Ever since the finale episode of Game of Thrones season 8 has been aired there has been a big rumble about how disappointing final episode turned out to be. Ratings and social buzz must be high but the reviews were appalling.
Of course, there was never going to be one end that would make every fan happy – viewers all have different ideas about how the story would end, who should sit atop the Iron Throne, who should be the prophesized Azor Ahai and Valonqar, and where everyone should end up. However, the issues of season 8 go far beyond fans simply being grumpy that their favorite character didn’t win.
So, I’ll be breaking down the main reasons why fans were left so disheartened with it.
1. Rushed Ending
Let’s start with the big one, the whole thing just felt like it was rushed. Everything in season eight seemed to be happening too quickly and it would often feel like three episodes worth of information was being crammed into one feature-length episode. A side effect of this was that we weren’t able to enjoy the big 3 pay-off moments in the way that we had done previously.
The eighth season should have been the build-up and aftermath of the Battle of Winterfell – something that has been teased since the very first episode. Having twice as long for the build-up would have also allowed some more scenes on the Wall, a look at the royal progress North (not just the arrival at Winterfell), some more time for Daenerys and Jon to process the big Aegon revelation, and a little more explanation of what was happening with Azor Ahai.
Ok, so what about Bran becoming king? It was a little unbelievable due to the way it happened, especially when all the people deciding seemed to have a more obvious choice. Them choosing Bran would have made more sense if some more episodes were devoted to explain his journey.
Moving on to Jon. The character who had the most screen time and probably the most interesting storyline, the secret son of Rhaegar Targaryen and Lyanna Stark, the man who is an actual mixture of ice and fire. What was the point of Jon being a Targaryen? The big reveal of this information was a huge part of the narrative, yet it was only used as a tool to partly justify Daenerys’ descent into madness.
This could have been the part which makes everything right but unfortunately failed to do so.
The sign related to white walkers wasn’t justified either. Or was it just their thing? Well, who knows. “The Prince that was promised”, apparently Bran was the Prince that was promised.
It seemed as if all the subplots were ignored to wrap things up soon.
Each and every character has been painted so vividly up until this point. The characters in Season 8 aren’t the characters that we know. Characters were acting out of character without enough time to really explain or develop their actions.
We all expected a powerful character like Cercei to do a lot more than just standing at a window and drinking a glass of wine.
Big moments like Cercei dying, the night king finally being dead or Varys being burnt alive just weren’t given the screen time or the importance that they earned in all these seasons.
The best seasons were able to take the time to draw things out, carefully unspooling the motivations of characters, allowing for twists and deaths to get the attention they deserved.
Varys definitely deserved a lot more than just being burned alive. Missandei lived her early life in chains and spent her last moments in chains as well, I think she was worthy of a little more.
Ignorance on the set
The most memorable was the coffee cup in plain sight on the table after the battle of Winterfell. There were also two modern day water bottles spotted on the floor in the scene before Bran is named King. This probably not the best way to grab the audience’s attention.
That being said, a decline in quality doesn’t mean that the show has stopped being enjoyable. I still very much enjoy watching Game of Thrones. The difference between now and back then is on the rewatch; Rewatching previous season used to give us chills, I guess we’ll be missing out on that point in the latest season.
Well that being said, there is not a lot that we can do, signing petitions didn’t really help did it? I guess waiting for the books is the only solution here!