Where the Final Season of ‘Game of Thrones’ Went Wrong: Inspiration for the “Seven Sins of Writing” Series
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**WARNING: This blog post along with all others in Midnight Publishing’s “The Seven Sins of Writing” series may include spoilers from all eight seasons of the Game of Thrones TV show on HBO. If you have not yet watched the show and plan to, continue reading at your own risk.**
Where the Final Season of Game of Thrones Went Wrong
The final episode of the most watched TV show in recent history aired several weeks ago. The staff here at Midnight Publishing believe it’s safe to say that the viewers and fans are still reeling. HBO’s top-rated extremely popular show Game of Thrones (based off bestselling author George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire book series, with two more novels forthcoming) set records, inspired millions, and built a dedicated fanbase that rivals those of Star Wars and Harry Potter. Since the release of the last six episodes of Game of Thrones’ season eight, however, the response from fans has been one of shock, frustration, and criticism. Don’t believe us? A petition to reshoot the season with new writers has garnered over 1.5 million signatures so far.
So, what exactly went wrong with this beloved show, its detailed world building, and a wide cast of complex characters? Many fans are calling out the show’s co-creators and writers, D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, for numerous issues. These include a lack of source book material after season six and a “rush” to complete the series to direct their attention to an upcoming Star Wars film. (This post on the Ringer extrapolates on the co-creators’ statements about ending the series before anyone including HBO, George R.R. Martin or the show’s viewers wanted it to be.)
While a lot of this is speculation on why the writers wanted to end things the way they did, there are some absolutes regarding the failures made to the structure and elements of Game of Thrones’ final season. And as heartbreaking as these mistakes—or “sins” —are, they can be of great reference to storytellers who are examining what not to do when crafting fiction.
Inspiration for the “Seven Sins of Writing” Series
Join us for the next two months as we release our seven-part “Sins of Writing” series. Each one will examine a mistake made in the final season of Game of Thrones that all writers should strive to avoid to publish successful, satisfying, and champion-worthy fiction. The lineup and a brief introduction for each post are as follows:
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part One: An Unjustified Character Arc Examining the rise and inexplicable fall of Daenerys Targaryen.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Two: Unbelievable Plot Twists Comparing the iconic scene known as “The Red Wedding” to unexplained plot developments in season eight.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Three: Plot Holes Exploring the loose ends, rushed resolutions, and forgotten characters of season eight.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Four: Anticlimactic Endings Examining the anticlimactic nature of the Night King’s defeat and Jon Snow’s true heritage.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Five: Lackluster Dialogue Analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of season eight’s dialogue in comparison to earlier seasons.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Six: “Plot Armor” and Protecting Your Characters Exploring the problems surrounding unbelievable feats that ensured characters’ survival in season eight.
“The Seven Sins of Writing” Series Part Seven: Choices Made for a “Wow” Factor Discussing the problems that come with choosing to deliver the “unexpected” rather than the logical and satisfying regarding the series’ final episodes.
Midnight Publishing is a writing, editing, and marketing company based in Phoenix, Arizona with a staff of dedicated, award-winning editors. We have been assisting authors and entrepreneurs all around the globe for nearly a decade. We are passionate about stories and the written word in all of its forms, and seek to come alongside our clients as they pursue their publishing dreams. Contact us today for a sample edit and to discuss your book project!
Lauren has been a professional writer and editor for more than 10 years. After graduating from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, she focused on magazine and book editing, and continues to write for publications on a range of topics, including travel, music, food and wind. Her obsessions include vinyl records, the ocean, scotch-tastings, a mean guitar solo, and the feeling of a physical book in her hands – ironic, since she has 400 on her bookshelves and is allergic to paper.