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It’s no secret that Game of Thrones season 8 was very controversial. Many fans felt their favorite characters were mistreated by the writers. While some people were happy with the ending of the show, many fans were left confused and frustrated. Why did the writers do this?

Let’s get into possible reasons why the writers went down the paths they did. We’re not claiming to know fully, but many fans are wondering: why did Game of Thrones let fans down in season 8? Without any further ado, let’s get started.

How did ‘Game of Thrones’ let fans down?

While some fans were happy with the ending, many fans felt that it was rushed and badly written. The plot with the White Walkers was resolved almost too easily for many fans. The famous Golden Company was far too easy to defeat for many fans. And most of all, the characters, in many fan’s minds, were not treated with the respect they deserved.

Daenerys Targaryen especially deserved better, according to many fans, than what she got. Such an inspiring and well-written character should have an ending worthy of being the end of her character arc. If she must die, she should at least die with dignity. That certainly was not the case in season 8 of Game of Thrones, at least not in many fans’ opinions.

Some fans also felt that Tyrion and Jon were mistreated. Tyrion, especially in the last two seasons of Game of Thrones, only made bad decision after bad decision, retaining none of his political savvy and wit from the earlier seasons. Jon, a ruler with a keen sense of justice, seeming to follow Daenerys wholeheartedly even as she spiraled into madness, made no sense for many fans.

And finally, the controversial decision to name Bran king. Tyrion suggests that Bran has the best story of anyone there and therefore should be king. Not only is that questionable logic, but many fans felt bored by Bran’s story and didn’t find him fascinating at all. So suggesting that he has the most compelling story is quite hard for many fans to accept, even if it comes from fan favorite character Tyrion. In the end, Game of Thrones wraps up all of its stories in extremely unsatisfying ways.

Why did the ‘Game of Thrones’ writers go this route?

Emilia Clarke DB Weiss and David Benioff at the 'Game of Thrones' premiere
DB Weiss, Emilia Clarke, and David Benioff | Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for HBO

It is hard to understand why the writers went the directions they did. Why end so quickly, without any buildup to anything that the characters went through? Why rely on so many toxic tropes to push your ending? It’s a real mystery for many fans.

And yet, in some strange way it almost makes sense. With Daenerys’ story, the writers were probably trying to spread some sort of message about the corrupting nature of power. About how no one, no matter how well-intentioned they are at the start, is safe from it. Fans got that message alright but the way it was delivered left something to be desired for many.

‘Game of Thrones’ season 8 was broken…or was it?

Bran’s story was probably meant to give a message as well: a message about the power of stories to bring about change. And yet, by giving the throne to an unqualified boy, many fans felt that Game of Thrones did not live up to its own message. It did not bring about any change, instead relying on assumptions and lazy writing to bring the show to its — unsatisfying — conclusion.

Sansa’s storyline was also probably meant to be empowering to female fans, yet many didn’t find it so. It’s hard to accept a show that had arguably the strongest female character killed by her lover Jon Snow in one scene, naming a woman queen in the next. It felt false to many fans, hollow, as if the writers were just trying to appease the criticism that they knew would come. And there is something to be said about the fact that Sansa’s ending is the exception, that women are seen as “the exception, not the rule” when it comes to leadership.

In the end, Game of Thrones will not have the legacy it could have had as one of the most popular shows ever and that is all because of how it ended. While some fans are no doubt happy that the show reached some kind of conclusion, many fans are left wondering if it was worth it. The show will most likely be remembered for being extremely popular for an unknown reason and for doing badly by many of its female characters.