Editor’s note: “Game of Thrones” spoilers ahead.
WASHINGTON — The rape of a beloved character in the final scene of the Sunday, May 19 episode of “Game of Thrones,” “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken,” has set social media on fire, with some well-known fans proclaiming they’ll no longer watch the show.
Sansa Stark, who already escaped the the late psychotic King Joffrey, was violated by her arranged-marriage husband Ramsay Bolton. To make matters worse, her childhood friend Theon Greyjoy, who Ramsay has since castrated, enslaved and renamed Reek, was forced to watch.
Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Democrat from Missouri, took to Twitter to announce that she’s done watching the show.
“Ok, I’m done Game of Thrones. Water Garden, stupid. Gratuitous rape scene disgusting and unacceptable.It was a rocky ride that just ended,” she tweeted.
Her tweet also made reference to a scene involving Sand Snakes’ characters that, according to Entertainment Weekly, many fans thought was poorly staged.
Entertainment blog, The Mary Sue also announced it would no longer promote “Game of Thrones” arguing that rape scenes aren’t necessary plot devices.
However Slate writer Amanda Marcotte argues Sunday night’s assault scene treats rape with the seriousness and gravity the subject deserves.
“Once Sansa was engaged to Ramsay, it would have been a cop-out to play this storyline any other way,” Marcotte writes.
“We are meant to look at the grotesque realities of war lurking underneath the gleaming armor and fancy banners of medieval myth-making.”
The scene isn’t the first of its kind to stir controversy for the show. Last season there was argument over whether a scene involving Cersei and Jamie Lannister was consensual or not.
“Game of Thrones” writer and producer Bryan Cogman said in interviews conducted before the show’s airing that the episode was an important turning point for Sansa Stark’s character but hasn’t defended or apologized for the scene.
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