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Xray the Enforcer

[Book Spoilers] EP506 Discussion v. 2

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Defending a fictional rape is still making excuses for it. Here is another couple of examples to add to those above:

"She knew what she was getting into"

"She went home with him, what did she expect to happen"

Variations of both of these as well as the good old, but there is no rape in marriage excuse have been flying around the comments sections of numerous articles.

We can even go back to when book readers were discussing the original Jeyne scene describing it as partly her fault for not fighting back or trying to find a way to escape. The nasty old trope of not resisting meaning it is partly the victim's fault.

I think you're getting into territory that should be avoided here and will only cause actual debate to suffer as a consequence. I'm pretty sure these defences are defending the creative decision to have the rape scene given the nature of Ramsay.

I'm with you though. It may work in the context of having put Sansa in this position, but the contrivances the writers have invented to put her in that position are utterly nonsensical.

The woman who sent that wonderfully written and highly moving response to Sansa's rape to AngryGoTFan made a brilliant point that things could have gone differently even in the context of the show though. The point was that given the time that Littlefinger left WF for KL and Stannis left CB for WF, Stannis' forces should have made it to WF ages ago given that Littlefinger has already made it to KL, given the immense difference in distance.

Edited by Dolorous Gabe

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I'm with you though. It may work in the context of having put Sansa in this position, but the contrivances the writers have invented to put her in that position are utterly nonsensical.

Agreed. I've stated earlier in the thread why her choosing to marry Ramsay makes absolutely no sense from the character POV but the fact the writers have been planning this since season 2 when ST was a minor and have gutted her storyline and LF's to get her to this point whilst simultaneously stripping the Winterfell plot of all its other elements seems to suggest the scene was about wanting her character to experience rape at the hands of Ramsay.

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Could be a great twist if she finds out she's pregnant.

Given the fact that is almost a certainty, not really. It makes her character even more tragic.

She lets the child live and then the Bolton's have won: their bloodline has a direct claim to Winterfell. Even if she kills them all, she has forever linked House Stark to House Bolton.

Or she kills the child (so far apart from Moontea we have not seen any abortions) and then becomes a monster with a hollow victory.

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Hey, didn't respond to your earlier comment because I didn't really know where to start. Yes, Jeyne was used to further Theon's development... that should be obvious in the books. I don't know where to start with that objection other than to suggest a reread.

You seem confused so Ill state it more clearly: There are multiple mentions in this thread of Jeyne Poole being a plot device to facilitate a resurgent Theon who saves the day. This is then used as an argument against merging elements of the Jeyne storyline with Sansa's because it somehow diminishes a strong primary character.

This argument is weak (in part) because it starts with many gross representations of what happens in those chapters, not the least of which being the complete omission of the role of Mance Rayder and the spear wives in the liberation of Theon and Jeyne from Winterfell. I also objected to the "fridging" trope because no one here can tell the future. If Sansa's arc unfolds in a particular way, then we can have an intelligent discussion about that.

Could be answered with your own words:

Again, there seems to be confusion. The words that you quoted were part of a criticism of another poster's use of the term "rape apologist". A "rape apologist" is derogatory term for someone who attempts to discredit claims of alleged real world rape. It is not appropriately applied to someone who is defending the merit of a fictional rape scene.

Edit: I have no problem extending this term to the "Sansa/Jeyne had it coming" or "It wasn't really rape" crowd, but again, not applicable to someone defending the inclusion of the scene.

Edited by Deadlines? What Deadlines?

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Given the fact that is almost a certainty, not really. It makes her character even more tragic.

She lets the child live and then the Bolton's have won: their bloodline has a direct claim to Winterfell. Even if she kills them all, she has forever linked House Stark to House Bolton.

Or she kills the child (so far apart from Moontea we have not seen any abortions) and then becomes a monster with a hollow victory.

She gives the baby to the Others and it becomes the Great Ginger Other.

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She gives the baby to the Others and it becomes the Great Ginger Other.

Okay that was quite funny.

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Defending a fictional rape is still making excuses for it. Here is another couple of examples to add to those above:

"She knew what she was getting into"

"She went home with him, what did she expect to happen"

Variations of both of these as well as the good old, but there is no rape in marriage excuse have been flying around the comments sections of numerous articles.

We can even go back to when book readers were discussing the original Jeyne scene describing it as partly her fault for not fighting back or trying to find a way to escape. The nasty old trope of not resisting meaning it is partly the victim's fault.

As far as "defending the fictional rape" I would have exactly the same objections as you do. That is not the same thing as defending the inclusion of a rape scene and the implications that has for the story. I thought that's what we were talking about here.

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You seem confused so Ill state it more clearly: There are multiple mentions in this thread of Jeyne Poole being a plot device to facilitate a resurgent Theon who saves the day. This is then used as an argument against merging elements of the Jeyne storyline with Sansa's because it somehow diminishes a strong primary character.

This argument is weak (in part) because it starts with many gross representations of what happens in those chapters, not the least of which being the complete omission of the role of Mance Rayder and the spear wives in the liberation of Theon and Jeyne from Winterfell. I also objected to the "fridging" trope because no one here can tell the future. If Sansa's arc unfolds in a particular way, then we can have an intelligent discussion about that.

Again, there seems to be confusion. The words that you quoted were part of a criticism of another poster's use of the term "rape apologist". A "rape apologist" is derogatory term for someone who attempts to discredit claims of alleged real world rape. It is not appropriately applied to someone who is defending the merit of a fictional rape scene.

Okay, there seems to be a lot of miscommunication between us. First off, you seem to be stuck on rescue of Jeyne. When I say Jeyne's main purpose is to motivate Theon, I'm *not* saying her purpose is to motivate Theon to *aid in her rescue* (which is what I think you're implying). Theon's arc in this part of ASOIAF is largely about his own identity (going from Reek back to Theon). The events you cite are actually an example of that: Jeyne's presence serves as a catalyst for the spear wives to influence Theon to escape.

Beyond that, I don't know how to clear this up other than a labor-intensive reread. We will have to just disagree.

To the second point, I was not trying to involve myself in your conversation about 'rape apology'. I'm only trying to point out that fictional rape being different from real-world rape is highly applicable to *our* conversation. In fiction some characters are more important than others. Minor characters serve different narrative purposes than main ones.

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As far as "defending the fictional rape" I would have exactly the same objections as you do. That is not the same thing as defending the inclusion of a rape scene and the implications that has for the story. I thought that's what we were talking about here.

Because there are so many reasons why this scene was a bad idea we maybe talking at cross purposes about different things. I have objections when these type of scenes are used as shock value, play into unpleasant tropes, play to the nastier wishes of the dark side of fandom or when plot lines are wrung through an insanity wormhole to make them happen, all of which I think have happened in this case.

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Because there are so many reasons why this scene was a bad idea we maybe talking at cross purposes about different things. I have objections when these type of scenes are used as shock value, play into unpleasant tropes, play to the nastier wishes of the dark side of fandom or when plot lines are wrung through an insanity wormhole to make them happen, all of which I think have happened in this case.

The whole scenario of her being "sold" to the Boltons by Littlefinger is ludacris and further so for her at Moat Caillin to go ahead with it. That right there, when she agrees to cross Moat Caillin is the hingepoint to where this whole Sansa/Ramsay thing really went off the rails.

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Some comments from below that article.

*****

I am a rape survivor. Thank you, so much, for writing this defense. This is the first time I have felt Game of Thrones really did justice in portraying a rape scene, and I walked away from it shaken and upset but feeling stronger for having seen it. I recognized in it that Game of Thrones was not going to let people get away, that they needed to see it, to confront these things, and I did not feel any of it was unnecessary, avoidable, or poorly done. Even the shot of Theon's face was important. It remains to be seen if Game of Thrones can handle the aftermath well, but we shall see.

When I watched this scene, I felt that my story was finally been witnessed, that people would know what it was like, how it could be, the truth through all the fake depictions, and that was very important to me. But the backlash that resulted made me lose faith in the ability of people to deal with it. People would rather be comfortable than bear witness to the experience of literally millions of survivors. The number of arguments that "Sansa didn't deserve it" as if anyone does, or "now she is ruined/weak" were particularly difficult to get through. It isn't true. Survivors deal with self-blame on exponential levels, half even committing suicide because this is what society tells us. Your defense of the scene has given me strength again and was necessary and important. Thank you.

*****

As another survivor, I have to agree with you. The other thing is that people are not aware of how STRONG you have to be or become to have your soul survive a rape. Especially in our culture where rape is frequently treated as a joke, as a failing on the part of the survivor, as the FAULT of the survivor, as a "boys will be boys" no-big-deal thing ... This scene was done RIGHT. It showed the brutality without actually having it on screen.

I also think that this is the situation that will start to "wake" Theon up. It is different to endure your own abuse, it becomes unendurable when you witness someone that you care about or used to care about being abused. I survived domestic abuse (which included marital rape) and it wasn't until I saw one of my step-daughters being abused by my then-husband that I stood up and left.

*****

Thank you. As a fellow survivor, I actually felt that this was the first time the show depicted rape in a non-exploitative way. I've been much more offended by people saying that this scene has made Sansa "weak" again or that it has "reversed" all her progress thus far. I hate that assumption.

*****

You're not alone. As a survivor, I felt this was exactly what should have been shown. She couldn't resist, she wasn't beaten into submission, she was just forced to do what she didn't want to do.

Interesting to see different perspectives from that angrygot article that has been shared. This scene has gotten a much more mixed reaction than I expected. Amanda Marcotte, whose article many have criticized, is a reasonably well-known feminist blogger and wrt real life rape cases has been pretty much the opposite of a rape apologist, so I was not expecting that take from her.

For me I can see why some people are defending the scene, but I just don't think D&D deserve any kind of trust or benefit of the doubt when it comes to these things.

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That is powerful and to the point. Very truthful and they had this in mind for the actress when she was still 14 years old in planning for season 5, 4 years down the road. Sick.

Won't someone think of the children!!!!

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Interesting to see different perspectives from that angrygot article that has been shared. This scene has gotten a much more mixed reaction than I expected. Amanda Marcotte, whose article many have criticized, is a reasonably well-known feminist blogger and wrt real life rape cases has been pretty much the opposite of a rape apologist, so I was not expecting that take from her.

For me I can see why some people are defending the scene, but I just don't think D&D deserve any kind of trust or benefit of the doubt when it comes to these things.

Sorry I don't have time to hunt it up, but either Cheb or Julia posted a great rebuttal on tumblr to that article. The gist of it was that when it came to the books, she mostly agreed with her because George doesn't shy away from writing about the effects of abuse on the characters involved. Where the disagreement came was when it came to the show and how D&D just go for the shock value and completely miss the boat wrt to what happens afterward.

It total agreement with the bolded and I've gotten into a few arguments on reddit and other places stating the same sentiment.

edit: found the link to the post. Hopefully she won't mind since both of them have posted these in our forums before.

http://theculturalvacuum.tumblr.com/post/119463846881/all-hopefully-of-the-bad-arguments-about-rape-on

Edited by Duchess of Spork

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Where the disagreement came was when it came to the show and how D&D just go for the shock value and completely miss the boat wrt to what happens afterward.

They don't have the luxury of 7 massive novels, and over 20 years, in which to tell the story.

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Do you think there is still time for Theon to Save Sansa?



The horrible scene in question was the very last scene of the show, so by the laws of television logic, the next show can pick up that scene and complete it in unexpected ways.



It's a stretch but I'm hoping for a miracle here.


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