Kit Harington covers Rolling Stone for ‘Inside Game of Thrones’ feature, George R.R. Martin interviewed
By Lightbringer on in Interview.

Kit Harington is featured on the cover of the latest issue of Rolling Stone magazine as a part of their ‘Inside Game of Thrones’ feature. The feature includes a piece on Kit entitled “The Winter Soldier,” as well as an in-depth interview with George R.R. Martin.

In a preview of the feature Kit explains what he has in common with Jon Snow. “Snow’s a black sheep. The thing that drives both of us is more similar than you might think – he’s driven by ambition. I’ve always been ambitious too.” Kit admires the way that Jon balances his duty with ambition, and has a strong belief in what he’s doing. He also understands the immediate appeal of Jon Snow when Game of Thrones first aired. “People were looking for a hero trying to make his way through a dark world that they didn’t understand. That’s Jon Snow.”

Rolling Stone has already released their full interview with George R.R. Martin conducted for the feature. The interview is quite lengthy spanning a number of topics including his early life, the early stages of A Song of Ice and Fire, his concerns about screen adaptations, redemption, life’s hard truths, and much more. Here are a couple of excerpts:

Jeopardy prevails more than ever now, after the ending of the third season and the slaughter of Ned’s wife, Catelyn, and his eldest son, Robb, the King of the North.

The more I write about a character, the more affection I feel . . . even for the worst of them. Which doesn’t mean I won’t kill them. Whoever it was who said “Kill your darlings” was referring to his favorite lines in a story, but it’s just as true for characters. The moment the reader begins to believe that a character is protected by the magical cloak of authorial immunity, tension goes out the window. The Red Wedding was tremendously hard to write. I skipped over it until I finished the entirety of A Storm of Swords, then I went back and forced myself to write that chapter. I loved those characters too much. But I knew it had to be done. The TV Red Wedding is even worse than the book, of course, because [GoT creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss] turned it up to 11 by bringing in Talisa, pregnant with Robb’s child, none of which happened in the book. So we get a pregnant woman stabbed repeatedly in the belly.

Both Jaime and Cersei are clearly despicable in those moments. Later, though, we see a more humane side of Jaime when he rescues a woman, who had been an enemy, from rape. All of a sudden we don’t know what to feel about Jaime.

One of the things I wanted to explore with Jaime, and with so many of the characters, is the whole issue of redemption. When can we be redeemed? Is redemption even possible? I don’t have an answer. But when do we forgive people? You see it all around in our society, in constant debates. Should we forgive Michael Vick? I have friends who are dog-lovers who will never forgive Michael Vick. Michael Vick has served years in prison; he’s apologized. Has he apologized sufficiently? Woody Allen: Is Woody Allen someone that we should laud, or someone that we should despise? Or Roman Polanski, Paula Deen. Our society is full of people who have fallen in one way or another, and what do we do with these people? How many good acts make up for a bad act? If you’re a Nazi war criminal and then spend the next 40 years doing good deeds and feeding the hungry, does that make up for being a concentration-camp guard? I don’t know the answer, but these are questions worth thinking about. I want there to be a possibility of redemption for us, because we all do terrible things. We should be able to be forgiven. Because if there is no possibility of redemption, what’s the answer then?

Spoiler Warning: Page 3 of this interview does contain some spoilers, after George confirms that the interviewer is sullied he discusses who killed King Joffrey. Click here for the full interview!

The issue will hit news stands and the App Store this Friday, April 25.


58 Comments

  1. Lonmouth
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Ramsay!

    I hope Jamie will be redeemed in the end. It’s going to take a pretty big sacrifice though. Maybe he’ll Kill Cersie the same way he killed the Mad King. When she tries to burn King’s Landing down with wildfire.

  2. arden
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:10 am | Permalink

    the man who would be king right on the cover?? really? wtf why…thats a major spoiler!!
    Lmfao Rolling Stone is retarded!!

  3. Mauro
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    You should mention that GRRM *gives away* who kills Joffrey in the interview. It’s a huge spoiler for show watchers.

  4. Lady Wolfsbane
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    Let’s keep talking about hair. Bird’s nest metaphor?

  5. Valyrian Plastic
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    I wish the interviewer could’ve read through the dozens of other interviews and tons of videos in which George talks about literally everything he says here in some form. Everyone should just stop trying to get interviews with him altogether, until there’s a new story of some kind. No one ever asks him about Fevre Dream or Dunk and Egg either.

    Speaking of George, Words are Wind is back, but no pinch PINCH this time :(.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHWW57BDXI4
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_fgxCtQe5Ds

  6. Hoyti Von Totiy
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    Harington also revealed that once the show has its final colorful wedding – which could still be five or more years away

    eh?

  7. Strong Belwas
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:45 am | Permalink

    arden,

    arden:
    the man who would be king right on the cover?? really? wtf why…thats a major spoiler!!
    Lmfao Rolling Stone is retarded!!

    I get where you’re coming from, but how can that be a spoiler if GRRM hasn’t even written that part yet. That’s just popular assumption.

    Not to mention the cover is labeling Kit Harrington as ‘The Man Who Would Be King’ in response to his statement about being ambitious, not Jon Snow.

  8. Turncloak
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    arden,

    Are you daft? That’s not a spoiler at all and is just an assumption

  9. jentario
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    arden,

    It’s funny because it’s true. But obviously they are assuming too much.

  10. Our Blades Are Sharp
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    GRRM brings up interesting points about the grey areas in life. Personally I’ll never forgive Vick(my hounds mean more to me than most people) and Hitler is irredemable in my view I guess it all comes down to what matters to you personally as to if one can be redeemed or not but if Jaime saves a Stark down the road or truly ends the war in an honorable way he should be forgiven. Right now most female viewers will not so it going to be interesting watching his story unfold- which is the whole point right?

  11. Rygar
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    If only Cat had loved Jon Snow, then maybe Kit would smile during his photo shoots instead of looking like he just farted and can’t decide if it smells bad or not.

  12. Our Blades Are Sharp
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    Rygar:
    If only Cat had loved Jon Snow, then maybe Kit would smile during his photo shoots instead of looking like he just farted and can’t decide if it smells bad or not.

    GRRM looks like he farted, it smells great and he’s proud of it!

  13. jentario
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    Hoyti Von Totiy,

    Where did you get that quote?

  14. WompWomp
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Our Blades Are Sharp,

    Thank you Lorax, who speaks for most women?

    Valyrian Plastic,

    No pinching? There goes my desire to watch their latest. (Not really, but that is a shame.)

    It was a wonderful interview, even if it retreads a lot of covered ground. Very few like it manage or bother to capture GRRM’s personality to the degree this one does. Well worth the read.

  15. Alice
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    “Later, though, we see a more humane side of Jaime when he rescues a woman, who had been an enemy, from rape.”

    Oh, boy… There we go again.

  16. Morna the Witch
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    For some reason photographers or at least the magazine always use the most stern or glum picture of Kit they could find as a cover. This has happened more than once, whilst the spread inside is always much better. But yeah, I was waiting for the sarcastic remarks about Kit, as usual, lol.

  17. UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    Uhh jaimie raped cersei… I can never forgive him! He cant be redeemed!

    (Only kidding, just starting shit soz)

  18. jentario
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor,

    Even I was holding back. Shit, dude.

  19. Tatters
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Alice,

    Huh

  20. arden
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Turncloak,

    David and Dan telling GRRM who Jon Snow’s mother is, is all the info I need.

  21. Eren
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    Ho Chi Minh isn’t sauron but he is saruman.

  22. JC
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    If anyone gets a chance to read the interview in its entirety, it’s an insightful read – certainly the best interview I’ve ever read with Martin – and shows how much thought he’s put into the characters and the books. It illuminates a lot of the tough philosophical questions he wants the reader to be thinking about.

    Now if he can just hurry up and get the next book done.

  23. UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    i have a feeling jaimie will be one of the dragon heads along with jon snow. So i think he’ll be redeemed by the end (i hope he rides a dragon, thatll be sweet!)

  24. jentario
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Crow’s Eye,

    He was clearly joking

  25. chamush
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    The King in the south west!!!

  26. Valaquen
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor:
    i have a feeling jaimie will be one of the dragon heads along with jon snow. So i think he’ll be redeemed by the end (i hope he rides a dragon, thatll be sweet!)

    GRRM explicitly says in the interview that he’s not interested in redemptive arcs. People do good and evil concurrently, or at least have the capacity to. The explanation he uses in the interview is worth a look.

  27. Dave
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    UnbowdUnbentedUnhodor,

    I don’t know why people keep thinking there will actually be 3 riders of the dragons. I doubt it to be honest. It’s all misdirection in my opinion.

  28. Daniellica
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Great GRRM interview. Especially interested in:

    It’s all structure, structure and dialogue. Being there [screenwriting in Hollywood] improved my sense of structure and dialogue.

    So true. Screenplays (for the most part) follow a very rigid, predictable, straightforward path you must almost always follow. Ordinary World, Call to Adventure, Rejecting the Call, Meeting the Mentor, Point of no Return, blah blah blah. Screenwriting also taught me about economy, though I guess you’d never figure that by the way I post. It is somewhat like poetry in that you have such a small amount of space within which you try to say as much as possible, though screenwriting is all about revealing and poetry is the art of crafting secrets.

    That’s what I want the reader or viewer to wrestle with, and to debate.

    I love this about ASOIAF–that it raises so many phantoms relevant to life, to being human. That is why I call fiction a distillation of essential human truth. Concentrated emotion, action, reaction, ways to relate, to see the world, to be in the world amongst one another. The books and show often inspire me to write things of my own, to riff on the bigger picture, just as all your comments do. :)

    By the end of the war, Sauron is gone but all of the orcs aren’t gone – they’re in the mountains. Did Aragorn pursue a policy of systematic genocide and kill them? Even the little baby orcs, in their little orc cradles?

    ORC CRADLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    (right up there with Dragon Baskets)

    I believe in great characters. We’re all capable of doing great things, and of doing bad things. We have the angels and the demons inside of us, and our lives are a succession of choices.

    Hooray for the excluded third! My objet petit a is showing. Love!

  29. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    Valaquen: GRRM explicitly says in the interview that he’s not interested in redemptive arcs. People do good and evil concurrently, or at least have the capacity to. The explanation he uses in the interview is worth a look.

    Truth. These are not “redemptive” journeys. They are “heart of darkness” journeys.

    Oh to be a fly-on-the-wall in GRRM’s writing room.

  30. WeirwoodTreeHugger
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    Rygar:
    If only Cat had loved Jon Snow, then maybe Kit would smile during his photo shoots instead of looking like he just farted and can’t decide if it smells bad or not.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IxIkbwNbSYE&feature=player_detailpage

  31. Cielo Snow
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    Strong Belwas:
    arden,

    I get where you’re coming from, but how can that be a spoiler if GRRM hasn’t even written that part yet. That’s just popular assumption.

    Not to mention the cover is labeling Kit Harrington as ‘The Man Who Would Be King’ in response to his statement about being ambitious, not Jon Snow.


    I disagree. IMO Jon is the legit heir to the Westeros throne. However, I believe he’ll refuse the IT and will stay in the North.

  32. Annara Snow
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Our Blades Are Sharp:
    GRRM brings up interesting points about the grey areas in life. Personally I’ll never forgive Vick(my hounds mean more to me than most people) and Hitler is irredemable in my view I guess it all comes down to what matters to you personally as to if one can be redeemed or not but if Jaime saves a Stark down the road or truly ends the war in an honorable way he should be forgiven. Right now most female viewers will not so it going to be interesting watching his story unfold- which is the whole point right?

    Jaime is a fan favorite with female readers, GRRM has remarked on that a few times. What does the TV show have to do with that? David and Dan are supposed to be adapting GRRM’s books, not the other way round.

  33. Annara Snow
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Valaquen: GRRM explicitly says in the interview that he’s not interested in redemptive arcs. People do good and evil concurrently, or at least have the capacity to. The explanation he uses in the interview is worth a look.

    He does? Where?

    “One of the things I wanted to explore with Jaime, and with so many of the characters, is the whole issue of redemption. When can we be redeemed? Is redemption even possible? I don’t have an answer. But when do we forgive people? You see it all around in our society, in constant debates. Should we forgive Michael Vick? I have friends who are dog-lovers who will never forgive Michael Vick. Michael Vick has served years in prison; he’s apologized. Has he apologized sufficiently? Woody Allen: Is Woody Allen someone that we should laud, or someone that we should despise? Or Roman Polanski, Paula Deen. Our society is full of people who have fallen in one way or another, and what do we do with these people? How many good acts make up for a bad act? If you’re a Nazi war criminal and then spend the next 40 years doing good deeds and feeding the hungry, does that make up for being a concentration-camp guard? I don’t know the answer, but these are questions worth thinking about. I want there to be a possibility of redemption for us, because we all do terrible things. We should be able to be forgiven. Because if there is no possibility of redemption, what’s the answer then?”

    No, I don’t see him saying “he’s not interested in redemptive arcs”, explicitly or implicitly. If anything, he says the opposite.

  34. Daniellica
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow: Valaquen: GRRM explicitly says in the interview that he’s not interested in redemptive arcs. People do good and evil concurrently, or at least have the capacity to. The explanation he uses in the interview is worth a look.
    He does? Where?
    “One of the things I wanted to explore with Jaime, and with so many of the characters, is the whole issue of redemption. When can we be redeemed? Is redemption even possible? I don’t have an answer. But when do we forgive people? You see it all around in our society, in constant debates. Should we forgive Michael Vick? I have friends who are dog-lovers who will never forgive Michael Vick. Michael Vick has served years in prison; he’s apologized. Has he apologized sufficiently? Woody Allen: Is Woody Allen someone that we should laud, or someone that we should despise? Or Roman Polanski, Paula Deen. Our society is full of people who have fallen in one way or another, and what do we do with these people? How many good acts make up for a bad act? If you’re a Nazi war criminal and then spend the next 40 years doing good deeds and feeding the hungry, does that make up for being a concentration-camp guard? I don’t know the answer, but these are questions worth thinking about. I want there to be a possibility of redemption for us, because we all do terrible things. We should be able to be forgiven. Because if there is no possibility of redemption, what’s the answer then?”
    No, I don’t see him saying “he’s not interested in redemptive arcs”, explicitly or implicitly. If anything, he says the opposite.

    At worst he may be implying that redemption as exists in Christian allegory/pop fantasy doesn’t exist–that it’s much more complicated than most popular narratives are willing to admit. Hitler is both a great and horrible example, in that he seems to embody EVIL INCARNATE for a great many people, but Hitler, as many great tyrants, did not set out to “do evil.” As is so often the case, he thought he was doing the right thing to such an extreme that he felt justified doing anything to achieve that right.

    Yet Hitler was still merely human, a man with a fragile ego and insecurities and delights and bad hair days and body odor and charisma and a passion for art. I think GRRM challenges us to think within these terms–that heroes and villains have mixtures of qualities, bad habits, endearments, so ultimately they are neither heroes nor villains–just people. Do we demonize such individuals to remove them from ourselves?

    Then I always think to that line of Melisendre’s: “if half an onion is black with rot it is a rotten onion. A man is good or he is evil.” She reminds me of Spain, come to conquer in the name of the One True Lord, and the Inquisition has just begun.

    But to say GRRM is not interested in redemptive arcs is clearly misreading his quote–I just think he is not interested in the redemptive arcs we’re used to, and thank the gods for that.

  35. Zack
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow,

    Agreed. Jaime’s one of the most fascinating characters, because as the series progresses it’s more than that Jaime undergoes a personality change (though that is part of it)

    Giving him a POV, letting readers understand why he does what he does. Is he so bad? They’re valid questions. We see the thought process behind Bran’s defenestration–”If this boy tells someone what he saw, Robert will kill me, kill Cersei, Joff, Tommen and Myrcella too.” He cannot be blamed for wanting to protect the lives of his family…but his action was terrible nonetheless. To say Martin is uninterested in redemptive acs might have a ring of truth to it, but I think it can be stated more truthfully another way.

    It’s not ‘redemption’ so much as revealing the humanity that was already there. Good people do bad, and bad people are often capable of good. Without the inner contrast, everything becomes super boring. Martin may have indicated he was uninterested in turning black to white. But maybe showing a dark grey turn a slightly lighter tone, that’s not trite. It’s humanity. I don’t know why the hell we were arguing the other day. Clearly you’re on the ball.

  36. Hodor's Bastard
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow:
    No, I don’t see him saying “he’s not interested in redemptive arcs”, explicitly or implicitly. If anything, he says the opposite.

    According to this interview and that quote, you may get that impression. But that is too easy for GRRM, we know that, and he has elaborated further on the prevailing darkness in other interviews. [Although, it is refreshing that he reflects on the "hopeful" aspects of his characters' journeys as well!]

    As others imply very well, Jaime’s journey is about living with himself, his deeds, and the interpretation of his deeds by others. What is a kingslayer…a hero? How can that be? Yet, it is horribly true…if you consider the greater good. He (and those of us who have regrettably done evil/cruel deeds for selfish, reactive or misinterpreted reasons) carries this with him everywhere he goes and it will forever affect future decisions and actions. He is a paradox. He is neither redemptive nor a monster….in either book or show depiction.

    Like others have stated, when Joff died, did you see a monster dying or a severely spoiled scared child? Is Arya becoming a monster or a survivor? Is the Hound a kidnapper or a hero? Did Jaime plan his booty call with Cersei when he asked the septons to leave? After 25 years of torrential fuckfests and secret lust/love, who are we to judge their dysfunctional relationship? Westeros is filled with baffling ironies and atrocious paradoxes.

    The only thing that I find annoying about this series is that it continually leaves me wanting more and is terribly distracting.

    Zack,
    Daniellica,
    Thanks for those reflections.

  37. Sister Wrister
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow,

    Thank you.

    Daniellica,

    How are you so awesome? Such great writing, always.

    People forget that Hitler was Time magazines Man of the year in… 1939! Antiwar advocates stateside were mostly business moguls that credited him with bringing Germany, and indeed, Europe out of the depression by aggressively militarizing industry and getting the economic pistons firing again- but then look what happened. The ironic thing is…. Keynes and FDR kinda did the same thing…. Minus the genocide. I guess the ultimate judge of ones character is history’s perspective on the sum of one’s actions, over time. But history is always a game of “who controls the present now, controls the past….”
    As for Jaime, all of westeros knows why they call him Kingslayer, but only two living beings know his real reasons. (And of course, an army of sullied)… His character is engaged in battle with himself, perpetually. We’ll see how it all plays out.

    Just finally saw cap2 last night and the “cleansing” of dissent (ummm genicide?) had me thinking about Nazis again. Nothin ever changes….

    To whomever made this website start working on my phone today….. Many thanks.

  38. Valaquen
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

    Daniellica:
    But to say GRRM is not interested in redemptive arcs is clearly misreading his quote–I just think he is not interested in the redemptive arcs we’re used to, and thank the gods for that.

    Let me clarify, I used the terminology poorly: I meant, and I think GRRM means, character arcs that go from bad>good or good>bad are not what he is aiming for. There is no barometer for measuring just how good or evil some of his characters are. Rather, people of all persuasions are capable of both good and evil concurrently (probably because so many evil people don’t consider themselves evil, they tend to think they’re doing what is right, for whatever reason, and they are very capable of doing a good act just as they’re capable of lopping heads off).

  39. WildSeed
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow,
    Nicolau coster-Waldau is considered eye candy, for most female viewers. I understand too that Jaime”s book character has many admirers, of both genders, but I care for him not. For better or worse, GoT is adapting Jaime Lannister’s story in a way that gains support for those who remain on the fence about him ( he’s definitely gained much insight and evolved compared to his pre-ADWD days, but he still on that journey ) , and chagrined by those whom consider him a great man. Can’t wait to read more on the subject when the story telling resumes.

  40. Daniellica
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed: Nicolau coster-Waldau is considered eye candy, for most female viewers. I understand too that Jaime”s book character has many admirers, of both genders, but I care for him not. For better or worse, GoT is adapting Jaime Lannister’s story in a way that gains support for those who remain on the fence about him ( he’s definitely gained much insight and evolved compared to his pre-ADWD days, but he still on that journey ) , and chagrined by those whom consider him a great man. Can’t wait to read more on the subject when the story telling resumes.

    As a female viewer, I’d like to express that my favorite thing about NCW’s Jamie is not how he appears–not even some ripe Kingslayer Arse–but his portrayal of Jamie. His cockiness mixed with reserve mixed with insecurities he tries so desperately to mask. I find him pretty damn close to book-Jamie, at least as my recollections go, but to dismiss his portrayal as pandering to the female audience who want someone to drool over is, well, perhaps a wee bit insulting. :)

    Are all the beautiful women just there to pander to the male audience? And I’m not talking about boobs–Cercei, Dany, Melisandre, Osha, Ellaria, Shae, etc. etc. etc. I’m sorry, I just can’t imagine D&D sitting in their office having the discussion, “Let’s make Jamie a softie so the ladies will keep watching.” A) He’s not a softie, and B) I watch for the experience of the story and all of the characters, as do most female viewers, I’ll wager. There are many other things to watch for simple eye candy.

    Why am I even writing this.

  41. Daniellica
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

    Sister Wrister,

    I thought you’d abandoned me! :P

  42. WildSeed
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

    Daniellica: But to say GRRM is not interested in redemptive arcs is clearly misreading his quote–I just think he is not interested in the redemptive arcs we’re used to, and thank the gods for that.

    I’d quote all that you wrote, but this part appears more relevant to author’s intent. I enjoyed your perceptions and especially the context relating it back to GRRM’s work.

    To no one in particular :
    Philosophical are best not debated on the web, unless equal sides are willing to respect what the other perceives, with respect to religious doctrine or philosophical issues reflecting fundamental elements of existence. Though we attempt to, and even gain support by some, the remainder will easily miss the point or intent. I say this with myself in mind as well, and will only mention this for review; through principles and values enacted by those wiser among us, and all respect in the manner to preserve and honour all life, some crimes are considered irredeemable. With the full intent of murder, those such as Hitler and psychopaths like him should not be celebrated but dismissed with full resolve. It’s not because these may not redeem themselves in the eyes of those that note possible remorse or turn their lives to one without causing additional harm . That may be achieved and has proven itself from the perspectives of now law abiding or docile sociopaths. I suppose it’s debatable whether societal laws include taking another life, such as penalty of death ( which I personally don’t believe in ), that’s for citizens to decide. I’m really referring to that part of ourselves that becomes so altered from the experience of deliberately murdering defenseless people ( crimes of passion and extreme circumstances withstanding ). Only they really know the chasm created by their crime.

    No one is perfect and an irrelevant point to living, IMO. What matters are the choices we make while we live it. gaining a a little insight , empathy and respect for your fellow person is a good start. Hitler, US Slave holders & criminal psychopaths are way off the mark.

    Okay, back to Jon boy………..

  43. WildSeed
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

    Hodor’s Bastard: Arya becoming a monster or a survivor?

    She’s becoming nameless and faceless. A unique quality that the author invents, and I enjoyed reading. I cannot attach real life considerations to these characters at all time, that would take the fun out of it. LOL ! I really wished GRRM would have allowed Sandor to survive his wounds. For a while I believed he did. There were several passages where it mentions he didn’t, but you know the way GRRM tosses about reader angst …. Oh, and should I feel sorry for lord Tywin or Walder should they regret the Tully-Frey Wedding massacre ? .

  44. Daniellica
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed: No one is perfect and an irrelevant point to living, IMO. What matters are the choices we make while we live it. gaining a a little insight , empathy and respect for your fellow person is a good start. Hitler, US Slave holders & criminal psychopaths are way off the mark.

    Thanking you for such thoughtful words.

    I agree that the actions of Hitlers and Stalins should (hopefully) be rejected outright, but I so often see such individuals summarily dismissed as “monsters,” dehumanized, and it is this I find so dangerous. Hitler WAS just a man, and to dehumanize him creates a remove between “us” and “them,” the evil people. The danger is that thinking of Hitler etc. as inhuman monsters masks the humanity that allowed Hitler to flourish in the first place, and clouds our ability to see such behavior in others.

    I remember watching some interview Anderson Cooper had with a (Danish? Norwegian?) journalist who was making a documentary about the Taliban, just living with a “typical” (err?) Taliban family, showing the warlord playing with his kids, eating dinner, etc. Cooper asks the filmmaker, “Aren’t you worried about humanizing these people?” And I’m screaming at the TV, “WTF ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT! THEY ARE HUMAN!!”

    I know it is typical psychology to Other-ise an enemy, to strip him of his humanity and make him as foreign from the “we” as possible, and that those who stress the enemy’s humanity are often viewed as “sympathizers” (and persecuted, historically), but I see it as a moral imperative to recognize that other humans are, simply, human. GRRM excels in this, which is one reason I love his writing so much. He doesn’t tell me who is “good” or “bad” (*cough*StephenKing*cough*), but he shows me people’s actions and behavior and thoughts and lets me make my own decisions like an adult.

    Joffrey is probably the closest to a typical “villain” in the books thus far (well, maybe except for The Mountain, but given much time to sit with him I’m sure GRRM would manage to make him a secret lover of baby ducks or something), yet even at the end he evokes our sympathy by showing us the terrified child he was all along.

    In short, just because horrible people are capable of doing not-horrible things doesn’t excuse monstrous behavior, but to dismiss anyone’s humanity is to dismiss something in ourselves as well, no matter how much we dislike that recognition.

  45. WildSeed
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 10:57 pm | Permalink

    Daniellica,

    I ‘m attempting to rewrite my response… for some reason the post did not follow, earlier. I’m also in a lab and running back and forth to catch a timer .

    I’m really terrible at embedding web links, but there are countless media reports of Kit Harrington and Nicolau Coster-Waldau ( & to a lesser degree, Aidan ) being the male equivalent of ” eye candy ” for the series. Many viewers do not consider lord Tywin’s wrath as a deal breaker. He’s a CEO, an Alpha male, with great fashion sense ( : I’m all for what gets people interested in watching the show, LOL !

    I agree with you, with respect to Jaime’s script portrayal for the television series. The fundamental elements have not changed, and NCW ‘s acting has helped propel the story. The primary disappointment I have is the pacing of his storyline, and reducing in key events that perhaps I alone found compelling from reading. No doubt any will find reason to differ. Season 4 has had the task of adapting portions of two book sources for a single season ( for now ), a tall order. What I perceive from watching Jaime is his brash and arrogant nature depicted similarly in the books, and the personal growth through his travels and experiences with Brienne. That he is the Kingslayer and deeply in love with his sister had been well acknowledged since S1.

    The books have been useful as both a guide and criticism for the lengths some characters gradual stories emerge. While I applaud the screen process, there are meaningful scenes that I fear will never quite shape certain characters to their full potential. While many attribute all, if not most of Jaime’s enlightened frame of mind solely due to Brienne , and to a lesser degree, Cersei, I do not. Well, not in total. From the series, I have not witnessed his demonstrations of enlightenment, since his ” epiphany ” traveling alongside lady Brienne.
    What I miss, as I did with the other means of rounding out former characters, is the the essential spark that helps shape them. Maisie needs no lesson here, she gives it in large doses. her tenacity rises above the script, as does Charles Dance , et.al. Specifically, I will miss the RiverRun scenes between Jaime and his aunt, the pivotal points to her discussion, and similar with cousin Lancel. Nor will his growth be recognized through demonstration of it towards those considered lesser than he. No, I get a love story. A theme that GoT pushed heavily in season 3. I nicknamed it ” Game of Romance “. I haven’t discounted what the screen production may still choose to enliven Jaime’s storyline, and I may be guilty of showing my disappointment a bit too soon. However judging by the manner that Loras has been reduced to one dimensional preening gay man, barely capable of lifting a sword rather to lead any battle at
    Dragonstone, I’ll just remain neutral in consideration. It’s essential to consider neutrality while reading too, learning each character story. There have definitely been issues with the script for certain character portrayals, but this is not the worst of them.

    Wow, my 1st response was only a paragraph…..

  46. WildSeed
    Posted April 24, 2014 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    Daniellica,

    I reciprocate your thanks. I was hoping my babble signified something.., LOL !

    I found fault to the use of the word when someone applied it to the rape scene, in last week’s episode.

    Joffrey, sadly, was genetically challenged with criminal psychopathic traits, that no known herb or therapy known at the time would save. Worst and ignorance aside, he was surrounded by those in denial and even encouraged his psychosis. He was junior sociopath whose life was likely to be cut short, by someone close enough he dismisses. Today, some may fall under the radar because of their circumstances. however medicinals and therapy may help balance their physiological imbalance while the genetic damage is held in check.

    IMO, Tywin is a villain….. well….. sometimes there are no adequate words.

  47. Daniellica
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 12:08 am | Permalink

    WildSeed: IMO, Tywin is a villain….. well….. sometimes there are no adequate words.

    Tywin reminds me of a very competent and adept world leader or CEO or medical director (those roles sometimes held by sociopaths that require the cool resolve to get done what needs to be done without fretting over people’s feelings).

    Is Tywin more villainous because he helped destroy other characters I loved, or is it solely his behavior that gives that impression? One could say Tywin extolls the virtues of his time by putting duty before personal desire, honoring his family above individuals, ensuring the survival of his house and legacy. One might even say selfless. *gasp!*

    It’s extremely difficult to look at a world outside of our own societal view, which puts paramount value on the individual. Trust me, I am nearly seething with impish delight in anticipation of Tywin upon his final throne, but I greatly enjoy turning over as many facets of people as I can, even–perhaps especially–those distasteful to me. What is it that bothers me about them, truly? The ways in which they are so different from me, or perhaps the ways in which they are similar?

  48. Zack
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    Daniellica,

    This post is one of the best I’ve had the pleasure to read on the site in years. Wanted to thank you for taking the time to write it.

    As relates to Game of Thrones, I’m able to see Tywin (especially as portrayed by Charles Dance on TV) as a man who desires a future of prosperity and respect for his descendants. That he seems to lack mercy or compassion for enemy or family member alike is an unfortunate side effect for him. He appears not to have bothered to cultivate strong relationships with his children, which complicates that code he seems to live by, “Anything and everything for family”

    Again, it’s that contrast within a person that George so effectively captures, I think. And as you note, that notion of good existing simultaneously with ‘evil’ in the same person…it’s the nature of humanity and we should welcome attempts to be as real as possible, to be at peace with our own flawed natures.

  49. Arena
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 3:26 am | Permalink

    Daniellica:
    Great GRRM interview. Especially interested in:

    So true. Screenplays (for the most part) follow a very rigid, predictable, straightforward path you must almost always follow. Ordinary World, Call to Adventure, Rejecting the Call, Meeting the Mentor, Point of no Return, blah blah blah. Screenwriting also taught me about economy, though I guess you’d never figure that by the way I post. It is somewhat like poetry in that you have such a small amount of space within which you try to say as much as possible, though screenwriting is all about revealing and poetry is the art of crafting secrets.

    I love this about ASOIAF–that it raises so many phantoms relevant to life, to being human. That is why I call fiction a distillation of essential human truth. Concentrated emotion, action, reaction, ways to relate, to see the world, to be in the world amongst one another. The books and show often inspire me to write things of my own, to riff on the bigger picture, just as all your comments do. :)

    ORC CRADLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    (right up there with Dragon Baskets)

    Hooray for the excluded third! My objet petit a is showing. Love!

    So you read Lacan…

  50. Annara Snow
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    WildSeed:
    Annara Snow,
    Nicolau coster-Waldau is considered eye candy, for most female viewers. I understand too that Jaime”s book character has many admirers, of both genders, but I care for him not. For better or worse, GoT is adapting Jaime Lannister’s story in a way that gains support for those who remain on the fence about him ( he’s definitely gained much insight and evolved compared to his pre-ADWD days, but he still on that journey ) , and chagrined by those whom consider him a great man.Can’t wait to read more on the subject when the story telling resumes.

    I don’t know what the heck you’re talking about. First of all, what do looks have to do with it? We’ve been talking about how the show is portraying his personality – he still looks the same.

    And your last sentence is utter nonsense. People who are upset by the way the blatantly out of character rape in the last episode reflects on the show portrayal of him aren’t upset because they think “he is a great man”* – who in the world thinks that, really? – but because it’s, well, blatantly out of character.

    * Geez, what a ridiculous Straw Man.

  51. WildSeed
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    Annara Snow: First of all, what do looks have to do with it?

    Ask the women & teens swooning over him. I’m not one of them. I prefer to rate his performance on the show, and the material he has to work with. On the other hand, NCW does give great interviews in person. He has a great sense of humour. The entertainment media has really hyped up this nonsense, you speak of.

  52. WildSeed
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed: Can’t wait to read more on the subject when the story telling resumes.

    Annara Snow,

    The above sentence is ” utter nonsense ” ? You mean I shouldn’t be eager for TWOW to resume the scene where Jaime meets up with lady Stoneheart ???????????. Nonsense indeed !

    It sounds like you’re referring to the show , only, which I am not. I have no idea what ” straw man ” is, and I’m not very interested in finding out. No thanks.

  53. WildSeed
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    WildSeed: Many viewers do not consider lord Tywin’s wrath as a deal breaker. He’s a CEO, an Alpha male, with great fashion sense ( : I’m all for what gets people interested in watching the show, LOL !

    Daniellica: Tywin reminds me of a very competent and adept world leader or CEO

    We agree to that. Actor Charles Dance is very adept at giving his character charismatic charm, as well as shrewdness. It’s almost effortless for him. When I saw him cast in other roles, the same quality shines through. There’s a book ( can’t remember the title, although released in 2013 ) that explores the phenomenon of successful ruthless men ( from high profile politician to fortune 500 moguls ), and the sociopathic persona they display. What the author also noted ( I saw him being interviewed on the Jon Stewart show ) was their keen perspective of achievement which rarely delved into causing deliberate harm to an individual ( say murder, etc ). They kept their eye on the goal ( again, not like a serial killer ) which propelled them to positions of high profile and respect. Lord Tywin doesn’t mind stepping on backs to ascend his high status, and notably sends his underlings to their deaths, in order to steady his rise. On the show, despite scenes of Tywin meting out his shrewd plans, you can’t help but admire the finesse that Dance adds to the portrayal .

  54. WildSeed
    Posted April 25, 2014 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    Zack: As relates to Game of Thrones, I’m able to see Tywin (especially as portrayed by Charles Dance on TV) as a man who desires a future of prosperity and respect for his descendants. That he seems to lack mercy or compassion for enemy or family member alike is an unfortunate side effect for him. He appears not to have bothered to cultivate strong relationships with his children, which complicates that code he seems to live by, “Anything and everything for family”

    So true, to a point. Tywin understands that to hold on to power and fortune , he must ensure it for generations. That he chooses to prosper by any means possible, makes him more of a villain, IMO. Whenever I find myself mesmerized by Dance’s portrayal of Tywin, I recall the book passages that relate his accounts of the ” Reynes of Castermere “. It’s chilling and quite sobering. Do not cross this man ! I wish I had more accounts of his relationship with Aerys Targaryeon. On that note, his wife Joanne as well.

  55. Sister Wrister
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 5:25 am | Permalink

    Daniellica,

    Never!

    WildSeed,

    I hope you didn’t take my contextualization of history and judgement with regards to Hitler as anything remotely akin to rationalizing, let alone defensive, of his actions. I tend to agree with Dani, in that we must not forget that we all show up here human. I also believe we are all engaged in a feedback loop- input/output, repeat. The output is where we get a chance to speak… a moment of agency. One would hope this output informs subsequent inputs, though proof of a correlation between motivation, circumstance, and volition in human activity is elusive indeed. Regardless, the sum of all our actions will render an image for judgement. Clearly, any positive accomplishments Hitler may have had in prewar Europe were ultimately rendered worthless, and rightly so. This is because his later crimes were indeed irredeemable. And yes, they were monstrous. Whether genetics or environment are at play, and to what degree the capacity for heinous crimes can be quelled with therapy/medicinals… the bottom line is we are all human, we all have some degree of agency, and we could all fall into the wrong shape given the conditions (input) necessary and sufficient for such a fall (output).

    What a great read this thread is. Many thanks to you for your thoughtful discussion. I got the next round of ale and chickens!

  56. Daniellica
    Posted April 26, 2014 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Sister Wrister: the bottom line is we are all human, we all have some degree of agency, and we could all fall into the wrong shape given the conditions (input) necessary and sufficient for such a fall (output).

    You remind me of Bakhtin’s Tripartite Identity Scheme. One’s identity consists of three parts: the Center (everything internal within yourself, perception and prejudice and sensation and memory, etc.), the Not-Center (literally everything else, from other people to the atmosphere to physical objects, etc.), and the relationship between the two. It is the encounter that is vital, and in this scheme the Center and Not-Center are constantly shifting as they continuously collide.

    Which reminds me of Adorno’s commentary on art–that it must speak in some kind of alien language to have any affect. That it must be familiar enough to be recognized as language but alien enough to confuse, or to frighten, or to provoke. If we *just get* something, we leave that something unchanged, but if we are challenged by our experience, we’re given the potential to grow and learn and transform.

    That is one of my favorite things about this fandom–great discussions that veer in many directions, enriching disagreements, fruitless theorizing that still challenges one’s thought processes, so many perceptions of the same material. We’re all so deliciously flawed. :)


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