Shardcast: Cosmere Beefs


This week on Shardcast, we are going to complain. That's right. Many think we are just shill who love everything Brandon does, but that's not true. We're talking about our cosmere beefs this week. Hear us complain about things you maybe had no issue with. Spook. Kelsier. Wayne. Szeth. And, of course, Zane, in an epic rant to end all rants. Welcome to Complaincast.

Your cosmere beefs might be different. Put your top five in the comments. We would love to see them!

Today we have Eric (Chaos), Ian (WeiryWriter), Alyx (FeatherWriter), Matt (Comatose), and David (Windrunner). 

 

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Child of Hodor

Posted (edited)

Reading Oathbringer I found myself really resenting Hoid for the first time. He's super smart, super immortal, super wise, super quipy, super mysterious (vague) and isn't he quirky?! He acts like he doesn't care but "oh his real problem is he cares too much!". I think him telling yet another motivational story to a depressed main character to inspire them put me over the edge with him. He needs to storm off for a bit, not looking forward to him being the main character of the final cosmere novels at this point. 

I really didn't like Kelsier in the original trilogy. I appreciated him as a very flawed person who tried to do good later in life, but I didn't like spending time with him. I liked his arc during Secret History, but him being reincarnated annoys me because I have been feeling there were too many resurrections or fake deaths in Stormlight. Sometimes I get defensive (in my own mind :) ) about it and think "Brandon killed off almost everyone in Mistborn era 1" but this undoes one of the major deaths in that. 

Spook's speech pattern annoyed me to no end in the early books. He mostly drops it in the third one, so I didn't mind him in that one. 

Brandon writes a lot of characters who can't utter a line of dialogue without it containing at least one bad joke, pun or quip: Hoid, Shallan, Lopen, Lightsong, Wayne. A character with a lame sense of humor can be fun, but it would be nice if a character actually told good jokes. One of my favorite scenes is in WoK where Jasnah goes off on Shallan for saying the first half-clever thing that comes to mind "Errorgance", ugh. 

Edited by Child of Hodor
Punctuation
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Asrael

Posted

On Wayne viewpoints: I dislike him for all the same reasons
BUT ALSO
Whenever we drop into Wayne's head it breaks the suspension of disbelief for me because Wayne is portrayed as hyper competent/capable while also being completely off his rocker. I CANT believe that Wayne would see the world through such a messed up wacky lens and still manage to manipulate it so successfully and also successfully read and imitate people like he does

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Singer

Posted (edited)

I also don't care for the Spook/Beldre relationship for the same reason I hated Padme/Anakin: I don't think whining is attractive. I hazard to guess that most other women are not into whining. Listening to a guy whine about himself makes me want to slap him, not kiss him.

While I enjoy Wayne as a character, I don't really like being in his viewpoint, sounds like I'm not alone there! I think the way he treats Steris and women in general is intentional. So often sexist behavior is only something villains do in books and they are super creepy at it. This kind of casual objectification is more representative of what most women experience so it is more realistic. And guys who do this aren't monsters, sexism isn't perpetuated by monsters, it is perpetuated by ordinary people who don't see it as a big deal. 

I figure if characters don't annoy me sometimes then they aren't very realistic because humans annoy me.

I just thought of a beef from Oathbringer, but it's spoilerific:

Spoiler

The Kholins don't seems very concerned about Gavinor's safety. Navani, your grandson is in a besieged city, he is like 3 years old and completely helpless, and his mother is completely crazy. Elhokar cared, but once he died everyone mourns Elhokar but never mention Gavinor again. I was worrying about him the entire book! I'm glad we got a resolution on him and the squires, but I wish his family had cared about him at all, poor kid. 

 

Edited by Singer
I just had to add a new beef
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Potus

Posted

I also had a problem with Zane. I disliked all the interactions between Zane and Vin because I saw it as unneeded teenage love drama. I understand that Vin didn't have the best childhood growing up and that stunted her, but dear god I hated hearing her second guessing Elend through all of those parts. I did enjoy him messing with Straff so I'll give him that

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@WeiryWriter's beef with the commercial was the best beef in the episode. 

I also didn't like the counting the main characters moment. My main issue, however, was that Adolin was standing right there and everyone just ignored him as useless. Sure, he's not a Radiant, but he's possibly the best Shardblade fighter on Roshar. Storming use him in the fight. 

I don't like most of the romances that much. Siri/Susebron and Wax/Steris are good, but everything else is meh at best. 

It's not Cosmere, but I have beef with Nalizar from the Rithmatist. His character is basically just Snape, and the reveal about him at the end was unnecessary and predictable. 

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ladymxdnight

Posted

I had Strong Feelings™ about Zane so it was immensely gratifying to listen to this. Also, totally agree on the topic of Kelsier. I'm not a big fan of him, like, Kelsier-ing around the Cosmere starting religions based on himself and getting progressively nuttier. 

One thing I kind of disagree on: I don't think Wayne's treatment of Steris is out of loyalty to Lessie. Wayne really likes the idea of Marasi and Wax; after the thing he did with their wedding at the beginning of Bands there's the scene with him and Marasi in the kitchen (I think) where he's all like "So what if Wax is marrying Steris, and so what if Steris is your sister? You should totally go after Wax! Just like the Ascendant Warrior!" Which Marasi shuts down since she's moved on.

However, even in the previous books he kind of encourages Wax to pursue Marasi rather than Steris. So, it kind of feels like he doesn't have a problem with Wax moving on, he just has a problem with Steris. He treats her like she's throwing herself at an unwilling Wax, and in his mind he's helping Wax out by shoving Steris away. 

Anyway, I could be wrong, but that was my impression when I was reading the era 2 books. 

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goody153

Posted (edited)

I'm one of the minority who believes that Kelsier's revival was a really bad idea.

 It undermined so much of the good stuff from the Mistborn Trilogy that i thought made that trilogy really work(aside from the tight culmination to the ending of course ). Apart from his deus ex machina ruining the meaning of one of Sazed's epigraphs that was what encompassed the theme of original trilogy

Quote
  I speak of us as "we." The group. Those of us who were trying to discover and defeat Ruin. Perhaps my thoughts are now tainted, but I like to look back and see the sum of what we were doing as a single, united assault, though we were all involved in different processes and plans.

there was so many events in the trilogy that was represented as fighting against the bitter end which was Spooks/Gorodels/Marsh story and contribution in beating Ruin. Kelsier playing behind the scenes and having a hand on those undermined the climax of those characters that was supposed to be their own contribution on the culmination of all things. A grand effort in finally beating Ruin.

It ruined the meaning of "passing the baton" which has been a theme of Mistborn. Which was supposed to be what Kelsier and Rashek was mostly about but Kelsier ruined the meaning of that and Rashek didn't.

I loved mistborn as a culmination of all things that lead to the most important event(the ascension of the Hero of Ages and the caretaker that the people who suffered so much finally deserved.  Sazed) but not as a bloody Kelsier show. One man shows are fine but undermining other characters efforts if it was what made the story special is just terrible. 

His revival most of all cheapened the meaning of the single most climactic event in the TFE that was the circumstances of his finality(or should've been). It was one the best things i've read in all fiction until it was not because of Secret History. Still a powerful execution but no longer the best thing.

Not all characters have to be "greater scope characters". We already have a conspiracy(pulling strings from behind or playing the background) character which is Hoid. We also have characters who made sense and wasn't detrimental on them going to the greater scale story which was Marsh, the kandra and Sazed(especially him.. the entire trilogy was his setup for the greater game).

Not Kelsier, he's supposed to stay dead.

I know it's supposed to fill the missing link between the time of Leras death and Vin's ascension but it could've been setup better or 

Well that's my absolute #1 complain RANT OVER

Edited by goody153
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Great podcast, there were some high quality cuts of beef. Zane is my least favourite character Brandon has ever written and I fist pumped the air when he died. I just can't agree with Matt's take on Taln though. Everything I've seen and heard about Taln makes me excited for when he gets more involved later on. He is actually Brandon's favourite character as well so it comes as no surprise when he is one of the most beloved characters with only a few pages of screen time.

I get the beef with Kelsier returning but I absolutely loved that. Kelsier is an egotistical megalomaniac who didn't believe in an afterlife and still may not believe in an afterlife even after having seen the actors behind the curtains. I think it's perfectly in character for him to reject a conclusion to his own life story to pursue his own ends. It would feel unrealistic to me if Kelsier turned around at the end of Secret History and was like 'You know what, I'm a changed man and I'm going to reunite with my loved ones in the Beyond. I can finally be at rest'. Also, on the note of Kelsier beef, I do wonder if Kelsier requesting that Spook be made into a Mistborn was early grooming to more easily manipulate Spook into performing Hemallurgy experiments. Maybe Spook doesn't quite deserve as much stick after all. I personally dislike wish fulfilment in literature so I'm on the fence with Spook.

My biggest beef personally is with Shallan and it is for many of the reasons listed in the podcast. She sees herself as better than almost everyone around her and treats her 'inferiors' with a complete and utter lack of respect. The boots scene in WoR and the bookshop scene in WoK are two examples of her abusing the powers afforded by her privilege over some seriously underprivileged characters.

She also makes quite a few remarks about Adolin and his supposed stupidity simply because he lacks a scholarly background. Adolin is incredibly emotionally intelligent to the point where he is able to recognise and lift Kaladin out of his depressive slump in Shadesmar and is able to manipulate Ialai to deflect blame off Dalinar, yet Shallan mentally admonishes him for being dumb.

Shallan's treatment towards Adolin and Kaladin in OB is slightly unfair at best to completely inconsiderate and bullying at worst. She marries Adolin while being involved in an organisation that tried to kill his Aunt. Adolin knows nothing about her involvement with the Ghostbloods or her parent killing past as Shallan has chosen to hide those aspects of her past, not stopping to consider what that might do to those around her when she must confront her past. 

Her treatment towards Kaladin throughout most of OB is one sided and mean spirited. She goads Kaladin in Shadesmar for brooding despite Kaladin being close to non functioning due to a depressive episode. She Lightweaves a disgusting face onto Kaladin for no particular reason. She dismisses Veil's attraction towards Kaladin as having bad taste in men. All of this occurs with no prompting whatsoever from Kaladin's end. It appears to me that Shallan was attempting to demonise Kaladin in her own mind but if this is not the case then it highlights some serious issues she has in regards to classism and a superiority complex.

 

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Ixthos

Posted

Just to note on Zane's name not fitting, and on Zane filling a role.

Zane is a mirror for both Eland and Vin. V and Z are near the end of the alphabet, and E on the other. E is the most commonly used letter in English, Z the least. Vin and Zane are short sounding, Eland long sounding. Vin is choosing between two polar opposites, and one of them is closer to how she thinks she is while the other is everything good she sees in the world.

It also could be that - because Zane was raised apart from the rest of the family - it could be explained to anyone who paid attention to him that he was ostensibly a servant or child of a servant from a distant dominance, which might have a different naming system.

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Naurock

Posted

Two beefs. 1) RENARIN!

Alright being serious, 2) Elend and Vin. I'm not a huge fan, mostly because to me it's like when people call Romeo and Juliet a great lovestory. I'm nor very convinced kids that age can comprehend an incredibly complex feeling like love unless for a family member.

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Czernobog

Posted (edited)

Not Cosmere, but the character of Cody in The Reckoners referring to individuals as "y'all" caused me to--for the first time ever--literally throw my Kindle across the room. And then his using "all y'all" to refer to groups of individuals was even worse. Make up in-world slang all you like, Brandon, but please use existing English slang properly! "Y'all" is very much a plural term. When addressing an individual, use "you", and when addressing two or more feel free to use "y'all."

</rant>

My biggest in-Cosmere beef would have to be: publishing a work in which Kaladin kills Szeth, and then changing that in later revisions.

Edited by Czernobog
Added another thought to prevent a back-to-back post
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8 hours ago, The Harlem Worldhoppers said:

 

I get the beef with Kelsier returning but I absolutely loved that. Kelsier is an egotistical megalomaniac who didn't believe in an afterlife and still may not believe in an afterlife even after having seen the actors behind the curtains. I think it's perfectly in character for him to reject a conclusion to his own life story to pursue his own ends. It would feel unrealistic to me if Kelsier turned around at the end of Secret History and was like 'You know what, I'm a changed man and I'm going to reunite with my loved ones in the Beyond. I can finally be at rest'. Also, on the note of Kelsier beef, I do wonder if Kelsier requesting that Spook be made into a Mistborn was early grooming to more easily manipulate Spook into performing Hemallurgy experiments. Maybe Spook doesn't quite deserve as much stick after all. I personally dislike wish fulfilment in literature so I'm on the fence with Spook.

 

 

I always got the impression, that Kelsier couldn't pass to the beyond, because he took a dive in Preservations powers. Isn't there even a line, how he had given up Mare by doing this?

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7 hours ago, Czernobog said:

Not Cosmere, but the character of Cody in The Reckoners referring to individuals as "y'all" caused me to--for the first time ever--literally throw my Kindle across the room. And then his using "all y'all" to refer to groups of individuals was even worse. Make up in-world slang all you like, Brandon, but please use existing English slang properly! "Y'all" is very much a plural term. When addressing an individual, use "you", and when addressing two or more feel free to use "y'all."

</rant>

It's funny because Brandon has talked about how half of the South has the exact same complaint, and the other half is excited that he actually got it right. (I think @FeatherWriter is one of "all y'all" Southerners, but don't quote me on that)

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Secrets

Posted

48 minutes ago, WeiryWriter said:

It's funny because Brandon has talked about how half of the South has the exact same complaint, and the other half is excited that he actually got it right. (I think @FeatherWriter is one of "all y'all" Southerners, but don't quote me on that)

Clearly, none of y'all knows the proper usage.

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I gotta be honest... Renarin is just to whiney for me like. He constantly whines about his lot in life. Don't get me wrong, I understand him taking issue under the expectations of becoming an ardent, but the things that bothers me is how he only hates the idea of becoming an ardent because everyone thinks that's what he should do! Defying expectations just because you can is silly. Especially because he is depicted as a very very intelligent person. This type of arrogance bothers me. Do something about it! Be the hero of your own story! Dalinar learned to read so why can't you??? He just bothers me for that reason. 

(And yeah I do know what I'm about to get myself into, and I also like Shallan quite a lot)

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Unlicensed Hemalurgist

Posted (edited)

So much beef in this Shardcast it gave me the meat sweats. Nicely done, everyone.

9 minutes ago, Secrets said:

Clearly, none of y'all knows the proper usage.

Please. P A T R I C I A N S only say "yinz."

Edited by Unlicensed Hemalurgist
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10 hours ago, Czernobog said:

Not Cosmere, but the character of Cody in The Reckoners referring to individuals as "y'all" caused me to--for the first time ever--literally throw my Kindle across the room. And then his using "all y'all" to refer to groups of individuals was even worse. Make up in-world slang all you like, Brandon, but please use existing English slang properly! "Y'all" is very much a plural term. When addressing an individual, use "you", and when addressing two or more feel free to use "y'all."

</rant>

There is no standerdised sothern. Yes y'all came from the contraction of 'you all' but as language do, regardless of rules and guidelines, it changes to fit where it's needed. ie. Lol.

https://en.m.wiktionary.org/wiki/all_y'all

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/upshot/dialect-quiz-map.html

Anywho beef : not a fan of eland. Did not think vin/eland should have made it past the end of book one. Definitely should have ended mid book two. I didn't care much for Zane but I did like him being there to facilate vin's character growth. Would have been interesting having book three having vin and eland being forced to work together despite bad blood.

Potential lightweavers having a high mortality rate. (Including Tien)

Pacing of the kolinar job. Holy crap that was a grind.

Spook. Just not a fan. I feel like he was just another platform for main characters to rebound off of. (Like Zane).

Bands of mourning coming hard and fast when twinborns have not even been decently explored. Before new concepts/magic has been introduced.

Kaladin just understanding proper cosmere terms while in shadesmar without any reason. Shallan was at least a scholar.

While there are language barriers on roshar, they fit right in when they arrive on shadesmar... As if the language of shadesmar was alethi. Ok maybe cognative realm...but still concepts and culture weren't translated.

 

Sidenote : I think shallans quips stemmed more from a defense mechanism. Something she could do to rebel, to keep pushing forward. A distraction. And in WoR shallan gave adolin the for a witty reply but had to console herself because he didn't have the wit kaladin had.

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StrikerEZ

Posted

@FeatherWriter Renarin is my biggest beef. :ph34r:

This isn't a Cosmere beef, but a Reckoners beef. I despise the end of Calamity. Like, David was able to go up to Calamity and just go like “yo, humans ain't all evil” and Calamity just had an existential crisis and fled? No. That doesn't make any sense. And David getting powers. Ughhhh. It could've been done so much better, but it was just kinda there at the end. It undermines how well he was able to take down Epics as just a normal dude. Don't even get me started on all the alternate reality crap. Calamity is Brandon’s worst book, in my opinion. It's so storming terrible. Like, it started off pretty okay and then just went downhill from there.

@Chaos pretty much summed up my feelings on Zane perfectly. Zane and the middle of the book just made WoA so storming boring and slow to read. The end saved it, but that's only because Brandon is amazing at ending books. 

I actually don't have very many beefs that weren't mentioned in the podcast. Also, I definitely agree with @WeiryWriter when it comes to Aonic pronunciations. Actually, this has reminded me of a beef, but it's less with the books themselves and more with the fandom in general. There are CORRECT and INCORRECT ways to pronounce things. Personally, I think it's not okay to mispronounce a name because you think the pronunciation is stupid. It'd be like if I refuse to pronounce Eric (is that how you spell it, Chaos?) as “air-ick” and pronounced it as “eh-rick.” I know I'm exaggerating, but this just really annoys me. Don't get me wrong, I think Aonic pronunciation is stupid too, but I think lots of things people do are stupid, but I can still respect their decisions and pronounce things the way they're supposed to be. 

 

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23 hours ago, Ixthos said:

Just to note on Zane's name not fitting, and on Zane filling a role.

Zane is a mirror for both Eland and Vin. V and Z are near the end of the alphabet, and E on the other. E is the most commonly used letter in English, Z the least. Vin and Zane are short sounding, Eland long sounding. Vin is choosing between two polar opposites, and one of them is closer to how she thinks she is while the other is everything good she sees in the world.

I don't know if it was intentional or not but when I first read WoA, in the back of my mind was the question of whether Brandon chose Zane to make a joke on just how close it was to the word 'sane'. 

Oathbringer spoilers:

Spoiler

My biggest beef is Shallan and Kaladin. Not the love triangle plot line, just the potential of them being together. I have strong feelings on it and absolutely hate it. 

 

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Ixthos

Posted

36 minutes ago, LadyLameness said:

I don't know if it was intentional or not but when I first read WoA, in the back of my mind was the question of whether Brandon chose Zane to make a joke on just how close it was to the word 'sane'. 

Oathbringer spoilers:

  Hide contents

My biggest beef is Shallan and Kaladin. Not the love triangle plot line, just the potential of them being together. I have strong feelings on it and absolutely hate it. 

 

And was there any doubt that Vin would Win? ;-)

With regards to the spoilered section, I think we'll have to see how that line is handled in the fourth book, to see if maybe there is more to it than what appeared to happen in Oathbringer - maybe what happens there will add some perspective as to why it was done. What part of it makes you hate it though?

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Just now, Ixthos said:

With regards to the spoilered section, I think we'll have to see how that line is handled in the fourth book, to see if maybe there is more to it than what appeared to happen in Oathbringer - maybe what happens there will add some perspective as to why it was done. What part of it makes you hate it though?

 

Spoiler

I don't mind that there was the love triangle story line - after WoR it was kind of expected. 

But I think that having Kaladin and Shallan as a couple would be problematic. From their interactions, I think they would end up feeding into each other's mental illness and I don't want that to happen. I want them to both get better and I see them being together as a situation where they both end up getting worse. Where as I think Adolin is going to be able to help Shallan get her mental health more under control. I want Shallan and Kaladin to be friends but not in a relationship. 

 

 

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Ixthos

Posted

21 minutes ago, LadyLameness said:

 

  Hide contents

I don't mind that there was the love triangle story line - after WoR it was kind of expected. 

But I think that having Kaladin and Shallan as a couple would be problematic. From their interactions, I think they would end up feeding into each other's mental illness and I don't want that to happen. I want them to both get better and I see them being together as a situation where they both end up getting worse. Where as I think Adolin is going to be able to help Shallan get her mental health more under control. I want Shallan and Kaladin to be friends but not in a relationship. 

 

 

 

Spoiler

Fair point - the novel focused in on that though when they spoke, with Shallan confused at Kaladin thinking her ability to shut out pain was a good thing. I think the main reason for this is to show them being attracted but that attraction potentially being something damaging to them both, and that scene with Shallan being confused at Kaladin's appreciation for something she sees as her own flaw is to highlight that, with them both realising the other has flaws, that what attracted them is the broken state of the other and that needs to be fixed, that they aren't right for one another as they currently are, or might not be right for one another even when fixed.

 

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11 hours ago, Pandemonium said:

There is no standerdised sothern. Yes y'all came from the contraction of 'you all' but as language do, regardless of rules and guidelines, it changes to fit where it's needed. ie. Lol.

Of course there isn't. "The South" is hardly a homogeneous monolithic entity. But language, particularly regional idiomatic language, can trigger intense emotional reactions. Few would argue there's much rational thought present in a rant triggered by an emotional outburst.  :-)

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