Apropos of nothing, two thoughts on nakedness and sex in HBO’s Game of Thrones.
One, typecasting. Take British actress Esmé Bianco, who plays the prostitute Ros. When on camera she’s often nude, sometimes fully so, even, in one scene, simulating lesbian sex with another female actress. By taking this role, has she limited her career options? Will future directors and producers see her as a sex scene fill-in? Friends who watch Game of Thrones say no, the profession has moved beyond that. I have my doubts. One actress, Lisa Nolan, gave up a role in Game of Thrones after being asked to simulate a sex act in the nude. “People could have taken snap shots of the show and every time I did a shoot people would remember that scene,” she explained. Yeah, that’s kind of what I was thinking.
Two, where’s the outrage from the religious right? Where are the boycotts, the petitions, the letter writing campaigns, the attempts to restrict access to HBO? I’ve been writing about book bannings for a few years now: parental and community attempts to ban books from school reading lists and libraries, frequently over brief passages mentioning sex or masturbation. Almost all of these campaigns are organized by the religious right. The religious right targets TV networks and sponsors for employing gay spokespersons such as Ellen DeGeneres. The religious right pushes for state laws forbidding mention of homosexuality in public schools. The religious right wants to eliminate sex education altogether, save for the baseline message of abstinence. So how come they’re not going after Game of Thrones, a popular, prime time cable TV show featuring frequent nudity and at least one soft-core depiction of heterosexual or homosexual sex per episode? Google “right wing opposition to Game of Thrones” and see what you get. I get zilch. What am I missing?
I know, I said two thoughts. But here’s a third, anyway. I know the world of Game of Thrones is not meant to be our world, but its time is equivalent to our own medieval period, right? So how come everyone has such good teeth? And why aren’t they hairier? And why, getting back to the original theme of this blog post, are certain characters seemingly exempt from the requirement to strip and dry-hump one another? What kind of actors’ caste system is in play?
© 2012, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.