DIssecting Bran of House Stark (ADWD Spoilers)

Discussion in 'George R R Martin' started by The Imp, Sep 21, 2011.

  1.  
    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    Specifically, I'd like to closely examine Bran III

    We know that GRRM has used various devices to inject prophecy, foreshadowing and backshadowing into the story. Dany's visions in the House of the Undying, Maggie the Frog, Quaithe, various dreams in various POVs, flashbacks, etc, have all yielded valuable information. Now we have a chapter that answers questions in real time (using the Children of the Forest and Bloodraven) as well as in non-linear time using Brans new ability to see into the present and past through the eyes of weirwoods.

    Is Bloodraven an Old God now, or perhaps THE Old God? Are there many such being that started out as men and turned into "trees"? Is bran going to replace Bloodraven?

    This makes me slightly uneasy, as it's counterintuitive (dark is typically evil, light is good), but we don't have any reason to doubt Bloodraven, do we?

    Great info about greenseers. It also raises a question in my mind about Jon Snow's wolf being albino (does he have red eyes? Tjis is probaly idle speculation and not of consequence

    Bran hasn't learned properly yet. Can we believe what follows next?

    There are weirwoods all over Westeros. How many eyes will a crippled boy have? Apparently a thousand and two, or perhaps countless.

    Let them grow up close as brothers. Jon and the other Stark children? And is the implication that they aren't brothers at all? Not even half brothers? What or even whom must Cat forgive. GRRM conspiculously leaves the word "me" off the end of Ned saying that.

    This has to be Bradon and Lyanna, or perhaps Ned and Lyanna. Old Nan was old, but still spry enough to run and tell their father.

    Who is this woman? Certainly not Lyanna, as she looks nothing like Arya, or at the very least, bran doesn't recognize her as an older version of Arya/Lyanna.

    This is in the distant past (through the mist of centuries). A sacrifice to the Old gods (Bran tastes the blood)? Who is the white haired woman? Why was bran shown this?

    There has to be more to this chapter than i'm seeing. Perhaps in relation to other parts of the story. I think Bran might have been able to influence Theon, for instance. I wish that we had one or two more bran chapters, but that probably would have meant revealing too much.
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    Pilpel

    Pilpel New Member

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    Very thorough analysis, good job and thank you!

    Regarding Lord Brynden's speech about darkness. I don't think we can categorize anyone or anything at this point to being good or evil, dark or light. Every character we've met so far had its own agenda (with the exception of starks? maybe, but probably not), some characters that seemed evil turned out to be good and vise versa. It's all about perspective. My point is that the gods and different sources of power can be both good and bad.
    I think this power Bran's using now probably comes from the Other those red priests keep talking about but that's just me. Maybe someone's brought this up already, but could the undead outside the cave actually be guarding it?

    This chapter is very mysterious. I don't think it's possible to understand everything in it at this point. GRRM gave us just enough to keep us speculating.
    Waiting until TWOW to have all this answered will be nerve racking :rolleyes:
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    TPA

    TPA New Member

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    Yes! Bran will be a tree man!

    A green seer like the green priests in Kevin Andersons Saga of Seven Suns series.

    He could taste the blood because it seeped into the ground to the roots of the tree.
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    interesting thought about the undead outside the cave, but i think that they're a danger to those inside, not guardians. I'm in the middle of a re-read, so I may change my mind later :)

    TPA, good point about the blood in the roots
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    TPA

    TPA New Member

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    The question, then, is what is Brandons roll as a tree in the overall story?

    He can be a source of information, kinda like a Westerosi internet, but how will he communicate it to anyone who matters?

    Maybe he could use trees to warg animals across long distances?

    Maybe he develops a portable tree interface so he does not have to tie into a permanent location like the current dude?

    You know, Brandon, having overcome so much, has to be an important player, so playing out his story could be interesting.
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    juleska

    juleska The North remembers

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    In addition to what Pilpel has said, I would further argue that GRRM seems to be playing with our conventional wisdom of light=good & dark=evil. As we've seen, the so-called "Lord of Light" has many detractors for evil practices (such as human sacrifice). Funny how all the good things Mel has done to help Jon in ADWD (and our expectation that she will continue to help him in TWOW) has made us forget about the many many many people she (and her ilk) have thrown onto a pyre. Let us not forget either how Selsye interprets the "lord of light", that she would sooner children starve and freeze to death than extend charity to them while allowing them to keep their own gods.

    R'hollor is a bloodthirsty and heartless god as far as I can tell. If I were in GRRM's world, I would doubtless choose the Old Gods of the North as my own, if not the Many Faced God of Braavos. The Seven are vapid and useless, the Drowned God is ruthless and uncaring, R'hollor demands complete acquiesence or death.....whereas the Many Faced God is consumed with the pursuit of justice and the Old Gods are simply there, listening always, and if ever intervening then only in subtle ways. I tend to distrust those "flashy" gods.

    Anyway, the point to all that is this: If GRRM is turning our traditional notions of good & evil, light & darkness on their head, then it stands to reason that Jon is the one we should be worried about.....not Bran. Although I personally think that Jon will ultimately turn Mel away from her faith.
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    Ursa major

    Ursa major Bearly Believable Staff Member

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    You mean like the proposed murder of Dany, who had been nothing but a victim at the time? Does anyone think that should the Faceless Men have been hired for that job that their religious qualms would have prevented them from taking the contract?

    (And I do wonder if a certain extravagantly costumed banker is all he seems and whether someone has paid for the demise of, say, Stannis. I don't wish to set off another theory, but the death of Stannis would probably help in furthering Littlefinger's plans and the Regent of the Vale may be able to afford such a hit.)
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    juleska

    juleska The North remembers

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    Which is the reason I say I'd likely prefer the Old Gods of the North. But then, I'm speaking only in terms of GRRMs world. In this one, I am not a particularly religious person. Your point is taken, but it doesn't change my primary observation here that light/dark good/evil are being somewhat turned on their head.
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    Your point is a good one. I alluded to it when I talked about Bloodraven telling Bran to embrace the darkness, that it is his strength (paraphrasing). Before ADWD many of us here and on other boards though that Mel was probably pure evil and that the traditional roles oflight and dark were being reversed. it now seems clear that Melisandre's motives are "good", or at least, she wants what is good but is willing to use things that others would consider to be bad to achieve her goals. In many ways, she is much like most religious zealots in RL. Anyway, I think that there must eventually be a unification of light and dark (on all human levels) to defeat the Great Other. I don't know if GRRM practices any religion any more. He has said he used to be a practicing Cathloic is isn't anymore, but the nature of his characters and storeis has always made me think that he is very much in to the Eastern notion of Yin/Yang, as evidenced by the complex nature of almost every character. Very few have been black or white, but rather, varying shades of grey.
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    MIDNIGHT

    MIDNIGHT enjoy the hour

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    One major quote from Bran' chapter in ADWD that is giving me some hope about Jon's fate comes after he has just saw and tried to contact his father. Leaf says to him "He is gone, boy. Do not seek to call him back from death" Brynden also says to him " Nor will your sight be limited to your godswood..... but in time you will see beyond the trees themselves".
    Leaf's phrase seems to indicate that Bran may have some ability to "call one back from death" and Bloodraven has indicated that Bran will be able see events near and far without a tree. Perhaps Bran will witness Jon's death and "call" him back before before he truly is gone ?:)
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    I had read that as don't try to call him back from death because you can't, but the passage you quoted is certainly ambiguous enough so that almost anything is possible. Bran will certainly become an extremely powerful figure, and perhaps the focal point of the end game.
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    Syphon of Oor-Tael

    Syphon of Oor-Tael is going fishing

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    I think Bran is actually going to be a tool of the Other and appear to be evil, but it will probably end up that R'hllor had everyone deceived all along. That is, Melisandre did.
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    I think it's of great importance that Bran seems capable of speaking to those praying or possibly just near WW trees. Theon hearing a voice whispering his name when he was in the WF GW proves this.
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    Eversummer

    Eversummer Member

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    something tells me that it was not Brandon or Ned playing with Lyanna. Benjen's name always bugging me.


    Stupid as I am, my drunken mind tells me its Lysa contemplating revenge as her son by Littlefinger was aborted. This is pure nonsense...the Arryns were descended from the Andals and that they have burned and cut down weirwood trees especially in the Vale...right?

    In the next hour, I'd jump headfirst off the cliff near our house....pardon me for my utter idiocy.
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    It's hard to rule anything out. It's certainly not clear who the girl is. :)

    I came across the "Jon dream" at the end of aCoK. Very interesting.

    Part of it

    I wonder if Sansa will end up with Summer?

    Brban is certainly going to be the directing force, and I think he will reunite the wolves/children.
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    Tywin

    Tywin I always pay my debts.

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    This was a passage that I glossed over when reading, but now that you bring it up seems like it has the potential to be incredibly important.

    I'm assuming this was the same pool by the weirwood in Winterfell, but what jilted women in the north have their been that needed to be avenged? Some woman that Brandon (Ned's older brother) got pregnant? Ramsay Snow's mother? I'm trying to think of other women but drawing a blank. Old Nan when she was young? Anyone have more insight on this?
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    Needle

    Needle Arya's Whisper

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    Ghost does indeed have red eyes (first chapter AGoT) just as Jojen's are that moss green.
    I will add here Jojen's words to Bran- (Jojen says he is only a boy who dreams)
    I have felt for sometime that the Old Gods are in some way responsible for the Others, not sure how I feel about that but this quote
    does not bother me because as Mel herself has pointed out- it is light that creates shadows not darkness!
    Definitely speaking of Jon and his "brothers" who are not his brothers!
    Gotta be Ned and Lyanna!
    Really no clue here but just a thought, I can not remember their names but could this be the girl who was stolen by the bard as the prettiest flower in Winterfell then returns with an infant?
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    The Imp

    The Imp New Member

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    Old Nan is a really interesting thought.

    Hodor
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    Tywin

    Tywin I always pay my debts.

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    I'm tracking that Lyanna was Eddard's younger sister, so although I originally assumed that was Ned, now I think Eversummer's right and that has to be Benjen.

    Did she have any other children? I think she's a pretty far-fetched option. What other options are there for jilted women?
  20.  
    Eversummer

    Eversummer Member

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