No One Is Fooled By The PR Spin Against Sophie Turner

Sophie turner Joe Jonas couple smiling outside

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I’m never above discussing the latest celebrity gossip, but this one hits different: Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas are getting a divorce after four years of marriage and two kids, and it appears to be getting messy.

This year has seen the surprising end of quite a few famous couples (RIP to my fave ship Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello) but these two certainly weren’t on my radar. In my mind, they were well on their way to Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds-level relationship goals. Their vibes have always been overall pretty loving, genuine, and actually quite fun, with Sophie regularly seen supporting the Jonas Brothers at their concerts, and even poking fun at Joe’s past relationship with Taylor Swift, while celebrating her own Swiftie status.

The media spotlight doesn’t seem to be on the divorce itself, though, but on Sophie as a mother. (My eyes can’t roll any harder at this point.) Soon enough after the news came reports from sources that that Joe Jonas has been caring for his children “pretty much all of the time”, even while on tour, and that “she likes to party, he likes to stay at home”.  The first ever pap shots of their children were published this morning too, with Joe at a café. Odd timing, considering how much care they took in keeping their kids’ faces out of the spotlight.

All this info is coming from ‘sources’, so no one knows who exactly is behind it. But let’s just say that it seems more likely to come from one camp than the other, considering how Joe is being framed as a caring father who likes to stay at home, while Sophie is supposedly out doing god knows what. (If it is Sophie’s PR behind the strategy, then she’s truly in her Sansa Stark era.)

All I know is that I’m happy to report that any attempted tactical assault on Turner’s character simply isn’t working. People have been quick to point out that Turner went from the height of her career after HBO’s Game of Thrones to being a supportive and caring partner and mother without batting an eye. Now that they’re getting a divorce, she’s suddenly a party girl and absent mum? The math ain’t mathing.

I think I’ve seen this film before, and I didn’t like the ending. Britney Spears didn’t go through everything she did without teaching us a few lessons about how the media leverages misogyny to turn on female celebrities. Back in her Disney era, Vanessa Hudgens was the one who had to issue a public apology in 2007 for private pics that were leaked without her consent, in an impressive feat of mental gymnastics. Similarly, at the height of her Twilight fame, the then 22-year-old Kristen Stewart copped much of the blame for an affair with director Rupert Sanders, who was 41 and her boss.

Things feel different now. It might feel like a stretch to attribute this resistance to popular media, like the billion-dollar success of Barbie and the joyful fan camaraderie we’re seeing at Taylor Swift and Beyonce concerts, but I think it plays a part. The viral success of girl trends, though they have their own criticisms, also shows that women are ready to reclaim the narrative around girlhood and refuse the bullshit.

And it’s no surprise that the two-pronged PR hit against Turner has gone straight for the easy, age-old hits to a woman’s reputation: motherhood and domesticity. It’s a strategy that probably would’ve worked well circa 2008, when the Jonas Brothers were gaining global success and Sophie Turner was… 12.

But like Sophie, we’re older and wiser now, and these old tricks won’t work on us anymore.