The Mother of Dragons herself, otherwise known as actress Emilia Clarke, believes that the criticism Game of Thrones receives for its nudity is unwarranted. The final season of Game of Thrones is currently being filmed and viewers are eagerly awaiting the final chapter of what has become arguably the most successful television series in recent memory.

Aside from the thrilling political intrigue, expansive fictional world and epic battle scenes, Game of Thrones has earned itself a reputation for excessive gore, shocking deaths and liberal nudity and has been criticized to some extent for all three, though perhaps mostly for its depiction of sex and the human body in all its unclothed glory. While some critics posit that such nudity is inappropriate in a popular, mainstream show such as Game of Thrones, others argue from the perspective that such scenes are needlessly gratuitous and are included for nothing more than cheap titillation.

Related: Emilia Clarke Dies Hair For Game of Thrones Season 8

Clarke herself has appeared in several nude scenes in Game of Thrones and speaking with Harper’s Bazaar, argued that the show’s nudity should simply not be an issue. The actress states:

“I’m starting to get really annoyed about this stuff now because people say, ‘Oh, yeah, all the porn sites went down when Game of Thrones came back on.’ I’m like, ‘The Handmaid’s Tale?’ I f**king love that show, and I cried when it ended because I couldn’t handle not seeing it. That is all sex and nudity. There are so many shows centered around this very true fact that people reproduce… People f**k for pleasure—it’s part of life.”

0.mothersmercy Emilia Clarke Defends Game Of Thrones Nudity

Clarke’s comments raise two salient points. Firstly, that Game of Thrones is far from the only television series to feature sex and nudity in a graphic and regular way and secondly, that the topic perhaps shouldn’t even be a controversial issue in the first place. However, the debate is perhaps representative of a cultural phenomenon that extends beyond Westeros and even beyond the world of television. Over the years, Western culture has become increasingly more tolerant in how sexuality is portrayed in the media and there will likely always be a vocal minority that wish to halt that progression and retain the status quo.

With regards to Game of Thrones, it’s easy to see where Clarke is coming from to some extent. The majority of nude scenes in Thrones are presented in the “fact of life” manner the actress refers to and as such, contribute the the show’s sense of realism. For instance when Daenerys emerges unscathed from a raging fire, it makes complete sense that her clothes would have perished. Likewise, it would seem very odd indeed if a scene set in one of Littlefinger’s brothels didn’t feature patrons in the buff.

However, there are instances both in Game of Thrones and in other series where the nudity on display appears to serve no other purpose than to draw a cheap thrill. For better or worse, sex scenes get viewers talking and generate publicity and there are times when it certainly seems like Game of Thrones plays up to this. It’s also worth considering that there have been several occasions where Game of Thrones has pushed its sex scenes into some particularly grim territory with moments such as Sansa’s brutal rape at the hands of Ramsay Bolton.

MORE: Game of Thrones Hacker Identified

Game of Thrones season 8 is expected to premiere in late 2018 on HBO.

Source: Harper’s Bazaar

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