Culture

Feminist Gripes About 'Game of Thrones' Scene and It's as Ridiculous as You Think

I’ve been a “Game of Thrones” fan since the books first came out, but I missed a good bit of the series. After all, I have kids and the show’s somewhat raunchy desire to put sex everywhere made it difficult for me to watch. Now that I work from home, however, I can enjoy the show while the kids are off at school.

Just yesterday, I watched the latest episode where Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen meet for the first time. It’s a meeting I knew was going to happen about the time I read the second book, so I was looking forward to it.

Jon Snow, the bastard of the North, meeting the Mother of Dragons, one of the most storied women of her age. To call it a bit “awkward” would be an understatement.

Nonetheless, I should have anticipated what I saw later in the day. It seems that the very beginning of the scene, where the two are introduced to one another, bothers a feminist or two.

The long-awaited scene garnered lots of chatter on social media, namely that the whole laundry list of Daenerys’s titles is getting to be rather annoying, as is Daenerys herself, and about how refreshing it is that Jon Snow doesn’t concern himself with accolades. He’s the real deal.Did no one else see what I saw?

Because I was watching the most obvious metaphor for sexism in the workplace, the most stereotypical man-versus-woman job interview in fake history.

Here’s this orphan girl, who spent the better part of her life being subjugated by men, toiling endlessly to rise up and do some good along the way (ahem, she freed a bunch of slaves). She’s now in a position of power, backed by a killer résumé. She’s a working mom with three unruly toddlers, she’s proud of her accomplishments, and she isn’t about to be all modest about it.

And here’s Jon Snow, a bastard with no birthright, yes, but a white man who apparently needs no introduction just the same

Talk about the point of the exchange sailing right over someone’s head.

Jon is introduced by Ser Davos Seaworth, a knight and a warrior, but not a herald and not a man used to fulfilling the role. Daenerys is at home — literally, for the first time — and surrounded by her closest advisors, including Missandei, who knows how to make the appropriate introductions.

The point was that Jon is a bit of a rube by Westeros’s standards. He’s a bastard from the North only recently raised to his station as King of the North. By contrast, Daenerys has already come to terms with it and completely grown into her role as queen. The point isn’t to make some comparison to women in the workplace, but to show how completely outclassed Jon is in this meeting.

However, it’s evidence that people can find a reason to be offended by anything.