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Just finishing up reading Dark and Hungry God...
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We like to talk about redemption being a theme in SRD's works, but I don't think any of his characters are ever "redeemed" of their crimes, however much they may wish it. Angus came to regret what he did and may have wished there was some way he could have redeemed himself... but that's impossible. He was never going to get the complete forgiveness from himself or Morn that he'd need to be "redeemed." However, despite this he still transcended himself, he still became a better person.

Angus' wielding could also be viewed as an analogy of how his life shaped him to be a horrible person, an upbringing that forced him to do a lot of his atrocities. To transcend this, he had to have the will but also the trust of his victims. It was Morn giving him a chance that allowed him to overcome the strictures of his cyborgness and nastiness in general, even if he essentially remained a cyborg and nasty person in the end.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orlion wrote:
We like to talk about redemption being a theme in SRD's works, but I don't think any of his characters are ever "redeemed" of their crimes, however much they may wish it.


I've been thinking on this for a while...and, like a lot of things, I think it depends.
In one sense/usage "redemption" means basically paying what you owe. And in that sense, I think you are correct. What one does, no matter how lofty/heroic/good, does not/cannot "pay for" what one DID...some deeds are beyond any price.
In another sense, though, redemption is the attaining/regaining of your unadulterated self, your agency/identity, with the implication that one has become "good," or at least "better." In that sense, I think redemption happens for many, many SRD char's. [and many, many char's in other peeps work, it's just SRD is more extreme/intense in the theme than many, and makes us care more for his characters, so we want/need the redemption of them].
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think it is possible for Angus to have a "happy" ending--he is still Angus, regardless of the fact that he is a BAMF with one-of-a-kind ship full of state-of-the-art tech.

I do agree that he now has the potential for redemption. Although he could willingly choose to return to his old life and old ways, I suspect that he will not--Warden and Morn placing their trust in him has in many ways made him a new man.

I certainly wouldn't want to get in his way.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 12:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I personally feel The Gap is a little different because I look it as a cycle, conflict, vision, power, madness and ruin, much like Wagner's epic. The ring starts in the river, and ends there.

In the specific case of Angus he starts of conflicted, and ends conflicted.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Orlion wrote:
We like to talk about redemption being a theme in SRD's works, but I don't think any of his characters are ever "redeemed" of their crimes, however much they may wish it. Angus came to regret what he did and may have wished there was some way he could have redeemed himself... but that's impossible. He was never going to get the complete forgiveness from himself or Morn that he'd need to be "redeemed." However, despite this he still transcended himself, he still became a better person.

Angus' wielding could also be viewed as an analogy of how his life shaped him to be a horrible person, an upbringing that forced him to do a lot of his atrocities. To transcend this, he had to have the will but also the trust of his victims. It was Morn giving him a chance that allowed him to overcome the strictures of his cyborgness and nastiness in general, even if he essentially remained a cyborg and nasty person in the end.


Angus became a better person? Really. Really. Better than what? Transcended what? His welding, maybe. But we don't know what Angus did with his new freedom.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a certain ground for comparison between Angus and the evil yet strangely innocent Alex DeLarge in the movie/book A Clockwork Orange. In the end, Alex was freed from his "welding" by members of the political party opposed to the one that "welded" him. But in the end he was simply freed to be himself again. He is, let's say, freed to pursue redemption, although as with Angus we are not told if he ever attained it. It is this freedom that serves as the ideal. And we learn that in the long run there are evils far greater than those individuals who only predate upon other individuals, evils that seek to enslave thus take away the freedoms of all often for the sake of "higher" political ideals.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Putting this here because my question probably won't stretch out a whole thread: Who have you guys thought the "Dark and Hungry God" is in the story? I've always assumed it was Angus, who I guess is the obvious canditate: he's hungry for freedom, his powers are godlike, and he sure as hell is a dark person.

But reading all the Ancillary Documentations (I skimmed them my first read), I thought it could just as easily be Holt Fasner, what with all the backstory we get. Or the UMC/UMCPD as a whole. What to you guys think of that idea?

Oh:
TheWormoftheWorld'sEnd wrote:
There is a certain ground for comparison between Angus and the evil yet strangely innocent Alex DeLarge in the movie/book A Clockwork Orange. In the end, Alex was freed from his "welding" by members of the political party opposed to the one that "welded" him. But in the end he was simply freed to be himself again. He is, let's say, freed to pursue redemption, although as with Angus we are not told if he ever attained it.


Spoiler:
I seem to remember at the end of the book Alex has at least made a personal resolution to change his ways, even if we don't see this actually play out. IIRC, this was one of the major differences with the movie; at the end of the movie, Alex seems just the same, hearing Ludwig Van in his head an leering at images of naked women.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, the final chapter of the book was cut from the movie. I found it a bit twee, to be honest.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cambo wrote:
Putting this here because my question probably won't stretch out a whole thread: Who have you guys thought the "Dark and Hungry God" is in the story? I've always assumed it was Angus, who I guess is the obvious canditate: he's hungry for freedom, his powers are godlike, and he sure as hell is a dark person.

But reading all the Ancillary Documentations (I skimmed them my first read), I thought it could just as easily be Holt Fasner, what with all the backstory we get. Or the UMC/UMCPD as a whole. What to you guys think of that idea?


Donaldson left it obscure as usual. He would probably say 'all of the
above.'

Cambo wrote:
Oh:
TheWormoftheWorld'sEnd wrote:
There is a certain ground for comparison between Angus and the evil yet strangely innocent Alex DeLarge in the movie/book A Clockwork Orange. In the end, Alex was freed from his "welding" by members of the political party opposed to the one that "welded" him. But in the end he was simply freed to be himself again. He is, let's say, freed to pursue redemption, although as with Angus we are not told if he ever attained it.


Spoiler:
I seem to remember at the end of the book Alex has at least made a personal resolution to change his ways, even if we don't see this actually play out. IIRC, this was one of the major differences with the movie; at the end of the movie, Alex seems just the same, hearing Ludwig Van in his head an leering at images of naked women.


In the book, Alex became bored with the lifestyle; the movie version presents him as irredeemable. Being redeemed through boredom wouldn't be translatable to the silver screen in an interesting form. Ending the film with naughty images was much more interesting.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have always thought the the Dark and Hungry God was not any of the characters but the inevitability of change threatening to destroy everything. By the end of the third novel, things have changed to the point where the old truce is impossible to maintain and enough betrayals have occurred to allow Holt's plan to move forward on its own intertia.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, much more profound. Perhaps I was being too literal minded.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always thought that, at least with the third and final books. the the titles would make more sense in reference to the inspiration source. (Wagner's Ring cycle). If you could find out what character in that was the 'dark and hungry god', you could then try to find out its Gap equivalent.

Buuuut I also like Hashi's point.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like to believe Orlion's theory that the choice of titles traced back to something as deep as SRD's Wagnerian inspirations for the Gap cycle...but the experience of what publisher mandates did to the titles he had selected for the Last Chronicles suggests that Donaldson may not have the artistic freedom to have picked titles on as obscure a set of grounds as that.

Yes, I hope it was as simple and elegant as suggested...but I'm prepared for the truth to be considerably less satisfactory.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The title as it now stands is just a pun on the real title, as the GI tells us: "Dark and hung". Surprised

Or maybe something like this:

Quote:
It's a bit embarrassing to admit this, but sometimes titles are more intuitive than literal. Ferinstance, what *exactly* is the "forbidden knowledge" in "Forbidden Knowledge"? Have fun with that one. But working backward in the GAP books, "This Day All Gods Die" clearly refers to--gasp!--both Holt Fasner and Warden Dios. Joshua isn't really a candidate, except in the sense that "transformation" (and Angus *is* transformed) is a form of death. So the "Dark and Hungry God" must be either Holt or Warden. Both of whom have literally already "arisen" before the story begins, but who "arise" to prominence *within* the story in book three. And of those two, Holt is plainly darker and hungrier than Warden.

Strangely, there is a bookstore where I live that uses title abbreviations on their price-stickers; and the abbreviation this store used for book three was "Dark and Hung."
(04/28/2004)


When I first read ADAHGA, I think my initial connection was the rising threat of the Amnion. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great GI post!

I agree with Donaldson on FK; there's quite a few examples you could use to fit with that title. The Aminion immunity drug springs quite prominently to mind, but I also think of Angus' ability to edit data cores, the force growing technique, Davies' memories of Morn's life.....many things.
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