The term "Mary Sue" dates back decades, with its most recent use often being to describe characters who are unrealistically heroic, overly capable, and lacking in any real flaws. Characters like Luke Skywalker and Batman are often considered such examples, often referred to as "Gary Stu," in that they serve as wish-fulfillment on the part of the writer as opposed to being fully realized, flawed, or complicated characters. During this week's eventful episode of Game of Thrones, Arya Stark pulled off an impressive maneuver, reminding audiences of the journey she has made over the series from the character we were first introduced to.
Some viewers weren't anticipating such a moment, resulting in the knee-jerk reaction of calling her a Mary Sue. From the earliest episodes of the series, Arya expressed her interest in becoming a warrior instead of following the expected gender roles of a royal family, which led her down a path of sword training, fending off attackers, and ultimately becoming a deadly, stealthy assassin. Given that virtually every step in Arya's journey over the course of eight seasons has been towards becoming an expert killer, with even much of the episode putting those combat skills on display, fans didn't take too kindly to seeing viewers refer to her as a Mary Sue and discrediting all of her accomplishments.
Scroll down to see what fans are saying about Arya Stark being called a Mary Sue.
People calling Arya a Mary Sue may have missed the part where she trained for six seasons to be an assassin. #gameofthrones— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) April 29, 2019
That dudes are using “Mary Sue” to describe Arya Stark removes all doubt that it's just a sexist term used to convey the belief that only men should have cool heroic moments in movies.— Amanda Marcotte (@AmandaMarcotte) April 29, 2019
*spends 8 seasons watching a character train and evolve into essentially a shapeshifting assassin and executioner*— Brock Wilbur (feat. Brendon Urie of Panic! At The (@brockwilbur) April 29, 2019
Online Gentlemen: neat
*she protects one dude*
Online Gentlemen: BEHOLD! A Mary Sue in our midst.
Before you call Arya Stark a Mary Sue lemme hit you with some goddamn fact.
1. Trained by the best swordsman in Westeros.
2. Trained by the best assassin
3. Studied/Watched the brilliance of Tywin Lannister
4. Studied/trained with The Hound
Shes a full bred warrior, fuck off.— Trash Bag NHL Bracket Matt (@Jaigeyes_) April 29, 2019
So you think Arya is a Mary Sue but you don't think Jon Snow is? pic.twitter.com/vloKOOPVxz— Agent Carter’s Biggest Stan (@ThatShaniaTween) April 29, 2019
To everyone throwing around the term Mary Sue about Arya Stark, I say this: pic.twitter.com/ChxZkWCNhk— Justin Pearson (@StarLord_Justin) April 29, 2019
It's *super weird* that a bunch of men started having issues with Star Wars, GoT, Avengers/MCU once women started having larger roles. Claiming Arya Stark is a Mary Sue is delusional.— Jay Johnson (@JayngoUnchained) April 29, 2019
Mary sue just means "girl power fantasy that doesn't appeal to me personally".— Jessi Sheron mermaid comics (@JessiSheron) April 29, 2019
The Arya Mary Sue argument is really bizarre. Stealth has been something we've seen her do a lot already (perhaps even to supernatural degrees) and they even set it up again two weeks ago when she snuck up on Jon in that exact same spot.— neontaster (@neontaster) April 29, 2019
The only tea here is that if Jon had defeated the Night King instead of Arya, or if any male star wars character had defeated Kylo in that battle instead of Rey, y'all petty male nerds wouldn't be calling them "Mary Sue".
Just admit you're intimidated by strong women and go pic.twitter.com/Jmj4JC1xTK— Dai ☀️ crying because Endgame (@ForcebondMouse) April 29, 2019