Game Of Thrones: Is Rape An Overused Plot Tool?
Jessica Chastain is NOT happy with the Game of Thrones, and she’s calling them out for a specific scene in the latest season.
Rape is not a tool to make a character stronger. A woman doesn’t need to be victimized in order to become a butterfly. The #littlebird was always a Phoenix. Her prevailing strength is solely because of her. And her alone.#GameOfThrones pic.twitter.com/TVIyt8LYxI
— Jessica Chastain (@jes_chastain) May 7, 2019
In season 8, episode 4 titled “The Last of the Starks,” Sansa Stark had a conversation with Hound about the sexual and physical abuse she suffered and survived in the hands of Ramsay. Calling her by her nickname “little bird,” The Hound said if Sansa had followed him back in Season 2, she wouldn’t have been the subject of abuse and manipulation.
To which Sansa a.k.a. Lady of Winterfell replied
“Without Littlefinger and Ramsay and the rest, I would have stayed a little bird all my life.”
Oscar Nominee Chastain disagreed vehemently with the statement, Tweeting that “rape is not a tool to make a character stronger.” Some people echoed her sentiments.
Remember when Sansa was like "you know, it actually was a good thing I got raped and otherwise assaulted and abused all those times, bc now I am a Strong Woman." Interesting. #GameofThrones pic.twitter.com/Xd6klW0dKN
— alanna bennett (@AlannaBennett) May 6, 2019
However, some people disagreed with Jessica Chastain
Maybe I understand it a little more because I was raped when I was 19, it was brutal like Sanza; and regardless of how it was written, I understand what she meant when she said it and gave me a sense of pride and accomplishment
— Lizzy Trzaska (@OneEyedLizzy) May 8, 2019
Sansa’s not saying she’s thankful for it she’s saying without it she may not be as strong and may still rely on others more than herself. A common statement from many victims, myself included. Don’t take that sentiment away from victims by trying to put a negative light on it.
— no one🗡 (@becky_mccowan) May 6, 2019
Regardless of how it happens, rape is rape, and it’s a reality that many women face, even in the comforts of their home. In the Game of Thrones world, Sansa had to endure physical abuse at the hands of Joffrey, who was supposed to be her prince charming, emotional manipulation and eventually, rape.
Fans report that when Sansa said, “Without Littlefinger and Ramsay and the rest, I would have stayed a little bird all my life” she was referring to all the bullsh*t she had to go through to become a phoenix, and not just rape. If she hadn’t gone through hell, she would still be the scared little girl that she was.
Is rape an overused plot tool?
I still love #GameofThrones but this show proves over and over again they have no idea how to write about rape. Sansa just shrugging off what happened to her by saying she's stronger for it?? do any women write for this show, or…?
— Alex Bruce-Smith (@alexbrucesmith) May 6, 2019
It’s several hours later and I’m still so fucking mad that D&D made Sansa say that repeated sexual trauma was the only thing that made her strong. Sansa was always strong. Trauma made her practical – and cynical. And these men are so bad at writing women. #GameofThrones
— kaye toal (@ohkayewhatever) May 6, 2019
It’s not just the Game of Thrones that has this problem. Directors can’t find ways to portray rape or define it in a responsible manner. Rape is traumatic, and it’s difficult to portray on film. The Malaysian film industry is rife with rapey roles that actresses may have to take on. More often than not, it’s used as a plot tool to build character. If only filmmakers could find better ways to build character, and according to a study, fictional rape scenes do not contribute to less rape. In fact, they contribute to the fact that some men think rape is OK.
What do you think?
How do you think Sansa would have grown if she had not been through all that bullsh*t? Sansa Stark is the woman she is today not because she had to suffer through her ordeals, it’s because she survived it. She went through literal hell and came back stronger, colder. We stan the badass Lady of Winterfell.
Do you think rape is an overused plot tool in the Game of Thrones or any other series for that matter? Let us know in the comments below.