Warning - This post contains spoilers.
I would love to write a full review of Game Of Thrones, as I haven't yet & while this post may seem to state otherwise, I do love the show. It's filled to the brim with believable acting, beautiful cinematography, & of course, gripping story lines. But sadly, one of those story lines has taken a sharp left turn. The milk of its promise has soured, & now people like myself & fellow rape survivors are rushing to get the spoiled milk out of the house before it stinks the whole place up. So I guess that's why I'm blogging about it. You see, I was kept awake until very late last night by the final scene of "Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken" & then I was woken up early this morning by Sansa Stark's pain filled sobbing ringing in my head again. So right now I'm just TIRED. Not just physically. I'm tired of being so affected by rape scenes; I'm tired of bad writing on shows like this one & The Walking Dead (which has a bad habit of killing its most intriguing characters off before their story ever reaches its peak); & I'm tired of HBO adding rape scenes to the show that (so I'm told) weren't even in the books.
From what I remember, it was actually a good episode up until the final scene. I remember Arya discovering more about the place she was in & who she was (& was not) ready to become; I remember some great lines from Tyrion (as usual), & I remember Margaery screaming for her child King as they dragged her brother & her away (after her brother's lover basically pulled a Shae). But it took a while to remember all of that because the final scene ripped it away from me (& others too, from what I'm seeing on social media).
Honestly, I never really liked Sansa. She's always been a whiny brat in my eyes (as well as in many others), but that was slowly beginning to change as recent events & character development made me curious to see her morph into a strong, dark, vengeful woman. But then the show shocked us with a huge change of character on her part, which made us all feel bad for her, but also turned her back into the whiny brat that we were first introduced to. Don't get me wrong, I know more than most that rape is a traumatizing event, especially for a virgin, but somehow I at least expected her to hold back her tears & muffle her cries as a show of strength. But heartbreakingly, that was not the case.
Of course, this wasn't the first rape scene in the show - Danaerys was raped by the man that ended up becoming her "sun & stars" (& in that case it actually ended up being good character development), & Cersei was raped by Jaime after their son died (which was absolutely unnecessary, not to mention, not in the books, & made me lose all the respect I had recently gained for Jaime's character) - but somehow this is the most disturbing rape scene yet. One obvious reason for that is that we as an audience have grown up with Sansa, & have watched her be passed from one man to the next while somehow managing to keep her virginity intact. In fact, she held onto her virginity for so long that it became a sort of "sword in the stone" - many tried to pull the sword out, but none were deemed worthy. But then Ramsay comes along with a stick of dynamite & blows the stone to pieces. Gee, how creative.
Really, no one is surprised that Ramsay would do such a hideous thing. He isn't exactly King Arthur. But I personally held onto hope until the moment she started sobbing. Hope that Theon (who was forced to watch) would finally man up & save her, or that Sansa would woman up & save herself, but unfortunately they gave us neither option, & while the show is known for its harsh awakenings, this one may have been too harsh. I think they missed a great opportunity for character development with this scene, & it worries me that they are now at the point where they have to depart from the books, & while I'm sure they probably discuss major plot points with the author first, I'm worried about them changing the 'game' too much. But I for one will continue to watch, simply because I'm too invested in Dany & Tyrion & Arya to stop. And who knows, maybe Sansa's story line will end up being somewhat like Dany's story line & we will see an unbowed, unbent, & unbroken Sansa from here on out.
In fact... I know we will.
P.S. If you've been raped, talk to someone. You can find RAINN here, & my support group RISE here & here.
Be The Lightning,