We’re in for a long wait now that Game of Thrones is over, and we have no idea when season 8 will premiere. But I just hope that HBO makes sure it doesn’t ruin next season’s best moments like it did with season 7.
One of the reasons the story and show are so great is that they put extraordinary men and women in extraordinary situations. The kicker is that all these people have to deal with whatever is coming their way using whatever is available to them in the Westerosi Middle Ages. And it all feels real. Imagine the same story set in the present or in a distant future. It wouldn’t be so fun anymore, in a world where there are instant messaging and weapons of mass destruction.
In Game of Thrones, every character has to deal with time, among other things. But episode 6 certainly made time seem irrelevant, offering us instant ravens and even faster dragons. And it’s all a cheap ploy to provide the bad guys a dragon, even if the viewers ultimately get epic battles out of it.
It turns out that HBO knew all along that it was about to make a huge mistake, but it didn’t really care.
“We were aware that timing was getting a little hazy,” Beyond the Wall director Alan Taylor told Variety last week. “We’ve got Gendry running back, ravens flying a certain distance, dragons having to fly back a certain distance…In terms of the emotional experience, [Jon and company] sort of spent one dark night on the island in terms of storytelling moments.”
That doesn’t sound right.
“We tried to hedge it a little bit with the eternal twilight up there north of The Wall,” he explained. “I think there was some effort to fudge the timeline a little bit by not declaring exactly how long we were there. I think that worked for some people, for other people it didn’t. They seemed to be very concerned about how fast a raven can fly, but there’s a thing called plausible impossibilities, which is what you try to achieve, rather than impossible plausibilities. So I think we were straining plausibility a little bit, but I hope the story’s momentum carries over some of that stuff.”
That’s definitely not cool. We shouldn’t have these massive and beautiful battles like the ones in Beyond the Wall if timeline and continuity don’t make sense.
Find a different place for Jon & Co. to be stranded, somewhere they can spend a few days. Maybe it’s still surrounded by water. Or find a different way to give the Night King the dragon he needs to breach the wall. Or find a different reason why Daenerys is heading North. Maybe Brann warned her right after Jon Snow left on this daring expedition.
Let’s just hope Game of Thrones writers learn from these mistakes and use time more accurately next season. Fudging timelines again can really ruin the Game of Thrones experience, and there’s only one season left. Oh, and by the way, as it stands now, the White Walkers have a better chance of reaching Winterfell than the Westerosi Alliance heading there. I can’t wait to see how HBO handles this.