Mark Reads ‘Jingo’: Part 17

In the seventeenth part of Jingo, WHERE IS THIS STORY GOING. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read Discworld.

Trigger Warning: For transmisogyny

The D’regs

Well, the “battle” between the D’regs and the Klatchians did not unfold as I expected, but that’s a good thing. As cool as Carrot’s idea was, I also didn’t want to see Goriff’s friends – many of whom I assumed were thrown into the war as well – slaughtered. Plus, that’s not really Pratchett’s style, is it? Tonally, it probably would have felt very strange in a Discworld book. Yes, this is war, and it’s not like violent deaths have been absent from this series. But the solution that Carrot and Vimes execute here feels like a rejection of what you might expect in a typical fantasy book. Very, very few (if any!) people actually die, and the two watchmen accomplish something that is so unexpected that the Klatchian commander surrenders just out of sheer respect.

But what I like about this is how these characters don’t demean the D’regs for believing as they do. No, they just convince them that there’s simply a better option, one that’ll grant them the element of surprise and the closest thing to a guaranteed victory. And it works! Again, the Klatchian force simply could not believe that the D’regs did not charge at dawn. It’s like their whole thing, y’all. And if someone can persuade the D’regs, then perhaps they are not to be fucked with.

71-Hour Ahmed

WHAT THE HELL. WHY IS HE NAMED THAT. WHAT CAN HE DO IN THAT SPECIFIC LENGTH OF TIME? WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THAT PERIOD OF TIME? WHY IS IT THAT AHMED WANTS VIMES AND THE OTHER WATCHMEN ALIVE??? Y’all, I thought I had this figured out, and I made a huge deal out of pinpointing Ahmed’s motivations, and I was wrong. You are all probably cackling at me this instant. WHAT DOES HE WANT???

Lord Vetinari

So, a great deal of this part of Jingo dredges up one of my least favorite comedic tropes: men in dresses. And like, there is almost a subversion of through the footnotes, but even then, I don’t feel comfortable saying that that counts, as if it wipes away the uncomfortable taste left behind. Thankfully, I was able to be entertained by the complete surprise that is Lord Vetinari. Look, the man has an image he maintains. He is stoic. Calculating. All-knowing, as much as a human can be all knowing. He pulls the strings and makes people feel as if they’re in control the entire time. What he absolutely does not do is JUGGLE. THERE IS NO WAY THIS MAN IS AN EXPERT JUGGLER.

And yet? Welcome to this section of Jingo, in which the Patrician uses his otherworldly skill to gain access to Klatchian high command. I cannot believe I get to write about this because HOW THE FUCK IS IT REAL. Oh, he doesn’t just juggle. He performs sleight of hand magic tricks to. Y’all, the Patrician is a highly-trained street performer, and everything about this feels wrong. But I cannot deny what is written in the text of this book, can I? This is the world that I live in, now and forever.

I don’t know how to deal with it. Let’s talk about this line:

Although, he noted, the women in the crowd seemed to be disappointed by the sudden curtailment of the performance.

Because RIGHT? How many times have they been catcalled and berated by men? Maybe Nobby should have kicked the hell out of that one guy. But this totally feels like that whole trope of a person pretending to be a marginalized/oppressed individual and suddenly understanding what it’s like to be the other side, which is also not a favorite of mine. Perhaps this is how that seer’s fortune will come true?

Mark Links Stuff

I am now on Patreon! There are various levels of support, from $1 up to whatever you want! You’ll get to read a private blog, extra reviews, and other such rewards. I POST A LOT OF CUTE PHOTOS, OKAY. Think of it like a private Tumblr blog that only SPECIAL PEOPLE get to read.
– I have updated my list of conventions and events for the remainder of the year and much of next year.  Check the full list of events on my Tour Dates / Appearances page.
– My Master Schedule is updated for the near and distant future for most projects, so please check it often. My next Double Features for Mark Watches have been announced here.
– Mark Does Stuff is on Facebook! I’ve got a community page up that I’m running. Guaranteed shenanigans!

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since ’09.

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