June 27, 2016

STATEMENT: Game of Thrones Season Finale – A Legacy of Sexploitation

Statement by Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of NCOSE

The season finale of Game of Thrones (GOT) concluded Sunday night. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) calls on its creators to remove graphic sexual violence and nudity from future seasons.

“The Game of Thrones brand has become synonymous with gratuitous rape and graphic nudity,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. “While the 6th season of Game of Thrones contained fewer scenes of sexual violence due to substantial backlash on the subject last year, it has continued to normalize pornographic images in mainstream entertainment. Bare female breasts and buttocks, and scenes of brothels and prostituted women, remain staples of Game of Thrones storylines.”

“Given the ubiquity of female nudity on the show, some have called for an increase in male nudity as a form of ‘equality.’ While it is undeniable that the persistent female nudity on Game of Thrones is representative of the cultural beief that women’s bodies are public commodities, GOT creators need to eliminate pornographic images in their show, not produce more.”

“The pornographic nature of Game of Thrones is further confirmed by the fact that the website Pornhub has recently been uploading GOT sex scenes as pornography for its viewers,” Hawkins continued. “Additionally, data from Pornhub shows that the website experiences a decrease in traffic during Game of Thrones’ airtime, and that Game of Thrones related searches jumped nearly 370 percent on the day of its premiere. The HBO series also features pornography performers among its cast. It’s time to start using some common sense. If a show hires pornography performers, and a porn site says Game of Thrones is porn, then it is porn.”

“That is why we are calling on Game of Thrones creators, and HBO executives, to make a public statement that they will refrain from explicit sexual scenes and to formally apologize to the real-life victims of the sexual violence and abuse for the sexual violence they have so carelessly portrayed,” Hawkins concluded. “It would be the first step on a “Walk of Atonement” for Game of Thrones showrunners and HBO executives that is long overdue.”

Due to its history of sexually exploitative programming, including Game of Thrones and the upcoming series Westworld which required actors to sign contracts agreeing to genital contact, HBO is a member of NCOSE’s 2016 Dirty Dozen List.

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