Game of Thrones Feminist Leaderboard
11:07 am, April 29th | by Colette McIntyre
HBO’s Game of Thrones has something for everybody — zombies, dragons, manipulation, sex, wolves, Peter Dinklage, violence, politics, homoerotic subtext, songs by super hip indie bands, more sex — but what we love most are Westeros’ badass women: the dames of thrones fight, plot, snark, strive, and are as multifaceted and intriguing as their male counterparts. Each week, The Jane Dough will rank the GoT ladies according to how hard they ruled in last night’s episode. Start your Mondays feeling like the commander of dragons, rather than the bleary-eyed version of yourself you usually bring to work at the beginning of the week. When you play the game of feminism, you win or you…well, don’t win.
- Aria sure does go after what she wants, doesn’t she? Running out to stab the Hound after the Brotherhood Without Banners failed to appease her desire for revenge was a little crazy but I gotta respect it. 3 points
- For sticking up for her man and not being afraid of some warg that looks like a poor man’s Johnny Depp from Pirates of the Caribbean: The Snowqual 3 points.
- Even when she’s getting sexy with Jon Snow, Ygritte manages to remind him that he knows nothing. That is some high level, masterclass, Cesar Millan alphadog magic. 5 points.
- The next step in keeping pretty faced Jon Snow in his place: rattling off the other men that she has been with, some of whom were “built like mountains.” I do love me a gender role reversal, so 4 points.
- Cersei is back in form, conniving and enlisting others in her plots. I’m glad she didn’t let her little chat with her father last week dampen her spirits. She is taking Tyrell matters into her own hands — that is the Cersei we all know and love to hate! 4 points.
- Twist of twists: Cersei got back on her father’s good side by digging up a little nugget of gossip about the Tyrells. She revealed the Sansa-Loras marriage plot to her father and got to sit by his side, pleased as punch, while she took down both the Tyrells and her brother. It was such a great day for Cersei Lannister… 5 points.
- …until her father revealed his plans to marry Cersei off to Sir Loras. Cersei put up a fight — “I am Queen Regent, not some broodmare” &mdash but in the end, she has little choice. No points, just a fist shaking at the patriarchy!
- “No need to speak.” Lady Olenna doesn’t have time for your apologies or pleasantries, Podrick; don’t you understand that she is more concerned with her bowel movements than she is with you and most of society? Fetch figs for Lady Olenna, Game of Thrones‘ Jamie Lee Curtis. 3 points.
- Listen to Olenna rattle off the number of bannermen and bushels of oat that the Tyrells have contributed to the kingdom during wartime — clearly this is a woman who is running thangs. 5 points.
- I love how Olenna and Margaery has a deeper understanding of the kingdom’s commoners than any of the Lannisters; the Tyrell women know that the public must love you, fear you, depend on you, and be appeased by you. Case in point: Olenna informs Tyrion that a royal wedding is more than a wedding, it is a distraction for the public. It may be expensive, but it is a necessary expense. Every week I come to realize that the female Tyrells should be ruling the world — everyone would have a toy knight at home, there would be extravagant events to attend, and cheese would be served whenever you wanted it to be served. 5 points
- “I was told you were drunk, impertinent, and throughly divulged; you could imagine my disappointment at finding nothing but a browbeaten bookkeeper.” Did I somehow change the channel and start watching MTV’s Yo Momma because that was a BURN. 2 points.
- Oh hey Catelyn, how have you been? Oh just weaving and sitting around? Oh yeah, I’m sure you are missing your father and your sons. You still haven’t heard from either of your daughters? Wow, that sounds rough. Well…uh…your hair looks nice down? What is Robb talking about right now? Oh man, did you hear that? He wants to execute that Karstark guy! …Of course it’s a bad idea, I know that! You’re right! Wait…you’re actually going to say something? You are going to stand up and disagree with your son? Right now? Of course I think you should, I just didn’t think that you were ready to be anything other than a sad, lonely breeze that passes in and out of scenes! You go, girl! How did it go? He didn’t say anything, he just stared at you, huh? Well, at least you said something! 5 points.
- So he did it anyway and realized that he shouldn’t have but only gave credit to that healer lady who he married (which he also shouldn’t have done) for being right, forgetting that you also advised him to do otherwise? Typical. Well, we know you were right! How about you show me some of your weaving while I try to find you a dress that doesn’t look like something Grand Maester Pycelle would wear, okay? 2 points for being right, even though you didn’t get credit for it.
- So Selyse has been kept locked in a tower by her husband, Stannis, who rarely comes to visit her and she is fully aware that her husband has cheated on her with Melisandre and helped create some evil smoke baby but that is alright with her because it was all for the Lord of Light and it’s not like she’s alone since she’s kept company by her pickled dead sons…? Wow. Looks like Catelyn has some competition for Most Defeated Female Character.-6 points.
- I like you, little Shireen! You trust your own judgement and sense of morals (which is good since your dad is cray-cray), you visited your friend against your father’s wishes, you’ve realized that you are currently living out your worst punishment and thus aren’t afraid of any consequences, and you’re teaching your friend how to read. And all of that happened in one minute-long scene. 6 points
- For being able to shame and intimidate Jamie even when naked: 5 points.
- Daenerys is ruling over her Unsullied army with an iron, democratic fist. It’s great to see her in action. (It’s even greater to see some of those Unsullied without their helmets on. Me-ow, Grey Worm.) 5 points.
The Biggest Feminist This Week: Sure, she may have appeared in just one scene but Lady Olenna exuded more power in those 3 minutes than Podrick has inches below the belt — and we all know that Podrick is wielding something ungodly down there. Olenna doesn’t dillydally around the issues or waste her time on polite remarks; she says her piece, sticks to her guns, and gets her figs on time.
Our Takeaway: Take advantage of whatever meeting or encounter you are able to arrange; there is always enough time to prove your power.