Game of Thrones has received a fair bit of flack for some of its sex scenes, even just for the sheer amount of them, but Natalie Dormer has stuck up for the show, saying she doesn't really see what all the fuss is about.
Natalie, who plays Margaery Tyrell on the show, says people's attitudes to sex scenes should be the same as they are to violence in TV and film. The main issue, she told The Telegraph, is whether it is actually adding anything to the story and whether or not it is gratuitous or glamorized.
"I think sex and romance is a huge part of human motivation. So long as it's informing the story then I don't see what the problem is. Obviously no one likes gratuitous sex or gratuitous misogyny, the same way people shouldn't like gratuitous violence.
"But I think Thrones is quite good in that way. The violence is quite naturalistic. It's not hyper-stylized. It's not glamorized. And the sex is quite real and dirty as well. It's about those raw, visceral qualities of human life that make good drama."
Natalie added that she has certainly never felt under any pressure to strip off and that it's worth remembering that men can be just as reluctant as women.
"Welcome to being an actress under a certain age in the industry," she laughs drily. "But, you know, there are sensitive men in the industry as well—writers, directors, producers. It's not just men against women. David Benioff and Dan Brett [the Thrones showrunners] are liberal-minded Americans who believe in equality. And we're all serving the story."
Last year, creator George R R Martin admitted he was shocked that the sex scenes on the show seemed to cause more outrage than the gruesome deaths. Speaking at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, he made a pretty strong point:
"I'm always astonished that there's always so much more controversy about the sex than about the violence. I think that says something about us that isn't necessarily a good thing to say.
"I can write a scene and describe in detail a penis entering a vagina, and there will be a portion of the audience who get very upset about that. But I can write a scene about an axe entering a human skull and nobody will complain about that.
"Generally speaking I'm much more in favor of penises entering vaginas than of axes entering heads. People seem to accept the violence much easier than they accept the sex."
And that is the deep philosophical thought we shall leave you with for today.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.