Game of Thrones’ six-episode final season experienced push back from dissatisfied viewers; some went so far as to launch a petition urging HBO to remake Season 8, an effort that has since exceeded one million signatures. The petition sought the removal of showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.
The petition came as Season 8 reached a ratings high: its penultimate episode, “The Bells,” was at the time of release HBO’s most-watched single episode of any series at 18.4 million viewers. But the episode was also the most poorly received in series history, earning just a 48% approval on Rotten Tomatoes.
Benioff and Weiss earlier told EW fan reception “matters a lot” when delivering the ending they’d planned since Season 3.
“We want people to love it,” Weiss said.
“It matters a lot to us. We’ve spent 11 years doing this. We also know no matter what we do, even if it’s the optimal version, that a certain number of people will hate the best of all possible versions. There is no version where everybody says, ‘I have to admit, I agree with every other person on the planet that this is the perfect way to do this’ — that’s an impossible reality that doesn’t exist. I’m hoping for the Breaking Bad [finale] argument where it’s like, ‘Is that an A or an A+?’”
Added Benioff, “From the beginning we’ve talked about how the show would end. A good story isn’t a good story if you have a bad ending. Of course we worry.”0comments
There has since been mixed reactions to the fate of Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), killed by lover Jon Snow (Kit Harington) in the finale. Clarke admitted to EW Daenerys’ heel turn “comes out of f—ing nowhere,” but of her ending, “I thought she was going to die,” Clarke said.
“I feel very taken care of as a character in that sense. It’s a very beautiful and touching ending. Hopefully, what you’ll see in that last moment as she’s dying is: There’s the vulnerability — there’s the little girl you met in season 1. See? She’s right there. And now, she’s not there anymore.”