Disability justice writer Ace Tilton Ratcliff is questioning “Game of Throne’s” use of the name “Bran the Broken.”
“You have this omniscient, all knowing incredible being, and the name that he gets stuck with is Bran the Broken?” she said. “It’s one, tiny example of the ways that people think about disability.”
The series ended with Brandon Stark being named King of Westeros. Bran was paralyzed after being pushed out a window in the pilot. After he underwent eight seasons of character development, including transforming into an omnipotent oracle-like seer, he was given the moniker Bran the Broken.
The nickname comes from the books by George R. R. Martin, where Bran refers to himself in this way several times, but it was not previously used in the show. Fans were confused and upset by the nickname, including Ratcliff, who has written about disabilities, including her own, many times.
“I mean, who thinks of anything that’s broken in a positive way?” she said. “It’s not a word that you associate with something that can accomplish wonderful things.”
Disability rights activists have previously praised the show for actor Peter Dinklage, who portrays a character with dwarfism, and character Jamie Lannister, who learned to adapt after losing a hand. But many think the show’s conclusion missed the mark.
“Despite the fact that we make up essentially one-fifth of the world’s population, we don’t get a whole lot of representation,” Ratcliff said.