Monday, May 16, 2011

Wait A Second

FLG doesn't know how many of you are watching Game of Thrones on HBO, but he is and there's a spoiler coming up in the post. He has also been reading the books, almost up-to-date.

Anyway, FLG was shocked by Renly and Ser Loras being gay. That's not in the books. Not even hinted at in the books, as far as FLG has read. Given other events, it seems like this would've already been broached in the books if it was.

That's not to say that stuff in the books necessarily precludes a homosexual relationship between Renly and the Knight of Flowers, but where the fuck did this entire idea come from?


Withywindle said...

They also manufactured a gay character for the movie version of Stardust. It's Hollywood. Or, I suppose, TV & Hollywood.

william randolph brafford said...

Read the books again -- it's subtle, but it's definitely there.

FLG said...

Now that I think about it, he did have a Rainbow Guard.

And a quick amount of Googling reveals some collections of quotes, but I never ever picked up on it. Although, there are non-gay explanations for most of the quotes too though.

william randolph brafford said...

I haven't read the books in years, but I remember that some of the older characters kept hinting at some secret problem with Renly's marriage, but without saying what it was. The relationship between Renly and Loras was the best explanation for that...

Andrew Stevens said...

I thought Martin was hitting us over the head with it and was surprised to find that lots of people missed the hints. However, the books left you free to believe that it could have just been a rumor about Renly and Loras, but despite Renly's having been married to his wife for weeks, she claims the marriage was never consummated and most people seem to find this quite plausible.

FLG said...


In hindsight, after posting this of course, I guess it is all very obvious.

Two things threw me:
1) I was never that interested in the Renly or Loras storylines. I tend to skip right over them. Tyrion, Jaime, Jon Snow, and Arya Stark are the characters that primarily interest me.

2) Martin isn't usually terribly subtle about much sexually. Whoring, bastards, incest for crissakes...if a character were gay, then I'd expect him to just state it. Not ambigous statements with reasonable, non-gay, explanations.

Galatea said...


Gay characters in genre fantasy must remain closeted lest the book be relegated to the (further) niche label 'queer-friendly'.

See also: Harry Potter. Sirius, Remus and Tonks implied gay but retconned straight, Dumbledore extratextually gay. Why couldn't she just "state it"? 'Cuz then all the media coverage promptly changes to "The queer-friendly teen series, Harry Potter", and her publishers chose not to go down that road.

Andrew Stevens said...

Galatea: a plausible theory. On the other hand, it could be the other way around. Loras and Renly are, in the end, fairly unserious characters, merely playing at war, and it's possible Martin didn't wish to get a reputation as queer-unfriendly or writing in stereotypes.

It's also hard to see how the information could have been unambiguously imparted to the readers. Renly and Loras wouldn't have come right out and told anyone so unless one or the other was made a POV character, there's no way to let the readers in on it unambiguously.

Not terribly fond of this episode or the TV show so far, I must say. Principally because where Martin was subtle, the TV show is hamfisted. I suppose it has to be that way given time constraints, but you lose all the details that make the books worth reading.

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