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Game of Thrones episode 6 went "too far" even for the most shocking show on TV, say viewers

SPOILERS: The ordeal endured by Sansa Stark left some viewers vowing to stop watching the HBO drama, while others felt it was a neccesary portrayal of the dark world of Westeros logo
Published: Tuesday, 19th May 2015 at 7:26 am

The latest episode of Game of Thrones ended with a disturbing scene.


After Sansa Stark wed sadistic Ramsay Bolton at her former home of Winterfell, the final moments saw her new husband brutally consummate the marriage while Sansa's childhood friend Theon was forced to watch silently nearby.

The scene has caused controversy, with many viewers feeling it was gratuitous, particularly since it was an event only referenced implicitly in the source book.

However, other viewers reacting online defended the episode, and argued that the show was conveying how dark and disturbing Westeros – and indeed the real world – really can be, especially for women.

Episode 5 was the final straw for some viewers...

Many said that despite the show being famous for its brutality, the sexual violence was a "cheap" and "unnecessary" trick to entertain and shock audiences...

But there were also a smaller number of viewers who took to Twitter to defend the episode, saying that the scene was simply a realistic depiction of the horrors of Westeros...

But this tweet summed up the general response to this argument...

There was also anger at such a violent scene being shown on TV, particularly when the scene is not actually in the original George RR Martin novels...

George RR Martin addressed this very issue, if rather obliquely on his blog last night. He said that the TV show is "faithful" to the books, but implied that last night's divergence from the source material is due to HBO having to condense his "lengthy (extremely) and complex (exceedingly) novels" into a normal-length TV episode. It wasn't clear from his post how he felt about Sansa's rape scene being written into the TV show. Here's the blog post below...


"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... 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."

Game of Thrones series 5 episode 6 review: A dark and disturbing wedding in Winterfell

What did you think about the controversial scene? Was it gratuitous or justified in the context of the drama? Vote in the poll and leave your thoughts in the comments box below.


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