This post ISN’T about Game of Thrones waging a war on women as many have phrased it, because that isn’t true. At all.
People nowaday’s seem to confuse glorification with depiction. I will not deny that Game of Thrones has some very uncomfortable scenes. Some are gory, some are violent, and some are just very unpleasant, even if they don’t involve sex, violence or any other cliches like that.
The ending scene in 5x06 was one of these scenes. It was horrific. You’ve got Ramsay Bolton raping Sansa Stark, whilst a tortured wreck of a man, Theon, watches by command.
This one scene has caused uproar on tumblr, an uproar which, in my opinion, is wildly exaggerated.
Don’t get me wrong, rape is awful, but this scene is not something we should be protesting over. In fact, I’d even go as far to say that there are other scenes in Game of Thrones that are ethically worse than this scene.
Firstly, this scene, in no way, glorifies rape. Not at all. It’s menacing, it’s unpleasant, and it is designed to impact the emotions of the viewers negatively, which means that this scene actively stigmatizes rape, and that’s a good thing.
Just because GoT depicted a rape scene, why should that mean that it also promotes it? Are beheadings suddenly a popular craze? Is the genocide of infants 2015′s new big trend?
In the start of season 2, Cersei Lannister (the Queen Mother) orders the city guard of King’s Landing to raid brothels, homes and the streets to murder the possible children of her deceased husband, King Robert, so that her child will remain King. The whole series of scenes is brutal. Children crying; one boy getting drowned in front of his mother; an entire brothel being raided and an infant stabbed.
In season 3, Theon Greyjoy is captured by the Boltons following his botched attempt at capturing and holding Winterfell, the capital of the North. Over the course of the season, he is tortured, humiliated, and is even castrated by his torturer, the sadistic Ramsay Snow. Theon devolves to a primitive level: he takes on the name Reek, and becomes an obedient slave to Ramsay.
All the way back in Season 1, viewers hear the story of a Night’s Watch recruit, Pip, and how Pip ended up on the Wall. He recounts how he used to be a minstrel for a lord, and that the lord tried to sexually coerce (and possibly assault) a teenage Pip, and that Pip was threatened with execution because he said no.
Tell me this: is the genocide of infants across an entire city passable?
Is the torture, castration and devolution of a human being not that bad?
Is the sexual coercion and assault of a teenage boy something that can be looked over in the eyes of tumblr’s brigade of pro-censorship feminism?
I guess if it all happens to a boy, then who gives a shit.
In 5x06, some other events occur:
Arya Stark euthanizes a critically-ill 6-year-old girl, but this is something we can gloss over.
Loras Tyrell is arrested by the fanatic religious group, the Faith Militant, for the crime of buggery; his sister Margaery, who is the Queen, is also arrested for lying to protect her brother. But, you know, homophobia obviously isn’t an issue.
One of the main characters of the show, Tyrion Lannister, is almost murdered by a group of slavers, and is then pushed into slavery. However, slavery is obviously a non-issue, so let’s not bring that up.
My point is that the uber-sensitive feminist brigade of tumblr has suddenly found a way to push their agenda in the most meaningless way possible, and that is through censorship, exaggeration and a general lack of common sense surrounding both the issue itself and Game of Thrones as a show.
Game of Thrones is not a pleasant show. People do not watch it for outstanding morals and to cheer themselves up; they watch it because it has great acting, a diverse setting and a well-written narrative. If you honestly think that this scene is suddenly going to make someone think “Huh, maybe rape is a good thing!”, then you need to pull your head out of your own arse, wash it down with some bog roll and face a reality check.
The day Game of Thrones becomes a beacon of ethics and morality is the day that I will shit in my hands and clap.