RT @zeynep: I wrote about why the downturn of storytelling in #GameofThrones also explains why it's hard for us to deal with Facebook, YouTube, AI, etc. The show was a rare beast: a sociological narrative in a world dominated by psychological/individualized ones. https://t.co/gxX5hsdH6Ihttps://t.co/x1b2dKZkOT
Some consider me a great character author, and speaking as such: "People-centered storytelling" is a poisonous slogan that empties out Hollywood and journalism. Anyone who cries "Only skeletons matter in anatomy!" is too ignorant of anatomy even to draw accurate skeletons. https://t.co/dH2nwmCUOX
RT @zeynep: I wrote about why the downturn of storytelling in #GameofThrones also explains why it's hard for us to deal with Facebook, YouTube, AI, etc. The show was a rare beast: a sociological narrative in a world dominated by psychological/individualized ones. https://t.co/gxX5hsdH6Ihttps://t.co/x1b2dKZkOT
I used to joke and say GoT was porn for Political Science majors. It was about working the social systems and the results of working those systems. You want power? Kill someone and marry into a powerful family. Who can be trusted? No one. But the system can be trusted because everyone is operating within the system. Geoffrey was hated but the one major thing he did was not follow the system, which sent the world into chaos.
She doesn't, any more.
She used to. She had a purpose, a goal, a mission, an identity, nuance, some humour. D&D's "excellent" writing put a stop to that, and quick. She turned into a one-dimensional Good Guy character, instead of still a good person, but with quirks and interesting character development.
I dont even care to argue whether she has a reason to exist or not.
Complaining about a given character not "having a reason" to exist in the song of ice and fire is quite probably one of the funniest criticism there is, especially as one directed towards a "new" problem. Just funny
Have you people read the books?
And also why do character need to have a purpose, what the fuck is this critique to begin with?
> Have you people read the books?
Oh, I'm sorry, I thought this was about the TV show.
Oh... wait... it is...
So why are you bringing up the books again? I've read them all.
> And also why do character need to have a purpose, what the fuck is this critique to begin with?
You're right! We just just plop in hundreds of random people with no driving plot or no goal to aid the narrative. Who needs tight, story telling in a time-conscious fashion, something that a TV series relies on! Let's just add more and more and more irrelevant characters (to the main story arcs) and just turn an 8 season TV show into a never-ending cycle of adding in and removing irrelevant characters.
Sometimes a character in a story, specially a ridiculously overfilled with characters story like game of thrones, needs to be present for the sake of not ignoring its existence, even if their biggest contribution to the story has long been over. Brienne was still a relevant figure in winterfell, having her die on purpose or simply vanish for the sake every character having a purpose is not necessary and it can even constitute bad writing in and of itself.
Of course her not having any other purpose to the narrative beyond continuing her own story is simply not true. Were there not any brienne, the point of jaime lannister being completely unable to leave cersei even when he had another love interest would not be driven home or not as significantly.
Again it's a completely vacuous criticism by people who mistakenly think they know what they're talking about. Not every character in a cast of a fuckton of them needs to follow basic storytelling rules.
> Brienne was still a relevant figure in winterfell, having her die on purpose or simply vanish for the sake every character having a purpose is not necessary and it can even constitute bad writing in and of itself.
It definitely can.
And it's definitely within D&D's wheelhouse to fuck it all up. But what better time to kill of a character that has nothing else to do in your story than at the Battle of Winterfell?
> Were there not any brienne, the point of jaime lannister being completely unable to leave cersei even when he had another love interest would not be driven home or not as significantly.
That was a shitshow, Brienne or no Brienne. Essentially, they undid 5 seasons worth of character development in one scene. Brienne didn't add or stop it, in any way. It was just shitty writing.
> Not every character in a cast of a fuckton of them needs to follow basic storytelling rules.
Yeah! Let's just go back to the beggar in King's Landing for 15 minutes to see what he's doing today! Oh, he's taking a shit and talking about how the price of grain has increased, and he can't afford bread any more!
Do you play video games? Do you understand the differences between, say, the Elder Scrolls: Skyrim and Witcher 3? Both are set in (in generalizing terms) more Northern-inspired fantasy worlds. One is an experience. You walk around, discovering the world, discovering stories, but your role in the world is always limited. In the other, you have a narratively driven, focused but still vast game that shows that your actions have consequences. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.
But the former does not work in film/TV media. In Lord of the Rings, would you have preferred to jump back to Pippin's uncle, working his farm, and talking about the weather? You get to "discover" the life of a Hobbit! Isn't that great?!
Have you read any of Tolkien's stuff? You're describing the Silmarillion. I'm talking about the Lord of the Rings. One is a world-building exercise that skims the top of the overall setting, whereas the other is an in-depth look at character development, story-telling and narratively-driven writing. Obviously the latter also has some world-building, otherwise we wouldn't care about the characters. But the Silmarillion is not the Lord of the Rings, and it never was supposed to be.
Add in the constraints of time and limited number of episodes, and you just can't do it, unless you water down the entire series like they did in season 8, where they just jump from one set-piece to the next.
Essentially, they undid 5 seasons worth of character development in one scene.
Character does literally same he always did the entire show and before it even started, wow my character development that i fantasized in my mind is ruined.
> in-depth look at character development, story-telling and narratively-driven writing
My fucking sides. The lord of the rings . My fucking sides.
Go read some serious books, this is pointless. Idk why i even bother
Brienne was one of them. She could've been completely cut from season 8, and nothing of significance would've been lost. Same for Bronn. Same for Muh Sundae. Same for Yara. Same for Dornish Prince dude number 12. And on the list goes.
They were there solely because they either hadn't had the fortune of being killed off when the show wasn't shit, or because the writers kept them along for the shitshow, due to their popularity with fans, that was related to their past importance in the show.
okay but you see how "written poorly" is not the same as "no reason for existing", and is also not the same as "not a major player"?
GoT has always had side characters that don't play a large role in what we'd consider the main plot, but their stories help flesh out the world and universe and provide different perspectives on what is happening. Maybe I'm appealing to how GoT should be written instead of how it actually was, but it's kind of insulting to take one of those side characters, and say "literally pointless" just because they haven't been given screentime in a while.
like, characters don't have to narratively justify their existence. If the story they tell is compelling then who the fuck cares if they're "important" in the grand scheme of things or not?
> okay but you see how "written poorly" is not the same as "no reason for existing", and is also not the same as "not a major player"?
But she doesn't **do** anything in season 8, except for yell loudly and cut down some Wights. She **did** stuff that was pertinent to more major characters, like Caitlyn Stark or Jaime Lannister. She was a good side-character. And then she didn't do anything any more.
She could literally have not made an appearance in season 8.
> say "literally pointless" just because they haven't been given screentime in a while.
It's not that. It's the fact that the plot doesn't need them, any where, at any point.
> like, characters don't have to narratively justify their existence. If the story they tell is compelling then who the fuck cares if they're "important" in the grand scheme of things or not?
Characters that don't narratively justify themselves don't make for compelling characters. I can't believe you just said that. What turns a character from an extra with a few lines into an actual character is the justification, via the use of narrative, of their story, and thus their existence.
If you just put random people into a story that have no reason to be there, you're just adding fat and flab.
Shot in the dark. You'd probably get pretty mad if somebody spoiled something important for you, right?
I say this not because of the spoilers drama but because of how you're framing how media tells a story. If it's all about building to some set destination, if it's about moving towards "the end ", then sure. Brienne does not forward that goal.
But if you believe a story can be enjoyable and even satisfying without an epic conclusion, if the process of telling the story is just as important as how it ends, then you'll see why it doesn't matter that side characters influence the main plot in a major way. Because all that matters is the story they tell. If Brienne left the North in S5, and fucked around and talked to peasants for three seasons and then died in a ditch, I'd enjoy seeing that story. It wouldn't have fuck all to do with the end of S8, but if it was well done then I think I'd like to see it.
That's the difference here. It's the journey vs the destination.
> Shot in the dark. You'd probably get pretty mad if somebody spoiled something important for you, right?
It depends entirely on what is being spoiled.
> If it's all about building to some set destination, if it's about moving towards "the end ", then sure. Brienne does not forward that goal.
That's called a story.
If there is no destination, regardless of what it may be, then you have a rant on your hands.
> But if you believe a story can be enjoyable and even satisfying without an epic conclusion, if the process of telling the story is just as important as how it ends, then you'll see why it doesn't matter that side characters influence the main plot in a major way.
First off: an ending doesn't have to be epic. But yes, stories do have to end. The ending only has to make sense: it doesn't need to be an epic set-piece.
Secondly: if a secondary character doesn't move the story along, at all, then what's the point of the secondary character? Yes, it has to feed into the main narrative arcs of the story. Otherwise, why are they in the story, to begin with?
> If Brienne left the North in S5, and fucked around and talked to peasants for three seasons and then died in a ditch, I'd enjoy seeing that story. It wouldn't have fuck all to do with the end of S8, but if it was well done then I think I'd like to see it.
But why? As in: why would you even care? How would the writing possibly be captivating, if it had absolutely nothing to do with the plots?
Would you want to follow the story of a poor beggar in King's Landing whose story in no way reflects, effects or intersects with that of the overall plot lines? Why?
> It's the journey vs the destination.
You're not describing a journey. You're describing a random waltz through the mountains where you get lost and die of exposure.
From the latter half of the article:
In sociological storytelling, the characters have personal stories and agency, of course, but those are also greatly shaped by institutions and events around them. The incentives for characters’ behavior come noticeably from these external forces, too, and even strongly influence their inner life.
People then fit their internal narrative to align with their incentives, justifying and rationalizing their behavior along the way. (Thus the famous Upton Sinclair quip: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”)
The overly personal mode of storytelling or analysis leaves us bereft of deeper comprehension of events and history. Understanding Hitler’s personality alone will not tell us much about rise of fascism, for example. Not that it didn’t matter, but a different demagogue would probably have appeared to take his place in Germany in between the two bloody world wars in the 20th century. Hence, the answer to “would you kill baby Hitler?,” sometimes presented as an ethical time-travel challenge, should be “no,” because it would very likely not matter much. It is not a true dilemma.
We also have a bias for the individual as the locus of agency in interpreting our own everyday life and the behavior of others. We tend to seek internal, psychological explanations for the behavior of those around us while making situational excuses for our own. This is such a common way of looking at the world that social psychologists have a word for it: the fundamental attribution error.
When someone wrongs us, we tend to think they are evil, misguided or selfish: a personalized explanation. But when we misbehave, we are better at recognizing the external pressures on us that shape our actions: a situational understanding. If you snap at a coworker, for example, you may rationalize your behavior by remembering that you had difficulty sleeping last night and had financial struggles this month. You’re not evil, just stressed! The coworker who snaps at you, however, is more likely to be interpreted as a jerk, without going through the same kind of rationalization. This is convenient for our peace of mind, and fits with our domain of knowledge, too. We know what pressures us, but not necessarily others.
That tension between internal stories and desires, psychology and external pressures, institutions, norms and events was exactly what Game of Thrones showed us for many of its characters, creating rich tapestries of psychology but also behavior that was neither saintly nor fully evil at any one point. It was something more than that: you could understand why even the characters undertaking evil acts were doing what they did, how their good intentions got subverted, and how incentives structured behavior. The complexity made it much richer than a simplistic morality tale, where unadulterated good fights with evil.
The hallmark of sociological storytelling is if it can encourage us to put ourselves in the place of any character, not just the main hero/heroine, and imagine ourselves making similar choices. “Yeah, I can see myself doing that under such circumstances” is a way into a broader, deeper understanding. It’s not just empathy: we of course empathize with victims and good people, not with evildoers.
But if we can better understand how and why characters make their choices, we can also think about how to structure our world that encourages better choices for everyone. The alternative is an often futile appeal to the better angels of our nature. It’s not that they don’t exist, but they exist along with baser and lesser motives. The question isn’t to identify the few angels but to make it easier for everyone to make the choices that, collectively, would lead us all to a better place.
That's part of the thesis of the article by my read. Because they kinda shifted quickly from sociological to psychological, they did not have time to fully develop the psychological character arcs to satisfaction. The writers of the later seasons took sociological threads and tried to finish them as psychological threads, destroying what was built up anticlimactically and out-of-the-blue introducing motives and threads that did not exist before. It was the abrupt shift more so than one style being inherently better than the other.
This completely nailed it for me. I've been spreading this article to any who will read it and probably annoying people with it.
The "psychological/sociological" divide is useful in analyzing and articulating differences in all kinds of things too; systems are not just the sum of their constituents. The fundamental attribution error is also a powerful concept.
Yeah, this article really found the words to describe something that I was feeling but couldn't articulate.
Tellingly, halfway through the article, I was like, "this also explains why I liked 'The Wire' so much," and then after I had that realization, the author referred to "The Wire" as an example of sociological storytelling.
Really smart stuff. I didn't realize that and probably George RR Martin didn't either. Maybe if he did he could have told DD what kind of story they needed to write.
But I've always felt there was something fucked about Game of Throne's story structure, I think the problem was all these talks of prophecies and legends and gods that didn't fit the sociological aspect of the show. They where bound to clash in the end with either something stupid like "god didn't exist I guess" or something equally stupid like "Well I guess god exists and if we believe he can fix shit for us" Which would make the first seasons completely pointless and all the magic we see ultimately absurd.
In a sociological story there's no grand scheme, no divine intervention, no chosen one etc... Otherwise it's not a story about society as a fixable human thing.
Don't show miracles, plot armored or ressurrecting characters and accurately predicted prophecies all throughout your series if you want it to be about society.
4THOTangry swarm of bees in human skinsuit6 months ago
>Maybe if he did he could have told DD what kind of story they needed to write.
Those dumb cunts hate any kind of negative feedback. The stories of Semly being shit on because he wanted to stay on the show (for a story reason) and Massie pushing back against the dumb ass chase in Bravos are testaments to that. They do not accept feedback, which is why the season is 6 episodes against everyone (the viewers, HBO execs, actors) etc.'s wishes.
Sorta interesting to think about but misses the mark entirely w.r.t. GoT. This is one of those rare cases where a normally oversimplified critique like "the writing/storytelling is bad" is appropriate and complete in describing the show's litany of critical failures - of which a shift from "sociological" to "psychological" storytelling is not one.
It's not even that the storytelling is bad with respect to early Game of Thrones, it's bad on its own. The consistency from episode to episode, and even within one episode, is just gone. People notice *minor* continuity gaps in TV, so they're *definitely* going to notice things like:
- 5+ instances of a character being absolutely doomed, followed by a dramatic camera cut, followed by the character being absolutely fine next time they're shown - all in one episode.
- 3+ instances of a character being absolutely fucked, only to have the threat suddenly killed by another character at the last second - all in one episode.
- Watching the entire Dothraki horde be extinguished, then learning it was apparently only half of them next episode.
- Watching an entire structure collapse over two characters, then learning it was only a handful of bricks and the structure is intact next episode.
- Arya leaving the city on a horse, but then she's still at the city and the horse is gone in literally the very next scene she's in.
- Jon getting mad at Grey Worm, storming off to see Dany on the other side of the city, and running into Grey Worm when he gets there.
The list goes on. That's probably not even 30% of just the continuity mistakes. And this doesn't even touch on the more serious plot/character failures, on which I could probably write 2000 words with just surface-level critiques. Jamie's arc. Bran's arc. Cersei's lack of character. Jon's lack of character. Jon's central plot twist having no bearing on the story. The Night King's arc.
Not to mention the incredibly poor editing/pacing/tone decisions. Cutting away from Jon telling Arya and Sansa about his heritage. Cutting away from Bran and Tyrion having an apparently very meaningful conversation. Cutting away from Clegainebowl, at all. And in place of these critical, monumental, years-of-buildup scenes, we get filler. It's not as if they needed the screen time - they didn't sacrifice these scenes to make room for better scenes.
What an absolute fucking disaster this season was. Consider my expectations subverted.
Edit: Bonus meme: I will never, ever understand what the goal or intention of the "let's hide in the crypt" plot point was. I just don't get it. The audience knew exactly what would happen, because it doesn't even require explanation. And then it just happens. And no characters saw it coming. Even the ones who've seen the Night King raise the dead, in person, never once thought this was a possibility. So the characters are shocked, while the audience 100% expected it to happen. Did the writers think we'd be surprised? Did they think we would *know* it was obvious, so we'd expect something different and be shocked that the obvious thing actually happens? It's just baffling to even think about the goal there.
The amount of time that this show does
>5+ instances of a character being absolutely doomed, followed by...
>3+ instances of a character being absolutely fucked, only to...
and also the "character barely wins a fight with suspenseful music playing, or barely runs to safety, only to be stabbed/shot in the back after looking back to their friends" meme, is absolutely mindboggling.
Seriously, the scene cuts where you see 3 people getting swarmed overhead by like 30 *whatever bad guy* and then when it cuts back 5 minutes later they're fighting 5 guys max, are so fucking egregious. It's just embarrassing and blatantly "hype up the lowest common denominator with cool shots" bait that end up creating so many continuity errors and ruining the suspension of disbelief if you're paying attention.
Of course I could go on about similar shit but we've all seen it, I'm just still sad even though my expectations have been low for 3 seasons
This was my reaction too. But I still think there's some value there. We used to understand these characters so well because they were placed within a comprehensive sociological context, and now we don't understand or connect with these characters both because they've been cut off from their sociological context AND because the writing (the psychological and plot side) is just bad. I view it as one part among many.
But also, rather than view the whole sociological side as a value in-and-of-itself, like the author seems to, I see it as just another aspect of good character building. Characters make more sense when they are developed within the context of their environment. It's very rare (maybe even impossible) to write a strong (read: complex, 3d, whatever) character without including that connection. But then again, maybe the author feels the same way, and is just stuck in the mode of not wanting to be too critical of standard genre writing.
No. It's not. It's a link to a very insightful article about Sociological storytelling and the shift GOT took in the final season away from that. It's about much more than the final episode and isn't a reaction piece so much as a much bigger literary criticism of the book, the show and storytelling in general.
This submission to /r/asoiaf has been automatically removed because the title does not include one of the required spoiler tags, such as (Spoilers Main), (Spoilers Extended), or (Spoilers Production). You can use (Spoilers Published) to limit your post to just the book series.
HBO trailer discussion should be posted with (Spoilers Extended) or higher.
Haha! This is actually the first comment I've received on my profile so this is an event of sorts :-)
Glad you liked the article. I think you even liked the article on #MeToo I shared by Shruti Rajagopalan so you obviously have a refined taste.
My opinion of the show and of society in general is largely congruent with that of the author. I think the show was excellent in the first four seasons, began to show cracks in season 5 and was absolutely unwatchable in its final two seasons. The author was somewhat charitable to season 7 but I think that was horrible too.
>Love the article! After watching the finale, I felt nothing.
I've felt that way about the show since season 7. I'm glad it has finally ended and I don't have to watch it any more. I was watching it out of a sense of obligation more than anything.
>Hoping against hope for a do-over.. P.S. I signed the petition :D
Haha! Not going to happen but it's important to show our frustration. I don't know if you're aware but there are multiple spin-offs in the works and Amazon is going to make *Lord of the Rings* so there's that.
Apart from that, if you're interested in good television I recommend r/Survivor, r/Gomorrah, *Breaking Bad, Fargo* (Season 1 and 3) and I have one more show in mind that I shan't mention because I don't inadvertently want to ruin it by getting spoilers :-)
>Haha! This is actually the first comment I've received on my profile so this is an event of sorts :-)
Haha that's interesting... considering you post so often.
>Glad you liked the article. I think you even liked the article on #MeToo I shared by Shruti Rajagopalan so you obviously have a refined taste.
Yup..that was me. But I do sense some superiority complex there ;)
>My opinion of the show and of society in general is largely congruent with that of the author. I think the show was excellent in the first four seasons, began to show cracks in season 5 and was absolutely unwatchable in its final two seasons. The author was somewhat charitable to season 7 but I think that was horrible too.
After S8, I'm finding the last couple of seasons to be very well written. I agree with the author pretty much on all of it. What's frustrating is that D&D had all the work done...the storyline was there, the character arcs were there, they had good actors, lots of money etc. All they had to do was stay true to the show's essence, not try to make it 'their own', and reach the end in a way that's consistent with the last 70 hours in terms of narrative and pacing. Apparently it was too much to ask for :(
Yeah I heard about the prequels. Let's see how that goes. My interest levels have decreased significantly. I'm watching Breaking Bad...it's amazing. And I loved Narcos too. Also, some of the recent Netflix shows are really good...esp. Kominsky Method and After Life.
تحليل علمي لسبب فشل النص للموسم الثامن من صراع العروش Game of Thrones
بالمشرمحي ومتل ما علّقت من قبل على الموضوع ... الـ #DumbandDumber ما بيعرفوا يكتبوا شخصيات مدورة وكاملة ... يادوب يعرفوا يكتبوا شخصيات مسطحة من شلة سوبرمان وسبايدرمان وجماعة Marvel وحتى هي كتابتهن أقل مستوى بكتير من كتابة بعض المتابعين للمسلسل اللي ألفوا توقعات على النت!
1632 is a great example of rippling changes to the world from one event. It isn't perfect, most of the characters get married far to quickly, but the way it tells a story of history being made by the common people is amazing.
This writer makes a great and important observation.
GRRMs writing style let the audience feel the political forces at play.
Using the WWII reference: we all like to think we’d be Schindler, or the family that would hide Anne Frank, but the truth is for most of us that we’re the policeman just following orders because we want to keep our family safe.
Forget about GoT, the emphasis on psychological over sociological has been harmful to us as a society for decades in every respect. We never look at contextual factors effecting behavior, but rather assess the individual, and this is illogical.
Even right now as the left bemoans the emergence of Trump, they actually think that his rise is some sort of fluke, rather than the logical manifestation of our political system as it has unfolded over the decades.
It's been a long time but I suppose the Foundation series fits. The whole science of "psychohistory" is basically sociological storytelling. And the later books start dwelling on psychological storytelling more and more.
I would second The Wire as the best example of a narrative driven by sociological implications rather than character action or drama for the sake of drama. Every plot piece and character and their role in the story serves overall social and political points.
I found this article interesting, though I’m not fully certain where I stand on it. It’s certainly an interesting argument, but it also strikes me as belonging to the genre of essays and video essays where writers attempt to do a postmortem analysis of what’s “wrong” with a later season of a show or a remake/sequel to a book or movie by trying to find where it thematically went off the rails—and I think analyses like that can be interesting, but ultimately a little too myopic and “I’ve found the ONE ANSWER!”
While I agree that the ASOIAF books allow for more space for events outside of characters’ control, I always found this to be more in service of deconstructing the fantasy/medieval intrigue genre while still featuring psychological storytelling. After all, the books are told from the psychological perspectives of POV characters, and while not every king is given a POV, Daenerys, Cersei, Jon, Tyrion, and other extremely powerful characters are afforded this.
>the books are told from the
> of POV characters,
Yes, but their psychological states and motivations, are effected by the events underway around them, effecting their decisions and development as characters.
Sure, I wouldn't deny that. I completely agree that, more than many stories, the broader institutions and external implications take a center stage in GoT, especially in the second book. But at the same time, I think it's important to not overemphasize that external angle such that you're under the impression that they aren't equally involved as individuals. Consider that, just as much as we see the perspectives of characters who aren't the primary decision-makers, we see the perspectives of those who *are*: Jon is eventually Lord Commander, Daenerys is the Queen of the Dothraki and leader of her army, Bran is the Three-Eyed Crow and has a central role in the world's magic, and Cersei and Tyrion are major political figures who decide the course of events in the story! I'll absolutely grant that they're reacting to events around them, but many of the POV characters are also the people who *shape* those events.
What I think Tüfekçi is arguing is not that a psychological perspective is absent—after all, it is obviously, not—but that the engine of the story is not the individual’s psychological motivations but how each fit together in a whole, how each navigates norms and institutions and things among and between others. The characters certainly have emotions just like sociological novels will have a society; she’s arguing about what’s the (perhaps subjective) core.
That's certainly true, and I wouldn't dispute that the society plays a major role, so I'd agree in that regard. At the same time, I think there's also something to be said that, by depicting the narrative from the individual, subjective perspectives of different characters, the novels embed a psychological element into their very form. So perhaps the series is equal part psychological and sociological in a way that other stories are not.
I suppose I just take umbrage with trying to ascribe all the series' problems to this one phenomenon, as Tüfekçi is explicitly doing (the article claims to have found the "real" reason that this season of the show isn't very good), when there are lots of different reasons for its problems. Certainly, I'll agree that the weight of the story is much reduced when it feels like the characters are no longer responding to the world but are rather being pushed along by plot contrivances, but that has as much to do with poor writing and setup (after all, lots of stories feel rather lame when characters seem invincible and impervious to any threat) than with the psychological/sociological angle.
All that is to say that I think the sociological angle is certainly relevant, but trying to call it the only reason or the "real" reason for the poor quality just misses so much.