Game of Thrones season 8 has now come to an end, and it’s left a lot of fans scratching their heads wondering what on Earth just happened. Here are 5 times the Game of Thrones writers dropped the ball in season 8.
Unfortunately, the series’ conclusion, which was much-anticipated just felt a bit flat and fans of the show – people who’d been watching since the very first episode – were left thinking, “Is that it!”. Well, at least, that’s what I was thinking when the end credits started to roll.
After much deliberation, I finally managed to come up with five key areas which led to the final season of the show and the show’s finale falling so sort of the mark.
5. The show forgot all about its fantasy element
Game of Thrones, for me and many other fans, was all about the fantasy element. People across the globe were stunned and in awe of all the fantastical stuff that was going on on-screen. The dragons, the witches, the magic, the White Walkers. This was what the show was all about for me and many others. Well, Game of Thrones season 8 just threw that all out the window. It was evident from the start of season 8 that the writers couldn’t care less about the magical creatures. The White Walkers were all destroyed in one episode, after years of build up. The dragons were never given a satisfying story arc and at the very end of the show, Westeros is empty of all fantastical elements because they all died. What the actual f***! Pardon my French, but come on.
I know that George R. R. Martin keeps on saying that his story is all about the politics and it just so happens to be set in a fantastical world, but the show was different. They made a big deal about the Night King and the dragons and then just brushed it all aside in the final season. Not cool, guys!
4. They didn’t care about their female characters
Game of Thrones for, let’s say six seasons, actually gave a crap about their female characters. There was Daenerys Targaryen (played by Emilia Clarke), Cersei Lannister (Lena Heady), Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner), and Arya Stark (Maise Williams) who are all great characters and had, up until the last two seasons, been given incredible story arcs. The last two seasons really put them to one side as the show concentrated on the likes of Jon Snow (Kit Harington) and Tyrion Lannister (Peter Dinklage).
OK, so just look at how their female characters are completely sidelined in season 8. Cersei is killed in the dumbest way possible and has literally nothing to do in the last season, despite being the show’s big bad for seven seasons. There was also the way Daenerys was killed at the very end, which was the result of a conversation between Tyrion and Jon where Tyrion basically says, “You’ve got to kill her because she’s crazy!”
It just all felt wrong and completely unjustified, which is a shame because they’re all wonderful characters who deserve so much more than what they got in the final season.
3. They rushed it
The last two seasons of the show were completely rushed. For some reason, they thought it would be a good idea to wrap everything up in six episodes, and it really wasn’t enough time to conclude such an expansive show as Game of Thrones. It resulted in characters literally teleporting from one place to another, and it just didn’t do the show any favours whatsoever. There are, of course, a multitude of reasons why they decided to do this: money, time, actors contracts…
That said, I’m certain they could have found the time to do one more season and do things properly. Alas, they didn’t and it ended up all being a huge mess of a final season.
2. They concentrated far too much on spectacle
Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a good Game of Thrones battle as much as the next guy. But, I much prefer the conversations in dark rooms aspect of the show, and this had none of that. It was far too focused on the spectacle, which resulted in poor character development because it’s virtually impossible to develop someone’s character during a fight scene with the White Walkers. Again, this could be down to the show’s conclusion having been rushed, but it meant that season 8 of Game of Thrones felt more like Vikings and less like what the HBO hit TV show started off as.
1. They were too scared to kill off ‘nice’ characters
If you think back to the very beginning of the show, back when Benioff and Weiss were working off of Martin’s books, the show wasn’t afraid to kill off its most beloved characters. Remember how they beheaded Ned Stark (Sean Bean)? That all disappeared when they got beyond the books. Beloved characters were literally being brought back from the dead. They became too scared to kill off the characters that fans liked. Season 8 was the worst offender in this regard. Just look at the Battle of Winterfell. Literally, none of the favourite characters died in that battle, which is an absolute miracle.
We were promised an incredible battle, which we got, but it didn’t feel impactful because none of the core characters died in it. In short, Benioff and Weiss bottled it, and that’s what they did with the last two seasons. They didn’t want to rock the boat, and they ended up capsizing it in the process. Oh well. On to the next show, I guess.
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