As the third season of Game of Thrones begins, let's hope the nudity is more equal

Nine times out of 10 it is a woman who is seen disrobed while her male counterpart remains clothed

Share
Related Topics

Like thousands of Game of Thrones fans across the nation, on Monday night I will be sitting down to watch the third season of the show.

I’m looking forward to seeing how the story develops, which characters get killed off and who will get a step closer to taking the Iron Throne. What I won’t be looking forward to is having a pair of breasts thrust into my face every week for the next two-and-a-half months.

For those who've never seen Game of Thrones, the series is about the power struggle between several families to win the throne and rule over the fictional land of Westeros. The series has been adapted from George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels, and along with the uncompromising violence the show is characterised by its sexual content.

On the whole the sex scenes in Game of Thrones have been taken directly from the books and serve a purpose, compared to shows such as Rome and Spartacus: Blood and sand where the sex only really adds to the aesthetic. Indeed I would argue that the majority of the sex scenes are integral to the plot of Game of Thrones and are important because they define the characters. Sex is part of the human condition and by showing the wants and desires of these characters they become more believable and rounded as literary creations. For instance, Theon Greyjoy uses sex to demonstrate his power and nobility to others. Whether it involves sleeping with the daughter of a sea captain or unwittingly fondling his sister (it’s a long story), the overall impression is that he constantly needs to prove himself.

Saying this, I've also found that at times the series has featured sexual scenes that are unnecessary and add very little to the plot. In the first season a brothel owner instructs two prostitutes on the art of making love and orders them to give him a demonstration. The whole sequence played out like a piece of girl-on-girl action for the fan boys and came out of the blue in the overriding scheme of things.

Unsurprisingly, this scene was not in the book and in my opinion added very little to the plot, apart from shoehorning in what was essentially some softcore porn. It might not surprise viewers to learn that some of the scenes were so raunchy that a number of actresses turned down parts on the show. Porn stars were even drafted in to play the more risqué roles.

Game of Thrones is a wonderfully rich and complex story with the depth and detail of The Wire, and production values on par with Boardwalk Empire. The makers simply do not need to stray into softcore territory with superfluous sex scenes to hold their audience’s attention. I think it’s safe to say the makers won viewers over the moment Bran Stark was thrown out of a tower in the first episode. Some of the adult content works, but the additional sex scenes feel unnecessary and comes across as the thinking man’s porn of choice – man being the key word.

My main gripe is not with the sex itself but with the disparity between male and female nudity. Nine times out of 10 it is a woman who is seen disrobed while her male counterpart remains clothed. It is something that is inherent across the film and television industry and needs to be rectified starting with Game of Thrones. If there are going to be sex scenes then surely both male and female characters should both bare their flesh rather than just one party?

Interestingly, I posed the question of the inequality in nudity in Game of Thrones to several of the show’s stars last year and got a particularly strong response from one actress. Natalia Tena, who played the Osha and filmed a scene involving full frontal nudity said: ‘I think it’s really unfair, every actor, any actress has had her t*ts out. Every single actress I know. Blokes it’s like, let’s see some c**k. Do you know what I mean? Let’s make it more even.’

It shows that something needs to change in the industry. Why shouldn’t the male form be celebrated as much as the female form? After all we are living in an ever more sexualised society where the lines between art and porn in the mainstream are blurring.

As a female fan I find myself seeing a lot of women of Game of Thrones in the buff and it feels rather disconcerting. Surely the makers should be catering for female viewers as well as male viewers? Women make up a good chunk of the audience, so perhaps next year they can feature a scene in a brothel where we are shown the rent boys of Westeros or the bed slaves of Essos? Just bring some parity to the nudity for the fan girls.

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Photographer / Floorplanner / Domestic Energy Assessor

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Photographer/ Floor planner /...

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Surrey - £40,000

£30000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Guildford/Craw...

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Assistant

£13500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Customer Service Assistant is...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £35,000

£16000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An ambitious and motivated Sale...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

General Election 2015: Ed Miliband hasn’t ‘suddenly’ become a robust leader. He always was

Steve Richards
 

Costa Rica’s wildlife makes me mourn our paradise lost

Michael McCarthy
Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence