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Game of Thrones Season 8: A Review

Oh boy am I ready to write this.

After six incredibly short 'movie-length' episodes that spanned across six agonisingly painful weeks, season eight of Game of Thrones has come to its bitter bulls**t end. I am so gosh darn grateful that it's over and even more god damn frustrated at how it played out, so much so that I had to take a full almost THREE weeks to recover from it's pitiful attempt at a season finale before I could even write my overall review.

I truly think I speak for the majority of the shows loyal fans when I say Season 8 concluded in quite possibly the single worst way it could have ended. I'll give a list of dot points as to why exactly it caused so much pain to my existence and then I'll explain in greater detail to what extent each dot point affected me.

1. The speed

2. It had none of the gory death and misery that the show is famous for

3. It was predictable

4. The characters were robbed of any vaguely understandable endings

5. They missed pretty much all the foreshadowing set up by George R. R. Martin

6. The ending

And you should be grateful it's only six. I narrowed down 430 minutes of shitty writing, poor foreshadowing and destruction of years of character development into six dot points that basically sum up why the season was so trash.

1. The speed

I'm sorry, forgive me, but they really summed up seven drawn out, descriptive, in depth, dramatic and emotional seasons in six episodes. We're talking over forty characters here with individual lives that intertwine seamlessly in the books written by George R.R Martin.

That's at least forty character arcs that had to be built from the ground up, forty personalities that had to be designed from scratch a lifetime worth of "background" that had to be present in each and every character and even more in the fluttering of minor characters that enter and exit at different stages.

All of that, summed up, concluded and finalised in six episodes that included two major battles that were the most built up decisive battles ever seen in the history of this incredibly detailed world created by Martin.

It was way too fast.

Well loved characters that had been around since the beginning developing and changing as people were given textbook endings that felt bland and confusing. All so that the few 'major' plot points could be resolved averagely and all the actors, directors and writers could move on to other projects.

Well fuck that, the timeline and the pressure they put themselves under to produce something of such significance is exactly why I am glad Martin takes years to write the next book in the series.

At least I know for a fact when it comes out that it is exactly what he wanted it to be, exactly what he had planned and will give actual closure to such an enormous franchise.

It's like if the last three movies of the Harry Potter series were squished into one, a single movie that killed off Voldemort half way through and ignored every other built up secondary plot point in return. Ending with Hermione inventing the laptop and Ron going off to explore Antarctica.


2. It had none of the gory, death and misery that the show is famous for

Out of the twenty two primary characters (excluding secondary characters and recent editions such as Euron and Yara Greyjoy, Rob Arryn etc) only nine died. Of those nine only three died in understandable, memorable and important ways. The three I'm referring to are Jorah, who died protecting his queen as was to be expected, Theon, who died defending a Stark and therefore regained his place in their family and The Hound who died killing his brother in a literal blaze of glory.

That's it.

The show most notoriously known for killing fan favourites only killed nine significant characters in their final dramatic, this is it, season. That's just over one an episode! In a season that included two episode length battles! Not to mention that two of those nine died being crushed by bricks! They weren't even fighting!

I could maybe, maybe get over this lack of death if it wasn't for the fact that there were so many opportunities for characters to die. Every single character could have died, some two or three times and yet they all make it out alive with only a few scratches. Now that, is poor writing.

3. It was predictable

Oh boy there aren't enough words in the English dictionary for me to put into sentences how annoying it was to watch the final few episodes of this season. After (spoiler) the white walkers were all annihilated in episode three there wasn't much hope left for the remainder of the season.

As soon as the night king was killed I knew that Dany would end up going insane and killing the majority of King's Landing. The show still needed it's 'shock' moment and with the best shock factor they had now killed it had to be created from the remaining characters.

So with Dany going insane and her prophecy stating that she would be betrayed by love it wasn't too difficult to piece together that Jon would end up being the one to kill her.

With that whole plot set aside everyone knew Cersei was going to die. There was a bit of debate about who would be the one to deliver her justice but the majority knew it would have something to do with Jaime. Him dying too for their incestuous love wasn't so much a shock as more of a disappointing sigh.

Then to finish Bran is named the King. Because they needed something to do with him to end the season having destroyed the majority of his purpose in episode three when they killed the PRIMARY VILLAIN in the whole show!! I will literally never get over that.

4. The characters were robbed of any vaguely understandable endings

I understand that the show is different to the books but my god did the writers throw any resemblance of the books out the window when they constructed this god forsaken season. Of the deaths I mentioned above the three that died understandable deaths were the only three that I think truly got proper endings.

The rest of the deaths were strange, pointless or just completely lame in concluding their characters stories within Game of Thrones.

Varys got killed in an almost beautiful way having just sent out word about Jon's true heritage, he was the martyr, dying for the cause that would ultimately play out in the end. Except it didn't. Whoever got Varys birds just ignored them apparently as that aspect is never resolved. Hence Varys, the true protector of the people who just wanted a good ending dies for nothing.

Jaime and Cersei die like children under a pile of rocks trying to unsuccessfully escape King's Landing and make a life for themselves. These two characters alone deserved deaths that lived up the hype that was their involvement in the series as a whole. Cersei should have gone out fighting or killed herself with poison before ever giving in and trying to run away, and Jaime! God if there was ever a character that deserved a better ending it was Jaime. We watched the man completely evolve from the beginning to the end of Game of Thrones only to have him completely flip back to his old self right at the end, WHY?

Then there's Dany who goes rogue despite the entirety of her time on the show preparing for the opposite. It was a rushed equivalent to a cheap jump scare in terms of writing.

Ah yes, the lovable main female character is actually a baddie and we should be glad that her slave-freeing selfless loving self never got to keep the throne.

Poor writing. Her character deserved more.

Honestly I don't think I can explain how disappointed I am in the remainder of the Stark's conclusions. I just... what a waste.

5. They missed pretty much all the foreshadowing set up by George R. R. Martin

I've kind of covered this off already through the destruction of the entirety of each character's development through the show but I really can't explain enough how frustrated I am with what they did to such an enormous franchise.

Not to mention the fact that the one constant throughout this entire show, scattered consistently through the books and present in the very first scene of season one was the white walkers.

But they all died.

In episode three.

All of them.

Never to return.

They could not have screwed that up more than they did.

6. The ending

I'm not even going to bother going into detail with the ending of Game of Throne's because the thought of it alone makes me angry.

It just doesn't flow, the awkwardness of a bunch of lords and ladies selecting the one guy who is completely unreliable at sticking around to listen to people as their King is painful.

It didn't make sense. It was an attempt to bring everyone together in some sort of actor and actress reunion to conclude the show as a family. Like why the hell was Rob Arryn there? We haven't seen that kid for years and yet now he pops up, not to help with the war at all or anything but to vote for who should be King.

Plus the ending basically throws away the whole point of Game of Thrones, it's supposed to be a game, about who will rule over the seven kingdoms. They're not all supposed to join up at the end and say 'hey you know in the real world there's this thing called Democracy that works pretty great, maybe we should test that out?'

They're supposed to be killing each other, going to any means to be the overall winner.

I guess that was just another major point that was forgotten about this season. Classic.

So in conclusion, it was pretty shit.

But at least we have a book or two left that will end better and bring order to such a complex series.

That is If George R. R Martin doesn't die first.

I hope his will has a clause that ensures David Benioff & D. B. Weiss stay far far away from the end of the final novel. I don't think I could take the disappointment.

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