Archive for October, 2014

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For those of us that have read A Song of Ice and Fire, I think we can all agree that The Creator, George R. R. Martin, does an excellent job of portraying strong female characters. There are many who exude strength and prove themselves as strong and capable leaders. Sometimes it may take a while to find her voice as it did with Sansa Stark or she may be born with determination like her mother Catelyn Tully. A woman’s strength might also come from pain and revenge like Arya Stark or it could even come from love and loss like Daenerys Targaryen. Whatever the reason may be, GRRM has done an excellent job in giving a strong voice to female characters. But what HBO’s mummer’s farce of a show has done is provide you with lessened versions of these women. Game of Thrones has done little and less to show you how powerful some of these characters may be and it is time that we rectify these egregious errors by turning to the books!!

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While fan favorites Arya and Daenerys are represented fairly well as they were originally created, let’s talk about two characters that have been grossly misrespresented: Asha Greyjoy and Arianne Martell. Each of these characters is a strong, important woman in her own right and both have been ruined by the book burners D&D for reasons unbeknownst to me. Lets start with Asha first since she has at least sort of been seen on the show.


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Asha Greyjoy is the only daughter of Balon Greyjoy and to many, the only living heir of Balon since Theon is presumed dead. In the book burning program, Game of Thrones, the show runners CHANGED HER NAME to “Yara” Greyjoy to avoid confusion with the wildling “Osha”. Really? REALLY? Do D&D think that people are so stupid that they can’t remember the difference between two completely different characters? Others take me. Asha is a fierce and loyal warrior and the captain of her own ship, the Black Wind. Her father respected her determination and courage and thus raised her as his heir after his two eldest sons were slain and Theon was sent to Winterfell as a hostage. During Balon’s assault on the North, it is Asha who commands the greatest fleet of ships and is entrusted to capture Deepwood Motte. Unlike other Ironborn, Asha displays compassion and empathy for her captives like Sybelle Glover and her child and treats them gently and insists that others do the same. Asha is fearless in battle and unlike her HBO counterpart, Asha Greyjoy would NEVER run away from dogs!!!!! The pathetic assault on the Dreadfort to rescue Theon is by far one of the most ridiculous scenes in the history of the show. Every detail of that scene contradicts the very essence of Asha Greyjoy. She is not some craven that will run away at the sight of dogs!!! She would take her suckling babe from her breast and place it right between the eyes of any man that stood in her way!!! After the untimely demise of Balon, the Iron Islands were in need of a new ruler. Though Asha is clearly the heir of House Greyjoy, each of Balon’s brothers, Euron, Victarion and Aeron, had many supporters that believed he should sit the Seastone Chair. What happens next is probably one of my favorite parts in A Feast for Crows, the Kingsmoot. Now, I am not going to delve into details about the Kingsmoot because “we do not spoil” (You see what I did there, right? RIGHT?) here at angrygotfan dot com, but it’s pretty awesome and easily one of the best depictions of the Ironborn. The show runners have said they were planning on omitting the Iron Islands “subplot” from season 5 so maybe we can hope for them to appear in season 6, but that’s looking pretty grim.

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As far as Arianne Martell is concerned, unless you’ve read A Feast for Crows or A Dance with Dragons, you probably have no idea who she is since the Dornish were only recently revealed. Arianne Martell is the oldest child of Prince Doran Martell and the heir to Sunspear. Unlike their Westerosi counterparts, the Dornish hold true to the practice of primogeniture, which sounds like a fancy SAT word, but basically means it doesn’t matter if the first born child is male or female when it comes to inheritance. This is important to the Dornish story line. Extremely important actually, as it is the impetus of a crucial events which involve the Lannisters. This is one of the reasons why cutting Arianne is a grave mistake. For a bit of background, Arianne feels that her father does not respect her and is planning on passing over her in favor of her younger brother Quentyn (another omitted Dornish character) and she sets certain events in motion to try to reclaim her birthright. Instead, the show runners decided to carve up Arianne’s story like a Thanksgiving turkey and divide it amongst the Sand Snakes and her uncle’s paramour, Ellaria Sand. This is why the storyline for season 5 makes no sense. Obara, Tyene and Nymeria, only want revenge for their father! They aren’t trying to start a war over who succeeds Doran! And to add even more insult to the Dornish storyline, including Ellaria in this foolishness is just insulting to her character. Ellaria wants peace and gives one of the most eloquent speeches about vengeance in A Dance with Dragons.  Now, while Asha Greyjoy is a hard and steadfast warrior, Arianne Martell is more demure and subtle when exercising her influence. Described as a great beauty, she is not afraid to use her physical appearance to get ahead. While some may look at this in a derogatory manner, think of Cersei Lannister, she does the same thing. When you play the game of thrones, all options are on the table. Arianne, much like her uncle Prince Oberyn Martell, is the exemplification of their House words “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken.” Clearly Arianne still has a part to play as she is a POV character in The Winds of Winter. How this will translate to the show remains to be unseen.

What we do know though, is that two female characters that were so well written and embodied the very essence of female strength in their own respective ways, have been defiled. Asha Greyjoy is more than what she has been portrayed as on the HBO series. And the show watcher will never get to experience the character of Arianne Martell. But there is still hope! For after the blasphemous book burning show is at an end, the books shall remain forever!!!!

By Lady Shelly

Graphics by @3eyedcr0w

the-world-of-ice-and-fire-grrm-566x750OM7GS!!!
GREETINGS CURIOUS GENTILES AND BOOKFAITHFUL MEMBERS OF THE ARMY OF ANGER ALIKE!! THIS IS THE MOST AUSPICIOUS OF TIMES AS WE HAVE NOW BEHELD THE REJOICEMENT OF THE RELEASE OF THE LATEST VOLUME OF THE SACRED TEXTS OF A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE!!!!! A BRAND NEW ADDITION TO THE SACRED TEXTS AFTER 3 YEARS HAS BEEN BESTOWED UPON US!!! A TRIUMPHANT ADDITION TO THE WORLD OF ASOIAF!!!!
WOIAF - Daemon Blackfyre EVERY PAGE OF THIS BOOK IS A FEAST FOR THE EYES IN BOTH TEXT AND ARTWORK! THE PREVIOUSLY UNTOLD HISTORIES OF THE TARGARYEN DYNASTY, ROBERT’S REBELLION, NYMERIAS SHIPS AND THE 9 FREE CITIES HAS NOW BEEN ELABORATED UPON! HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHAT IN 7 HELLS THE DOOM MEANT?!! HOW ABOUT THE EVENTS AT SUMMERHALL?? THE UNRAVELING FRIENDSHIP BETWEEN AERYS AND TYWIN LANNISTER?!!  WELL THIS BOOK WILL TELL YOU! THE PREVIOUSLY UNEXPLAINED HISTORY OF MANY OF THE MOST POPULAR  HOUSES IS ELABORATED ON AS WELL!! THIS BOOK IS THE PERFECT ADDITION TO THE CANON AND ARMS US WITH MORE AMMUNITION THAN EVER TO DESTROY THE BOOK BURNERS! THE SHOW RUNNERS DONT CARE ABOUT THE BACKSTORY LIKE WE DO! THE WORLD OF ICE AND FIRE IS AN ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL PART OF EVERY MEMBER OF THE ARMY OF ANGERS ARSENAL AGIANST THE BOOK BURNERS!!!
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THE BEST PART ABOUT THE BOOK IS THAT THE HISTORY IS EXPLAINED TO US AS THE CREATOR, GRRM, INTENDED. THE ARTWORK EXIBITS PERFECTLY HOW HIS GRACE CREATED THE WORLD OF ICE AND FIRE. HAVE YOU SEEN THE PATHETIC EXCUSE FOR THE IRON THRONE THAT THE BOOK BURNERS CREATED?! AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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THE TRUE IRON THRONE IS NOW ON DISPLAY FOR ALL TO SEE!! ITS AMAZING I LOVE THE THING I LOVE IT IT IS PERFECT IN A WORD JUST AMAZINGLY PERFECTER AS LIFE ITSELF!!!!!!!!! THE SAME CAN BE SAID FOR WINTERFELL, KINGS LANDING AND THE WALL!! NOW WHEN WE HEAR ABOUT THE CHILDREN, WE WILL HAVE A BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF WHO THEY ARE AND NO THEY ARE  NOT LITTLE DIRTY KIDS THROWING MAGICAL FIREWORKS TO KILL A PACK OF STUPID ZOMBIE SKELETONS!!
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IF YOU HAVE NOT GOTTEN YOUR COPY OF TWOIAF WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?!?!?!?! AND IF YOU ARE USING THE EXCUSE THAT THE BOOK COSTS TOO MUCH THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE! $20 FOR THE KINDLE VERSION! THAT IS JUST 3 DAYS WITHOUT YOUR DAILY STARBUCKS GRANDE CARAMEL FRAPPUCINO!!! GO NOW AND GET THE BOOKS!!! THEY ARE SELLING OUT ALL OVER THE PLACE AND TRUST ME  YOU DO NOT WANT TO BE WITHOUT THIS BOOK!!!!

READ THIS BOOK OR ANSWER TO ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WOIAF - Ser Duncan the Tall vs Lord Lyonel Baratheon

WHY THE FAITH OF THE SEVEN MATTERS  high_sparrow_ffg_786 For those of you that have yet to read A Feast for Crows (SHAME ON YOU), the High Septon or as some call him the “High Sparrow” is a yet to be seen character that is going to play a crucial role in season 5. Thanks to the great images provided to us by thewatchersonthewall.com, we have had some glimpses of His Holiness and have confirmation of his appearance in season 5. Now without spoiling too much, let’s talk about why this man is going to be so important.

Jonathan_Pryce1The Faith of the Seven, or the “New Gods” is the most common religion in Westeros and is practiced all over except for the North and the Iron Islands. The Faith, as it is commonly known, draws heavily on the number seven and there are 7 gods: The Warrior, The Maiden, The Smith, The Crone, The Father, The Mother and The Stranger.800px-The_Seven_by_guadAlthough each has a distinct purpose they are each a representation of a single deity. The Faith is often compared to Catholicism as it too has several aspects of a single God along with an organization (Pope/College of Cardinals) that is similar to the the High Septon and Most Devout. The organization of the faith is also very similar to that of the Catholic church in the middle ages where members of the clergy held positions in government and were often the individuals that created laws and imposed punishment on offenders; much like the High Septon in Westeros.

High_SeptonThis parallels reality. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century, there emerged no single powerful secular government in Western Europe, but there was a central ecclesiastical power in Rome, the Catholic Church. In this power vacuum, the Church rose to become the dominant power. As the Church expanded beginning in the 10th century, and as secular kingdoms gained power at the same time, there naturally arose the conditions for a power struggle between Church and Kingdom over ultimate authority.

Věnceslav_Černý_-_Příchod_věrozvěstů_Cyrila_a_Metoděje_na_MoravuIn essence, the earliest vision of Christendom was a vision of a Christian theocracy, a government founded upon and upholding Christian values, whose institutions are spread through and over with Christian doctrine. In this period, members of the Christian clergy wield political authority. The specific relationship between the political leaders and the clergy varied but, in theory, the national and political divisions were at times subsumed under the leadership of the Catholic Church as an institution. This model of church-state relations was accepted by various Church leaders and political leaders in European history.

During the Middle Ages it was customary to classify the population of Christendom into laboratores (workers), bellatores (soldiers), and oratores (clergy). The last group, though small in number, monopolized the instruments and opportunities of culture, and ruled with almost unlimited sway half of the most powerful continent on the globe. The clergy, like Plato’s guardians, were placed in authority “by their talents” as shown in ecclesiastical studies and administration, by their “disposition to a life of meditation and simplicity,” and … by the influence of their relatives with the powers of state and church, in which we see similarities to maesters, who commonly hold great sway as well as family connections. Maester Aemon, anyone?

20120425230449!Aemon-Castle-BlackIn the latter half of the period in which they ruled [800 AD onwards], the clergy were completely freed from family cares. Celibacy was part of the psychological structure of the power of the clergy; for on the one hand they were unimpeded by the narrowing egoism of the family, and on the other their apparent superiority to the call of the flesh added to the awe and overall mystique in which lay sinners held them.

There can also be parallels drawn between the seven sacraments of the Catholic Church and the seven gods of the Faith. GRRM has stated that the Faith is based on the Roman Catholic Church on numerous occasions although he “is a lapsed Catholic…[and] would find me an atheist or agnostic.  I find religion and spirituality fascinating.” He has also said that the use of religion in ASOIAF is one of the things that sets his series apart from Tolkein’s in that “nobody is worshiping anything in Rings.” The hierarchy of the Catholic Church looks like this.

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1. God
2. The Church which includes the people of God
3. Deacons serve God and the people of God
4. Priests serve God, the people of God, and the deacons
5. Bishops serve God, the local Church the People of God, the deacons, and the priests
6. The Pope serves God and the entire Church as well as the bishops, priests, deacons and people.

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We can compare it to the Faith of the Seven which includes the following:

The Contemplative Brothers. They are humble men which work and live in communities very much like monastaries such as the Quiet Isle. They often take a vow of silence.
Begging Brothers. These men are clad in brown robes and beg (obv) and bestow blessings upon those they encounter on the road.
The Faith Militant which includes 2 orders: The Warrior’s Sons who are knights who have renounced their lands, gold and possessions to fight for the Seven. They swore their swords to His High Holiness like Lancel Lannister. The Poor Fellows wander the realm and escort pilgrims between septs and are more humble than the Warrior’s Sons
The Silent Sisters. These women serve the Stranger and have taken a vow of silence. They are often called the “Wives of the Stranger” and prepare the bodies of the dead for burial.
Septas and Septons. The men are often devoted to one particular aspect of the Seven such as the Smith and the septas often act as governesses to nobility such as Septa Mordane.
The Most Devout is a council of septas and septons that are of the most importance.
The High Septon. This is the equivalent of the Pope. This is the most important person in the Faith of the Seven

Another extremely important fact to consider is the Divine Right of Kings, key to the series as the King of Westeros is always anointed and coronated. While it was held that monarchs ruled through the Mandate of Heaven or God, at times this right was called into question, as to who exactly wielded greater authority – the monarch or the Pope.

chtempThe Investiture Controversy was the most significant conflict between Church and state in medieval Europe. In the 11th and 12th centuries, a series of popes challenged the authority of European monarchies. The issue was whether the pope or the monarch would name (invest) powerful local church officials such as bishops of cities and abbots of monasteries. The conflict ended in 1122, when Emperor Henry V and Pope Calixtus II agreed on the Concordat of Worms. It differentiated between the royal and spiritual powers and gave the emperors a limited role in selecting bishops. After 50 years of civil war, the outcome was mostly a victory for the pope and his claim that he was God’s chief representative in the world.

The age of the investiture controversy may rightly be regarded as the turning-point in medieval civilization. It was the fulfillment of the early Middle Ages because in it the acceptance of the Christian religion by the Germanic peoples reached its final and decisive stage. The greater part of the religious and political system of the high Middle Ages emerged out of the events and ideas of the investiture controversy.

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Now that we have discussed (very briefly) about the Faith, let’s talk about these “sparrows” and why we should care about them. If we think back to previous books, there have been 2 previous High Septons seen in ASOIAF: The “Fat One” that was killed during the riots in Kings Landing and his replacement, who was chosen by Tyrion Lannister but was later killed. This leads us to the third High Septon or the High Sparrow. The sparrows were a direct result of the War of the Five Kings. During the war, septs were looted and the holy people within were often raped, tortured or killed. Due to these unspeakable crimes, holy men and women brought the bones of those murdered to King’s Landing to show the king and ask for protection. They were the poorest of the members of the Faith and came to be known as sparrows as the sparrow is the most common bird. The High Septon was amongst these holy men and women and was elected to the office of High Septon by fellow sparrows. This was not to Cersei Lannister’s liking as she could not bribe or threaten him into submission as the previous men before him. Furthermore, the High Sparrow has refused to bless the reign of Tommen and has subsequently filled Cersei with much indignation.

Nobody knows the true identity of the High Septon as holy septons relinquish their names upon election to office, but there are many theories. But the reason why he and the Faith writ large are so integral to the upcoming season and overall culmination of the books, is because of their extreme influence over the monarchy and their high standing among the people of the land.

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Of course this may all be ruined in season 5 when psychotic bookburners D&D decide to make the High Septon a magical wish-granting fruit bat that only speaks in riddles. But there is still hope! Perhaps the High Septon will be the one character that is unsullied by the small minds of evil men, but then again when have D&D ever really cared about remaining loyal to the book?!?!?!? No one understaaands!!!

Lady Shelly