If you haven't seen the latest episode of Game of Thrones (GoT) do not read ahead as there will be a couple of spoilers. This article discusses a specific scene that took place during the episode, and a mini social experiment I conducted on Twitter.
During this installment of GoT, Jamie Lannister raped his sister, Cersei Lannister, next to the corpse of their incestual child. There has been justifiable outrage on Twitter ever since. The reason I thought people were disturbed is because of the fact that incestual rape took place next to a boy's corpse. So I decided to pose a question about this scene, and then make a few remarks. I was indirectly issuing a challenge to see the responses I would get.
The question I posed was:
So is the GoT outrage over the fact that a rape scene occurred, or because it didn't happen in the book?
I then made three comments about the show before anyone could answer:
There was a rape scene, be-headings, people being disemboweled, and burnings at the stake. Oh, and torture. And heads being placed on spikes.
The wildlings butchered an entire tribe, and 1 of the wildlings told a boy in the tribe that he was going to eat the child's dead parents.
Being a person who always says 'the books were better', I'm hoping this GoT madness is just literary snobbery.
The responses I got were surprising. I expected people to fly into a rage over the immorality of the sequence. The reason I thought this was because I had already seen them--hundreds of them--objecting to it on a moral basis.
The first response to me was a person saying that this scene changes the tenor of the show. The second response was a young woman saying that there's no need to add this scene if it didn't happen in the book. The third reply was a man saying Jamie Lannister is one of his favorite people on the show, and that Jamie raping his sister is out of character. The fourth person to reply admitted that it was literary snobbery on their behalf.
Keep in mind that this HBO series has deviated from the books since the 1st episode, yet there was none of this outrage before. The tenor of the show has changed many times due to characters being killed. People did nit-pick the details, but there has never been this level of anger. I expected folks to live up to the fact that they drew a proverbial line in the sand. That a man raping his sister in front of their incestual child's corpse is disturbing beyond comprehension. But they did not.
This mini-experiment tells me a couple of things about people. They are quick to question themselves once they are challenged on subjects of morality, and they abandon their post too quickly and do not defend a legitimate beef. There should have been at least one person who stepped up and said the scene went too far. If one sees something they perceive as wrong, they should stand up, say something and hold their position until convinced otherwise. Don't immediately back down just because someone issues a challenge.