Dear_Gnome: An open letter community for WoW
||[Sep. 12th, 2013|02:03 pm]
It would be really, really great if you could think of a way to develop Varian Wrynn's character which doesn't involve turning your few prominent women into angry violent screamy harpies so that he can be a foil to them. (Or, as I call it, the "Shut up, Tyrande, you stupid woman" phenomenon, which now extends to Jaina Proudmoore.)
Yeeeah. That moment at the end of the Shieldwall campaign when VARIAN WRYNN is appealing to JAINA PROUDMOORE to calm down and be reasonable and not to lash out in anger, I had a moment of *profound* cognitive dissonance...
So... you totally wouldn't be pissed to all hell if somebody blew your city up? Because that's what happened to Jaina. Everyone she knew and loved in Theramore was brutally murdered. She barely survived. Her apprentice turned to ash when she touched the girl's body.
Good to know atrocities that piss you off are simply Screaming Harpy Syndrome.
You're getting this backwards. I'm not suggesting her reactions are disproportionate, I'm suggesting that putting her into a situation where her main job as a character is to be screechy and angry is both kind of gross and perhaps symptomatic of a broader problem. (Bearing in mind that the same thing just happened to Tyrande, on a smaller scale.)
"Good to know atrocities that piss you off are simply Screaming Harpy Syndrome."
And can we, as a society, stop with this sort of condescending rejoinder?
You're the one that said it, so practice what you preach.
Are we seriously now in "I am rubber, you are glue" territory?
I can see why you use a sock. (See? See?)
Edited at 2013-09-13 08:24 am (UTC)
Except it's the only journal I use on LJ. Additionally, you -might- want to steer clear of the personal attacks here. The mods don't like that.
My statement was regarding -what you said-, not you yourself.
I mean, it's one thing to be opinionated about something. It's completely different to say something like "turning your few prominent women into angry violent screamy harpies" and then turn around and say you didn't say that when someone points out that the female in question lost damn near everything and got talked out of genocide by a man she formerly respected and the man she had feelings for. You're the one who flat said she had been turned into a screaming harpy. If her reactions aren't out of line considering what happened to her, why is it a problem in this instance?
Oh. Okay. Let's play this by your topsy-turvy rules.
Here's a statement regarding what you're saying, not you yourself.* I think you're deliberately misunderstanding what I've said because you get a weird rise out of being offended. I think that's why you're blowing past the words I've put out there, words which other people have understood, words which I've explained and clarified and elaborated upon, and yet words which continue to escape you.
My objection here--and I'll admit that I'm not quoting myself word-for-word here, but this is because you seem to have discovered that taking things out of context provides maximum latitude for righteous indignation, thus it becomes necessary to lead you by the nose and to expend otherwise-unnecessary verbiage on the project--is not that Jaina Proudmoore's reactions are vastly disproportionate or unreasonable, but that it feels like Blizzard, rather than telling her story for the sake of creating an interesting story, is essentially torturing and contorting and reducing her to a state which sets up another character to serve as a foil.
Her job in this expansion has not been to do much for her own sake, it's been about setting up Varian Wrynn as royal and balanced and king-like, even if this means turning her into a character which scarcely resembles her behaviour or comportment to date. Varian Wrynn had to become visibly moderate and evenhanded and leaderly, so Jaina Proudmoore had to become violent and angry and jaded. Destroying Theramore is a convenient means to this end, rather than being the story Blizzard ever really wanted to tell. (Indeed, the fact that the whole Theramore storyline was shoved into a novel rather than shown or demonstrated or repeated or otherwise covered adequately in-game is, IMO, quite telling.)
*There! See, I used the magic words! Now you can't construe any of this as a personal attack, because of those words! CHECKMATE, INTERNET! That's how it works, right?
Edited at 2013-09-13 10:33 am (UTC)
We have disagreed in the past, but I fully agree with this.
If Jaina was being portrayed ICly...I can see her being righteously hacked off, as is her right, but focusing the wrath at Garrosh and his fanpoodles and just kicking the everliving piss out of them, and then kicking Thrall in the goolies for enabling the Hellscream brat anyway, and slapping Varian in the head for his part in the escalation of this fuckery.
People do not just magically become super genocidal racists. Racism doesn't just poof into being. Only ignorant people believe it does, and they put me in mind of HP Lovecraft really.
I would agree if Jaina didn't get talked down by Thrall at the end of her book. It makes my head hurt that she realizes what her anger could have done (wipe out Varian and most of the Stormwind fleet) so she says she'll totes be good now, and then NOPE EVERYBODY DIES RAWWRRRRRRR.
I just want character development to stick. :T
You've heard of lies, right? The guy she loved (Kalec) was riiight there too, helping talk her down. She said that to get them off her ass.
Awwwwwwww. You're really bending over, here, cutieboots, to try to make it look like Blizzard ISN'T an airheaded boys' club and isn't depicting her as uncontrollably crazy without a man!
Just...get lost, babygirl, mmmmay? You're getting all het up and nasty and rude, princess, and you know you're wrong. You're just being irrational andembarrassing now, so I think it's time you went for your nappy-naps and let the adults keep talking. ^^
You know, while I disagree with ranty, you are really being obnoxious here.
You know, I expect that sort of "aww you're so cute" out of high school valley girls. You're being needlessly and exceptionally disrespectful. Way, way, way, way, way the fuck beyond what you need to be.
Are you like this with everyone who has a different opinion than yours? It's a bit sad.
Ranty has her reasons for disagreeing with the OP, just as I'm sure you do. Doesn't make her worthy of being called "cutieboots" or "princess" or any other belittling, high-school-age remarks like that.
Blizz is a company owned by men, ran by men, with games who are enjoyed largely by more men than women. I think all things considered, they've done a marginal job at managing not to make all their women characters airheaded brats who sleep with major powerful lore males and are subservient to them as a result. Aggra? Very powerful Shaman, capable of standing on her own as a character. Sylvanas? You better believe it. Tyrande? Has been on her own for some time now. If anything, I like this version of Jaina so much more than the weepy, "I'm so proud of my King" back in Icecrown. She got sick of people screwing with her, and she started playing the 'all right, if you want to be an unhinged sociopath, I can play that game too'.
Having an opinion on that does not make someone worth being called the names and being 'talked to' in the manner you have. You should be ashamed of yourself.
Keep personal attacks out of this, please. Its fine to disagree with other members here but we do not tolerate going after others with complete disrespect.
The only reason I disagree with this is because not all characters are exactly equal. The way they respond to different circumstances -- including atrocities -- is shaped by what sort of person they are. Jaina Proudmoore has been through all sorts of shit in her life and she's never responded to it before by going into screaming ragemode, so it would be a fair conclusion then that she simply doesn't respond to adversity in that way, because she never has before.
You can always argue that this was finally the straw that broke the camel's back, and it has fundamentally changed who she is as a person, or you can argue that this was always hidden inside her before but just never had a chance to come out. But I think it's fair for the people who liked the character she was before to be displeased that such a fundamental aspect of her personality seems to have changed.
Especially when the circumstances she does it in gives off this weird vibe that it only happens so that Varian Wrynn can show off what a calm and reasonable and selfless man he's become (speaking of fundamental changes to how a character reacts to adversity.)
And it's not like Blizzard hasn't done this BEFORE. Hi, making Sylvanas OOCly evil (yes, kids, she did care for her people, Dave Kosak is just a fool) to try to make people like Garrosh more.
Your argument here is the first cogent one in here, thank you. I appreciate the logical discourse.
I don't think people shouldn't be allowed to dislike her, or be forbidden from liking how she was prior, I just want people to see logic about it.
On a related discussion thread on wow-ladies, I brought up a point that seems relevant here: what bothers me about this explanation (she's upset over the destruction of Theramore) is that it doesn't seem supported by the in-game writing. Certainly she has the right to be upset by it, it's just that that event doesn't seem to be the trigger for her change.
"When you go talk to Jaina in Dalaran during the Shieldwall questline, Anduin is trying to persuade her to use the resources of the Kirin Tor to help the Alliance in Pandaria (an odd change of tune for you, Anduin) and Jaina is refusing. During that entire conversation she remains completely calm and reasonable, talking in a level tone of voice and smiling conversationally as you discuss the history of the Kirin Tor, and speaks compassionately about the Sunreavers and how she values them as members of the KT despite the fact that she recognizes and accepts that they have emotional ties to some members of the Horde. At this point in time, to all appearances, she is grieving over the loss of Theramore but is in complete control of her emotions.
Then the theft of the Divine Bell from Darnassus happens. And while yes, that was a bad thing, it was a betrayal of Jaina's trust, the fact remains that 1) it was an action of one or two people, not the whole faction and 2) no one in the Alliance was even harmed during that theft. And Jaina completely flips her fucking lid. In the course of ten minutes she goes into murderatin' mode, patrolling Dalaran with her elementals out and shooting the fuck out of anyone who doesn't run fast enough. And continues in muderating mode for the rest of the expansion pack.
So... it was kind of a jarring transition, is what I'm saying. I can sort of see the argument that Aethas Sunreaver's betrayal was much more personal, for Jaina, than the actions of Garrosh and the goblins who nuked Theramore. Nevertheless, the destruction of Theramore does not seem to be what she was responding to."
I think the events of Dalaran/the Bell were the proverbial straw. She'd been talked out of Heinous Things by Kalec and had control of the Kirin Tor. She's still 'statesman' enough to know the consequences of bringing the full wrath of the Kirin Tor down on Orgrimmar, as well as evicting the Horde. I surmise that Jaina wanted to keep an eye on the Sunreavers and at the very least -try- for peace, understanding that Garrosh was one man and giving people the benefit of the doubt and all that, because peaceful resolution is Jaina's thing.
Then the Sunreavers kick sand in her face and steal the Bell. She's -livid- at that point and thinks that the Horde played her for a fool, not knowing the politics at play within the Horde at the time. Without all the facts, the facts that we players have, it's a logical conclusion.
Now, I'm not saying that Jaina isn't over the edge here. I'm not saying that she's 100% in the right with her actions. I'm saying that it isn't Screaming Harpy Syndrome because there are reasons behind her change. The writing could be better, but there's still -some- logic there. She got kicked in the head, picked herself up, and got kicked again. If someone were to do that to me, I'd be calling for their ass to be kicked too, if I didn't outright do it myself.
edited because I missed a word in a sentence.
Edited at 2013-09-13 02:12 pm (UTC)
"I'm saying that it isn't Screaming Harpy Syndrome because there are reasons behind her change. The writing could be better, but there's still -some- logic there. "
Perhaps. What it ultimately comes down to for me, though, is that I liked and admired the person that she used to be, and that person is gone. I can't be pleased with this development regardless of whether her transformation was justified, and I ultimately don't think the writers sold me on this story in a convincing fashion.
And I can accept your stance. *nod*
Because you aren't raging at me and because you're not attacking me over having a different one. :D
I don't know if this will get me in trouble, but I honestly don't know why our part of my thread above got frozen or why what I said could be construed as a personal attack, because it seriously wasn't. ._.
I just want to say in response to this and my post, that what dragonhawker is saying is pretty much what I was trying to get across too. I'm okay with someone finally flipping a table and having enough, I just want the lead-up to make sense. The scene I'm talking about in the Jaina book is when she's on that fighter island, making a bajillion water elementals with the Eye, and Thrall shows up and is like WTF LADY and she's all RAWR and they have a fight of sorts. She gets talked down at that point, and then she goes to Kalec and it sounds like all's swell that ends swell. She's not happy with the Horde or Garrosh and she makes it plain that as long as Garrosh is in charge, peace isn't an option.
That, unfortunately, was the end of my lore involvement, because I haven't had the time to devote to the Domination Point dailies to get the rep up to learn all the little lore bits that are going on. I knew Lor'themar was going to the night elves to ask if maaaaybe they can come back pretty please, and Garrosh found out and orchestrated the attack to make them lose face. It's just not like Jaina, even as weary and worn thin as she is, to look at that situation and not turn it over and over and figure out the cracks. For her to just go and stab everything, to the point of encouraging her king to continue bloodshed -right in front of the actual person who caused all this and is already beaten- just doesn't hold water for me. I'm super okay with character change, I just want it to be justified. :(
This. All of this.
I can understand her anger, and her rage. But I have a really hard time accepting that one of the most level-headed and logical characters in the series, especially one who has already had to make considerably difficult decisions in the past, has changed convincingly.
Oh, god. Here I am saying Grom is rolling in his grave regarding Garrosh, when Jaina is falling into her father's footsteps. Against the exact same opponents, even!
Clearly, Rexxar is needed.
Even at that, in all truth, the quest text implies that if they go willingly, she won't hurt them. She only hurts the ones that are resisting, she's trying to figure out who's siding with Sunreaver and who isn't - but that considered, I agree with you it was a huge and pretty drastic change given the timespan.
Then again, this is a woman who saw the guy she loved turned into the Lich King, among other various "emotional disappointments". The confusing thing is, they don't seem to want to give anyone the definitive "this is the last straw" point as far as writing for her. She has way too many ups and downs. It's like "I'm ok, I'm ok RAAAAAAAAAGE I'm ok RAAAAAAAAAAAGE"...it fluctuates so often it's really hard to keep track of >.<.
"The confusing thing is, they don't seem to want to give anyone the definitive "this is the last straw" point as far as writing for her. She has way too many ups and downs. It's like "I'm ok, I'm ok RAAAAAAAAAGE I'm ok RAAAAAAAAAAAGE"...it fluctuates so often it's really hard to keep track of >.<."
Pretty much this exactly!
There's also no accounting for the fact that Jaina is one of the most intelligent conventionally-mortal people in the game. You don't become the most powerful mortal mage in the known universe by hanging around books and osmosing them. And while it's true that cleverness is no defense against emotions like betrayal, misplaced affection or disappointment, I like to think (especially when that intellect is derived from careful, thorough study) that it comes with things like patience, foresight, tolerance for the unknown and unknowable, etc.
In this expansion, Jaina has been behaving less like a terribly tremendously incredibly clever mage, and more like, well, Garrosh. RAGE RAGE RAGE brief moment of calm RAGE RAGE RAGE RAGE UNTAINTED BY THOUGHT AND YET CALCULATED TO CAUSE AS MUCH HARM AND INJURY AS POSSIBLE brief moment of calm RAGE RAGE RAGE
Edited at 2013-09-13 04:13 pm (UTC)
Yep, I agree. And the crappy part is, if you don't read the books, it's even more confusing. It's just another argument towards "why are you guys not putting Lore in the game".
Blargh. It's sad when you have to get a friend to give you the cliffnotes to even know wtf is going on with MAJOR lore NPCs -.- :<.
That's how I saw it, too. She was involved with a lot of stuff before, but Hellscream killed not only a ton of her people, but Rhonin, too. Losing someone you respect as much as she did him, that's more than enough to take off the kid gloves, so to speak.
There's probably better ways they could have portrayed her, but at the same time it makes sense with how she reacted. Varian doing the 'now, now, calm down' thing just didn't sit right with me. I get it, he's in Pandaria now and that's how they roll there, so to speak, but even at that Anduin's always proven to have the leveler head in most of those situations. The fact it happens in the same room where Anduin's pretty much near-death only adds more to the 'wtf Blizz', simply because that's his son. You'd think he'd be just as off-kilter as she is o.O. I dunno.
Oh wow, you really are sort of a yes-man aren't you? You're so cute, little one! ^^ It's so adorable, really, that you'll slobberingly defend problematic and sexist depictions of women as irrational without their men, and cheerlead bullshitty misogynist writing that warps a character completely outside their known personality!
Jaina going after Garrosh? I can see. I can see her getting raging pissed at his ass, and his cheerleaders' asses.
But turning her into a genocidal asshole?
That happened to make Varian look good and because CDev thinks they're edgy.
You're a stan and an unthinking pseudoliberal fauxminist brat.
This is your only warning. Do NOT name call or personally attack here. You're welcome to civil debate, but this is not how that's done.
Has anyone considered that Jaina might legitmately have suffered brain damage? She was at the center of one of the largest, if not THE largest, magical explosions in Azeroth's history, and came out of it with bleached hair.
What if her brain was damaged as well? It doesn't take much to alter someone's personality, and if it were the case here...
Heck, WoW has shown in numerous cases since Vanilla how excess magic can affect huge changes in people, places etc. AS you said.. centre of huge magical explosion. Also, her eyes have changed too, not just her hair. Notice they glow? Seriously, if not brain damage, something huge has happened to her...
Actually...if we want to pull out The Books That Shall Not Be Named (the old RPG books), arcanists aka mages suffered something called arcane corruption. It was inherent in the class because they basically took something natural (magic in ley lines) and warped it to do their bidding. So...actually, sort of makes sense.
So instead of Screeching Emotional Harpy Woman we'll have Unstable Mentally Disabled Woman? Yay.
Brain damage does not immediately mean mentally disabled.
My mother certainly wasn't mentally disabled after her stroke.
This is probably the best explanation I've heard, actually, and it makes a lot of sense. That paired with her long use of magic, and on top of everything she's been through? Yeah.
Given what happened to the druid in Terokkar after he was too close to a mana explosion, yeah. There is precedent for exposure to uberhigh amounts of arcane power causing heavy negative effects on people.
Which...yeah. Not sure how to feel about this whole thing but there is precedent for it.
And let's not forget Medivh. Oi! -.- lol
Deathy was actually thinking of a Mercedes Lackey book where a powerful mage was almost at the epicenter of a magical explosion, and he came away physically scarred, and with tiny changes in his brain. Almost unnoticeable, except they made him quicker to anger and slower to forgive, and at several points he had angry tantrums until someone showed up who knew what the problem was and could help.
So, ah, not QUITE WoW lore at all, but the similarites were there.
Err, well...Medivh went crazy because he was being controlled by Sargeras who was alive inside him. It's not quite the same as arcane corruption. Which is why after he "died", he got better and started telling people to GTFO to Kalimdor.
Actually, now I wonder -- the big shift in Jaina's personality during this questline seems to have occurred.... at the time of the theft of the Divine Bell in Darnasses. The last time you talk to Jaina before that happens, she's calm and reasonable. The first time you talk to Jaina after that happens, she's ready to set fire to everything.
Did perhaps the Bell get rung in her hearing?
....That's a pretty viable thought, Deathy. Honestly can say I've never thought of that lol. That would make so much sense!
I like this theory, and it would explain a lot.
However; I am kinda enjoying Jaina going a bit dark sided "so to speak" To me that makes her a much more interesting character.