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Roger - A Symptom of of Deep Structural Problems in LCs?
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ussusimiel
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:37 am    Post subject: Roger - A Symptom of of Deep Structural Problems in LCs? Reply with quote

The thread on Family has raised the issue of the lack of proper development of the character of Roger.

Is the treatment of the character of Roger indicative the general structural and thematic weaknesses that some see in the LCs? And, are there ways that the character could have been treated differently that would have helped to improve the series?

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Short answer: yes to both questions.

Right from the beginning of ROTE, it's a problem. Why did Linden never attempt to contact Roger, or Joan's parents, if for no other reason than to (1) inform them of Joan's condition, and. (2) see if their presence might have been the thing to rouse Joan from her state and maybe begin her healing?

SRD is a very careful writer, and puts in precisely what he wants/needs. I feel like we gave to take the lack of a single word about that anywhere in the LC's means that (1) it didn't happen, and (2) it wasn't even on linden's radar as a thing to try. Even three paragraphs describing efforts to reach out to Roger and/or the Machts that were rebuffed would have been enough to establish that Linden tried.

Because it beggars belief, based on everything we know about
Linden, and especially what SRD tells us about the things she learned regarding healing patients like Joan over a decade, that she wouldn't gave tried very hard indeed.

It's a huge oversight, either on Linden's part, or SRD's, and to me, it sets the tone for more such throughout the LC's.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 8:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...ahhh..no..the treatment of Roger as writtrn by the author is quite acceptable as is. I think the sheriff could have done a bit more , but its understandable how even the Law can't assert itself until the law has been broken. In other words..nobody understood how screwed up Roger was. Real life isn't so different.

But we're talkin about a Fantasy series here.
And by the time we meet him again in the land, hes got kassy's flaming hand, and the croyel on his side..Its already too late for any warm and fuzzy.

This is SRD's story, so of course, now that its down and printed, anyone can say this or that should have been different..more salt, less pepper..Same thing.. But if one wants to stay relevant,,attached to what actually was written and come to a perception on how all things fit together,,then you have to criticize with a different set of tools besides personal taste..or personal wishes and wants. Roger is the worse thru neglect. Linden grew up knowing a distorted love. Roger grew up without any love at all; neglected for being the son , the offspring of a leper,,and not even allowed to associate with the leper who fathered him. ..Roger is more than the opposite of Love,,He is the product of No Love..the total absence of Love..The character Roger, fills that general perception out quite well.

What seems to bother some is TC's reaction or inter-action with Roger..Lets see..dead..arch of Time..when his son shows up in the Land..he is already Foul's lap dog, already a tool of the despiser, to be used to gain freedom from the Land, from the Arch of Time..

So..its like the author puts it a couple of times in TLD..the realities of all the " ifs" are wonderous,,but you have to make a choice and deal with the consequences of that choice....Its obvious Joan was TC's first concern upon coming back to " life". That he didn't continue on to find and dispense Roger...no body seems to see,,or mention. Don't forget..it was Despair that killed Roger,,not TC. ..Structural flaw??..if you want to make an issue about Roger..geezuz..there is a easier one with Joan..TC stabbed Joan to death. TC was married to Joan and had a son by her,,and He Murdered HER..if how TC treated Roger is a problem..then how TC treated JOAN is the unsolved universal riddle of Dark Energy.

Square peg..meet round hole..There is basically no hope for Roger..What Hope or Love is given to the character he turns into fear and loathing. Yet..TC could kill Joan .. but did not Kill Roger.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 3:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Roger - A Symptom of of Deep Structural Problems in LCs? Reply with quote

ussusimiel wrote:
The thread on Family has raised the issue of the lack of proper development of the character of Roger.

Is the treatment of the character of Roger indicative the general structural and thematic weaknesses that some see in the LCs? And, are there ways that the character could have been treated differently that would have helped to improve the series?

u.
I'd say no. With the caveat that if it is, it's a symptom of structural problems with the entire Chronicles of Thomas Covenant.

1) Not agreeing with how a character(s) act is not indictitive of a failure of structure... it may be characterization, it may be a lack of background info (We do not know what Linden did to contact relatives of Joan in the ten years ... we do not know if the relatives really cared. And Roger would only really be able to be legally responsible for Joan towards the end of that. Maybe. This also doesn't appear because Donaldson does not care and actively leaves out details to focus on what he wants to)

2) Donaldson does not really want to focus on Roger as a character arc. Roger is part of the plot and serves his function as such.

3) It seems to me that the actual issue should not be with Roger (based on the criticisms I've read) but rather Covenant's response to Roger and Joan. Though once again, that is not really structural but characterization.

4) Not everyone needs to be saved in a story... it actually kinda weakens the punch of when people are saved if everything ends up hunky dory for everyone... you need people to fail to contrast with those who succeed. So it does not bother me that Roger went out like a bitch. He at least got to take out the Harrow like a boss beforehand.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 9:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Roger - A Symptom of of Deep Structural Problems in LCs? Reply with quote

Orlion wrote:

I'd say no. With the caveat that if it is, it's a symptom of structural problems with the entire Chronicles of Thomas Covenant.

1) Not agreeing with how a character(s) act is not indictitive of a failure of structure... it may be characterization, it may be a lack of background info (We do not know what Linden did to contact relatives of Joan in the ten years ... we do not know if the relatives really cared. And Roger would only really be able to be legally responsible for Joan towards the end of that. Maybe. This also doesn't appear because Donaldson does not care and actively leaves out details to focus on what he wants to)


This is my problem with it. SRD's leaving this out weakens the entire foundation of the LC's. Look at the themes he wrestles with throughout the series - the relationship between parents and children is front and center. And Linden's self doubts and (as Stave puts it in AATE) her dwelling on the various "what ifs" resulting from her choices is one of the central themes in her character arc.

When we're told by SRD that Linden tries to heal her patients by showing them "in every language she could devise" that they are loved and cared for, the lack of ONE SINGLE WORD about trying to enlist Joan's family to aid in her healing is a huge, glaring omission, either on Linden's part, or on SRD's.

I mean, given Linden's questioning of her actions (and inactions) and the consequences resulting from them, isn't it logical and completely in character that she would wonder "could I have done more?" or "if only I'd tried to contact Roger after the events of ten years ago, maybe he could have been saved" etc. She analyzes every other choice she makes at great length, and blames herself for every possibly outcome of them - to me, it's beyond belief that she wouldn't come around to questioning herself over this, too.

Quote:
2) Donaldson does not really want to focus on Roger as a character arc. Roger is part of the plot and serves his function as such.


True, but that's part of my problem with the whole LC's as well. There is a LOT that is not focused on, things that were treated with more care and attention in the earlier Chronicles.

Quote:
3) It seems to me that the actual issue should not be with Roger (based on the criticisms I've read) but rather Covenant's response to Roger and Joan. Though once again, that is not really structural but characterization.


I disagree. To me, it's structural because Covenant's relationship with and feelings about Roger ARE (or should have been) a much larger part of his story. Not because I, personally, would prefer it, but because this is a series that is expressly grappling with parent-child relationships as a major theme. To more or less ignore the relationship between Covenant and Roger (especially in a series where the introspection goes on for whole chapters at a time) is a fundamental failure of the books, to me.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:08 am    Post subject: Re: Roger - A Symptom of of Deep Structural Problems in LCs? Reply with quote

starkllr wrote:
...To me, it's structural because Covenant's relationship with and feelings about Roger ARE (or should have been) a much larger part of his story. Not because I, personally, would prefer it, but because this is a series that is expressly grappling with parent-child relationships as a major theme. To more or less ignore the relationship between Covenant and Roger (especially in a series where the introspection goes on for whole chapters at a time) is a fundamental failure of the books, to me.

I agree with this, mainly because Roger is so involved all through the LCs. And I think that his presence is mostly unnecessary to the main story. I know that he is centrally involved with the period set in the past during FR (but I think that this could have been relatively easily overcome through, for example, a Raver possessing someone and then being hidden by the croyel's glamour). And I know that he is tied up with Kastenessen and the skurj, but much of that plot-line seemed to me to be either peripheral or unnecessary. Yes the Giants get to fight them a lot and they turn up in lots of battles, but what purpose did that whole branch of the story serve?

I see many of those elements of the story more as gimmicks and plot devices rather than integral to the story, and I found much of it distracting and annoying right from the off in the LCs. If the relationship between Roger and Covenant had been explored more deeply, then I could maybe have begun to see the purpose in the presence of Roger's character.

And this points to the greater structural weaknesses that I see in the LCs, those of a more general lack of integration in the story and disappointing level of care regarding characters in general. Even a b*****d like Roger deserves to be hated with a passion and his end be seen as a relief. We felt that way about Kasreyn or Rant Absolain. Instead, for me, Roger mostly bugged me and then died without there being any real resolution to his character.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 12:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fascinating..to say the relations between parents and their children is front and center...and then say,,there are structural problems attending to that ...uhhmmm..if your " posit" fails under the weight of your own observations..then can you agree that quite possibly your " posit" is flawed?.. I can only suggest the relationship between parent and children is Not front and center,,at least in the most literal sense... Yes, of course TCoTC is just nothing but fathers and mothers and sons and daughters...Heck, by near end of TLD it even dawns on TC that the ur-Viles are fathers and mothers with sons and daughters..but TC is covered with blood from butchering them by the gross by the time he sees them as he may see himself.. Thats my point..On larger themes the character Roger works well as does Joan etc etc etc..larger than parent child relationships. Love, Hope, Compassion defining what it is to be a Human Being in this era of modern man..seems to me to be the front and center Theme of TCoTC and by that, I have little to quibble about with character of Roger.

Matter of fact..the character scares the crap out of me...because We know so little about him..and by allowing to know so little about him..his actions are all that more Shocking and Horrifying,,We Don't Know What he is going to do next..what stunt, what new way of attacking, what new weapon, what new alliance,,etc etc..he is going to pull off next. Thats not structural flaw...thats Suspense..

For me.. it was brilliant what the author did in Fatal Rev..with Roger and croyel creating the Illusion of TC and Roger..I thoroughly enjoyed the Mystery and Suspense of all of it. The author doesn't let Linden kill him off tho..Heck not even TC gets to Mercy Kill him..No..Despair got played by His Biggest Fan,,and it cost Foul his ticket to eternity.

Structural Flaw...consider..that if Roger had not been there and had his few minutes of Drama..then maybe Foul would not have been side tracked and thus been able to get free...Consider,,that the final redemption of Roger,,was that he distracted Foul just long enough..to miss the opportunity to escape....In Surreal terms,, that is Black Humor at its best and thus " magnificence"..As the Time Warden,perhaps TC can be allowed to be at least aware..of Rogers final act ,,as being redemptive.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 7:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have to agree with those who think that there is a structural problem here.

We know that at the end of The Second Chronicles Roger was effectively orphaned (his father dead and his mother mentally incapacitated). In the opening chapters of The Last Chronicles we learn that Linden was capable of adopting and caring for one of the children damaged by the Community of Retribution. We know that Linden's boss, Dr. Berenford, was closely familiar with the tragic circumstances of the Covenant family. We also know that the town in which the action in the "real world" takes place is the sort of small town where everyone knows everyone and knows what's happening. In the light of these considerations, and others that have been mentioned by other commenters, it is drawing a long bow indeed to expect that for ten years after the events in The Second Chronicles until Roger's legal coming of age, Linden would have had no contact with Roger and shown no interest in Thomas Covenant's son.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Roger grew up elsewhere, with Joan's parents.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Savor Dam wrote:
Roger grew up elsewhere, with Joan's parents.

Yep, and never underestimate the tenacity of grandparents protecting their grandchild by keeping them away.

And once again, this seems to be an issue of "I don't like the way so-and-so reacted" rather then "that's not very believable!" People are a whole lot varied then genre fiction tends to have you believe it, and though a small town may want to know everyone's business it rarely does (in my experience). Doesn't stop them from repeating gossip as if it were fact, but there you go.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

People forget that in RL, Linden knew Covenant for less than 2 days.

For the ten years since then, Roger was underage, and lived with his grandparent guardians, who also probably made Joan's medical decisions if anyone did. There was no legitimate socially-acceptable reason for Linden to contact Roger.

... until Roger came of age and took over responsibility for his mother's care. Then it would be very appropriate to meet Roger. And that's exactly when Linden did meet him.

So if you want to consider "plausibility", please consider it widely and in depth.

-----

As to the question of why include Roger at all, that seems very straightforward.

If Donaldson thought that having a Covenant-imposter was critical to the story, then Roger Covenant was certainly the first and foremost choice. Only someone from the real world is a plausible choice, because only they have the cultural background to fake it 'till they make it.

Certainly there is also "novelty", for lack of a better word, as well.

And Roger provides a new twist on Foul's mendacity without requiring Donaldson to invent something brand new to do it. It re-weaves loose ends back into the plot and ties them up. There's a certain amount of "efficiency" to this that fits with Donaldson's style.

Lastly, as I mentioned earlier, Roger and Joan are utterly necessary as foils for Linden and Jeremiah. They represent the old family that Covenant has chosen over in favor of a new family, wife and son. Donaldson has suggested that Roger "implied" Jeremiah - his sense of story balance seemed to demand that his new family would parallel the old.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayfriend wrote:
...For the ten years since then, Roger was underage, and lived with his grandparent guardians, who also probably made Joan's medical decisions if anyone did. There was no legitimate socially-acceptable reason for Linden to contact Roger.

... until Roger came of age and took over responsibility for his mother's care. Then it would be very appropriate to meet Roger. And that's exactly when Linden did meet him.

I'm not sure that I agree with this, way. I think that as a possible method for reaching Joan bringing her son into the picture would be a fairly good one. I can easily see how the grandparents would refuse to allow it, and I still think that it is quite plausible to suggest it as a course of action.

wayfriend wrote:
If Donaldson thought that having a Covenant-imposter was critical to the story, then Roger Covenant was certainly the first and foremost choice. Only someone from the real world is a plausible choice, because only they have the cultural background to fake it 'till they make it.

While I can see how important this role was I have suggested upthread how it might have been dealt with otherwise. Roger didn't even make a particularly good fist (pun noted Laughing) of it as it was. IMO, another imposter could have replaced Roger within this part of the story without altering it in any crucial way.

wayfriend wrote:
Lastly, as I mentioned earlier, Roger and Joan are utterly necessary as foils for Linden and Jeremiah. They represent the old family that Covenant has chosen over in favor of a new family, wife and son. Donaldson has suggested that Roger "implied" Jeremiah - his sense of story balance seemed to demand that his new family would parallel the old.

I agree that Roger acts as a foil for Jeremiah (as Joan does for Linden) and this is maybe where his lack of development causes difficulty for me. I get to understand him so little that he might as well have remained outside of the Land and instead remained a symbolic foil to Jeremiah. This in some ways might have been more effective because we would have been left with the image of him of being a discarded dupe of Foul's, and maybe had more sympathy for him because of that.

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="wayfriend"]People forget that in RL, Linden knew Covenant for less than 2 days.

For the ten years since then, Roger was underage, and lived with his grandparent guardians, who also probably made Joan's medical decisions if anyone did. There was no legitimate socially-acceptable reason for Linden to contact Roger.

... until Roger came of age and took over responsibility for his mother's care. Then it would be very appropriate to meet Roger. And that's exactly when Linden did meet him.

So if you want to consider "plausibility", please consider it widely and in depth. [\quote]

There certainly was a legitimate reason to contact Roger. I think that for anyone in Linden's position, at some point in the ten years between WGW and ROTE, it would at least cross your mind to think "Hmm...I wonder if Joan would react to her son's presence, or her parents. Maybe I should give them a call and see if they'll come visit her?"

Literally, all it would have taken was two or three paragraphs to tick off the possibility, explain that it had failed, and then Linden looks more responsible and on-the-ball (in keeping with the way she's described in the first chapters of ROTE). That's it. The fact that SRD couldn't find three paragraphs to tick that box off says that he didn't consider it remotely important. But I just can't understand that.

Maybe I'm making too much if this, but it feels SO careless to me. SRD tells us about Linden's success in running her wing of the hospital. He goes into the way that she's learned that patients have to heal themselves, but she can try to give them the circumstances in which they will feel safe enough to do so. But then Linden ignores such an obvious avenue of potential healing for Joan, and SRD doesn't deem it important enough to even bother to mention? It comes across to me as the first of many similar (and much more serious) problems with the LC as the series goes on.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

structural problems...When is it going to dawn on you guys that when a series is all about freeing from the constraints of Time and Space, structure as you know it , just went out the window.?

You can say that your heritage, your upbringings, your society , have you molded in to a form you cannot and wish not to free your self from, but that doesn't change TCoTC..Thats two different things. But I see your " structural problems" as nothing more than insisting TCoTC has a structure,,that is clear to me the author breaks free of thru-out and reduces to rubble by end of TLD. So ,,having the Roger character as as evidence of structural problems..misses the whole idea that " structure" as you demand..simply evaporates by the end of the series..Your structural problems are non sequitor because structure collapses to rubble at end. Structure IS the Problem and the author destroys it and begins anew. Give it a try why don't you..?
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ussusimiel wrote:
wayfriend wrote:
If Donaldson thought that having a Covenant-imposter was critical to the story, then Roger Covenant was certainly the first and foremost choice. Only someone from the real world is a plausible choice, because only they have the cultural background to fake it 'till they make it.

While I can see how important this role was I have suggested upthread how it might have been dealt with otherwise. Roger didn't even make a particularly good fist (pun noted Laughing) of it as it was. IMO, another imposter could have replaced Roger within this part of the story without altering it in any crucial way.

The answer to the question, "Why use Roger?", isn't applicable as an answer to a different question, "Could it have been someone else". I am sure Donaldson had many possibilities to choose from. He could have used a sheep if he had wanted to. But Donaldson thought Roger was the best choice. We are left to speculate why. Speculation can be based on the premise that Donaldson made the best choice for his intent, or speculation can be based on the premise that Donaldson was careless and unskilled.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayfriend wrote:
ussusimiel wrote:
While I can see how important this role was I have suggested upthread how it might have been dealt with otherwise. Roger didn't even make a particularly good fist (pun noted Laughing) of it as it was. IMO, another imposter could have replaced Roger within this part of the story without altering it in any crucial way.

The answer to the question, "Why use Roger?", isn't applicable as an answer to a different question, "Could it have been someone else". I am sure Donaldson had many possibilities to choose from...

I am not arguing with the choice of Roger. So long as he was in the Land, he would obviously be the best choice. What I am trying to show is that Roger's presence in the Land, IMO, isn't absolutely crucial to the LCs. I was attempting to demonstrate this by suggesting that even in the part of the story where he is present for the most extended period, I find it relatively easy to find a way to replace him. I couldn't do this with Jeremiah, for example.

Part of my thinking on this is that I find Roger's presence in the Land didn't work for me (I was fine with the part he played in the 'real' world) and I am examining that perception to see if it casts any light on other difficulties I had with the LCs as a whole.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ussusimiel wrote:
wayfriend wrote:
ussusimiel wrote:
While I can see how important this role was I have suggested upthread how it might have been dealt with otherwise. Roger didn't even make a particularly good fist (pun noted Laughing) of it as it was. IMO, another imposter could have replaced Roger within this part of the story without altering it in any crucial way.

The answer to the question, "Why use Roger?", isn't applicable as an answer to a different question, "Could it have been someone else". I am sure Donaldson had many possibilities to choose from...

I am not arguing with the choice of Roger. So long as he was in the Land, he would obviously be the best choice. What I am trying to show is that Roger's presence in the Land, IMO, isn't absolutely crucial to the LCs.

There are thousands of things in the LCs that aren't crucial to the LCs. Haruchai and Ranyhyn aren't crucial to the LCs, if the criteria is that Donaldson could have used something else. I guess I have lost the gist. Sorry.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayfriend wrote:
There are thousands of things in the LCs that aren't crucial to the LCs. Haruchai and Ranyhyn aren't crucial to the LCs, if the criteria is that Donaldson could have used something else. I guess I have lost the gist. Sorry.

I am obviously not doing a good job of explaiining myself Laughing

It is clear to me that the Haruchai and Ranyhyn are crucial to the LCs, as I would find it nigh on impossible to imagine the story without them. Another example is the Insequent. I am not a big fan of them, but I recognise that their presence is absolutely necessary for the story. If they weren't there then something else very like them would need to replace them.

I am focusing on Roger because I find a number of the structural problems I experienced combined in his character and role. For example, I found that at times there were simply too many major characters involved, I found the pacing of the story was often too slow (with a lot of time spent explaining the multiple plotlines and characters' motivations) and I found it difficult to engage with many characters (good or bad). By looking closely at Roger's place/treatment in the story I am also attempting to examine these other issues. In doing so I am continuing to analyse my responses to the series and deepen my understanding of why they felt so different from the earlier ones.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 2014 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Roger's pretty boring. He's a bad guy -- worse, and irredeemably bad bad guy. So there's nothing to like about him, unless you get a kick out of his sarcasm. And he's not very interesting either. Ravers and croyel are exotic and alien, and so they don't really need depth, and a little vagueness just adds to their mystery. But Roger's just a guy, like guys we know. He's doesn't get anyone excited by being exotic or mysterious. His only hope to earn us being interested in him is if he becomes a POV character once in a while ... but unfortunately Donaldson's rules for his story won't permit that.

So, to the degree that "being able to imagine him not being in the story" is the same as saying "he's not very interesting, I could have done without him", that's understandable.

But in any other way, I think he's just as crucial as any other element of the story. Every element has alternatives, they're just not as good. The element of Roger is the same in this regard. I don't think anyone else could have been a Covenant-imposter as believably, not when Linden is the one that has to be fooled. And had we not seen how much Roger was swayed by Foul, the Jeremiah arc would not have been as well established.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Roger is not developed in the books except in the real-world section in ROTE and at the final showdown in TLD and it's true as well that no effort is made yo contact, redeem or even care about him. Now the first could be a failing by SRD, the suggestion that he could've have been captured along with Jere-Croyel sound interesting in theory, but the second must be a deliberate choice. Maybe SRD should have been more forthcoming with his reasoning in the books but we should accept that there were reason for what he wrote.

Once we accept that, it becomes a character flaw in our heroes rather than a plot flaw. So why do Linden and Covenant show so little regard to him?

Linden is easier to explain, I think. She regards herself as a very good mental doctor for her patients in general and Joan in particular but perhaps there is some self-deception there. None of the hard-cases in her clinic improved much during the decade she looked after them. How did she care for them? Her approach was pretty passive as far as I can tell. She tried to surround them with a warm and caring environment and hoped that it would allow them to emerge out of their shells by themselves. But she knew there was a supernatural element at the root of their afflictions. Like Jeremiah in AATE, hugging them was, while helpful, not enough to set them free. So why did she make no effort on that front?

We need to go back to the ending of WGW. After doubting Covenant and trying to possess him, Covenant vindicates himself and defeats Lord Foul. He promises to stand over Time in the Land and guard it against the dissipated Foul. Linden learned in her time in the Land to Love and more importantly to Believe in others. To admit that Foul was not truly defeated, to admit that the deranged patients in her clinic were proof or at the very least a strong indication that Foul was still alive and kicking would have been, in her mind, to doubt her love of Covenant and to belittle his victory. It would have robbed his death (both in the real world and in the Land) of its meaning. He didn't really save the possessed cultists and his wife and maybe he didn't ensure the future prosperity of the Land against Foul by his awesome sacrifice. And so Linden denied the possibility that there was anything fundamentally wrong with her patients. There were just taking a long time to recover.

And what about Joan? Here we have another problem for Linden. Her secret relationship with Covenant twists her dealing with Joan. Covenant is Linden's love but Joan was his wife. She was the one he sacrificed himself for. In one sense Linden feels she should take on Covenant burden to honor his memory. In another sense she wanted to punish her for putting Covenant through so much anguish. And so she doesn't invite her parents or her son. She deals with her herself, just like Covenant did in his cabin. Linden explain to us her strategy. She would allow Joan to injure herself so she could pay up for her sins against Covenant using the symbol of the marriage she forsake. Unlike Covenant's strategy, which was to allow her to punish him Linden encourages Joan to hurt herself. If she was just a disinterested outsider maybe I could accept her reasoning but she's anything but. (and this is an even stronger example of how Linden blinds herself to the possibility that their victory in the Land was not as complete as she wants to believe) We don't hear that much about how the other patients are treated but for lack of contrary evidence we should assume that Joan's treatment is unique. There is one mention of depressed patients hurting themselves in AATE (before Linden confronts the Lurker) but I don't think Linden says there that she actually encouraged her patients to do this.

To return to Roger, there is also another reason she ignores him. He is Covenant's flesh and blood son. It is obvious Linden wanted to have a child by the love of her life. She went and adopted Jeremiah because she couldn't have one. To see this kid would have been too painful to her. Envy obviously and maybe also fear. Could she pretend like he meant nothing to her? Could she pretend in front of him and Joan's parents that Joan was just another patient? And could they discover that she had Covenant's ring. Would they try to take it from her, like Roger tried to do when he showed up?

I'll go into what Covenant's reasons could've be in another post.
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