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Horrifying Things That Game of Thrones Treated a Little Too Casually  

Devon Ashby
2.8k votes 507 voters 37.1k views 20 items

List Rules Vote up the awful events about which Game of Thrones was just a little too casual.

Game of Thrones is known for being a shocking, bloody, and scandalous television show. However, it gets a lot of pushback for also being weirdly indifferent about many of its own worst transgressions. Admittedly, the show takes place in a different time (sort of) and the showrunners can get away with a lot in the name of "historical accuracy." Game of Thrones is a fantasy series, but it takes place in a medieval Europe-esque world, and medieval Europe was a pretty harsh and brutal place.

On the other hand, there are a lot of reasons why the show might handle certain sensitive subjects sloppily. Overeagerness to shock is one reason, but every episode also includes tons of important plot points from the books being shoehorned into a very limited amount of time. It's natural that certain details would get lost in the shuffle, but that doesn't necessarily excuse the blasé attitude the series often takes with violence and other shocking incidents.

What are the worst instances of really horrible stuff getting downplayed on Game of Thrones? Character deaths getting swept under the rug like they're no big deal, egregious instances of abuse or sexual violence, and entire, made-up cultural traditions that are embraced by the characters but revolting to the viewers are just a few examples.

Upvote the events, crimes, and moments from this popular TV show that you think were handled a little (or a lot) too lightly.
1
House Bolton's Obsession with Flaying People Alive
House Bolton's Obsession w... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Horrifying Things That Game of Thrones Treated a Little Too Casually
Photo:  Game of Thrones/HBO
The Boltons are so excited about flaying people alive that their House sigil is a picture of a guy who's been flayed and their house motto is "Our blades are sharp." The Boltons are horrible in general, even by Game of Thrones standards, but this practice especially  encapsulates why they're so terrifying and gross, and yet all the other houses seem pretty chill about it and treat the Boltons like they're just regular folks.
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2
Theon Screws Up Roderick Cassel's Beheading
Theon Screws Up Roderick Casse... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Horrifying Things That Game of Thrones Treated a Little Too Casually
Photo:  Game of Thrones/HBO
It's bad enough to have your home seized by outsiders and then get beheaded for refusing to swear fealty to your new overlords, but Theon's ineptitude with a sword made Roderick Cassel's execution even more terrible than it had to be - his neck was basically hacked apart by three or four separate misplaced blows, then snapped in half with the help of Theon's boot heel. Honestly, people should remember this death more vividly, and if there's a reason why they don't, it's probably because half the fans can't remember who this guy was or why he was so important.
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3
Theon Murdering Peasant Children to Cover Up the Escape of His Hostages
Theon Murdering Peasant Childr... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Horrifying Things That Game of Thrones Treated a Little Too Casually
Photo:  Game of Thrones/HBO
Theon arguably wouldn't have actually killed Bran and Rickon if given the opportunity, but he was more than happy to sacrifice the lives of a couple of worthless peasants for the sake of deception. The worst part was that this wasn't part of some really clever scheme on Theon's part - he simply lost the two Stark children, and was scared of looking like an idiot, so he pretended he found them, and then set them on fire to punish them for leaving. Brilliant!
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4
Lysa Arryn Nursing Her 13-Year-Old Son
Lysa Arryn Nursing Her 13-Year... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Horrifying Things That Game of Thrones Treated a Little Too Casually
Photo:  Game of Thrones/HBO
There were vague whisperings about Robin Arryn being "feeble," immature for his age, and possibly unfit to rule the Vale. The revelation that he was still breastfeeding at age 13, though, should have been enough to tip off Catelyn to the fact that Robin's mother was off her rocker and needed a serious intervention. Think of the lives that could have been saved!
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