10 examples of bad writing from season 7 of Game of Thrones
It feels as if Game of Thrones is extremely eager to end. The choice to green-light a seven-episode season meant, inevitably, that some corners would be cut. Some things would be rushed. The pieces would fly across the chessboard, not always in rational ways.
I'm not here to nit-pick. I hope, even you disagree with my points, that you'll be able to see my reasoning, and continue to expect more and more out of the people creating fiction for our consumption. So (SPOILERS), with no further ado.
1. Tyrion Lannister has been nearly written out of the show
Ah, Tyrion. The quick-witted dwarf is George R.R. Martin's favorite character, and a fan-favorite as well. "I drink, and I know things." He's a legend. So why, in season seven, has he been so ignored? His conversation with Cersei is the only meaningful scene he gets all season, and we don't even see the full thing.
His reunion with his brother Jamie takes a pathetic two minutes. That's not nearly enough to mend the distance between these characters. So much of Tyrion's great conversations take place off-screen, and all he gets to do is give Daenerys bad combat advice. Tyrion's last heyday was back in Season four, and HBO's insistence on making this the Jon and Dany show has crowded out one of its best characters. The Lannister family drama used to be so amazing. Why, now, is it being cut when all the characters are coming together?
2. The battle at the ice lake with the Night King was just plain stupid
There's no way around this one. The idea of a handful of great warriors holding off an entire army is against everything Game of Thrones once stood for. The show was about strategy, not brawn. Bad decisions got your favorite characters killed. That was the essence of the show. Now, Jon Snow charges north of the Wall with a horrible plan, and gets saved like it's a Saturday morning cartoon? It's all thrilling, but it's horribly detached from a realistic or relatable scenario.
3. Littlefinger was killed because the show wrote him into a corner
Littlefinger's death scene was one of the best moments from the season finale. Yet, how exactly did he get there? His grand scheme seemed to totally fall apart, and the writers just didn't know what to do with him. He went from becoming Lord of the Vale and saving Jon Snow to trying to get Sansa to kill Arya? Why? And he only got found out because of Bran's omniscience. The master schemer deserved a more sensible end. After all, he made the entire show happen.
4. The Night King is just not a compelling villain
What made Game of Thrones great? An army of unfeeling ice warriors that can't be negotiated with? No, it was the genius of Tywin Lannister, his son Tyrion, the values and ambitions of the Stark children, the ruthless monomania of Stannis Baratheon, the cunning of Cersei. By making death the enemy, you also turn a great drama into a straightforward fantasy. The Night King is not half as interesting as someone like Roose Bolton, who is still alive in the books, along with Stannis, and all that human conflict will no doubt be more engaging than the Night King riding a dragon. If you disagree, why did you ever enjoy the show in the first place?
5. Jon Snow has become a boring character and a horrible leader
The whole show has become what it always avoided being: a traditional fantasy with a single hero. Now, Jon Snow is invincible until the endgame, and he's bent the knee to a dragon queen whose family burned Ned Stark's father and brother to death, all without telling his people. He went from Dragonstone to north of the Wall and back again without even thinking of Winterfell. It just doesn't make sense. It's generic fantasy storytelling, not Game of Thrones.
6. Way too many forced reunions
Remember Gendry? Well, the show's ending, so he's back. Jorah? He's also back, in the same episode, but Dany doesn't really care, because this is the Jon Snow show now. Tyrion and Jamie meet for two minutes. Everyone reunites at the Dragon Pit. Where's all the emotion? The classic scenes? Only for Jon and Dany, I'm afraid.
7. The travel is broken
Jon went from the southernmost tip of Westeros to north of the Wall, sent a raven all the way down, Dany flew all the way up, then they went all the way back south...in two episodes. You can say it helps the plotting, but it totally breaks the sense of scale. The whole world feels like a blur, where once it was carefully built-up.
8. Plot armor
So, so much plot armor. Jamie Lannister survives drowning in full armor. Jon Snow survives everything, despite making worse decisions than Robb Stark ever did. A team of badasses go on a suicide mission and only Thoros of Myr, the ultimate side character, ends up dead. No one important died this whole season, except Littlefinger.
9. The Night King only broke through the wall because of Daenerys
Without that frozen dragon, how exactly would the Army of the Dead have gotten south? It took so much dragon fire to melt the wall, there's no way that tons of scratching wights would have done that to it. Only Dany and Jon's moronic decisions enabled their worst enemy.
10. Jon's parentage is played out
If you'll remember, season six ended with the confirmation that Jon Snow, formerly thought to be the illegitimate child of Ned Stark, is not a Stark. We waste an entire season waiting for Bran to reconfirm this. We'll have to wait again for Jon to find out. This 'reveal' has been done twice. We get the point.
No matter what comes in season eight, the show seems to be more spectacle than character drama. And in other news, a robot is working on finishing the novels.