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Topic: Essays of Ice and Fire: Tragic and Otherwise.

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Essays of Ice and Fire: Tragic and Otherwise.
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So I have long yearned to discuss some of the characters and their tragic endings in ASOIAF like our Beloved Ned and his son Robb. However some characters not only have tragic endings but are tragic in themselves like Brienne the Beauty. Or what about Aerys the Mad king who thanks to genetics was subjected to the cruel voices in side his head. If you feel like me and want to honour some of these characters please join me.

I'd like to start with a lesser known character Maelys "the Monstrous" Blackfyre, last in the line of the Blackfyre pretenders. While mostly represented as a villain slain by a noble and brave knight, I believe him to be a much more tragic character who was not a villain by choice.

House Blackfyre was founded by Daemon Blackfyre a legitimised Bastard of King Aegon IV and was named after the Sword of Aegon I which was given to Daemon when he was 14. The sword was always given to the successor of the ruling king.

He was named "the Monstrous" because a rumour was widely spread that he had cannabilised his twin while still in the womb. Effectively making him a "kinslayer" both accursed in the eyes of gods and men from the moment he was born. He was also born with a huge second head spurting from his neck, an affliction he had not chosen. There is no mention of his parents or who raised him, but from his actions it is clear that he was raised with an immense grudge aimed at House Targeryen, those who had stolen his family throne.

In recap a despised and accursed child with an inborn hate for the Targeryens. I however do not believe he was a monster in character as in name and in body. He rose to the position of Captain General of the Golden Company and by all accounts his men followed him loyally. Is it then a suprise that this man who had so little aspired to take more with Fire and Blood and during the war of the Nine Penny Kings convinced the company to invade Westeros to take the throne. No small act for such a man born with so many limitations.

However before the invasion could commence the Targeryens sent their own force to the Stepstones and there the two armies clashed. Maelys was slain by Lord Commander Barristan Selmy himself. It made for a beautiful song, the Monstrous Usurper slain by the brave and noble Knight of the Kingsguard. With him ended the Blackfyre line. Had his invasion succeeded a physical monster would have sat the Iron Throne. However years later a real monster sat the throne and Westeros plunged into chaos.

 

Maelys a someone who was born a man, but the world fashioned him into a monster.



-- Edited by Aegon the Conqueror on Tuesday 18th of September 2012 03:32:55 PM

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Children Of The Forest VP
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Why was Daeron tolerated and Daemon wasn't? There were Bannerman whom supported each and felt
that without Bloodraven or Selmy, the outcome could have been much different. Of course that depend
on whom would benefit as loyal bannermen or kinsmen.

I need to review Dunk and Egg recollection of Blackfyre I and II, my guess is Melys wasn't discussed .
Mayhaps the Targaryeon genealogy is better related elsewhere, do you have a reference to share ? I'm
assuming the specific Wars ( Blackfyre I & II, Ninepenny, etc ) are covered there as well ?



-- Edited by WildSeed on Tuesday 4th of September 2012 02:33:10 PM

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Bloodraven's archers made the difference. AWOIAF is pretty useful.
I might be wrong but I think the war of the Ninepenny kings took place after the Tragedy of Summerhall. Don't think Duncan was alive anymore.

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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For the next one I want to discus Ser Barristan Selmy, my favourite minor character, but I don't have the energy right now.

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Grateful. Je vous te suis très reconnaissant !

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Non comprende

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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Non comprende


         I am very grateful to you.



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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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A true king is the realm's greatest servant. The people exist not to provide one with comfort and power, but the king to provide his people with safety and security.

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Your grace speaks wisely for his youth.

I'm exhausted, must eat and will return.

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I also had a flash of inspiration for probably the most tragic character of them all, Prince Rhaegar Targeryen, if the masses will endulge me.

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Pray, tell. Must the white raven take flight beforehand. Speak or I will summon the green woman known as YvyB.

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Lord Commander Barristian Selmy of the Kingsguard. The singers and common folk refer to him as Ser Barristan the Bold, famed knight of the Kingsguard and the embodiment of nobility,loyalty and honour. The perfect example of everything the Kingsguard were supposed to embody. A champion of the people when it came to tourneys, slayer of the MAelys the Montrous and Simone Toyne of the Kingswood Brotherhood, he cut his way through the entire Golden Company to get to Maelys. He spent most of his life guarding incompetent men when he himself would have made a much better leader.

But who was he really? Who was the man beneath the armour. Thanks to some pov chapters in ADWD one gets a unique view into the mind of the most celebrated Knight alive, and what one discovers is quite shocking. Ser Barristan is a man filled with regrets and sees only failures where others see his successes. For the purpose of this piece I will focus only on the tragedy of Ser Barristan up to the point of his dismissal from the Kingsguard as his service to Danaerys Targeryen is impossible to judge without knowing the ending.

Barristan was born the son of the Knight of Harvest Hall. He appears to have been Bold since a young age as he entered his first tourney at the age of 10 where he jousted and lost against Prince Duncan son of the famous Egg. Only six years later he would unhorse both Prince Duncan and Lord Commander Duncan the Tall leading to his knighthood. At 23 he was sworn into the kingsguard by the new Lord Commander Gerold Hightower (both Dunk and Egg had died during the Tragedy of Summerhall.)

One of his most famous moments came during the Defiance of Duskendale when he rescued Aerys and slew ser Symon Hollard. It was this event that made Aerys crack and descend slowly into madness. One can imagine the thoughts that must have gone through Selmy's mind as he saw Lord Rickard and Brandon Stark die at the order of the King he had sworn to protect. His vows kept him from doing anything else than his duty, but what did it mean to you if one of your proudest moments led to years of suffering for the realm?

One of his greatest failure came at the famous Tourney of Harrenhal. He was smitten with lady Ashara Dayne, although he knew that he could do nothing about it. However if he won the tourney he would name her the Queen of love and beauty. However Rhaegar unhorsed him in the final titlt and named Lyanna Stark as the Queen, setting in motion the events that would lead to the War of the Usurper. Perhaps if he had won, Ashara would not have been raped by Brandon leading to her death a year later.

The regrets that piled up on the man's shoulders as he saw the entire continent plunge into a bloody war must have been incredible. At the battle of the Trident he was mortally wounded and his relief at doing his duty must have been palpable. Great was his surpise as he awoke and found himself healed by the enemy's Maesters. The war had been lost, all his sworn brothers had been slain, except for the youngest who had killed the king they had all sworn to protect. Everyone had died except for him, survivors guilt drowing the man, he accepted Robert Baratheon's offer to become Lord Commander, it was not as if the man had anywhere else in life to go.

As Robert's rule of drunkeness and whoring continued, and Barristian spent his years with nothing but guarding and looking back, one has to wonder whether he still wanted to continue the life he was living. So many accomplishments yet dwarfed by the consequences of his failures. There was only one thing left to do, guard King Robert in the very best way he could. Serve out the remainder of his life doing his duty surrounded by men who were not fit to even lick the boots of the previous kingsguard. A relic like the dragonskulls that were stored away, a reminder of glorious days now long gone.

Yet how cruel was fate as caught up in the cospiring of the Lannisters he was unable to save the life of yet another king. Another regret piled on to the shoulders of a man whose best had never been enough. The scene where he relates his failure to NEd Stark is heartbreaking.

His dismissal coming at the hands of the same people who set him up to fail was the final tragedy for a man whose greatest crime was loyalty to those who did not deserve it. Yet he went out in the same way that he entered his first tourney, boldly telling the brothers who had not a shred of honour, how easily he could kill them giving the sword he had served with for years to the boy king. Some part of him must have been relieved and continued to grow as he heard of the monstrous acts of Joffrey.

Yet it was also this act that gave him room to rectify some of the mistakes he made, seeking out the true heir to the Iron Throne. The consequences of this action remain to be seen. Before I will be able to judge completely on the tragedy of his life.

Ser Barristan the Bold, a man of great accomplishments, but even greater regrets.

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Ah, yes. When Arristan shared his knowledge of her relatives, esp Rhaegor, it was insightful and thoughtful.
When I begin my re-read project, I will reference geneaologies and timeline where it serves purpose.
Ser Barristan Selmy is indeed a man of many accomplishments and I wonder what GRRM has in store for
him. The days of Chilvary and decorum gets muddled with each passing generation.



-- Edited by WildSeed on Tuesday 4th of September 2012 02:34:08 PM

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Yes, a woman agrees that those are tragic figures in this wonderful saga. However, can there be a more tragic family story than that of the Starks? Originally only setting out to serve the realm, Ned's tragedy and the subsequent dismantling of his family unit is the worst tragedy of all so far. Of course we don't know how it will all end as there are still a few Starks living at the end of ADWD, but it's not looking good for any kind of happy family reunion in Winterfell. Having just read the RW again earlier today, I know it will be the hardest thing to watch when that episode airs, there's no way to avoid that. There will be many tissues crumpled that night. What kind of lives can the remaining Starks expect? Sansa being used as a pawn for her "claim" as heir of the north or hiding as an alter ego with no hope for a true happy family life in sight? Bran's life as a ward-or whatever in training, what can that possibly lead to that would be satisfying for him and whatever siblings he has left at the end? Arya, the wise and wicked, how will she ever reconcile the hatred of those that destroyed her family with any kind of return to a normal life? Will it ever be possible? Will Rickon be able to grow in any kind of normal way after seeing his family destroyed, and for what? What of their wolves? What of Stoneheart? It's all so sad sometimes a woman wants to stop reading, but is compelled by the lovely wordsmithing to continue on, heart in hand.

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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

A true king is the realm's greatest servant. The people exist not to provide one with comfort and power, but the king to provide his people with safety and security.


 Well said your grace, hear, hear!smile



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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Aegon, that was brilliant.  Love the scene where Selmy and Eddard talk glory days.  I know there was huge mutual respect between the two of them.  Waiting with baited breath to see what the future brings for such a wonderful character.  I hope only good things, but this is GOT.  Gods be good.



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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MrsHghar wrote:

Yes, a woman agrees that those are tragic figures in this wonderful saga. However, can there be a more tragic family story than that of the Starks? Originally only setting out to serve the realm, Ned's tragedy and the subsequent dismantling of his family unit is the worst tragedy of all so far. Of course we don't know how it will all end as there are still a few Starks living at the end of ADWD, but it's not looking good for any kind of happy family reunion in Winterfell. Having just read the RW again earlier today, I know it will be the hardest thing to watch when that episode airs, there's no way to avoid that. There will be many tissues crumpled that night. What kind of lives can the remaining Starks expect? Sansa being used as a pawn for her "claim" as heir of the north or hiding as an alter ego with no hope for a true happy family life in sight? Bran's life as a ward-or whatever in training, what can that possibly lead to that would be satisfying for him and whatever siblings he has left at the end? Arya, the wise and wicked, how will she ever reconcile the hatred of those that destroyed her family with any kind of return to a normal life? Will it ever be possible? Will Rickon be able to grow in any kind of normal way after seeing his family destroyed, and for what? What of their wolves? What of Stoneheart? It's all so sad sometimes a woman wants to stop reading, but is compelled by the lovely wordsmithing to continue on, heart in hand.


 Yep. Starks have dark days behind, and dark days ahead.  I have my fingers crossed for Jon.  The lady in the crypt says, "It is known".



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

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MrsHghar wrote:

Yes, a woman agrees that those are tragic figures in this wonderful saga. However, can there be a more tragic family story than that of the Starks? Originally only setting out to serve the realm, Ned's tragedy and the subsequent dismantling of his family unit is the worst tragedy of all so far. Of course we don't know how it will all end as there are still a few Starks living at the end of ADWD, but it's not looking good for any kind of happy family reunion in Winterfell. Having just read the RW again earlier today, I know it will be the hardest thing to watch when that episode airs, there's no way to avoid that. There will be many tissues crumpled that night. What kind of lives can the remaining Starks expect? Sansa being used as a pawn for her "claim" as heir of the north or hiding as an alter ego with no hope for a true happy family life in sight? Bran's life as a ward-or whatever in training, what can that possibly lead to that would be satisfying for him and whatever siblings he has left at the end? Arya, the wise and wicked, how will she ever reconcile the hatred of those that destroyed her family with any kind of return to a normal life? Will it ever be possible? Will Rickon be able to grow in any kind of normal way after seeing his family destroyed, and for what? What of their wolves? What of Stoneheart? It's all so sad sometimes a woman wants to stop reading, but is compelled by the lovely wordsmithing to continue on, heart in hand.


            Keep your chin up Mrs H'ghar aww My heart grieves  for the Starks and all those living in such times. I include

            the TCOTF, The Casterly's, The Reynes ( Raines ? ) , Lyanna Stark, Princes Rhaeger and Baelor, Aegon V and

              many others. Did war exist before men taught themselves to make weapons ?



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War existed as long as men have, the blade is merely a tool which makes a man's job easier. "Who was it that first forged the blade? Of rugged steel his savage soul was made..."

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@Lyanna your words are too kind my lady, thank you.

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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

@Lyanna your words are too kind my lady, thank you.


 You grace is very welcome.  I have a great respect for the afinity of our pen, er, keyboard. smile



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Lyanna Stark wrote:
Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

@Lyanna your words are too kind my lady, thank you.


 You grace is very welcome.  I have a great respect for the afinity of our pen, er, keyboard. smile


 our?



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Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:
Lyanna Stark wrote:
Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

@Lyanna your words are too kind my lady, thank you.


 You grace is very welcome.  I have a great respect for the afinity of our pen, er, keyboard. smile


 our?


 Correction, "your", my damn laptop chicklets keyboard. cry



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

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Why thank you then, as soon as I have the time I"ll write down my thoughts on Rhaegar.

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I have oft written on the subject of GRRM's apparent utter disdain for competent rulers and how those who would be best suited to the throne never seem to get there. Reading COK for the first time I loudly cheered for both Stannis and Robb only to be let down in the worst possible way first at Blackwater, and then the battle of the fords at Riverrun and more horribly at the RW.
And yet GRRM has let people like Joffrey, TOmmen, Cersei and Danearys and to a lesser degree, Robert, have all had significant time on a throne, all with disastrous results. Don't even get me started on my anti Dany rant! And it's the main reason why I fear for young Aegon's life. GRRM's track record thus far is quite bleak.

Arguably the most tragic of all the characters of Ice and FIre is a young man we never met in the books. Someone who by all appearances would have made an amazing king. In fact Jaime Lannister thought so and Barristan Selmy who had served three kings was sure this man would be better than all three of them combined.

I refer off course to the Prince of Dragonstone, Rhaegar Targeryen. He is remembered with respect by Ned Stark and hailed a fallen hero by all Targeryen Loyalists. Though Robert Baratheon holds eternal hatred in his heart for the man he blames for taken away his beloved Lyanna.
The man was known as a musician, a famed warrior, a deep thinker who sometimes appeared distant, a melancholy man. A man after my own heart.

Born upon the same day that the tragedy of Summerhall took place, he was forever haunted by the dark events of that day. Some men blamed the event for his melancholy demeanor saying he was under the sway of the "shadow of Summerhal" because he was "born in grief". Young Rhaegar at first appeared to more closely resemble Samwell Tarly than the fierce warrior he would later become. An intelligent man, most of his formative years were spent with his nose in a book. He had no interest in the pursuits that most boys his age were following. He read so much that many of his father's bannermen began to snicker.
However he appeared in the training yard one day, dressed in armour, training sword buckled at his side, something he had read in a book convinced him to become a warrior and he would become one that few could hope to match and earned his knighthood at 17.

However although being a skilled warrior, it was not the defining trait of his identity like his nemesis Robert Baratheon, indeed men noted he loved his harp more than his lance. Sometimes when the mood struck him he would travel to Summerhall, spending days within it's ruins in utter silence with only his harp. When he returned he was capable of singing songs of such sad beauty that it often reduced women to tears. In this man's opinion it was this trait that stole the heart of a very prominent lady later on.

He was married to Elia oh house Martell, there appears to be no evidence as to his thoughts on the matter, whether he loved her or barely tolerated her. What we do know however is that she was a sickly woman, often bedridden, after the birth of Rhaegar's first son Aerys Maesters told her it would be hazardous to her health to have another.

Perhaps it was this trait that made Rhaegar forget about his wife. How exactly and why will remain a mystery, perhaps forever, but it was during the tourney of Harrenhal that the most cataclysmic of events in Rhaegar's life happened. Unstoppable in the jousting he unhorsed Ser Barristan the win the champion's crown. Ned clearly describes the shocking moment that followed as all eyes followed the prince as he held the blue crown of roses in his hand, ready to crown the Queen of Love and Beauty. Ned remembers that every smile died as Rhaegar rode past princess Elia and laid the crown in the lap of the she-wolf Lyanna Stark.

This would set in motion events that would shape the future of every man and woman in the entire Westeros. Lyanna dissapeared along with Prince Rhaegar and a furious RObert Baratheon convinced the Starks that she had been kidnapped by the malicious Targeryen Prince. Had a different king been on the throne, or had Rhaegar had the presence of mind to alert his father to his intentions, tragedy might have been averted. But love has clouded the judgement of many a man, high born and low. The result was the slaughter of both Lord Rickard and Brandon Stark and several others as the Mad King continued his reign of terror, and the calling of the Banners of the North, the Riverlands, the Vale and the Stormlands.

The army led by the powerful alliance of Eddard, Robert, Hoster, and Jon went from victory to victory with one general after the other succumbing to the wrathful rebellion. Eventually Rhaegar realised that the entire kingdom would fall if he did not act and came out of hiding. Leading all the might left to the Targeryens his force would meet the rebels at the fords of the Trident in a furious clash of arms. At the height of the battle an enraged and unstopabble Robert cut a bloody swathe through the Targeryen forces and came face to face with his hated enemy. All his rage at the loss of his beloved proved to much for the valiant Rhaegar and his breastplate was crushed by the warhammer of the man who would soon be king. Sinking into the mud of the Trident Rhaegar's life ended with a singular name..."Lyana..."

What events transpired during Rhaegar's absence can only be speculated on, but ample evidence suggests that Lyanna had been just as smitten with Rhaegar as he had been with her, and soon after his death would bring into the world his second son in the form of Jon Targeryen. Asking Ned to promise her that he would keep little Jon safe and raise him as his own, she died to be reunited with her lover.

One has to wonder if Rhaegar knew what was to happen, would have done things the same way. WOuld love have won through knowing that a year within his lover's arms would mean the destruction of both his house and their monarchy? That it would plunge Westeros into another dark time of slaughter only 15 years later? But such is the curse of love, it prevents even the brightest of men of thinking clearly and what appears to us as a clear mistake never occured to be wrong to the noble Rhaegar. If only the young lovers had thought, mayhaps Lyanna would've made a better queen than the sickly Elia who would;ve died soon. Perhaps the bethrothal could still be broken. If only Rhaegar had joined the war sooner, would the rebels have had the momentum needed to break the Targeryen forces? Or perhaps Rhaegar was as dark as Robert described him and was a villain who deserved his death? Perhaps he kidnapped and raped Lyana against her will, yet this writer finds it unlikely.

So many unanswered questions remain, but that is the tradegy of Rhaegar Targeryen, a single choice for love cost him everything and the lives of millions to come. A man who would have made an incredible king and could've guided Westeros into an unprecedented era of prosperity. And yet his life ended at the hands of a man whose own tragedy was born soon after, a man who would try to drown his sorrows in booze and prostitutes only to realise that his sorrows had learnt to swim.

Rhaegar Targeryen a man who would have made a better king than Westeros had seen in a hundred years, yet doomed to fall to the dealiest of afflictions. Like King Kong it was not the mortal blow that killed him, but the beauty!

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Yes, ser Barristan's account of Rhaegar to Danerys really impressed me too. I forgot about Ned's thoughts
because Robert's anger and sadness overwhelmed at the time of reading. Selmy and Varys are quite the
historians ( there may be a couple of others I know ) that gave accounts in an unbiased and straight
forward way. There was also blunt analysis when asked but the facts were laid out plainly to absorb.
I always wondered out loud why he made such a journey to find Danerys. I did believe him when he
said she had a good claim to the throne, but it was his telling of Rhaeger that convinced me of his
honesty. Arristan was never about petty revenge towards Joffrey, just to seek a better choice.

The tragic events unfolded with great impact it's true but king Aerys had already stirred the pot with his
madness and a shit storm fogged the air. Perhaps as king Rhaegar would have righted the balance to
the realm by responding by decree to those suffered under Aerys. Doing so would bring equilibrium and
peaceful coexistence ( for a time ). ? Would Robert back down or be lost, well probably not. Would Ned's
influence and fairness become reasoning points to his boyhood friend ? Aerys probably did unspeakable
things to Tywin as well, their history goes far back as young boys.

Robert did however buy a 15 year peace with pardons and aligned with the Lannister's by marriage . That
was undoubtedly Jon Arryn's wisdom there. Keep your enemies close , especially rich and mighty house
lords.

I must say though, Mark Addy and Sean Bean delivered a fine performance and made me forget everything
when he spoke of Lyanna, the love of his life and woman he would die for.

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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

I have oft written on the subject of GRRM's apparent utter disdain for competent rulers and how those who would be best suited to the throne never seem to get there. Reading COK for the first time I loudly cheered for both Stannis and Robb only to be let down in the worst possible way first at Blackwater, and then the battle of the fords at Riverrun and more horribly at the RW.
And yet GRRM has let people like Joffrey, TOmmen, Cersei and Danearys and to a lesser degree, Robert, have all had significant time on a throne, all with disastrous results. Don't even get me started on my anti Dany rant! And it's the main reason why I fear for young Aegon's life. GRRM's track record thus far is quite bleak.

Arguably the most tragic of all the characters of Ice and FIre is a young man we never met in the books. Someone who by all appearances would have made an amazing king. In fact Jaime Lannister thought so and Barristan Selmy who had served three kings was sure this man would be better than all three of them combined.

I refer off course to the Prince of Dragonstone, Rhaegar Targeryen. He is remembered with respect by Ned Stark and hailed a fallen hero by all Targeryen Loyalists. Though Robert Baratheon holds eternal hatred in his heart for the man he blames for taken away his beloved Lyanna.
The man was known as a musician, a famed warrior, a deep thinker who sometimes appeared distant, a melancholy man. A man after my own heart.

Born upon the same day that the tragedy of Summerhall took place, he was forever haunted by the dark events of that day. Some men blamed the event for his melancholy demeanor saying he was under the sway of the "shadow of Summerhal" because he was "born in grief". Young Rhaegar at first appeared to more closely resemble Samwell Tarly than the fierce warrior he would later become. An intelligent man, most of his formative years were spent with his nose in a book. He had no interest in the pursuits that most boys his age were following. He read so much that many of his father's bannermen began to snicker.
However he appeared in the training yard one day, dressed in armour, training sword buckled at his side, something he had read in a book convinced him to become a warrior and he would become one that few could hope to match and earned his knighthood at 17.

However although being a skilled warrior, it was not the defining trait of his identity like his nemesis Robert Baratheon, indeed men noted he loved his harp more than his lance. Sometimes when the mood struck him he would travel to Summerhall, spending days within it's ruins in utter silence with only his harp. When he returned he was capable of singing songs of such sad beauty that it often reduced women to tears. In this man's opinion it was this trait that stole the heart of a very prominent lady later on.

He was married to Elia oh house Martell, there appears to be no evidence as to his thoughts on the matter, whether he loved her or barely tolerated her. What we do know however is that she was a sickly woman, often bedridden, after the birth of Rhaegar's first son Aerys Maesters told her it would be hazardous to her health to have another.

Perhaps it was this trait that made Rhaegar forget about his wife. How exactly and why will remain a mystery, perhaps forever, but it was during the tourney of Harrenhal that the most cataclysmic of events in Rhaegar's life happened. Unstoppable in the jousting he unhorsed Ser Barristan the win the champion's crown. Ned clearly describes the shocking moment that followed as all eyes followed the prince as he held the blue crown of roses in his hand, ready to crown the Queen of Love and Beauty. Ned remembers that every smile died as Rhaegar rode past princess Elia and laid the crown in the lap of the she-wolf Lyanna Stark.

This would set in motion events that would shape the future of every man and woman in the entire Westeros. Lyanna dissapeared along with Prince Rhaegar and a furious RObert Baratheon convinced the Starks that she had been kidnapped by the malicious Targeryen Prince. Had a different king been on the throne, or had Rhaegar had the presence of mind to alert his father to his intentions, tragedy might have been averted. But love has clouded the judgement of many a man, high born and low. The result was the slaughter of both Lord Rickard and Brandon Stark and several others as the Mad King continued his reign of terror, and the calling of the Banners of the North, the Riverlands, the Vale and the Stormlands.

The army led by the powerful alliance of Eddard, Robert, Hoster, and Jon went from victory to victory with one general after the other succumbing to the wrathful rebellion. Eventually Rhaegar realised that the entire kingdom would fall if he did not act and came out of hiding. Leading all the might left to the Targeryens his force would meet the rebels at the fords of the Trident in a furious clash of arms. At the height of the battle an enraged and unstopabble Robert cut a bloody swathe through the Targeryen forces and came face to face with his hated enemy. All his rage at the loss of his beloved proved to much for the valiant Rhaegar and his breastplate was crushed by the warhammer of the man who would soon be king. Sinking into the mud of the Trident Rhaegar's life ended with a singular name..."Lyana..."

What events transpired during Rhaegar's absence can only be speculated on, but ample evidence suggests that Lyanna had been just as smitten with Rhaegar as he had been with her, and soon after his death would bring into the world his second son in the form of Jon Targeryen. Asking Ned to promise her that he would keep little Jon safe and raise him as his own, she died to be reunited with her lover.

One has to wonder if Rhaegar knew what was to happen, would have done things the same way. WOuld love have won through knowing that a year within his lover's arms would mean the destruction of both his house and their monarchy? 

Rhaegar Targeryen a man who would have made a better king than Westeros had seen in a hundred years, yet doomed to fall to the dealiest of afflictions. Like King Kong it was not the mortal blow that killed him, but the beauty!


 crying.gif



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

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Aegon The Conqueror - I have oft written on the subject of GRRM's apparent utter disdain for competent rulers and how those who would be best suited to the throne never seem to get there. Reading COK for the first time I loudly cheered for both Stannis and Robb only to be let down in the worst possible way first at Blackwater, and then the battle of the fords at Riverrun and more horribly at the RW.I have oft written on the subject of GRRM's apparent utter disdain for competent rulers and how those who would be best suited to the throne never seem to get there. Reading COK for the first time I loudly cheered for both Stannis and Robb only to be let down in the worst possible way first at Blackwater, and then the battle of the fords at Riverrun and more horribly....

Well struck Your Grace ATC!



-- Edited by MrsHghar on Monday 3rd of September 2012 11:48:15 PM



-- Edited by MrsHghar on Monday 3rd of September 2012 11:48:54 PM



-- Edited by MrsHghar on Monday 3rd of September 2012 11:49:54 PM



-- Edited by MrsHghar on Monday 3rd of September 2012 11:50:28 PM

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Any suggestions for a next tragic character? Not Ned please, still too painful!

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Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Any suggestions for a next tragic character? Not Ned please, still too painful!


 Perhaps the Hound? or Aemon Targaryan? or are you all targed out? biggrin



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

Lord Bannerman Of The Smileys
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Lyanna Stark wrote:
Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Any suggestions for a next tragic character? Not Ned please, still too painful!


 Perhaps the Hound? or Aemon Targaryan? or are you all targed out? biggrin


 Yes, the Hound!  Please !



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Wielder of the Baratheon BANHAMMER
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This thread is great, finally caught up. Such great analysis ATC!

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Thank you DNA!!!!
Maybe on day when we are bigger and when I'm much better we can do what Macha suggested and also put them in e-book form.
Seriously guys need some suggestion! WHo would you like analysed?

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Cary Storm wrote:
Lyanna Stark wrote:
Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Any suggestions for a next tragic character? Not Ned please, still too painful!


 Perhaps the Hound? or Aemon Targaryan? or are you all targed out? biggrin


 Yes, the Hound!  Please !


 Mmmmm Aemon is a bit difficult, I'll see maybe in future. But the Hound, now there's something I could do! 

Watch this space!



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                                     It's not a Dog's life: a closer look at the tragedy of Sandor the Hound Clegane

It's hard to feel sympathy for a 6,5 monster, with the look of murder in his eyes and a greatsword slung across his back. Hard to feel sorry for someone who would ride down children at just an order and describes killing as he's greatest pleasure. Yet above all the things one could say of Sandor Clegane, one has to admit, the man is honest! His nickname the Hound is a reference to both his ugly face and his unquestioning loyalty to his masters. There is a reason for this loyalty as I will yet explain. Sandor ever the honest man acknowledges both this derogative name and trait by donning a Dog's head helm. He does this as he has learnt the lesson Tyrion tried to teach Jon Snow. "Never forget what you are, the world will not. Armour yourself in it and it can never be used to hurt you." In this instance it is done quite literary, perhaps it was the Hound himself who inspired this example. 

Above all he disdains knights and the hypocricy that usually accompanies them. Why dress up, parade and glorify a trained killer? Why make him kneel and annoint him with holy oils and make him say vows that everyone knows he will not keep?These are the questions that drive Sandor, for knight are nothing else than well trained sadistic murderers who enjoy killing just as much as he does. He does not hate them for being murderers, merely for thinking that they are better than him because of their titles. For thinking they are something that they are not. Yet Clegane unashamedly acknowledges exactly who he is.

But what is it that makes the man tick. It is one thing that has made him bitter, yet it is also the sole driving force for the man. The one thing that has propelled him to become such a skilled murderer. The one thing that was the entire reason for his existence. 

Just for clarification sake, this will be an analysis of the Hound, not the reformed monk Sandor. Without knowing exactly where GRRM is taking the character, such an analysis is impossible. So I will adress only the character we have seen in the series. 

What little we know of Sandor's childhood gives us a unique and startling insight into the Hound. While at first we judge and despise him, the revelations brought on by his childhood memories forces one to realise, this is one of the most Tragic characters of Ice and Fire. One that deserves our sympathy. His childhood was not a happy one what we do know suggests that he was not raised in a loving enviroment. At the age of seven Gregor caught his little brother playing with a wooden knight that belonged to Gregor, without a word Gregor shoved Sandor's face into the fire and held it there until household servants pulled him from his younger brother. This is the reason why Sandor has such great fear of fire and the reason why his courage left him during the Battle of Blackwater, for there he faced the only demon that truly frightens him, the searing pain and power of fire! To suggest otherwise is ungrounded folly! (Had to put in a little stab aimed at Pearson Moore.) 

The only ramifications we know of is that their father explained the burn marks away by saying Sandor's bedding caught fire. It is safe to assume that Gregor was not punished for his cruelty, perhaps his father did not do so out of fear. Whatever the reasons, it backfired as a couple of years later the father would die, one suspects at the hands of his loving son. Had a better home been provided for both sons, perhaps they would have turned out better more balanced human beings. In fact it is believed that Gregor killed his younger sister as well. There is no record of further cruelties, but one can assume that they did not start or stop with the burning. Growing up in such fear and pain and constant torture, is it any wonder that the Hound found his only comfort in the misery of others? While there is no evidence to suggest he enjoyed torturing others, no one can argue that he does not enjoy killing. 

The day Sandor's father died is the day he left, seeking out his fortunes with the Lannisters, already being a skilled fighter and swordsman, I expect one would have to be growing up with the Mountain as an older brother. His skill was recognised quickly and he soon became the Sworn Shield of Joffrey Baratheon someone who was just as sadistic as Sandor's older brother. One expects the irony must have struck him and never once do we get the idea that he shows any affection towards the prince. Perhaps this is the very reason why he took such great care of Sansa, Joffrey's foremost victim. 

Although he does not have any affection towards his employers, the fact that he has nothing to inherit and no one to return to except for his sadistic older brother, makes him incredibly loyal to the Lannisters, doing they're dirty work without hesitation. After all he is a dog, and dogs to not shy from dirty business. His only solace from these deeds were found at the bottom of a glass. This is also the reason why he tried his so hard to get his money back from the Brotherhood without Banners, he had abandoned the Lannisters, and this was all he had left. 

All throughout his time, his service, his life one thought kept on driving him, the thought that perhaps one day his path might allow him to cross blades and kill his older brother. As the Elder Brother in AFFC notes, "Sandor Clegane dreamed of slaying his own brother, a sin so terrible it makes me shudder just to speak of it. Yet it was the bread that nourished him, the fuel that kept his fires burning. Ignoble as it was, the hope of seeing his brother's blood upon his blade was all this sad and angry creature lived for..." the sin of Kinslaying and it's ramifications are well known to any familiar with Tyrion's storyline, yet Sandor does not shy away from this sin, why should he? He has never been afraid of comminting any other sin before. He believes himself too far lost. 

How wonderful it must have seemed to Sandor as he saw the Mountain savage the young Knight of Flowers, fate had finally presented him with his chance and he wasted no time leaping upon the moment. Jumping into the fray he crossed blades with Gregor thinking that his chance was finally here, that now he could take his revenge and lay to rest the demon that has plagued him since he was seven. How cruel fate must have seemed as Robert Baratheon rose up and unleashed his furious voice to put a stop to the fight. How the two sides of Sandor must have clashed together that day. His desire for revenge vs his old habit of obedience. In the end he proved himself to be the Hound yet again, obeying the king. How that moment must have plagued him for moths after, if only he had disobeyed, if only he had managed to kill him sooner.

Yet fate had something crueler than even that in store for him. His fear of fire proving stronger than his need to obey, he abandoned the Lannisters to seek out his own fortune. We are given no glimpse into the inner turmoil that must have taken place as the news came that the Red Viper had slain Gregor, we are only given this quote, "and even that was taken from him when Prince Oberyn of Dorne stabbed Ser Gregor with a poisoned spear". This meant Sandor's end, he had no need for obeying anymore and the only way he could ever defeat his fear of fire was by slaying Gregor. The entire reason for his existence, the only thing that could free him  from his eternal torment had been taken from him. 

I will not speculate on his death or his apparent rebirth at the Monastery, I will only say that no man needed a new start more. No man ever needed to let go of his hatred more, and I can sincerely say I wish for him to find peace. 

For this is not a monster, but a man twisted by the horrors of his childhood. This is Sandor Clegane, not the Hound and he needs to be reminded of that fact once more. Mayhaps one day I will be able to complete this essay, knowing the ultimate fate of Sandor the broken man Clegane. 



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Goddess of Tits and Wine
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clapclapclapclap

Well said Young Ser ... I have a deep fondness for Our Clegane



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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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Oh as always suggestions for future essays are welcome.

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Children Of The Forest VP
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My clue to Sandor's sensibility and sensitivity were earliest noted with his indifference to titles and later
saving Sansa from the we-hate -Joffrey -mob. He performed his duties as king protector but never had
any love for the role he played let alone the inhabitants of the Keep. He understood the corruption and
politics masquerading in front of the people they represented. I always believed that had Robert been
less passive or Ned regent or king that Sandor would have something to believe in. Perhaps Ned would
have noticed his bravery and contempt for corruption. But all that changed once Sandor murdered the
butcher's boy and Joffrey firmly pulling on his leash. He also demonstrated compassion towards Sansa.

While I am reluctant to join the Sandor-is-a- softee committee, I do realize that he remained conflicted
about the atrocities he'd committed and contempt for those who fostered such commands or rules. He
was at best conflicted &suffered guilt for those crimes and despised his psychopathic brother most of all.
Sandor suffered as most men in those days but redeemed his humanity by courageously breaking free
of his villains/protective status.I'm aware than some romanticists believe that his tender side was only
for Sansa but I disagree. In a tumultuous political climate with mostly poor outcome for commoners
and foes of the king he did the unlikely challenge to lay down his weapon and get on with his life. Most
people would continue to seek out advantage or reward but he just turned his back and moved forward.
For that courageous act , his confessions and blunt speaking gave me a new respect for his character
that I would have easily dismissed in book one. Like most of GRRM 's characters most if not all
demonstrate what is wrong with the world and what remains good. Sandor's flaws speak volumes for
the common man and the choices they make. Live or die.

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Goddess of Tits and Wine
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Do they have to be tragic? aha ha ha ha ! I just realized what I said... This is ASOIAF !

Hmmm ... A ha! Cat , I dare you to tackle Cat... in fact I challenge you..I throw down the gauntlet... Do it ! :D

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Priestess of R'hllor
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But but but what about Theon "Fuck my life" Greyjoy?

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High King and Conqueror of the Seven Kingdoms
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I'll consider it, though the perils of writing on a woman is quite terrifying. Here there be monsters.

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Children Of The Forest VP
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YvyB wrote:

Do they have to be tragic? aha ha ha ha ! I just realized what I said... This is ASOIAF !

Hmmm ... A ha! Cat , I dare you to tackle Cat... in fact I challenge you..I throw down the gauntlet... Do it ! :D


        Start another Topic !!!!! furiousfurioussmile

        Maybe it should read :  Game of Thrones  Character Analysis ( the Not So Tragic Ones biggrin )



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Children Of The Forest VP
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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

I'll consider it, though the perils of writing on a woman is quite terrifying. Here there be monsters.


            Then we'll need another Topic . Anyone could do this including YvyB .



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Children Of The Forest VP
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Macha wrote:

But but but what about Theon "Fuck my life" Greyjoy?


          Great analysis and may take you longer than you think to write. Give it a go gurl aww



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Goddess of Tits and Wine
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You don't have to post it here ... you can email ! If you want ... seriously I'd be really interested on your take .

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Children Of The Forest VP
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YvyB wrote:

You don't have to post it here ... you can email ! If you want ... seriously I'd be really interested on your take .


          already started a Topic for you to begin . Tweak it or add to the description aww 



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Goddess of Tits and Wine
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Replied to you in chat :)

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Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Oh as always suggestions for future essays are welcome.


 Nicely done as always, your grace.  biggrin I've often thought of Sandor and Sansa as Beauty and the Beast, as it's GRRM and he did do something with that on primetime t.v. some years ago.



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

Lady Of The Blue Winter Rose
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Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

I'll consider it, though the perils of writing on a woman is quite terrifying. Here there be monsters.


 Please do Catelyn Tulley-Stark.  Break the glass ceiling!



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Rhaegar, despite wounding Robert, was struck down with a massive blow from Robert's warhammer, which scattered the rubies encrusted in Rhaegar's armor under the water.  Rhaegar died with Lyanna Stark's name on his lips.

 

Children Of The Forest VP
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Lyanna Stark wrote:
Aegon the Conqueror wrote:

Oh as always suggestions for future essays are welcome.


 Nicely done as always, your grace.  biggrin I've often thought of Sandor and Sansa as Beauty and the Beast, as it's GRRM and he did do something with that on primetime t.v. some years ago.


 Ugh.....Grrr...... Another San-San supporter furious

 

That was a great  television show wasn't it ( Beauty and the Beast ) ? I watched most of the re-runs at some point.

I think it starred Ron Perlman ( Hellboy ) and Linda Hamilton ( Terminator ) with very thoughtful, non mushy script.

I'll give you a pass then aww but no more sappy San-San stuff furious



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