Kit Harington and Sophie Turner, leads from HBO’s mega-hit series Game of Thrones, have responded to criticism regarding the show’s final season, including a petition on change.org to remake the final season without “incompetent writers”.
The petition, started by Dylan D. and addressed to HBO, has over 1.4 million signatures at the time of this article’s conception. With that in mind, it’s knocking on the door of its 1.5 million signature goal. The text of the petition itself reads, “David Benioff and D.B. Weiss have proven themselves to be woefully incompetent writers when they have no source material (i.e. the books) to fall back on. This series deserves a final season that makes sense. Subvert my expectations and make it happen, HBO!”
In an explanation, the petition’s author states that they created the petition after the fourth episode as a result of disappointment and posted it to r/freefolk on Reddit. Dylan D. acknowledges that it would be unreasonable to expect HBO to actually remake the series or even an episode. “It costs a fortune to shoot one episode and I think most signers understand that,” says Dylan.
However, the moods of some of the principal characters don’t reflect this sentiment. Both Harington and Turner, who played Jon Snow and Sansa Stark respectively, have criticized fans who were displeased with the show’s ending. Speaking with Esquire in May’s cover, Kit Harington had this to say:
I think no matter what anyone thinks about this season—and I don’t mean to sound mean about critics here—but whatever critic spends half an hour writing about this season and makes their [negative] judgement on it, in my head they can go fuck themselves [. . .] Now if people feel let down by it, I don’t give a fuck—because everyone tried their hardest. That’s how I feel. In the end, no one’s bigger fans of the show than we are, and we’re kind of doing it for ourselves. That’s all we could do, really. And I was just happy we got to the end.
Sophie Turner struck a similar note when asked how she felt about negative fan reactions concerning the show’s ending. When asked if she was surprised by the vitriol during an interview with The New York Times, Turner said that she wasn’t.
People always have an idea in their heads of how they want a show to finish, and so when it doesn’t go to their liking, they start to speak up about it and rebel.
Turner, like Harington, also took issue with the criticism of the show.
All of these petitions and things like that — I think it’s disrespectful to the crew, and the writers, and the filmmakers who have worked tirelessly over 10 years, and for 11 months shooting the last season. Like 50-something night shoots. So many people worked so, so hard on it, and for people to just rubbish it because it’s not what they want to see is just disrespectful.
Game of Thrones aired its final episode on May 19th. Plans for prequels and spin-offs are in the process, but little information has surfaced. A private pilot is happening in June and Naomi Watts was cast as a lead in one of the projects. There is no timetable for the release of any of the new shows.