Jessica Chastain has blasted the writers of “Game of Thrones” for suggesting a sickening rape on the show made a lead character a ruthless royal.
The actress was not amused by a remark her Dark Phoenix co-star Sophie Turner’s character, Sansa Stark, made in Sunday’s (05May19) The Last of the Starks episode, when it was suggested she would have avoided the emotional and physical abuse she was subjected to if she had left with tough guy Sandor Clegane, aka The Hound.
Sansa shot back, “Without Littlefinger and Ramsay and the rest, I would have stayed a little bird all my life,” suggesting that she’s stronger thanks to the deplorable actions of the men in her life.
Zero Dark Thirty star Chastain, who is a leading Hollywood feminist and women’s rights activist, noted the comment and took to social media on Monday night to attack the show’s writers.
“Rape is not a tool to make a character stronger,” she raged. “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.”
Her comment sparked a debate online with one rape victim stating: “As a rape survivor who just watched #GameOfThrones, I’m gonna go ahead and take FULL F**KING CREDIT for the strength I’ve gained since my attack. I’m not about to thank my rapist for getting me to where I am, like Sansa just did.”
Another viewer and Chastain follower added: “I love Sansa Stark’s character development, but can we just take a minute to remind the writers that rape and torture do not build resilience? She gained strength in spite of those events, not because of them.”
And another fan of the show, Alex Bruce-Smith, suggested the lack of women in the writers’ room is to blame for some questionable scenes and plot points.
“I still love #GameofThrones but this show proves over and over again they have no idea how to write about rape,” he tweeted. “Sansa just shrugging off what happened to her by saying she’s stronger for it?? do any women write for this show…?”
Sansa’s rape scene at the hands of her ruthless husband Ramsay Bolton in season five was one of the most criticised moments of the series and led to many fans boycotting the show.
Turner defended the scene, telling The Times, “The more we talk about sexual assault the better. And screw the people who are saying we shouldn’t be putting this on TV and screw the people who are saying they’re going to boycott the show because of it. This sort of thing used to happen and it continues to happen now, and if we treat it as such a taboo and precious subject, then how are people going to have the strength to come out and feel comfortable saying that this has happened to them?”
– Cover Media0