Draginon

Alternative Villains

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Have you ever watched a film or show, read a book or played a game and started thinking that the designated good guy(s) might be the real villain?

After I first watched Moana I actually felt like Maui was the villain of the story, just a redemption arc villain, but so many people keep thinking he’s the male hero of the story.

Another I thought about while playing Lego Dimensions. I’ve never watched the Legends of Chima show but I already know that the crocodile tribe are supposed to be the designated villains but while playing Lego Dimensions one of the Chima quests comes from the Lion tribe leader and the way he phrases the quest I couldn’t help thinking “wait, are the Lions the real villains?” I thought this because they hoard all the CHI to themselves, refuse to let anyone else use it (which has led to others trying to make a synthetic version) and hunt down anyone who takes even a drop of it. Oh and the CHI is apparently necessary for connecting with the great animal spirits. In any other media a group that does this is almost always the villain of the story so it seems suspect that a hero group would do something like this. Heck the only reason the crocodile tribe even does bad things is because they keep being denied access to CHI, when other tribes do get permission it’s heavily regulated how it’s used, and they just want to be connected to the great crocodile spirit. I guess reptiles will always be villains even when they are trying to do the right thing. 

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The Rebels are obviously the villains of Star Wars. The Empire is just seeking peace and order in the galaxy, and they also employ smurfs in their navy. Total good guys. The rebels are terrorists who seeks the aid of teddy bears who eat people, and a shady religious order of old, represented by a wierd frog who lives in a swamp. 

The Vikings in Vikings are defenitely the bad guys in the drama, but are also the main characters. Likewise, in The Last Kingdom, Uhthred, the main character, is pretty much a douchebag. 

Thor is defenitely a bad guy in the first half of the first Thor movie. He is a genocidal warmonger. 

Gandalf is pretty much sending out random farmers to fight dragons and evil empires who employ monsters. He does this twice.

Dumbledore is pretty much sending his students to fight dragons, dark lords, risk their lives by travelling back in time, allows them to attempt murder at school, employs a guy who dreams of torturing children, and allows a bully to work as a teacher in his school. He does this a LOT:

Doctor Strange willingly sacrifices peoples lives for good in his Endgame plan. 

In Knightfall, the main character steals the kings wife, and when the king finds out, he is treated like the villain, and the one who has been doing bad things (granted he does do bad things out of anger, but not really before that). 

Basically everyone in Game of Thrones. Except Davos. He just smuggled onions, which is okay. 

I will be back if I recall more things.

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2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

The Rebels are obviously the villains of Star Wars. The Empire is just seeking peace and order in the galaxy, and they also employ smurfs in their navy. Total good guys. The rebels are terrorists who seeks the aid of teddy bears who eat people, and a shady religious order of old, represented by a wierd frog who lives in a swamp. 

Have you seen the emperor?  Also just no.  The empire is supposed to be Nazi Germany.  Calling them the good guys is plain ridiculous.

2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Thor is defenitely a bad guy in the first half of the first Thor movie. He is a genocidal warmonger. 

Agreed.  This is why Odin sends him to learn humility.

2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Doctor Strange willingly sacrifices peoples lives for good in his Endgame plan. 

He has absolutely no choice in the matter.  He is just doing the best he can.

2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Basically everyone in Game of Thrones. Except Davos. He just smuggled onions, which is okay. 

Agreed actually.  Although Ned Stark, Arya, Jon, Sam, and Brienne are all mostly OK.

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15 minutes ago, Karger said:

Have you seen the emperor?  Also just no.  The empire is supposed to be Nazi Germany.  Calling them the good guys is plain ridiculous.

That was a joke actually, though that can be hard to tell in text form. 

 

16 minutes ago, Karger said:

He has absolutely no choice in the matter.  He is just doing the best he can.

2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

I know. And I dont consider him a villain. He is however showing the same mentality as Amaram or other antagonists in the Cosmere. 

17 minutes ago, Karger said:

Agreed actually.  Although Ned Stark, Arya, Jon, Sam, and Brienne are all mostly OK.

Yeah. Beric, Gendry, Sansa, Robb, Talisa... there are a bunch of decent people. 

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29 minutes ago, Toaster Retribution said:

I know. And I dont consider him a villain. He is however showing the same mentality as Amaram or other antagonists in the Cosmere. 

Ehhhhh, I am sorry but in that case I think you are stretching things a bit. Even if we were to look at Amaram as altruistically as possible, he is still operating on flawed information that is revealed to be false. Dr.Strange conversely looked at countless alternative timelines, and found only one where Thanos is defeated, and the population of the universe is preserved. In that circumstance the needs of the many out weight the needs of the few and he has proof from the time gem. Amaram has a belief in texts that have been altered and changed over the centuries by the very religion he believes in. By the way, could you point to me to a scene where Amaram actually states he is concerned for people's souls? Because the only mention I saw was his desire to make the Church more of a world power. You can certainly personally equate that by people in the book following that religion, their soul is saved by going to that religion's after-life, but I do not recall him ever stating that was his goal. I also do not recall that being stated as a tenet of that religion. Could you point that out to me?

Regardless it still goes back to the fact that Amaram is wrong, and all those people that have died, and are going to die because of the desolation, are going to die for nothing because his religion is false. So whereas Dr.Strange sacrificed a confirmed number of people (at their own choice, as Natalia and so on chose to be involved), in order to bring back and preserve another confirmed number, Amaram sacrificed an unknown number of people without their say, ultimately for nothing. Actually as I write this, I feel Amaram has more in common with Thanos, than Dr. Strange. Thanos felt killing a certain number of people against their will would be to the ultimate benefit of all. Turns out this was incorrect. Life actually ended up worse. He then reasons it is because they know what they lost, so he was then going to make them be happy with what he did. Ultimately removing their personal choice completely. 

 

edit: I would also say Dr.Strange's plan was nobler as he knew he would be sacrificing himself by being among those snapped and would have to depend on the time stone being right, for him to come back at all. So Dr. Strange would have far more to lose if he was wrong, (his life) while Amaram would not. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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4 minutes ago, Pathfinder said:

Ehhhhh, I am sorry but in that case I think you are stretching things a bit. Even if we were to look at Amaram as altruistically as possible, he is still operating on flawed information that is revealed to be false. Dr.Strange conversely looked at countless alternative timelines, and found only one where Thanos is defeated, and the population of the universe is preserved. In that circumstance the needs of the many out weight the needs of the few and he has proof from the time gem. Amaram has a belief in texts that have been altered and changed over the centuries by the very religion he believes in. By the way, could you point to me to a scene where Amaram actually states he is concerned for people's souls? Because the only mention I saw was his desire to make the Church more of a world power. You can certainly then equate that to saving people's souls in your opinion that by believing in the religion those people can then go to that religion's after-life, but I do not recall him ever stating that was his goal. And it still goes back to the fact that Amaram is wrong, and all those people that have died, and are going to die because of the desolation, are going to die for nothing because his religion is false. 

Stormlight spoilers:

Spoiler

True. He does believe that it is correct though, so the fact that it turns out to be false doesn’t really affect how we should read him, I think. 

As for the souls thing, I do not think that he ever speaks of saving souls (I will check some of his scenes later, but off the cuff I dont recall anything). My read is that he wants to do that though, because he is not callous enough to kill thousands for only power and glory (shown when Restares had to convince him to kill Kaladins men). There has to be some kind of greater good beyond himself as well. Otherwise he wouldn’t do it.

If you want to continue discussing Amaram (which I’m glad to do) then you should send me a PM so that we dont derail this thread. I do give you that the Strange/Amaram comparison doesnt hold up, at least not entirely. Strange is somewhat of a destination before journey guy though. Before looking into the future he is willing to sacrifice both Tony and Peter Parker to protect the Time Stone, which, as it turns out, was also the wrong thing to do since Tony needed to live for them to win. 

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38 minutes ago, Toaster Retribution said:

That was a joke actually, though that can be hard to tell in text form. 

I understand but you hit a pet peeve of mine.

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1 hour ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Stormlight spoilers:

  Hide contents

True. He does believe that it is correct though, so the fact that it turns out to be false doesn’t really affect how we should read him, I think. 

As for the souls thing, I do not think that he ever speaks of saving souls (I will check some of his scenes later, but off the cuff I dont recall anything). My read is that he wants to do that though, because he is not callous enough to kill thousands for only power and glory (shown when Restares had to convince him to kill Kaladins men). There has to be some kind of greater good beyond himself as well. Otherwise he wouldn’t do it.

If you want to continue discussing Amaram (which I’m glad to do) then you should send me a PM so that we dont derail this thread. I do give you that the Strange/Amaram comparison doesnt hold up, at least not entirely. Strange is somewhat of a destination before journey guy though. Before looking into the future he is willing to sacrifice both Tony and Peter Parker to protect the Time Stone, which, as it turns out, was also the wrong thing to do since Tony needed to live for them to win. 

I don't think this is exactly derailing as it is comparing Amaram and Dr.Strange as to whether they are "alternate villains" but if the OP would like us to, I have no problem respect their wish. I will follow up though that

Spoiler

Amaram wanted Dalinar to reject Sebarial and (I forgot the other Highprince's name) aid when preparing to travel to Narak to face the Parshendi. The reason being it will be all the more glorious for them. Dalinar had to shut him down saying he would hope they were beyond such vainglorious actions. So Amaram was willing to risk the lives of thousands of people, just so he and Dalinar would have more glory if they won. Amaram has been researching the history of the radiants and voidbringers to bring about the desolation. Jasnah has been doing the same exact thing. Jasnah noted how the records have been altered and distorted by the church. Amaram would have had to consciously disregard the evidence to not realize the information he was operating on was flawed. 

This is where we disagree. I do not think there has to be some kind of greater good for him to take the actions he takes. You can feel there is, but based on the information in the book there doesn't have to be. 

Dr. Strange said he was willing to if it came to that. That is the first difference. Dr. Strange would protect the time gem, and do his best to keep it away from Thanos. He did not actively try to kill Tony and Peter in order to protect the stone. If he had to choose between protecting the stone and someone else actively killing Tony and Peter he would choose the stone over them. But Dr. Strange is not actively creating a scenario where Tony and Peter would end up dying because of the stone whereas the scenario would have not existed prior without him. Thanos is creating that scenario. Not Dr. Strange. Amaram is actively choosing to bring about a scenario where people will die due to his actions, in order to accomplish his goals. Further once Dr. Strange realizes what he must do to save all life, he does it. What he doesn't do is

Spoiler

switch sides to Thanos and actively fight with him to destroy half of all life in the universe. 

I spoilered that because of the reference to what Amaram did. 

 

edit: to put it another way. Dr. Strange is dealing with a scenario created by an outside individual or entity and is trying to mitigate that. Amaram is actively creating said scenario. 

 

edit 2: V from V for Vendetta is an alternative villain. It isn't shown too much in the movie but in the comics, V blows up those buildings when they are very much in use by the general population. He doesn't get them evacuated, nor warn anyone. So there are very much innocent people in those buildings getting killed. We just view V as a hero because he happens to extol our same set of values, but he is very much a terrorist murdering innocent people. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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23 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Gandalf is pretty much sending out random farmers to fight dragons and evil empires who employ monsters. He does this twice.

Jacqueline Carey's Banewreaker/Godslayer duology is in essence an 'alternative' Lord of the Rings where Sauron & his crew are the (anti-)heroes while Gandalf is the villain (along with the rest of the Valar and Maiar) and the hobbits are his clueless pawns.  I read this on a recommendation from GRRM and ended up with mixed feelings about it: I liked the ending, but the setting and characters seemed infodumped and underdeveloped, perhaps as a consequence of leaning so heavily on The Lord of the Rings.

While Abercrombie's First Law trilogy doesn't really have "designated good guy(s)", Bayaz is set up like that at least to some extent in the earlier parts of the series.

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@Pathfinder 

I think that you are, again, making a good point regarding Strange, and I see the difference between them. Regarding Amaram specifically:

Spoiler

He is hungry for glory, yes, but he also had a hard time killing Kaladins men for the Blade. If he had to be convinced to murder three innocents, he would probably have to be very, very convinced about his cause to murder billions of people. 

Also, his turn to Odium is him being weak enough to accept the ”I will take your pain” offer. He does this after learning of the lies of his religion, which makes it likely that he hadn’t realized those before. 

 

15 minutes ago, Just a Lifetime said:

While Abercrombie's First Law trilogy doesn't really have "designated good guy(s)", Bayaz is set up like that at least to some extent in the earlier parts of the series.

Bayaz is one character I despise. I think he might be my most disliked character in fiction. I’d take Straff Venture or Ramsay Bolton any day, to avoid him. 

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2 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

@Pathfinder 

I think that you are, again, making a good point regarding Strange, and I see the difference between them. Regarding Amaram specifically:

  Reveal hidden contents

He is hungry for glory, yes, but he also had a hard time killing Kaladins men for the Blade. If he had to be convinced to murder three innocents, he would probably have to be very, very convinced about his cause to murder billions of people. 

Also, his turn to Odium is him being weak enough to accept the ”I will take your pain” offer. He does this after learning of the lies of his religion, which makes it likely that he hadn’t realized those before. 

 

Bayaz is one character I despise. I think he might be my most disliked character in fiction. I’d take Straff Venture or Ramsay Bolton any day, to avoid him. 

And again I will have to very much disagree regarding Amaram

Spoiler

It didn't take much for Amaram to try to pull a shardblade on Dalinar, and then Jasnah. Just both times Dalinar and Jasnah were able to stop him. Kaladin and his crew were not as fortunate. 

But at the end of the day I guess RAFO till we get Jasnah's book with her flashbacks. I think we will learn the most about their shared history then. 

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In regards to Amaram: since we don’t know what he was really like before the Kaladin flashbacks this is just speculation on my part, what if he was just put in a bad spot at the time and has just become more fanatical since then where he has absolutely no issue doing it during the events of Oathbringer but absolutely would have to think about it during the WOK flashback. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of realism for him to become that entrenched in his beliefs in a couple years since people in cults can change just like that.

Now I could be proven wrong and it turns out he was always like that but the events as seen seem to show he was at least decent, and I mean decent in the nicest way possible considering what he possibly did to Jasnah when they were younger, but has grown more unhinged as the series has gone on until he has joined with the devil himself.

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1 hour ago, Draginon said:

In regards to Amaram: since we don’t know what he was really like before the Kaladin flashbacks this is just speculation on my part, what if he was just put in a bad spot at the time and has just become more fanatical since then where he has absolutely no issue doing it during the events of Oathbringer but absolutely would have to think about it during the WOK flashback. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of realism for him to become that entrenched in his beliefs in a couple years since people in cults can change just like that.

Now I could be proven wrong and it turns out he was always like that but the events as seen seem to show he was at least decent, and I mean decent in the nicest way possible considering what he possibly did to Jasnah when they were younger, but has grown more unhinged as the series has gone on until he has joined with the devil himself.

Eh, both Jasnah and Sadeas have known Amaram for a long time, and they both comment on knowing who he really is. So that doesn't read to me as a change. But I guess to each their own. 

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1 hour ago, Pathfinder said:

Eh, both Jasnah and Sadeas have known Amaram for a long time, and they both comment on knowing who he really is. So that doesn't read to me as a change. But I guess to each their own. 

A public image change at least.

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24 minutes ago, Draginon said:

A public image change at least.

Can you explain/elaborate on what you mean?

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On 2019-07-16 at 5:19 PM, Pathfinder said:

And again I will have to very much disagree regarding Amaram

  Hide contents

It didn't take much for Amaram to try to pull a shardblade on Dalinar, and then Jasnah. Just both times Dalinar and Jasnah were able to stop him. Kaladin and his crew were not as fortunate. 

But at the end of the day I guess RAFO till we get Jasnah's book with her flashbacks. I think we will learn the most about their shared history then. 

Stormlight spoiler:

Spoiler

In the case of Dalinar, I think he pulled his Blade in self-defense. Going for a kill there would be incredibly stupid, for one, and something Amaram would want to avoid even if they werwnt in the middle of Dalinars army. He wanted to make sure that he got away without being captured.

As for the Jasnah thing, he pulled a Blade after she insulted his mother (if remember the scene correctly). Reading between the lines, Amaram seems to hold his mother very highly. She wanted him to be the greatest soldier in Alethkar, and he is doing everything to succeed in that. When he pulled the Blade at Jasnah, it wasn’t for himself, but for his mother. I havent reread SA in quite some time, but I think this is the only time when Amaram loses his temper and acts out of anger. He is insulted by both Hoid and Adolin in other places, and doesnt pull Blades at them. 

Agreed about Jasnahs flashbacks. Amaram is pretty much the sole reason for why I look forward to those (well, that, and the fact that Brandon is writing them). I cant get into Jasnah as a character, which you know by now I think.

Always a pleasure to discuss with you! 

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19 hours ago, Toaster Retribution said:

Stormlight spoiler:

  Hide contents

In the case of Dalinar, I think he pulled his Blade in self-defense. Going for a kill there would be incredibly stupid, for one, and something Amaram would want to avoid even if they werwnt in the middle of Dalinars army. He wanted to make sure that he got away without being captured.

As for the Jasnah thing, he pulled a Blade after she insulted his mother (if remember the scene correctly). Reading between the lines, Amaram seems to hold his mother very highly. She wanted him to be the greatest soldier in Alethkar, and he is doing everything to succeed in that. When he pulled the Blade at Jasnah, it wasn’t for himself, but for his mother. I havent reread SA in quite some time, but I think this is the only time when Amaram loses his temper and acts out of anger. He is insulted by both Hoid and Adolin in other places, and doesnt pull Blades at them. 

Agreed about Jasnahs flashbacks. Amaram is pretty much the sole reason for why I look forward to those (well, that, and the fact that Brandon is writing them). I cant get into Jasnah as a character, which you know by now I think.

Always a pleasure to discuss with you! 

Gotta run but a quick few responses that I will elaborate on tomorrow

Spoiler

 

First, Dalinar made no threatening gestures. Dalinar even said he was giving Amaram an opportunity to apologize. The moment Dalinar revealed he had knew about Amaram's deception, Amaram began summoning the blade (he put his hand to the side)

Scene below spoilered for length

Spoiler

 

Dalinar nodded to himself, as if this were all expected "i believe an apology is due"

Kaladin struggled to remain upright, his leg feeling weak. So this would be his final punishment. Apologizing to Amaram in public. A humiliation above all others.

"I-" Kaladin began

"Not you, son" Dalinar said softly

Amaram turned, posture suddenly more alert - like that of a man preparing for a fight, "Surely you don't believe these allegations, Dalinar!"

"A few weeks ago" Dalinar said "I received two special visitors in camp. One was a trusted servant who had come from Kholinar in secret, bringing a precious cargo. The other was that cargo: a madman who had arrived at the gates of Kholinar carrying a Shardblade"

Amaram paled and stepped back, hand going to his side.

 

 

So that is when Amaram began summoning his shardblade. All Dalinar said was Amaram owed Kaladin an apology, and began to confirm how he knows it. That is enough for Amaram to draw a sword on Dalinar. An individual that at the time Amaram thought was unarmed without any means to defend himself from a shardblade. That does not strike me as honorable one bit.

 

Jasnah again did not do any threatening gestures. If you insult my mother, is it ok for me to pull a gun on you? 

Also Jasnah literally told Amaram to leave nine times. Then he grabs her, and pushes further three more times. At what point is Jasnah allowed to tell him to go to Braize? Here is the scene below also spoilered for length


 

Spoiler

 

“Jasnah,” he said when he drew close. “I was told I could find you here.”

“Remind me to find whoever told you,” Jasnah said, “and have them hanged.”

Amaram stiffened. “Could we speak together more privately, just for a moment?”

“I think not.”

“We need to discuss your uncle. The rift between our houses serves nobody. I wish to bridge that chasm, and Dalinar listens to you. Please, Jasnah. You can steer him properly.”

“My uncle knows his own mind on these matters, and doesn’t require me to ‘steer’ him.”

“As if you haven’t been doing so already, Jasnah. Everyone can see that he has started to share your religious beliefs.”

“Which would be incredible, since I don’t have religious beliefs.”

Amaram sighed, looking around. “Please,” he said. “Private?”

“Not a chance, Meridas. Go. Away.”

“We were close once.”

“My father wished us to be close. Do not mistake his fancies for fact.”

“Jasnah—”

“You really should leave before somebody gets hurt.”

He ignored her suggestion, glancing at Navani and Shallan, then stepping closer. “We thought you were dead. I needed to see for myself that you are well.”

“You have seen. Now leave.”

Instead, he gripped her forearm. “Why, Jasnah? Why have you always denied me?”

“Other than the fact that you are a detestable buffoon who achieves only the lowest level of mediocrity, as it is the best your limited mind can imagine? I can’t possibly think of a reason.”

“Mediocre?” Amaram growled. “You insult my mother, Jasnah. You know how hard she worked to raise me to be the best soldier this kingdom has ever known.”

“Yes, from what I understand, she spent the seven months she was with child entertaining each and every military man she could find, in the hopes that something of them would stick to you.”

Meridas’s eyes widened, and his face flushed deeply. To their side, Shallan audibly gasped. “You godless whore,” Amaram hissed, releasing her. “If you weren’t a woman…”

“If I weren’t a woman, I suspect we wouldn’t be having this conversation. Unless I were a pig. Then you’d be doubly interested.”

He thrust his hand to the side, stepping back, preparing to summon his Blade. Jasnah smiled, holding her freehand toward him, letting Stormlight curl and rise from it. “Oh, please do, Meridas. Give me an excuse. I dare you.” He stared at her hand. The entire room had gone silent, of course. He’d forced her to make a spectacle. His eyes flicked up to meet hers; then he spun and stalked from the room, shoulders hunched as if trying to shrug away the eyes—and the snickers—of the scholars. He will be trouble, Jasnah thought. Even more than he has been. Amaram genuinely thought he was Alethkar’s only hope and salvation, and had a keen desire to prove it. Left alone, he’d rip the armies apart to justify his inflated opinion of himself.

 

 

The fact of the matter is in both cases, the first thing he thought to do was to pull a weapon on the person who in no way were overtly threatening to him. 

Hoid he asked why no one has tried to kill him yet. To kill the Wit you have to assassinate him in such a way as not to get caught, otherwise you lose all your holdings, and become the new Wit. That would be the reason why Amaram did not pull his blade on Hoid. 

(little addition speaking of Hoid. Hoid points out that Sadeas is nothing compared to how horrible Amaram is. I think that says a whole lot, and that is as of Words of Radiance. So that is now five people saying how much crem kind of person Amaram is (Sadeas, Hoid, Kaladin, Adolin and Jasnah)

I guess my problem is how much rope and leeway you give Amaram for his every action despite what he has done multiple times across all three novels. 

 

edit: added a few more bits to my post. 

Edited by Pathfinder
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On 7/17/2019 at 0:53 PM, Pathfinder said:

Can you explain/elaborate on what you mean?

Look at how Kaladin viewed him before and after the incident. Before he saw Amaram as this noble person you could look up to as a hero, which is the public image, and afterwards he saw the real Amaram that only those like Jasnah had seen or even acknowledged, which is his private image.

In other words imagine if someone everyone loved actually turned out to be a psychopath? That would definitely change the public image of the person for sure.

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2 hours ago, Draginon said:

Look at how Kaladin viewed him before and after the incident. Before he saw Amaram as this noble person you could look up to as a hero, which is the public image, and afterwards he saw the real Amaram that only those like Jasnah had seen or even acknowledged, which is his private image.

In other words imagine if someone everyone loved actually turned out to be a psychopath? That would definitely change the public image of the person for sure.

So, to make sure I am understanding you correctly. Amaram was always like this deep down, but the public image he had to maintain curtailed his potential worse actions. Once his true nature was revealed at the end of Words of Radiance, he went full on, because his public image now matched his internal image? Did I understand what you are saying correctly?

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3 hours ago, Pathfinder said:

So, to make sure I am understanding you correctly. Amaram was always like this deep down, but the public image he had to maintain curtailed his potential worse actions. Once his true nature was revealed at the end of Words of Radiance, he went full on, because his public image now matched his internal image? Did I understand what you are saying correctly?

Kind of. I imagine the commanders and nobility are to Alethkari as actors are to us so imagine if a very well respected actor with a squeaky clean record turned out to be an abuser, drug user and any other bad thing you could imagine. Now imagine if that actor didn’t want that side known at all costs to the point of murdering anyone who found out?

That’s how I would describe Amaram in real world terms. I wouldn’t say full on because I think his internal thoughts would be on how to justify or rationalize his actions in a way to make him still the good guy but when confronted he can’t handle it and just goes to the extreme on his defense, like in those two passages you had posted. In other words he’s a psychopath who doesn’t see himself as such but will resort to violence when someone confronts him with his real nature.

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1 hour ago, Draginon said:

Kind of. I imagine the commanders and nobility are to Alethkari as actors are to us so imagine if a very well respected actor with a squeaky clean record turned out to be an abuser, drug user and any other bad thing you could imagine. Now imagine if that actor didn’t want that side known at all costs to the point of murdering anyone who found out?

That’s how I would describe Amaram in real world terms. I wouldn’t say full on because I think his internal thoughts would be on how to justify or rationalize his actions in a way to make him still the good guy but when confronted he can’t handle it and just goes to the extreme on his defense, like in those two passages you had posted. In other words he’s a psychopath who doesn’t see himself as such but will resort to violence when someone confronts him with his real nature.

Hmmmm, could be. His mother pushing him to be "the perfect soldier" could have birthed that. Interesting!

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2 hours ago, Pathfinder said:

Hmmmm, could be. His mother pushing him to be "the perfect soldier" could have birthed that. Interesting!

Now I’m imagining him as being in the same situation as child beauty pageant kids XD I could also see him in a Dexter situation where he’s always had those urges and one soldier he admired had a code he tries following and doesn’t seem to understand how he’s following it wrong.

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18 hours ago, Draginon said:

Now I’m imagining him as being in the same situation as child beauty pageant kids XD I could also see him in a Dexter situation where he’s always had those urges and one soldier he admired had a code he tries following and doesn’t seem to understand how he’s following it wrong.

Lol oh then I misunderstood what you were saying. I thought the "ideal alethi" his mother wanted him to be is part of the cause. As in he must appear to be the ideal alethi, not because he admired anyone, but because his mother instilled in him that he must appear to be perfect at all times. If anyone gets in his way to attain this appearance "perfection" he removes them, and then rationalizes it away. So killing Kaladin's men and branding him a slave is because in his head only he could truly make good use of them. Because only the perfect light eyed alethi could save the world. Not some darkeyes. It has to be him. He has to be seen as being the savior. Like Jasnah said, he would tear apart the armies to satisfy his over inflated ego to be seen as the savior. 

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6 hours ago, Pathfinder said:

Lol oh then I misunderstood what you were saying. I thought the "ideal alethi" his mother wanted him to be is part of the cause. As in he must appear to be the ideal alethi, not because he admired anyone, but because his mother instilled in him that he must appear to be perfect at all times. If anyone gets in his way to attain this appearance "perfection" he removes them, and then rationalizes it away. So killing Kaladin's men and branding him a slave is because in his head only he could truly make good use of them. Because only the perfect light eyed alethi could save the world. Not some darkeyes. It has to be him. He has to be seen as being the savior. Like Jasnah said, he would tear apart the armies to satisfy his over inflated ego to be seen as the savior. 

Well since we don’t know what his childhood was like it could be either situation: Him striving for the ideal or his parents encouraging him (or worse discouraging like berating him if he had a hair out of place) for stuff that made him so focused on appearances and reputations over ability.

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Ever since reading Warbreaker, I look at everyone as a potential alternative villain. Ha ha. I have trust issues in books now. (Yet I still love them.) I know that’s not entirely where you were going with that. 

As to what you were thinking:

I wasn’t a particular fan of Frozen and I really like the idea of the Trolls being alternative villains who kidnapped Kristoff as a kid and then altered Hans’s memories to frame him as a villain to set Kristoff up with the princess. I also wish they had stuck with the original idea of keeping Elsa as the villain. 

Batman (or lots of superheroes really) could be considered villains in that they operate their own justice outside the rule of law. 

 

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