[AGGRESSIVELY REMINDS YOU THAT ASAMI SATO IS A KIND, SMART, BRAVE, AND BEAUTIFUL PERSON INSIDE AND OUT AND DESPITE EVERYTHING THAT HAS HAPPENED TO HER SHE HAS STUCK BY HER BELIEFS AND FRIENDS.]
[PASSIVELY POINTS OUT THAT SHE COULDN’T PUT HER JEALOUSY AND RELATIONSHIP ISSUES ASIDE WHEN KORRA WAS MISSING LONG ENOUGH TO SHOW WORRY ABOUT HER “FRIEND” WHO HAD JUST SELFLESSLY TRIED TO RESCUE HER FROM JAIL AND WENT MISSING AS A RESULT]
Casually issues a reminder that the amount of concern that Asami showed was approximately equivalent to every other character who was searching for Korra, Mako’s frantic, front-and-center, out-of-nowhere panic aside.
Casually adds that Asami had just learned that her father, whom she trusted, was working for an organization that she fundamentally disagreed with, and was thus forced to take the opposite side and lost her father and her home as a result. Oh and she was arrested a few days later and put in prison for being a nonbender who happened to be related to an Equalist (read as: getting in Tarrlok’s way, but still, jail is jail).
Casually rounds this off with the reminder that despite her reasonable negative reaction over the dude she was in a committed relationship with clearly expressing feelings for another girl and the other hardships she had been slammed with, Asami still did the right thing by her and stayed at the Krew’s side and took down her father, nearly dying in the process.
I think so many of the problems with Robb and Cat on the show stem from the fact that D&D basically wrote themselves into a hole.
I understand why the aged the characters up. But this is troublesome in terms of Robb’s storyline, because so much of his character arc in the books is rooted in the fact that he is a young boy in way over his head. And — at least on some level — he knows he is in way over his head. At one point, he admits (paraphrasing) that he’s “messed up everything but the battles,” and he is willing to listen to Cat’s advice, even if he occasionally resents her for giving it. On the show, Robb is roughly twenty. Ned and Robert fought and won a rebellion at that age. Stannis held a castle under siege. By Westerosi standards, Robb is too old to be (believably) relying on his mother, so they’ve given him too much confidence and have him treating Cat like an interloper.
Also, his show storyline is all over the map, with Catelyn in tow. In the book, she releases Jaime at Riverrun while Robb is away, which makes the whole thing Edmure’s problem, and Cat basically makes it easy on him by confining herself to Hoster’s chambers until Robb returns. And when Robb does return, he is immediately willing to forgive her, because he also made a potentially politically disastrous mistake in his grief. Putting Cat on the road with him, and turning the Talisa arc into a thing where he actively pursues a relationship outside the Frey alliance changed the tone of everything. So, he treats Cat like a criminal, because why not.
I’m still really salty about it. And not just because I genuinely like Robb in the books. I hate what it’s doing to Cat as a character, because they are basically trying to turn her into someone to be pitied, which IS SO FAR FROM THE POINT I AM FOAMING AT THE MOUTH. One of the most heartbreaking things about the whole King in the North arc in the books is that Cat shows an amazing amount of strength. She just keeps soldiering on because Robb needs her, despite her personal losses and the fact that his kingdom is falling down around their ears.
So I’ve been thinking about something Bianca told Nico back in, I think it was The Battle of the Labyrinth, when Nico blamed Percy for his sister’s death. She said something along the lines of, “It’s dangerous for children of Hades to hold grudges. Its our fatal flaw.” Which made me wonder, is it possible that all demigods fatal flaws are influenced by their Olympian parent?
Hades’s children holding grudges would make sense. Zeus banished Hades from Olympus and pretty much forced him to rule the Underworld. Hades has always held a grudge against Zeus and the other Olympians because of that, and its gotten in the way of them collaborating and agreeing on topics. This is also the case for Nico, who found it initially difficult to work with Percy and the others until he finally let go of the past and moved on.
Another example is Athena. Annabeth’s fatal flaw is deadly pride. It is shown many times that Athena is prideful, just like her children. “The first thing a child of Athena learned was that mom was the best at everything, and you never suggested otherwise.” (I don’t have MOA with me but the quote went along those lines). There’s also Zeus. In the Titan’s Curse Thalia was almost influenced to give up Bessie to the Titans and gain ultimate power to destroy Olympus. She was tempted and you could say that is her fatal flaw, that she is power hungry. We know Zeus is a guy that LOVES power, so you could say Thalia’s fatal flaw is influenced by her parent.
These are only a few examples but if this is the case (and Rick Riordan is a clever sneaky genius) then the Olympians’ personalities and mythological past can be used to figure out the fatal flaws of other, unknown demigods. Like Leo. I’m starting to believe his fatal flaw has to do with revenge, since he was influenced by the goddess of revenge in Mark of Athena to take the fortune cookie. His father Hephaestus is known for exacting revenge because Hera tossed him off Mt Olympus and Aphrodite cheats on him with Ares. He created that golden net to capture both the Queen of the gods one time and the goddess of love another time, if I remember correctly. From the way he talks in BOTL we know he feels pretty bitter toward most of the Olympians. In a way he’s kind of the 12th wheel in his family, unloved, alone…Sounds familiar right?
So this is just a theory, but it would make sense for the Olympians to influence the demigods’ fatal flaws, don’t you think? They already have an impact on their kids’ personalities after all.
(GoT Season 3 spoilers)
“You have a taste, one taste of the real world, where people have important things taken from them, and you whine, and cry, and quit,” Brienne tells him, proving both emotionally and physically stronger than the man considered the greatest fighter in Westeros. “You sound like a bloody woman.”
From Think Progress’ review.
First Arya says all girls are stupid, then
AshaYara calls Theon and cunt, and now this. I don’t know what to think anymore. I’m excited about certain aspect of this show but this kind of thing is ominous as fuck.
What happened to how Asha realizes that “cunt” is such a shitty thing to call women?
It means whoever wrote that episode didn’t read the books properly or they just don’t understand the character. Which seems to happen with every single female POV character so far imho. (Maybe not Sansa but we’ve had so little of her).
And in the books, neither Asha nor Brienne nor Arya ever looked down on other women or thought of them as lesser than man just because they weren’t warriors or physically strong or whatever.
Man, this is one of those line I’m just going to keep well buried in my brain and pretend it was never in the show as I watch it.
Like this just makes me want to track down whoever wrote that episode and throw the books at their head and scream, “REMEMBER WHEN BRIENNE SAID THAT CATELYN HAD A WOMAN’S KIND OF COURAGE???”
Like just because Asha, Arya and Brienne don’t subscribe to their society’s gender norms for women DOESN’T MEAN THAT THEY LOOK DOWN ON OTHER WOMEN WHO DO OR THAT THEY LOOK DOWN ON WOMEN IN GENERAL.
Why does the show insist on trying to pit these different kinds of women against each other???
Because the show is written primarily by men who don’t seem to understand that for the most part, women aren’t spending all their time aspiring to be like men, squabbling with other women, insulting them for not being like amazing men.
In the books, women characters like Asha and Brienne have realized that internalized sexism only reinforces the patriarchy that is giving them a hard time. The writers, with their externalized sexism —through the mouthpieces of these women characters—haven’t gotten there yet.
To me it’s less about commitment to the source material (which yes, is different) and more that most women, at some point, become self aware enough to realize that when they call men “cunts” or “girls” they aren’t teaching the men a witty lesson about sexism. They begin to recognize that when they say things like “most girls are stupid (but not me)” they are still reinforcing something negative about being a girl.
It’s a part of gender identity development and maybe I wouldn’t expect a younger character like Arya to be there—but for this show to put lines like this in the mouths of every woman character with a weapon in her hands says more about the writer’s room than the characters themselves.
*clutches Brienne, Arya and Asha protectively and hisses like a mother cat*
STAY AWAY FROM MY BABIES D&D!!!!
So this bullshit came across my dash. Now I think categorizing women as most empowered and least empowered is problematic in it of itself (to quote from the article: On the flip side, we’ve identified 10 of their Least Empowered counterparts, women who allow the men in their lives and society as a whole to define their goals and values, and too often wind up playing the role of victim.) but specifically let’s talk about what was said about Sansa (who they put on the least empowered list).
She may be a victim of the sexist mindset of her times, but Sansa hasn’t done much of anything to defy her role as a human leverage in a battle of dueling kingdoms. Heck, she was too much of a scaredy cat to take up Baelish’s offer to escape Joffrey’s sadistic clutches. Where’s badass little sis Arya when you need her?
Remember how the other day I liked Sansa because as a character she rejects a lot of concepts I’m over? Yeah, well, let’s add empowerment to the list of concepts I’m over.
Sansa Stark doesn’t owe it to you to be empowered, whatever your definition of empowered is. Being all ‘ra ra feminism oh yeah’ isn’t more important than her safety and sanity. Sansa Stark is in serious danger every single day of her life. The threat of violence, rape, and death is part of her daily routine. (As it is in Arya’s, who FYI, is not in a better situation than Sansa.)
Sansa isn’t bad for women, or bad for feminism because she does not have control over her own life. What’s bad for women is shitting on women like Sansa who do what they have to do to live to see another day.
Sansa is in a place where she has to obey her captors. But to say she doesn’t fight back is ridiculous. Her actions my not seem big to the audience but they are big for her. She fights back by praying for her brother’s victory. She fights back by saving Dontos’ life. She fights back by showing kindness to people she doesn’t has to. She fights back by refusing to break. She fights. She fights so hard.
And for fucks sake. How could anyone who has watched the show or read the books criticize Sansa for not taking up Petyr’s offer right away. Firstly, yeah, she’s scared, this could have serious consequences for her. Secondly did you miss the part where Petyr Baelish was established as a bad person who does bad things? He’s one of the least trustworthy people in all the seven kingdoms jfc.
Anway, there’s my rant.
Women don’t owe it to you to be empowered. Sansa’s safety should come first and if you don’t understand that, then well, Sansa Stark is more of a feminist than you’ll ever be.
I went to find my copy of A Feast for Crows because I had mixed up Victarion Greyjoy with Euron Greyjoy and I wanted to clear it up, but my reading quickly turned into a session of Asha Greyjoy appreciation. Take this scene, for example:
“‘I am unwed,’ announced Left-Hand Lucas Codd.
‘And for good reason,’ Asha said. All women do despise the Codds as well. Don’t look at me so mournful, Lucas. You still have your famous hand.’ She made a pumping motion with her fist.
Codd cursed, till the Crow’s Eye put a hand on his chest. ‘Was that courteous, Asha? You have wounded Lucas to the quick.’
‘Easier than wounding him in the prick. I throw an axe as well as any man, but when the target is so small…’
‘This girl forgets herself,’ snarled Pinchface Jon Myre. ‘Balon let her believe she was a man.’
‘Your father made the same mistake with you,’ said Asha.”
There are a lot of things I enjoy about that exchange, not the least of which is Asha’s incredible sass. I also like Asha’s emphasis on identifying firmly as a woman, when Jon Myre tries to dismiss her as a “girl” or a wannabe man. One of the things that I love about Asha (and, indeed, most of the fighting women in ASOIAF) is that she doesn’t disguise herself as a man, she doesn’t hate her gender; she is merely a woman who can fight. Of course, not everyone sees it that way, and being a woman, feminine or masculine, warriorlike or not, is dangerous enough in Westeros. Unlike Cersei, who on several occasions wishes she had been born male so she could derive power by virtue of birth as opposed to ruling through her children/husband, Asha is proud to be a woman, a woman who wants to be powerful in her own right. And THAT is mind-boggling to Westerosi society.
Also, I find it really hilarious and ironic that of all people, EURON is asking Asha to be courteous. I guess it’s okay for Euron to be a dick to everyone, but as soon as the woman insults a man’s masculinity, she needs to be put in her place.
Plus, I love the quote “‘You have wounded Lucas to the quick.’/’Easier than wounding him in the prick.’” It’s a clever little rhyming exchange that, when isolated, kind of sounds like the sort of insult that Shakespeare might throw into one of his plays. I love Asha’s wit.
And another thing:
“‘And what if I shout your name?’ Harmund demanded. ‘What then?’
‘Peace,’ said Asha. ‘Land. Victory. I’ll give you Sea Dragon Point and the Stony Shore, black earth and tall trees and stones enough for every younger son to build a hall. We’ll have the northmen too… as friends, to stand with us against the Iron Throne. Your choice is simple. Crown me, for peace and victory. Or crown my nuncle, for more war and more defeat.’”
I had forgotten that first and foremost in Asha’s bid for king is her mention of peace. There’s something quite courageous about a fighter being able to recognize the value of friendship. Choosing peace over war is difficult in the quest for power, and sometimes it takes more courage to compromise, to take a few steps back and extend a hand to an enemy instead of a sword. Like Catelyn, she is a strategically savvy and intelligent woman who can see the value in ending war (or at least one war—obviously she still opposes the Iron Throne). And it’s rather sad that no one listens to her.
They’d rather hear about Euron and his fucking quest to find the dragons and wed Daenerys. Because, you know, that’s all women are good for: marriage.
Even Asha ends up married—without her consent.
“Rhaenys was a child too. Prince Rhaegar’s daughter. A precious little thing, younger than your girls. She had a small black kitten she called Balerion, did you know? I always wondered what happened to him. Rhaenys liked to pretend he was the true Balerion, the black dread of old, but I imagine the Lannisters taught her the difference between a kitten and a dragon quick enough the day they broke down her door.”
-Varys to Eddard Stark, A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
This is sad enough on it’s own, it really is, but it requires context in order to really appreciate it. The first thing you need to know is that little Balerion is still living in the castle. That last black cat that Arya can’t catch, the mean, scarred little animal that attacks servants and interrupts Robert and Tywin at dinner, making off with the roast, is Balerion, Rhaenys’ kitten. So just take a moment to imagine that little kitten, bruised and bleeding, latched onto the boot of Ser Amory Lorch, trying to bite through the leather, trying to save his little girl, staring up at her as she’s stabbed over fifty times. Imagine him being kicked away as they wrap her body up in a Lannister cloak and take it away. Imagine the kitten following them, limping, to the throne room, where the skull of the great dragon Balerion hangs. The bodies of his little girl, and her mother, and her baby brother, are all placed at the feet of the man who sits where the little girl’s father used to sit. And the kitten looks up, and sees the dragon’s head mounted over the throne, and he knows how small and weak he is. If I were a dragon, he thinks, I could have saved her. And so, over the years, he becomes the hardest motherfucker in the entire castle. He does what he can to hurt these new men who murdered his little girl and stole her home. He’d kill them all if he was able. But he’s still too much kitten, not enough dragon.
Do you know what Arya honestly reminds me of the most?
She reminds me of a kid left to the streets who thinks she has no choice but to join the local gang to give her life some sort of meaning after having everything violently stripped from her. Maybe she had a predisposition to violence before, maybe not, but she’s not simply this little socio/psychopath running around Westeros acting out against authority figures for the sake of acting out.
No, Arya’s arc is not a celebration. It’s fucking tragic and painful. Implying that the main reason she does it is mental illness (and not, you know, also the ridiculously absurd situations she’s found herself in as a nine-year-old, the social conditioning her mother and sister—knowingly or not—placed on her and against which she tried to rebel, etc etc etc) is nearly equally tragic.