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Spacerunner

Ironside's internal monologue

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Why does Ironsides refer to Chaser and Spensa as cowards in her internal monologue, when they are clearly not cowards.  Potential traitors susceptible to Krell taking advantage of their defect, sure, but not cowards

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That is a good point. I quickly skimmed the Interludes again, and I don't see a time where she refers to Chaser as a coward (she does in the first interlude, but it's out loud. I can chalk that up to keeping appearances, even when she's talking to Cobb). But she definitely refers to Spensa as a coward in her thoughts. Until the third interlude. Then she refers to her as a defect.

I'm not sure there is a good answer here. I assume it's to not reveal too much too soon, but I think that defect could have worked in place of coward in the parts of the story that are Ironsides' thoughts.

Sounds like a good question to ask Brandon if you get the chance, although if it's in an open forum you may want to try phrasing it to avoid spoilers.

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I think the phrasing may have more to do with the "defect". Ironsides is a continuation of the leadership on the original craft that wanted to fight instead of surrender. The engineers and scientists favored fleeing to safety. From her perspective the "defect" lead to the cowardice of escaping instead of fighting.

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If one repeats a lie often enough it becomes ingrained in their own mind. She has likely been living the lie for so long it has become the truth in her unconscious thoughts, leading to bridging between the idea of 'defect' and 'cowardice.'

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Ironsides was a very confused (and I'm guessing very internally conflicted) woman.  Almost none of her actions with regard to Spensa actually advanced any of her supposed goals.  She discriminated against Spensa only just enough to inconvenience her into trying harder and generate sympathy from the other students.  She claimed to be ultimately worried about the danger of the defect yet sent Spensa armed into multiple livefire fights?  I get the feeling she was mostly just lying to herself about what her goals and motives were.

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I think I might be one of the only people who felt a little bad for Ironsides. Her friend and fellow pilot seemingly betrayed them all, or at the least, he caused major damage to her psyche. She gave him permission to put himself at risk. And then he, moments later, murdered half her fleet. Now she’s in charge of a losing battle for the fate of the species. She’s embroiled in human politics which commandeer her best resource: pilots. Does she treat Spensa unfairly? Yes. Very! But I’m sure her resentment toward spensa’s dad is strong. And then to have to lie to manage the politics of a war that they are losing? I am not surprised at all. I’m glad she gets her comeuppance, but I don’t hate her.

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On 12/29/2018 at 1:46 PM, Bliev said:

I think I might be one of the only people who felt a little bad for Ironsides. Her friend and fellow pilot seemingly betrayed them all, or at the least, he caused major damage to her psyche. She gave him permission to put himself at risk. And then he, moments later, murdered half her fleet. Now she’s in charge of a losing battle for the fate of the species. She’s embroiled in human politics which commandeer her best resource: pilots. Does she treat Spensa unfairly? Yes. Very! But I’m sure her resentment toward spensa’s dad is strong. And then to have to lie to manage the politics of a war that they are losing? I am not surprised at all. I’m glad she gets her comeuppance, but I don’t hate her.

For sure the point of Ironside's interludes is so that we can see things from her perspective (pardon the turn of phrase). It's all about the motivations, and the probabilities. Ironside knew that Chaser had the "defect" and that he basically went crazy. She suspects that Spensa also has the "defect", and so she's trying to prevent Spensa from flying. Ironside's motivation has good intentions, and (without M-Bot's shielding) she would have been right.

I also wouldn't say that Ironside got her comeuppance. Sure Spensa proved her wrong (again, because of M-Bot's shielding), but as far as I know Ironside is still the leader of the military. She didn't lose anything except maybe some political bargaining power. My hope is that after Spensa's initial demands about Cobb and Rig (i.e. that they waited for them), she and Ironside are going to work together fairly smoothly.

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