“Game of Thrones” star Sophie Turner addressed that controversial rape scene from this past season once again at Comic-Con, and said the moment that disgusted fans actually highlighted Sansa Stark’s strength.
“If there’s one thing that Sansa still is despite what happened to her, is strong,” Turner said when a fan asked during a panel why producers chose to focus the last shot of the episode on Theon Greyjoy (Alfie Allen) watching the brutal assault.
“I really don’t know why — you’ll have to ask the writers on that one — why they focused it on Theon, because I was giving a great performance” she said.
Turner previously defended the scene many felt was gratuitous, and crossed the line of decency.
“When I read that scene, I kinda loved it. I love the way Ramsay had Theon watching. It was all so messed up,” Turner said in an interview published shortly after the episode aired. “It’s also so daunting for me to do it. I’ve been making [producer Bryan Cogman] feel so bad for writing that scene: ‘I can’t believe you’re doing this to me!’ But I secretly loved it.”
When opening up about the scene at Comic-Con, Turner stressed that her character’s compliance with the twisted perversions of husband Ramsay Bolton (Iwan Rheon) is a necessity for survival.
“I think Sansa has gone through a lot, but she has, you know, developed skills from Cersei … and she’s still just as strong as she was before,” Turner continued. “But again, what she’s been doing this whole time — this whole series — is, she’s been kind of just getting by without doing anything totally radical, because that could, you know, totally change her situation.”
“She could die. And with the Bolton’s, that’s a big risk to take. And I think she knows that, she’s not stupid,” she added. “She didn’t just think, ‘Alright then. This is going to happen.’ I think she thought it through in her head — she could have fought back if she wanted to. But she didn’t, and I think that’s good for her character. She’s one of those characters that kind of does her scheming in her mind, rather than outwardly.”
The fate of fan favorite Jon Snow (Kit Harington) was also a topic during the panel. However, fans hoping for a definitive answer to “Game of Thrones” biggest cliffhanger were left hanging. The assembled cast — including Turner, Allen, Gwendoline Christine, Liam Cunningham, Carice Van Houten, Natalie Dormer, Hanah Murray, John Bradley, Maisie Williams and Colenth Hill — along with director David Nutter and executive producer Carolyn Strauss mostly sidestepped the question when it was brought up by a fan.
But after a sizzle reel featuring audition footage from various cast members, Nutter did state that Jon Snow is “deader than dead,” which he also told President Barack Obama upon meeting him recently.
Watch the video of the full panel above. Turner’s comments begin at the 21:45 mark.