Game of Thrones Season 8 has been at the receiving end of fans. Heavily criticized for its narrative choices, abrupt character turns and fast-paced plot developments, fans are aghast at writers David Benioff and D. B. Weiss taking the short route in finishing the series and sabotaging, what fans are calling, the season’s potential for epicness. Accordingly, they’ve launched a petition on Change.org calling upon HBO to remake the season. It’s gained a lot of traction in the last few days and just recently surpassed 1 million signatures and is now headed to a new target of 1.5 million.
That’s a lot of supporters for a petition to amass in such a short while. But this is Game of Thrones we’re talking about; a show that’s already watched by many millions of viewers legally, and an additional number of viewers illegally. It’s consistently ranked among the most torrented and pirated shows of all time. Expectations from the final season were sky-high and all seemed to be going fine until the first two episodes. Starting Episode 3, The Long Night, fans became unforgiving of the writing deficiencies and by last week’s Episode 5, The Bells, fans had become too impatient to wait any more. The Bells has become the lowest rated episode on Game of Thrones with a 47% Rotten Score and an IMDb rating of 6.7.
“David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have proven themselves to be woefully incompetent writers when they have no source material (i.e. the books) to fall back on”, started the petition note written by Dylan D. “This series deserves a final season that makes sense. Subvert my expectations and make it happen, HBO!”. The “subvert expectations” is a wink at the Inside The Episode segment where the showrunners speak about the episode’s writing choices where Benioff had suggested the conclusion of the Battle of Winterfell partially came out of a need to subvert expectations, since everyone had anticipated Jon being the one to kill the Night King.
While not all actors and crew associated with the show have spoken about the petition, Jacob Anderson who plays the show’s Unsullied leader Grey Worm did respond, calling it rude and emphasizing the amount of effort that goes into pulling off something like this. His reasoning makes a lot of sense once you watch the behind the scenes documentaries that HBO has been releasing after each episode.
I think it’s rude. Obviously, the show feels to people like it belongs to them. That’s really good – I think it’s really important when people take something into their heart and it means something to them. However, it doesn’t. I just mean that in the sense that I was there and the crew, in particular, are like the hardest working people I’ve ever met. I think to trivialise their work in that way – I find it quite sad.Jacob Anderson on the petition to remake Game of Thrones Season 8
Game of Thrones is set to air its final episode of the series tomorrow on HBO. Here’s hoping it concludes on a note that redeems at least some of Season 8 and absolves some of the writing choices we’ve been running by.