and then having the ability to sit on it (mostly) for the last year at least. I am not sure I could have done that, given that original Taimandred has always been a pet theory of mine and I've been arguing that very thing (along with very many others) for years. (Barid even ended up locking a thread because of it ;-) )

 

While I have mostly been a lurker for all things WOT here, at Theoryland, reddit, Sci-Fi channel's forums, back in the day on the newsgroups, the old Prodigy and America-On-Line forums (both non-www boards. I bought a new PC in 93 after blowing through books 1-5 specifically BECAUSE I wanted to get online for that very reason!), I have always enjoyed the HCFF discussions and theories. And I have always enjoyed Terez's posts and details even when I strongly disagreed with her conclusions. So thank you again.

 

Having been a fan for a long time (and having read LOC many times when it came out and then participating in the online discussions) I remember vividly how very clear it was that Taim was Demandred. It was, to borrow a favorite RJ phrase (though I'm not using it facetiously), "intuitively obvious"- far more so than Dashivangar in COS, though that had been a real strong possibility. Demandred's role in the book was simply too large. His scenes bookended the entire book and that last final scene indicated that much of what had happened in the book- and setting up a BT to rival (and even force AS to submit) was arguably one of the most important things to happen politically, militarily and especially, given the series focus on balance, thematically. Up until RJ killed the theory with his categorical statement on tour in 2003 (and to a lesser extent, at the end of WH with Demmy's appearance at the battle during the cleansing) I never doubted it for a moment.

 

Despite his own AS statements implying that Taimandred was never true, I never bought it. LOC (and COS too) make much less sense with Demandred merely using Taim as a proxy- and are far less satisfying (IMHO). RJ changed his mind. It's nice to know that the RJ wrote too well to fool us with authorial fiat later on. In all honesty, it's a testimony to how good of a writer he was. Taim was far too much like Demandred, as we knew him up to that point. All the authorial tools that he used- foreshadowing, cryptic statements, character reactions, continuing the pattern set by Lanfear and Asmodean, physical placement of scenes in the books- created a 'shape' to the story that was simply too clear. It created a "hole", if you will, where the mind naturally filled it with the only Forsaken who fit- and the one who just happened to be explicitly stated as behind most of the major events in the novel. The "contract"- the expectation of resolution that an author makes with his audience was powerful. RJ set up the terms of the contract. He did his job too well.

 

The 2nd thing this indicates, though, is that Shara was never originally intended to play the role that it did (or if it had a role it to play- arguable at best, given the similar dismissal of the isle of madmen and RJ's own statements downplaying their importance). The serious lack of world-building in Shara- especially in comparison to the near overload of world-building he did in Rand-land proper, as evidence by the Companion and the BWB before it, serves to make this clear. Here was a guy with lists of just names. He wrote histories on Amyrlins dead 2000 years, and so much more. He plotted out the details of relatively minor sub-plots related to the interminable O-God-When-Will-It-End Andoran succession storyline- including counsel meetings and even the economic impact of newly discovered alum deposits. He wrote about EVERYTHING. It is almost inconceivable that someone devoted to this kind of meticulous creation would spend a minimal amount of time setting up the Sharan culture, at least beyond what was already known by LOC regarding the Ayyad, etc. Again, I'm not saying they WOULDN'T play a role (though I personally doubt it.) But if they did, it would not be to the extent that ended up.

 

In this case, I think Terez hit the nail on the head in her Reddit post. He made a mistake here. RJ wrote himself into a corner, by killing Taimandred. Demandred was set up (along with Mesaana and Semirhage) as the most dangerous players of the forsaken (outside of Ishy). And when we SAW Semi and Mesaana at work- the chaos they caused, their alter-egos, the carefully laid plans like the attempted kidnapping of Rand by both the WT and the Seanchan- we saw the competence we expected from the forsaken after the build up (as opposed to others I could name.) And Taimandred would have been another example of exactly that. Recall, their "alliance" and similarity was first set out in LOC. Thematically, again, it fits.

 

But once Taimandred is gone, what do you do with Demandred? He has to be awesome. His position in the actual book, as the executor of the DO's plans in LOC, made him far too deep and deadly. So where do you put him? Roedran was partially viable. There was also the Master of Swords among the Sea Folk, whose world-building and place in the novels from their introduction on, made it clear they were a part of the story. And there were a few others. It's interesting to go back and look at old threads prior to the BS trilogy (after KOD) and see the discussions/predictions of where Demandred was. Predictions are useful tools because they indicate what clues and ideas fans were picking up on. Shara was mentioned briefly since there were small throwaway mentions of them in WH and COT. Just a whisper of the chaos- chaos we'd expect, but nothing else. But there were comments made that it was far too late in the game- especially with ONE book left (per RJ's assurances) to introduce an entirely new culture and major player- and ANYONE Demandred was with would have to be a major player. Anything less would diminish Demandred as a big boss.

 

But in this, RJ played his cards too close to the vest. If Shara was introduced in 8, 9, or 10 it would almost immediately be seized upon as his location. It would be the best viable place and would fit. Look at how quickly Anath was unmasked. Everyone who read WH knew immediately she was Semirhage (a quick check of the FAQs under Anath is almost humorously glib in its assertion. Along the lines of "Yeah, Anath is Semirhage. This is a no-brainer." I imagine if RJ introduced Sharan culture, beyond the 2 or 3 one sentence mentions they received in, what, the 1800 pages between WH and KOD?, people would have been all over that. Perhaps he thought that with the right execution, it could be done in the final book. I have my doubts and ultimately we will never know.

 

The end result, though, is that there is a clear through-line between killing Taimandred and the massive Sharan role that we ended up seeing. For me, personally, it smacked of deus ex machina. I don't blame BS for that. I honestly don't know that RJ could have done it in a satisfying way. But again, for me, this is a clear result.

 

Lest it be misunderstood, I love WOT and RJ. I have been reading (and rereading and listening to the audiobooks and thinking about it) since 93- over 20 years! It was a large part of my life. I am glad to know how it ended. I feel a bit bittersweet about it all. I don't think I had unrealistic expectations, not really. Then again, if I'm honest, it's hard to tell. I don't believe so, but I can't be certain. We got closure, that is for sure. I was moved to tears when Tam "said" goodbye to Rand, after his "death". Rand had been my friend and I had lived his life, as hard as it was. But that bittersweet feeling remains.

 

To an extent, for reasons I don't completely understand, this reveal makes things a bit better. Honestly, I don't know why. It's not about being right. It's deeper, I think. I had a similar reaction to The Secret History of Star Wars (an amazing book.) Learning how much was made up, why decisions were made, why certain storylines were dropped or shifted about or even changed- seeing where the "seams" are of the work- for me at least gives me more understanding and empathy for the author. None of that "you raped my childhood!" nonsense.

 

The creative process is an amazing one and as someone who dabbles in writing, I can only respect authors for their work. Especially a giant like RJ. In many ways, he is one of 2 authors who had a profound impact on me- both in my own writing and style, and simply as a person. Seeing their very human hands in their work somehow gives me more of a connection to it and to them.

 

anyway, that was my (long) 2 cents.

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FIghting... desire.. to dig up... old threads... of people... calling Taimandredites... idiots....

 

Rise above. 

Anyway, NOW, I can rest easily with the series. This was actually a nice bookend, at least for the meta-WOT journey. I dont fault RJ, I dont think he ever did anything that wasnt in service of telling the best story, hard to argue with that. I'm just glad the truth came out, there was just no logical way this wasnt that case.

 

And Terez great info on the writing period of LoC. Amazing that LoC was his best book (in my opinion of course) given all that pressure. Now im excited for a reread, given this new info. Thanks!

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But once Taimandred is gone, what do you do with Demandred? He has to be awesome. His position in the actual book, as the executor of the DO's plans in LOC, made him far too deep and deadly. So where do you put him? Roedran was partially viable. There was also the Master of Swords among the Sea Folk, whose world-building and place in the novels from their introduction on, made it clear they were a part of the story. And there were a few others. It's interesting to go back and look at old threads prior to the BS trilogy (after KOD) and see the discussions/predictions of where Demandred was. Predictions are useful tools because they indicate what clues and ideas fans were picking up on. Shara was mentioned briefly since there were small throwaway mentions of them in WH and COT. Just a whisper of the chaos- chaos we'd expect, but nothing else. But there were comments made that it was far too late in the game- especially with ONE book left (per RJ's assurances) to introduce an entirely new culture and major player- and ANYONE Demandred was with would have to be a major player. Anything less would diminish Demandred as a big boss.

 

Couldnt agree more. My question becomes- how much of the Sharan intervention resulted from the 'Demandred needs a job now' wagging the dog? And moreover, it has to be a Big Reveal, to live up to all the hype that abandoning the old Demandred storyline engendered. 

 

And since now I apparently need a new conspiracy theory to chew on, here's a thought:

Argument 1: Without Demandred sans Taim, there is no Shara element. However, that doesn't mean there isn't a human channeler army planned as the DOs trump card in the LB. 

Argument 2: The role of the Seanchan seemed hugely anticlimactic in the LB, especially given Mats position. And, all the hints about red sails and Towers of Midnight regarding the mainland Seanchan were at best metaphors of no real bearing on the story.

Conclusion: The army that showed up as the Sharans were meant to be the bulk of the Seanchan mainland army, perhaps led by Semirhage. Egwene and the AS would be for more shocked and frightened by that intervention. Matt and Tuons Seanchan coming to the rescue would be that much more impactful. Instead of a clunky deux ex machina, we end up with a long foreshadowed answer to 'Whats going on in Seanchan', and perhaps 'what has Semirhage been up to'. 

 

Just a stab :)

Edited by mbuehner

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This is awesome news. And gives me an opportunity to say a few things.

 

First of all, thank you to Terez for digging out this information and then having the ability to sit on it (mostly) for the last year at least. I am not sure I could have done that, given that original Taimandred has always been a pet theory of mine and I've been arguing that very thing (along with very many others) for years. (Barid even ended up locking a thread because of it ;-)

I have to admit I'm a bit amused at people scrambling to lay claim to this one. I honestly think that there were few fans who never believed Taimandred. It was that obvious. As I mentioned in my signing report, the conviction that Taimandred was true is what drove me to Theoryland in the first place, but I'm hardly alone. Dragonmount in particular has suffered from a long line of Taimandred threads because it was the most popular great idea that inspired people to post.

 

I never made a Taimandred post as a noob because I googled that sh!t, and once I saw that RJ had denied it, I didn't figure there was any point in belaboring the issue. But every time I reread LOC, I had to wonder, "Does he really expect us to believe that Taim was never Demandred?" I tried to believe him, since it seemed I had no other choice, but it was hard.

 

This was definitely a difficult secret to keep, and I wish I had been able to keep it a little longer. I am pleased that it has gotten this level of response from all the old-timers; I wasn't actually sure that would happen.

 

Lest it be misunderstood, I love WOT and RJ. I have been reading (and rereading and listening to the audiobooks and thinking about it) since 93- over 20 years! It was a large part of my life. I am glad to know how it ended. I feel a bit bittersweet about it all. I don't think I had unrealistic expectations, not really. Then again, if I'm honest, it's hard to tell. I don't believe so, but I can't be certain. We got closure, that is for sure. I was moved to tears when Tam "said" goodbye to Rand, after his "death". Rand had been my friend and I had lived his life, as hard as it was. But that bittersweet feeling remains.

 

To an extent, for reasons I don't completely understand, this reveal makes things a bit better. Honestly, I don't know why. It's not about being right. It's deeper, I think. I had a similar reaction to The Secret History of Star Wars (an amazing book.) Learning how much was made up, why decisions were made, why certain storylines were dropped or shifted about or even changed- seeing where the "seams" are of the work- for me at least gives me more understanding and empathy for the author.

I feel the same way, and so do many others. Confirmation of Taimandred...before it happened, I might have thought that it would make me angry. Indeed, when we told Linda about it, she was sure that the fandom was really going to hold it against RJ. But for most people, that's not how it works, for whatever reason. It's a really satisfying emotional closure, and I think you said it well, that it's not just about being right. It's about being able to appreciate LOC for the book it was intended to be, at long last. Like Shannow said at RAFO:

 

We were not mad. The signs WERE obvious. I am off to read Lord of Chaos again, this time KNOWING it is Demandred I am seeing in all the Taim scenes. It will change the entire feel of the book.

 

Wow. What a revelation. The biggest ever from the WOT universe, as far as I am concerned. Almost two decades of being part of the fandom has finally provided its reward, if long after the party has ended.

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I never made a Taimandred post as a noob because I googled that sh!t, and once I saw that RJ had denied it, I didn't figure there was any point in belaboring the issue. But every time I reread LOC, I had to wonder, "Does he really expect us to believe that Taim was never Demandred?" I tried to believe him, since it seemed I had no other choice, but it was hard.

 

Heh. Yeah. I can imagine. Off the top of my head, it might be like the situation after TGH. During the wait for TDR, people furiously debated whether Moiraine was at the DF social (in TGH). Of course, having started the series when TFOH came out, with the hindsight I had, that seemed ridiculous. But of course, during the lull and without all the later books or statements from the author, it was "possible" (ok, not really, given Moiraine's history with Rand and the Two Rivers folk. It's a bad example but it's off the top of my head and I think you see my point.) For me, though, LOC was my first experience of getting a WOT book at release time, anxiously having a friend pick of LOC on that day and then sitting there at 11pm that night with that massive heavy book in my hands- and then reading that incredibly LOOOONG prologue- It was all an experience I will never forget. I had joined the fandom. And when it was all done, and Demandred was the new big boss because Ishamael had been dead for 2 books, and as you said, it being blindingly obvious....well I confess that I was as zealous as any Whitecloak in espousing my views. Of course, I don't claim it was mine. As you said based on your own experiences, it inspired may to join forums and the fray. Some were wary of how obvious it was- it was almost TOO easy, which, given RJ's track record, is understandable even if I disagreed.

 

But ,ore recently, though, I felt irritation when some posters here, from an easy armchair quarterback position of 2014, sat there and poo-poooed the entire idea of Taimandred as just one simplistic theory among many and that Minion-Taim was far more tenable. Having been there, having seen the flame wars and arguments, I resented the casual dismissal of it because it diminished the power and scope of that book, the very things we as fans had picked up on from the start. I just couldn't buy the retcon because it lessened the book. It wasn't what the I felt the book should be.

 

 

 It's about being able to appreciate LOC for the book it was intended to be, at long last.

 

This right here. This one sentence says it all. I can now reread LOC and appreciate the book- indeed the entire series- as it was intended to be. I will confess that after having read 1-9 more times than I can remember, I only read 10 and 11 a handful of times. And BS's trilogy only once or maybe twice. But perhaps now, with things out in the open, I can finally reread them and see what might have been. Or at least appreciate it as whole more. And I can imagine.

 

Shannow hit the nail on the head. The mysteries of Asmodean's killer and Taimandred all of one single piece, all of it makes perfect sense. And the sense of closure is great.

 

I will say that being a fan of textual criticism- the thematic study and dissection of pieces of work, whether film or literature- I do hope to one day see a study of RJ's masterpiece, with a clear look at its inspiration, evolution, and execution. I can think of perhaps maybe one or two (but mostly one ;-)) HCFF's who'd be able to do an incredible job peeling back the curtain and showing us how magic is created with all its imperfections and seams, its flashes of brilliance and heart. As I said, such things make me appreciate the work and the struggle of the author, missteps and all.

Edited by Ian Ohlander

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Would be interesting if we ever found out when and why he changed it.  I am glad Taimandred never "officially" happened since it was  way to obivious.  My guess is he realized in would cause some issues later on so it would be easier to separate the two and that so many people guessing it so quickly ruined the surprise.  He could still seperate the two at this time without causing too many issues.  Even under DO orders, it would just be hard to imagine Dem taking a position that Rand would get to boss him around.  Plus Dem was more fond of  armies so for me at least it makes more sense putting him in Shara.  Had  Dem stayed as Taim it would of meant putting Osan'gar in Shara to run the armies there.  That defiently wouldn't of been Agnior's strength. So probably made a lot more sense to put Dem there.

 

For me though RJ always kept saying Asmo's killer should be intuitively obvious" by the end of TFOH, but IMO Dem killing Asmo still isn't intuitively obvious" by the end of TFOH.  Since through TFOH Dem still was a minor player in the series.

Edited by Sabio

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I do wonder if Be'lal was supposed to do more than what he did, else why make the statement that the DO could snatch someone killed by a small amount of Balefire

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Would be interesting if we ever found out when and why he changed it.  I am glad Taimandred never "officially" happened since it was  way to obivious.  My guess is he realized in would cause some issues later on so it would be easier to separate the two and that so many people guessing it so quickly ruined the surprise. 

 

It was not obvious for the readers (99%, or more) back then. Or now. One cannot judge a twist based on opinions of hardcore fans. There were more than 20 million readers, and what, 2000-3000 online posters/lurkers (now this number is max. 400) who cared about the series that deeply?

 

And I think it is really sad to see that he let himself swayed by these "finding out-s". You have a story, so stick with it. (Plus: Strike while the iron is hot.) He struggled with EOTW and it shows. He was on the right path for next five books steadily, and BOOM! Health problems, "finding out-s" --> break, radical change of direction, another break, and he's on the downward spiral ...

 

 

Even under DO orders, it would just be hard to imagine Dem taking a position that Rand would get to boss him around.

 

On the contrary.

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Would be interesting if we ever found out when and why he changed it.  I am glad Taimandred never "officially" happened since it was  way to obivious.  My guess is he realized in would cause some issues later on so it would be easier to separate the two and that so many people guessing it so quickly ruined the surprise. 

 

It was not obvious for the readers (99%, or more) back then. Or now. One cannot judge a twist based on opinions of hardcore fans. There were more than 20 million readers, and what, 2000-3000 online posters/lurkers (now this number is max. 400) who cared about the series that deeply?

 

Taimandred was not the kind of theory that emerged from the hard core. It was the kind of theory that people joined Dragonmount just to post about, like...once a week, someone would join just to post their brilliant Taimandred theory. Most of them did not stick around to become part of the hardest core. Noobs were much, much more likely to care about Taimandred than they were to care about Asmodean. You can bet that for every person who bothered to join Dragonmount and ask about Taimandred, there were at least 10 who googled before posting, and even more who had the same thought but never considered posting about it on the internet.

 

The only theory that really compares to Taimandred in the fascination it held for noob types was Olvercain.

 

Edit: you are very much underestimating the number of people who engaged online. Even now, there are more than 400 people who attend JordanCon every single year, and JordanCon attendees are a very small contingent of the hard core. The biggest WoT Facebook page has over 60,000 likes, and since I'm an admin on this page I know that thousands are (still) engaged enough to like/share/comment regularly.

Edited by Terez

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I remember otherwise. But I'm old, so :wink: 

 

I've never used Facebook, so I cannot comment on this. Based on 'views' and posts I think the online community was small, and now veryveryvery small. (Basically all the bords are dead.) And even the high 'views' numbers come from repeated viewings from very few people.

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I remember otherwise. But I'm old, so :wink:

 

It doesn't really matter how old you are; one can look back practically to the dawn of the internet and see the same thing at ra.sf.w-rj on Usenet (archived on Google Groups), and after 1998, at the Theoryland archives and elsewhere. (DM archives that old are gone.)

 

PS: The thread I posted about Taimandred on Theoryland has over 7000 unique views, and you think there were only 2-3000 posters and lurkers at the height of the WoT craze? Looks to me like you're pulling numbers out of your wherever, dude.

Edited by Terez

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Exactly, I didn't start as a hardcore fan, but first time I read LOC I thought this guy is Dem., what better place to hide a forsaken then in Rand's own Army.  But then RJ said they weren't the same and I believed it.  So I figured RJ did that on purpose in order to distract and throw readers off as to where he really was.  I will admit after all the times RJ said they weren't the same I couldn't understand why that didn't put an end to the Taimandred theories. RJ said it wasn't so tossed out my belief they were the same.  I agree with Terez that the Taimandred was very popular with the non hardcore readers. 

Edited by Sabio

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I will admit after all the times RJ said they weren't the same I couldn't understand why that didn't put an end to the Taimandred theories.

 

It did put an end to Taimandred among hardcore fans, by the time KOD rolled around anyway. (Before then, some people were trying to figure out how his answers could be sneaky Aes Sedai answers, but after a while people gave up because he was just too clear about it.) But Taimandred wouldn't die, precisely because of all those noobs who kept joining up just to post about Taimandred. They didn't know what RJ said about it on book tours, so all the way up to the release of AMOL, we had Taimandred threads. (Especially here. At Theoryland, our noobs have always been a bit more hardcore than noobs here, where the more casual fans are more likely to join.)

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I admit I started in 2007 or something, read through to KoD and I found dragonmount searching for an answer for Taimandred. Fortunately I looked it up before actually asking, saving myself the embarrassment of noob question. At the time, I wasn't a hardcore fan. I'd say that along with OlverCain (although that one always did seem obviously not true to me) is what a lot of casual readers came online to find out. 

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OlverCain was also "obvious" on the level of a casual fan. The difference is that the hardcore had little problem accepting RJ's explanation for why it wouldn't work. Taimandred was a different story; when I say Taimandred died around KOD among hardcore fans, I mean that people accepted that Taim was not going to end up being Demandred. There was always a debate about whether RJ was telling the truth when he said that Taim was never Demandred, that he had not in fact changed his mind. LOC made that difficult to believe.

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So was Taim always Demandred? I remember a big deal was made in FoH about Bashere determining who it was, what was going on there?

 

 

I am inclined to think the change was a good idea, Demandred there would not have been a great idea in my view.

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