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[OB] Shallan Davar disgust thread

301 posts in this topic

18 hours ago, TwiLyghtSansSparkles said:

Apologies if this comes across as overly salty, but does that mean that people who stumble into knowledge they didn't know they needed in real life is also deus ex machina? Or, speaking in terms of in-universe contrivances, does this mean that Kaladin happening to stumble across the listeners in OB is also deus ex machina? Or that the Voidbringer attack that happens to give Elhokar's group time to sneak into Kholinar is deus ex machina? Or that Dalinar happening to puzzle out where the Voidbringers are going to attack is deus ex machina? 

If you're going to chalk up all of Shallan's victories to deus ex machina, then you have to apply the same standards to the other characters. 

Yes “deus ex machina” criticism was for all of the books. Especially everyone suddenly becoming radiant. 

15 hours ago, Calderis said:

Shallan is no more contrived than any other character. The reasoning behind all of the "deus ex machina" is explained in context, as it is with every other character 

Her theft was set aside because Jasnah realized what she was. It was not forgotten. The stipulations of her remaining as ward were no more theft and no more lies. 

Her marriage to Adolin being arranged was set up by Jasnah specifically to take care o her family's financial problems and tie a Radiant to house Kholin. It was a political move on Jasnah's part. 

Everything she does is validly explained, and based off of things that either were set up before, like Jasnah's research into the Oathgate. Or no one understands it, like what happened with Re-Shephir. 

The same could be said for Dalinar using the Oathgate or opening a perpendicularity. Or Kaladin making a calm spot in the highstorm. 

Frankly, the hate Shallan gets does not hold up to the reasoning people apply to it. This isn't directed at just you @Justi, because I've seen it numerous times. 

Of course he explained the path Jasnah created for Shallan by arranging fairytale marriage and forget to lucky theft. I’m criticising why Sanderson choose this path. It is very shallow way. If she handled her own family affairs it would be much more harder for Shallan but more respectful for her character. Sometimes I think he choose her name because of it. Shallan=Shallow :) 

I ilke fantastic fiction books very much, I Often compare characters between books. I can see Kaladin, Dalinar, Adolin living their lifes at other fiction books or in real world. They can live Rothfuss’s or Martin’s worlds as humans without radiant powers since they have strong characters. They take matters on their hands and fights. Same goes for Kvothe, Devi, Maer or characters from GoT living in here, WoK. But I cant see Shallan living anywhere. She mostly depend on Sanderson’s grace for survival. I really dont expect characters solves everything like they are in real world. But it is not a fairytale or Romantic book for 15-18 years of age girl. Perfect prince to solve everything? Shallow.

 

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16 minutes ago, Justi said:

Yes “deus ex machina” criticism was for all of the books. Especially everyone suddenly becoming radiant. 

....

I’m....really not sure what to say here. Since apparently every plot development is tantamount to deus ex machina by this logic, I am genuinely not sure how to respond. 

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Funny. Naive, self-destructive, and success through unbelievable circumstances/relationships seems to be the story of about 50% of celebrities in real life. 

I have no issue with it in a fantasy story. 

Edited by Calderis
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33 minutes ago, TwiLyghtSansSparkles said:

....

I’m....really not sure what to say here. Since apparently every plot development is tantamount to deus ex machina by this logic, I am genuinely not sure how to respond. 

Every person who life is in danger suddenly becomes radiant and then she/he lives. (except king and even he almost saved) How is this normal? Clearly this is will of the god. Thank god :) 

Can you imagine in Harry Potter series ordinary peoples suddenly become witches/wizards in life threatening circumstances? Or in Name of the Wind suddenly ordinary peoples use power of names to save their lives? Martin is famous with no coming “deus ex machina” so I’m not even going to name anyone from his books. But If a Sanderson character is in trouble no need to worry. He will be radiant And everything will be OK. :) 

Edited by Justi
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@Justi could you list some examples of a character suddenly becoming a knight, especially suddenly becoming a knight to survive?

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6 minutes ago, Justi said:

Every person who life is in danger suddenly becomes radiant and then she/he lives. (except king and even he almost saved) How is this normal? Clearly this is will of the god. Thank god :) 

Can you imagine in Harry Potter series ordinary peoples suddenly become witches/wizards in life threatening circumstances? Or in Name of the Wind suddenly ordinary peoples use power of names to save their lives? Martin is famous with no coming “deus ex machina” so I’m not even going to name anyone from his books. But If a Sanderson character is in trouble no need to worry. He will be radiant And everything will be OK. :) 

But....but that’s also kind of the point of the series right now? The whole crux of the conflict is that spren are starting to bond with humans again because the planet is in danger. It’s a natural narrative choice to follow the characters who become Radiants, and having them begin to display powers under life threatening circumstances makes for good drama. 

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24 minutes ago, TwiLyghtSansSparkles said:

But....but that’s also kind of the point of the series right now? The whole crux of the conflict is that spren are starting to bond with humans again because the planet is in danger. It’s a natural narrative choice to follow the characters who become Radiants, and having them begin to display powers under life threatening circumstances makes for good drama. 

Exactly. Also, there are more than enough people who just die, even though they could have become Radiants given different circumstances. Elhokar, Eshonai, Tien, Ym - to name just a few prominent ones. And then there are probably hundreds or even thousands of people who have been killed by the Skybreakers since the Recreance. The thing is, The Stormlight Archive is not their series. It is a series that tells the story of how the Knights Radiant are refounded and Surgebinding returns to Roshar. So of course it makes sense to prominently feature exactly the people who are (going to be) these new Knights Radiant.

In my opinion the only Deus Ex Machina-situation that could have been handled a bit better is Jasnah vanishing for a whole book, which was just required to tell the story of WoR more slowly. Shallan's stuff, on the other hand, is - while not always relatable - comprehensible to me, especially when you shift the focus away from her own motivations and to how other characters experience and view her.

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Justi, you cannot possibly mean that every person in these books that are in danger suddenly becomes a radiant and is saved? I mean with Kaladin moaning about everyone he is unable to save, and the hordes of people that die, without any stormlight saving them.

Taravangian says in his diagram: "look for the ones who survive when they should not". This is his recipe for finding the budding radiants. The ones who survive things that should have killed them are the ones that become radiants. Because they have already bonded a spren and are on their way to swear oaths.  And naturally, those are the ones that have the most screen time. 

It is rather obvious to me that the ones that become radiant struggle for a long, long time before they swear their words, and that they often need a dangerous situation to be able to understand what their nexts Words are. All these things are described either very explicitly in the books, or the explanation is there, but you have to be observant to understand it. That you often have to struggle as a reader to get all the different connections and explanations is one of the biggest charms of the books to me. 

These books are not about action scenes only and cannot be understood if you refuse to read and understand the other parts of them.

Edited by Jenet
Deleted two sentences that could be seen as a personal attack.
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1 hour ago, Jenet said:

Justi, have you actually read the books? Or have you just skimmed the contents?

Lines like this are how we end up getting the mods involved. We're shifting from opinions and discussion to personal attacks. 

How about we all agree to disagree and let this thread die again? 

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I like how the person that started this just comes in, says something super contentious, and then just leaves.                   btw that sentence was sarcastic.

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5 hours ago, Jenet said:

That you often have to struggle as a reader to get all the different connections and explanations is one of the biggest charms of the books to me. 

Me too. For some reason i really enjoy the extra work i have to do to understand and fully appreciate much of the stuff in the books. To pick out the nuances and see the additional layers behind. It makes me feel like i'm in English Literature class again. Okay i know that sounds... not fun, but for some strange reason it's fun for me. Especially since it's been a looooong time since i've had the chance to attend one. :P

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7 hours ago, cantabile21 said:

Me too. For some reason i really enjoy the extra work i have to do to understand and fully appreciate much of the stuff in the books. To pick out the nuances and see the additional layers behind. It makes me feel like i'm in English Literature class again. Okay i know that sounds... not fun, but for some strange reason it's fun for me. Especially since it's been a looooong time since i've had the chance to attend one. :P

Haha! I just thought exactly the same yesterday, and found that the feeling was pleasant. Like litterature analysis suddenly was fun instead of boring. And then I thought: Why? Here we sit discussing a fantasy book series, the most loathed genre of litterature there is, almost, and the analysis of the classics was boring, and this is not. I find that interesting.

Is it because we were younger then, and have matured?
Is it because we are not able to grasp the genious of the classics?
Or is it because Sanderson with his books of endless pages is able to create something entirely new? Something that almost resembles life itself, being able to show us in much more detail how different people feel about their lives and what happens to them, and force us to analyze in order to understand what is going on?

Anyway, this kind of writing really speaks to my crypticspren. "Mmmmmmm.... Patternnnn.... ",  it says all the time. And I start searching back and forth in the book to get more answers. Fun! Just like a puzzle.

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20 hours ago, Jenet said:

Justi, you cannot possibly mean that every person in these books that are in danger suddenly becomes a radiant and is saved? I mean with Kaladin moaning about everyone he is unable to save, and the hordes of people that die, without any stormlight saving them.

Taravangian says in his diagram: "look for the ones who survive when they should not". This is his recipe for finding the budding radiants. The ones who survive things that should have killed them are the ones that become radiants. Because they have already bonded a spren and are on their way to swear oaths.  And naturally, those are the ones that have the most screen time. 

It is rather obvious to me that the ones that become radiant struggle for a long, long time before they swear their words, and that they often need a dangerous situation to be able to understand what their nexts Words are. All these things are described either very explicitly in the books, or the explanation is there, but you have to be observant to understand it. That you often have to struggle as a reader to get all the different connections and explanations is one of the biggest charms of the books to me. 

These books are not about action scenes only and cannot be understood if you refuse to read and understand the other parts of them.

Dont you think saving Kaladin’s friends with words would be impossible since concept of becoming Radiant only become avaiable end of the first book and long before Kaladin’s friends died which is beginning of the first book?

All the long long explanations doesnt mean “There is dangerous situation, I’m going to say words and then I’m out of it” is not perfect example of deus ex machina. Couple of rediants should be dead in dangerous situations before we says otherwise.

 

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2 hours ago, Justi said:

Dont you think saving Kaladin’s friends with words would be impossible since concept of becoming Radiant only become avaiable end of the first book and long before Kaladin’s friends died which is beginning of the first book?

All the long long explanations doesnt mean “There is dangerous situation, I’m going to say words and then I’m out of it” is not perfect example of deus ex machina. Couple of rediants should be dead in dangerous situations before we says otherwise.

 

Mmm Deus Ex Machina only applies if the power/reveal isn't hinted at or foreshadowed beforehand, no? And Brandon does a crapton of foreshadowing for just about every significant event.

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wow I forgot about Taravangian saying “look for the ones who survive when they should not”. Should we call him Mr. Glass?

also @RShara crapton is the perfect word for the amount of foreshadowing Sanderson does and should henceforth always be used when referring to it :)

Edited by Straight_Outta_Arrakis
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Cremton. Not crapton. 

Also, am I the only one who is bothered by the title of this thread. Dislike I get, but disgust feels like a strange word to use. 

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3 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Cremton. Not crapton. 

Also, am I the only one who is bothered by the title of this thread. Dislike I get, but disgust feels like a strange word to use. 

Yes, I’ve been bothered by the title as well. Disgust just has such a negative connotation and sound.

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6 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Cremton. Not crapton. 

Also, am I the only one who is bothered by the title of this thread. Dislike I get, but disgust feels like a strange word to use. 

No, your not the only one. The discussion in here shows that as well, I guess.

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@Justi Sorry to mention this again, but could you please list some examples when a character was about to die and either said some words to gain power, or became a knight? I can't think of any examples where it wasn't choreographed to happen.

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1 hour ago, thorongil said:

No, your not the only one. The discussion in here shows that as well, I guess.

I've felt that way from the beginning, yeah.

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I do not like Shallan. Her attitude really annoyed me. I ended up skimming the parts with her in it. There was just too much of her in Oathbringer and not enough Kaladan!!!!!!!!

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*Kaladin :)

She's one of the main characters, so she's going to have a lot of screen time, along with Kaladin, Dalinar, Szeth, and Venli.

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The only reason I despise Shallan is because she has ruined my Kadolin fantasy :P

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1 hour ago, Ripheus23 said:

The only reason I despise Shallan is because she has ruined my Kadolin fantasy :P

Just ship the three of them together. Viola. Everyone wins. :P 

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Shallan is terrible. The reason I don’t like her is an evident part of her character: she is deceitful. It’s part of who she is. From the beginning of the story she has continued to lie to everyone around her including herself. There is no core of good in her, only the desire to imitate good for the sake of her own goals. She will betray all of her allies and think she is doing the “right” thing.

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