I’m not really pissed about this past season like a lot of people are, but I think a lot of people feel that David Benioff & D.B. Weiss (D&D) rushed the ending. HBO were going to give them 10 seasons of 10 episodes, but D&D just wanted to do 8 Seasons, and the last two seasons were 7 and 6 episodes respectively.
To a lot of people, it seems they just were ready to be done, and the quality of writing reflects that. Certain plot devices seem to contradict the “rules” established in earlier seasons. Characters jump around the world quickly, characters don’t really suffer consequences for their decisions (i.e. plot armor), and a lot of characters feel, well, out of character based off their portrayals in earlier seasons, and it doesn’t feel like they naturally progresssed to that point within the story.
It also feels like they made some story decisions based off shock factor or wanting to surprise the audience rather than what was set up in the story. Yes, there were shocking moments in earlier seasons, but usually those moments were set up by character’s actions that, in retrospect, led to those consequences. With the past two or so seasons, it seems they’ve defended their writing decisions by citing earlier moments they claimed to be foreshadowing, but many of those moments were often brief and at best are recontextualized as foreshadowing, if that makes sense.
To be fair, D&D have added a lot of good things to the story as well, especially in earlier seasons when working more off of G.R.R. Martin’s books (the show grew to be so popular for a reason and D&D definitely deserve credit for that too), but the seasonal transition from direct adaption to original work feels apparent in retrospect. I think fans feel like D&D sort of gave up towards the end because they were ready to move on, and some fans feel disappointed because they’ve invested so much time into this story. So I think people feel like they can’t trust them to tell a story and commit to it, from beginning to end. To be fair, I think D&D signed up thinking Martin would have completed series before they caught up with him, so they weren’t expecting to have less content to adapt by the end of it.
I do think, at the very least, since D&D are doing a trilogy, you’re talking about 6-8 hours of content rather than 8 Seasons and 75~ episodes of content like GOT. D&D could map out the trilogy before the first one even starts shooting if they wanted to. The first episode of the trilogy could start out well, but maybe some fans are worried that they’ll get them invested and then sort of drop the ball before it’s over.