Spoiler Warning: Last night’s Game of Thrones made a lot of people really angry. Let’s sift through some of the internet rage and mine out some of the finer points, shall we?
In the episode last night, Sansa was raped, and when I say people are pissed, I’m not joking around. The Mary Sue just put out a statement that they won’t cover “Game of Thrones” on their site at all from this point on.
— The Mary Sue (@TheMarySue) May 18, 2015
Lots of people agreed with the Mary Sue:
— Michelle Humphries (@TarynAria) May 18, 2015
Sansa Stark has grown into a smart, courageous and strong female character. Why did the #GOT show runners need to invent that rape scene?
— Jennifer Gasbarro (@JenGasbarro) May 18, 2015
— Jess Banks (@ProfBanks) May 18, 2015
I’ve noticed that when #GameOfThrones deviates from the books it’s to rape and rape again. Worrying.
— Alan Bissett (@alanbissett) May 18, 2015
While some others thought that maybe Sansa would be stronger afterwards:
Now, Sansa will really become the biggest badass. Ramsay, you gonna die. #GoT
— Maria Henrieta (@SassylikeLT) May 18, 2015
— Karl Jennings (@KarlJennings88) May 18, 2015
What’s happening to Sansa so strongly echoes what happened to Dany I wasn’t exactly shocked. It was horrible though, of course. #GoT
— Selina Wilken (@SelinaWilken) May 18, 2015
— kameel (@kameel_123) May 18, 2015
A couple of others pointed out how the scene was the most likely scenario in the storyline:
Yes the rape scene in #GOT was horrible but in the storyline it’s likely, it’s not like the writers were condoning or glamourising the act.
— Anna (@Anna_Michaux) May 18, 2015
— Captain Steve Rogers (@CaptainSRogers) May 18, 2015
In the end, George RR himself had to take to the internet to quell the masses, releasing this massive post on his website:
I am getting a flood of emails and off-topic comments on this blog about tonight’s episode of GAME OF THRONES. It’s not unanticipated.
The comments… regardless of tone… have been deleted. I have been saying since season one that this is not the place to debate or discuss the TV series. Please respect that.
There are better places for such discussions: Westeros, Tower of the Hand, Watchers on the Wall, Winter Is Coming, the comments sections of the television critics who regularly follow the show: James Hibberd, Alyssa Rosenberg, Mo Ryan, James Poniewozik, and their colleagues. I am sure all those sites will be having a healthy debate.
I have a lot of fans asking me for comment.
Let me reiterate what I have said before.
How many children did Scarlett O’Hara have? Three, in the novel. One, in the movie. None, in real life: she was a fictional character, she never existed. The show is the show, the books are the books; two different tellings of the same story.
There have been differences between the novels and the television show since the first episode of season one. And for just as long, I have been talking about the butterfly effect. Small changes lead to larger changes lead to huge changes. HBO is more than forty hours into the impossible and demanding task of adapting my lengthy (extremely) and complex (exceedingly) novels, with their layers of plots and subplots, their twists and contradictions and unreliable narrators, viewpoint shifts and ambiguities, and a cast of characters in the hundreds.
There has seldom been any TV series as faithful to its source material, by and large (if you doubt that, talk to the Harry Dresden fans, or readers of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, or the fans of the original WALKING DEAD comic books)… but the longer the show goes on, the bigger the butterflies become. And now we have reached the point where the beat of butterfly wings is stirring up storms, like the one presently engulfing my email.
Prose and television have different strengths, different weaknesses, different requirements.
David and Dan and Bryan and HBO are trying to make the best television series that they can.
And over here I am trying to write the best novels that I can.
And yes, more and more, they differ. Two roads diverging in the dark of the woods, I suppose… but all of us are still intending that at the end we will arrive at the same place.
In the meantime, we hope that the readers and viewers both enjoy the journey. Or journeys, as the case may be. Sometimes butterflies grow into dragons.
((I am closing comments on this post. Take your discussions to the other sites I have mentioned. And for those who may be curious as to the road the books are taking, I direct you to the WINDS OF WINTER sample chapters on my website)).
So what do you guys think? Is it really just a re-telling of two tales? Or is it just shock bait? Discuss in the comments down below.