"Hey, you...guy. The dames, eh? Yeah, the dames. Stupid dames. You having any luck with the horses? No, the horses are all...idiots. You know, between the dames and the horses, sometimes I don't even know why I put my hat on."
That's how people talk in bars, isn't it?
- Are you still tracking my every move? I thought we agreed to move on.
- Move on from what? We dated for like a week. It was like getting over mild food poisoning.
"I’m completely impractical, and will pack my Kindle before a pair of pants. In fact, I usually forget the pants, but I always have my Kindle."
I think the “butterfly effect” that I have spoken of so often was at work here. In the novels, Jaime is not present at Joffrey’s death, and indeed, Cersei has been fearful that he is dead himself, that she has lost both the son and the father/ lover/ brother. And then suddenly Jaime is there before her. Maimed and changed, but Jaime nonetheless. Though the time and place is wildly inappropriate and Cersei is fearful of discovery, she is as hungry for him as he is for her.
The whole dynamic is different in the show, where Jaime has been back for weeks at the least, maybe longer, and he and Cersei have been in each other’s company on numerous occasions, often quarreling. The setting is the same, but neither character is in the same place as in the books, which may be why Dan & David played the sept out differently. But that’s just my surmise; we never discussed this scene, to the best of my recollection.
Also, I was writing the scene from Jaime’s POV, so the reader is inside his head, hearing his thoughts. On the TV show, the camera is necessarily external. You don’t know what anyone is thinking or feeling, just what they are saying and doing.
If the show had retained some of Cersei’s dialogue from the books, it might have left a somewhat different impression — but that dialogue was very much shaped by the circumstances of the books, delivered by a woman who is seeing her lover again for the first time after a long while apart during which she feared he was dead. I am not sure it would have worked with the new timeline.
That’s really all I can say on this issue. The scene was always intended to be disturbing… but I do regret if it has disturbed people for the wrong reasons.
The thing about That Scene is, I don’t remotely think it’s D&D changing their campaign to defang the Lannisters, either. (I wouldn’t think that period, and after hearing the director’s cheerful “It’s not rape and I’m proud!” statements I’m goddamn sure.) I think the scene’s going to get the same casual glossing-over that all rapes get on the show, and I’m 100% certain that they still believe they’ve fundamentally softened these characters to a “likable”, palatable place. Which means, in their minds, that:
- Cersei could not conceivably be a “likable or relatable” woman if she consented—or, god forbid, generated any kind of sexual desire on her own—but
- Jaime can easily continue to be a “likable and relatable” guy even as a rapist.