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    The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 07 May 2010 10:09

    yeah good point :)
    It's true about the Baron that he didn't care much about anybody as long as their living or diying served his plans, but he also hated waste.
    Like a gambler if he bets high it's for a big win!

    nb
    wasn't it the Emperor who tried to set Hawat on "that upstart Duke"?
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby inhuien » 08 May 2010 14:29

    lotek wrote:wasn't it the Emperor who tried to set Hawat on "that upstart Duke"?
    I don't think so, he did give Fayd his blade though.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 08 May 2010 15:00

    with all due respect I must disagree:

    Again, Gurney glanced around the Great Hall, then bent close to Paul's ear.
    "Thufir Hawat's with 'em, m'Lord. I had no chance to see him alone, but he used
    our old hand signs to say he's been working with the Harkonnens, thought you
    were dead. Says he's to be left among 'em."
    "You left Thufir among those --"
    "He wanted it . . . and I thought it best. If . . . there's something wrong,Paul thought then of prescient glimpses into the possibilities of this
    moment -- and one time-line where Thufir carried a poisoned needle which the
    Emperor commanded he use against "this upstart Duke."


    "There is pain, my Duke," Hawat agreed, "but the pleasure is greater." He
    half turned in Paul's arms, extended his left hand, palm up, toward the Emperor,
    exposing the tiny needle cupped against the fingers. "See, Majesty?" he called.
    "See your traitor's needle? Did you think that I who've given my life to service
    of the Atreides would give them less now?"
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 09 May 2010 10:06

    I was referring to this passage, not to the final scene in the palace:
    "Now, Reverend Mother," the Emperor chided, but he smiled at the Baron's discomfiture, said: "First, you will tell me where you've sent your minion, Thufir Hawat."
    The Baron darted his gaze left and right, reviled himself for coming here without his own guards, not that they'd be much use against Sardaukar. Still...
    "Well?" the Emperor said.
    "He has been gone these five days, Majesty." The Baron shot a glance at the Guild agents, back to the Emperor. "He was to land at a smuggler base and attempt infiltrating the camp of the Fremen fanatic, this Muad'Dib."
    "Incredible!" the Emperor said.
    One of the witch's clawlike hands tapped the Emperor's shoulder. She leaned forward, whispered in his ear.
    The Emperor nodded, said: "Five days, Baron. Tell me, why aren't you worried about his absence?"
    "But I am worried, Majesty!"
    The Emperor continued to stare at him, waiting. The Reverend Mother emitted a cackling laugh.
    "What I mean, Majesty," the Baron said, "is that Hawat will be dead within another few hours, anyway." And he explained about the latent poison and need for an antidote.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby inhuien » 09 May 2010 10:15

    Ah :oops: , I fear this is a clear case of Lynch Contamination.

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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 09 May 2010 10:27

    The final Hawat scene was cut from the theatrical version, wasn't it?
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 09 May 2010 11:07

    inhuien wrote:Ah :oops: , I fear this is a clear case of Lynch Contamination.


    don't be too harsh on yourself he also gave Feyd his blade to fight Paul after Fenring refused to do it
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby inhuien » 09 May 2010 11:12

    MrFlibble wrote:The final Hawat scene was cut from the theatrical version, wasn't it?

    Yes it was, it was reinstated in the Smithee version.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 09 May 2010 11:13

    yeah it kind of sheds a new light on the Mentats' capacities: it says a lot that both Hawat and Piter were considered to infiltrate the Fremen, and the fact they would be sent for such a task, well that says a lot of the expendability of servants in most Houses.
    The Atreides being quite the exception in that respect.

    I still don't get why anyone would want to infiltrate a sietch that badly at this point and time of the story, but maybe it's just one of those gaps left for the reader to think for himself?

    When the Baron considers it has Muad'dib's name started to raise questions or not? There is a point where the Baron mentions it
    Book Three THE PROPHET wrote:"They've a new prophet or religious leader of some kind among the Fremen,"
    the Baron said. "They call him Muad'Dib. Very funny, really. It means 'the
    Mouse.' I've told Rabban to let them have their religion. It'll keep them
    occupied."


    now to find where they mention Piter infiltrating a sietch

    EDIT
    "And, Sire, there's one other thing. One of the
    mercenaries we knocked over was trying to get this blade from our dead Fremen
    friend. The mercenary says there's a Harkonnen reward of a million Solaris for
    anyone who'll bring in a single crysknife."
    Leto's chin came up in a movement of obvious surprise. "Why do they want one
    of those blades so badly?"
    "The knife is ground from a sandworm's tooth; it's the mark of the Fremen,
    Sire. With it, a blue-eyed man could penetrate any sietch in the land. They'd
    question me unless I were known. I don't look Fremen. But . . . "
    "Piter de Vries," the Duke said.
    "A man of devilish cunning, my Lord," Hawat said.


    right at the beginning then, and i get the feeling the H have been trying for a while though, but that is not based on anything aside what my gut tells me

    But if this is the only time it's mentionned it means that possibility is just what the Atreides assume from the data they have, there is no certitude this was indeed the Baron's plan.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby SadisticCynic » 09 May 2010 16:19

    That last quote suggests Piter had a Fremen look; maybe they just meant the eyes though...
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby SandChigger » 09 May 2010 19:35

    I still think the language would have given him away. :?:
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby Freakzilla » 09 May 2010 20:05

    SandChigger wrote:I still think the language would have given him away. :?:


    He wouldn't know the Canto and Respondu either, I don't think he'd get past the door seal.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 10 May 2010 04:48

    yeah I reckon even if the Imperium and the Baron had enough interest in the Fremen to sent their Mentats to infiltrate a sietch(if they are the equivalent of a super computer they must have some financial value), they still grossly underestimated the capacities of the Arrakis natives.
    Remember that the Baron hoped to use the Fremen as a fighting force and that quite early in the book.

    For the language issue, wouldn't a Mentat be able to assimilate a language very quiclky and from minimum data?

    Still that wouldn't be enough,I wonder if the tau of the sietch would single him out as an outsider?
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 10 May 2010 07:56

    lotek wrote:For the language issue, wouldn't a Mentat be able to assimilate a language very quiclky and from minimum data?

    Chomsky made you write this, didn't he? However, I think that if Piter really wanted to infiltrate the Fremen, he would have done some research before, which, presumably, would included the possible languages the Fremen spoke.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby lotek » 10 May 2010 10:38

    from what I remember it would be quite difficult to do any sort of research on the Fremen, a people that managed to hide its true strength and goals from everyone in the Imperium
    (would they use Chakobsa in front of an intruder that could report that later? I doubt it)

    Chomsky? I know the name but not sure what he stands for...

    To me a human computer should be able to learn a language by listening to it, Mentats can do the most difficult tasks in the blink of an eye, so why not that?

    But I think that more than anything, the Fremen were so good at intelligence gathering on Arrakis that they would have learned of Piter's coming I am sure, I mean they knew of the incoming attack on the Atreides and about Dr Yueh(when no one else even Hawat did)
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby SandChigger » 10 May 2010 14:13

    lotek wrote:To me a human computer should be able to learn a language by listening to it, Mentats can do the most difficult tasks in the blink of an eye, so why not that?

    :doh: Please ... just shoot me now! :D

    Except for limited imitative elements in every language, the connection between word (sound sequence) and meaning is arbitrary and unpredictable. Unless you have something like the Rosetta Stone (parallel translations with knowledge of one of the languages) for written language or full audio+visual observation/recording for spoken, you can read or listen (audio only) until you're blue in the face and you'll never understand the language, even if you have a supercomputer between your ears. (Sure, you could do a statistical analysis on a written text and learn a lot about the patterns within it, but that doesn't tell you what it means. Or you could learn to mimic perfectly what speakers are saying but never have any clue as to what they are saying if you can only hear them.)

    Of course, if there were a Desert Fremen café or something in Arrakeen where Piter could go and just hang out and listen to and watch people talking and interacting... ;)
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 11 May 2010 11:20

    lotek wrote:from what I remember it would be quite difficult to do any sort of research on the Fremen, a people that managed to hide its true strength and goals from everyone in the Imperium

    Difficult but not entirely impossible, so minimal preparations could be done. After all, even the existence of sacred objects, the crysknives, and their value to the Fremen were known to outsiders, so why not? I guess smugglers would prove a good source of intel on the Fremen.

    lotek wrote:Chomsky? I know the name but not sure what he stands for...

    Your supposition about Piter's ability to learn a language from minimum data by just listening to it reminded me of Chomsky's reasoning that when babies are learning their first language, the linguistics input they receive is minimal and erratic, and thus insufficient to work out the "system" of the language. Hence, Chomsky continues, the "system" must be already present in the baby's brain before (s)he is exposed to adult's speech. Of course, it would be easier if the only existing language were English - that would make Chomsky's theory simple and brilliant; but since it happens that people across the globe speak other languages as well, he had to invent a much more complicated "principles and parameters" theory to account for how his Universal Grammar transforms into a real-life one for any known language, influenced by otherwise "insufficient" and "erratic" linguistic input. BTW, I wonder if it ever occurred to him (or his disciples) to propose that actual languages are corrupted versions of the Universal Grammar - I think some ideas like that were expressed in the 19th century, claiming that all world languages resulted from corruption of the language Adam spoke.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby Freakzilla » 11 May 2010 12:07

    MrFlibble wrote:...I think some ideas like that were expressed in the 19th century, claiming that all world languages resulted from corruption of the language Adam spoke.


    You mean the Adamu, they slave labor force the aliens geneticly engineered? :wink:
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby merkin muffley » 11 May 2010 13:34

    SadisticCynic wrote:That last quote suggests Piter had a Fremen look; maybe they just meant the eyes though...


    Sorry I'm a little late with this, but reading those excerpts about Piter infiltrating the Fremen reminded me of some things FH set up in the second chapter of Dune:

    "The Baron stared across the room at his Mentat assassin, seeing the feature about him that most people naticed first: the eyes the shaded slits of blue within blue, the eyes without any white in them at all..."

    "...he consumes too much spice, eats it like candy. Look at his eyes! He might've come directly from the Arrakeen labor pool."

    I don't know if he looked Fremen otherwise, but I think that could be setting up the idea that he would have a chance of infiltrating the Fremen.

    Or, it might mainly be a way to show people that everyone on Arrakis has blue eyes. Maybe when the Atreides mention Piter de Vries when they're talking about a Harkonnen plan to infiltrate the Fremen, they're saying that Piter would be the one to come up with a plan like that. I think that's the way I took it, because I assumed that the Baron wouldn't have risked Piter on such a dangerous mission, and there were probably other Harkonnen spies who had blue eyes. I'm not so sure about that now.


    Freakzilla wrote: He wouldn't know the Canto and Respondu either, I don't think he'd get past the door seal.

    That's a good point.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby Freakzilla » 11 May 2010 13:42

    merkin muffley wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote: He wouldn't know the Canto and Respondu either, I don't think he'd get past the door seal.

    That's a good point.


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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 12 May 2010 19:07

    merkin muffley wrote:I think that's the way I took it, because I assumed that the Baron wouldn't have risked Piter on such a dangerous mission, and there were probably other Harkonnen spies who had blue eyes. I'm not so sure about that now.

    An off-worlder would need to consume vast amounts of spice to get blue-in-blue eyes; Piter himself asks the Baron if his addiction is too costly when the Baron mentions it. I doubt that a regular Harkonnen goon could afford a spice-rich diet.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby inhuien » 13 May 2010 03:56

    And remember that it's not that Freman necessarily consume a huge amount of melange, It's that their environment is saturated by it that it is inescapable. In much the same way as the western world is saturated by petroleum and it's by-products.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby merkin muffley » 13 May 2010 07:33

    I agree, and I think if that subplot had been fully realized, Piter would have been the character that would've done it. If a character as important as Duncan went to the Fremen, there's no reason to believe Piter wouldn't have been directly involved. :doh:
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby MrFlibble » 13 May 2010 15:42

    inhuien wrote:And remember that it's not that Freman necessarily consume a huge amount of melange

    I may have misunderstood the puspose of this comment, I just said that an off-worlder would need to consume a lot of spice, to get as much spice in their body as the Fremen would because of their environment. Perhaps living in a spice tank would also work, but since no one is ever mentioned in the books to saturate their body with spice just to get the eyes of Ibad, the point is kinda moot.
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    Re: The Fremen were some of the most interesting characters

    Postby inhuien » 14 May 2010 04:50

    You may well have misunderstood it, and your point may well be moot. What did you think it's purpose was: expansion, an aside, or possibly just input.
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