Use the Falchion

Way of Kings Prime Full Spoiler Discussion

57 posts in this topic

Wow, that's kind of horrifying, and makes me want to read the back 5 a lot less.  If I wanted a villain protagonist story, I'd be reading villain protagonist stories, not heroic fantasy!

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3 hours ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Wow, that's kind of horrifying, and makes me want to read the back 5 a lot less.  If I wanted a villain protagonist story, I'd be reading villain protagonist stories, not heroic fantasy!

Jahna is like book 10 or something so it should be fine.

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8 hours ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Wow, that's kind of horrifying, and makes me want to read the back 5 a lot less.  If I wanted a villain protagonist story, I'd be reading villain protagonist stories, not heroic fantasy!

Villain? I certainly wouldn't call her a paragon of moral virtue all the time (though I have less issues with her than a lot of people), but didn't realize people considered her a villain.

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1 minute ago, LewsTherinTelescope said:

Villain? I certainly wouldn't call her a paragon of moral virtue all the time (though I have less issues with her than a lot of people), but didn't realize people considered her a villain.

You know what I mean, though.  When someone's first instinct to resolve any and all problems is "murder someone," that person is what we call a psychopath.  And even though Jasnah doesn't always follow through with it, that always seems to be her first resort.

  • Suspicious woman marrying the king?  Hire an assassin "to keep an eye on her."
  • Thieves terrorizing a local neighborhood?  Use magic to slaughter them in cold blood.
  • Figure out that the Parshmen are the Voidbringers?  Bitterly complain what a shame it was that her ancestors enslaved them rather than genociding them as they ought to have done.
  • Hoid shows up unexpectedly?  Point a Shardblade at him.
  • Something seems off about her cousin's spren?  Clearly he needs to be murdered!
  • Learn the truth about the Desolations?  Let's go hunt down a few Heralds and murder them!

Even in book 4, when she decides to do something unambiguously good, she goes about it in arguably the worst possible way, invoking a villain trope that tends to backfire badly both in fiction and in reality:

Spoiler

Leveraging times of social crisis and upheaval to shove through policy changes not directly related to the problem at hand is known as "never let a crisis go to waste."  She directly states that this is what she wants to do in order to free the slaves of Alethkar, and it's a horrible idea for a number of reasons, not least because when you legitimize tricks like that, you legitimize them for your political opponents to use against you in return.

"Not a paragon of moral virtue all the time" is the understatement of the century.  She's a flat-out evil villain who happens to be fighting on the good guys' side, what TVTropes calls the "Token Evil Teammate."

WoK Prime's version of Jasnah wasn't.  I liked that one a lot better.

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1 minute ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Suspicious woman marrying the king?  Hire an assassin "to keep an eye on her."

And what did she do? Nothing more than keep an eye on her. And guess what? She was right. Aesudan was working to bring back the Desolations.

1 minute ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Thieves terrorizing a local neighborhood?  Use magic to slaughter them in cold blood.

Thieves that were murdering people, bribing the city guard to ignore the king's own orders to deal with them, and now attempting to kill her.

3 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Figure out that the Parshmen are the Voidbringers?  Bitterly complain what a shame it was that her ancestors enslaved them rather than genociding them as they ought to have done.

I agree this was not the correct reaction. Considering they were believed to be demons trying to exterminate the entire human species (which isn't quite correct but not 100% incorrect either), I'm willing to cut her some slack, even if I do think it's a very morally wrong stance (though lessened due to the lack of essentially any knowledge available).

3 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Hoid shows up unexpectedly?  Point a Shardblade at him.

Hoid, an incredibly suspicious individual, shows up exactly where she is Elsecalling to, which would require tracking her through Shadesmar. Yes, she pulls out a weapon just in case.

5 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Something seems off about her cousin's spren?  Clearly he needs to be murdered!

He's also telling the future, has a glowing red Odious spren, has been keeping important secrets, and is (obviously) very close to the entire ruling family. And when she sees he's no threat, she doesn't do it, and comforts him instead.

7 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Learn the truth about the Desolations?  Let's go hunt down a few Heralds and murder them!

It's a stupid plan with what we know, but seemed with her knowledge to be an essential step in stopping the Desolation.

12 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:
Spoiler

Leveraging times of social crisis and upheaval to shove through policy changes not directly related to the problem at hand is known as "never let a crisis go to waste."  She directly states that this is what she wants to do in order to free the slaves of Alethkar, and it's a horrible idea for a number of reasons, not least because when you legitimize tricks like that, you legitimize them for your political opponents to use against you in return.

 

Spoiler

I mean, it's not like she's had a chance to attempt this prior to the crisis starting, since she only recently became in charfe. I feel reasonably sure she'd be pushing for this either way. She is also not claiming any relation between the current situation and her decision, she is merely countering Dalinar's argument that it will cause problems to say it will cause less problems than it otherwise would.

 

17 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

"Not a paragon of moral virtue all the time" is the understatement of the century.

That was intentionally an understatement, yes.

18 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

She's a flat-out evil villain who happens to be fighting on the good guys' side, what TVTropes calls the "Token Evil Teammate."

You're entitled to your opinion, I guess, but I very strongly disagree.

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3 minutes ago, LewsTherinTelescope said:

You're entitled to your opinion, I guess, but I very strongly disagree.

Perhaps the most definitive thing of all was in book 4, when she gave a big rant about doing away with hope.  This instantly calls to mind the words Dante famously placed over the gates of Hell!

Which seems more likely?  That Brandon, a notably religious author, is completely unaware of a well-known quotation from one of the most famous pieces of classic Christian literature ever written... or that he knew exactly what he was doing when he wrote that?

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2 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

Perhaps the most definitive thing of all was in book 4, when she gave a big rant about doing away with hope.

 

Spoiler

She's helping plan a war, is told her plans aren't "hopeful" enough, and she gets annoyed about it. While I disagree with her overall stance on it, it also makes perfect sense in context and is not nearly as dystopian as it sounds taken without.

 

5 minutes ago, Mason Wheeler said:

This instantly calls to mind the words Dante famously placed over the gates of Hell!

Which seems more likely?  That Brandon, a notably religious author, is completely unaware of a well-known quotation from one of the most famous pieces of classic Christian literature ever written... or that he knew exactly what he was doing when he wrote that?

You're the first person that I've seen bring it up in response to that scene, so I think "he's aware of its existence but did not think most readers would seriously associate it with this character" is also an option.

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