Storytellers Need to Do Better
This morning's newsfeed has been inundated with the Game of Thrones' season finale. People are upset, they didn't see this coming, how could these characters who had such beautiful character building throughout seasons 1-7 suddenly end like this....
You get the idea. You get it even more if you have actually watched the series.
Quick admission here, I haven't. But I've read all the spoilers along the way and followed the series as a friend who hears about all the drama that this story entails. I found it fascinating. I honestly did. Now you're probably wondering, why did I hold off?
The creator who built the world of Game of Thrones hadn't finished writing about it yet. I found it fascinating that many of the characters and scenarios seemed to be inspired by different Shakespearean plays (they really could be, go read them again if you deny this). Especially since, like the writes of old, George RR Martin focuses on the sociological aspect of storytelling. That is, a villain isn't just a villain, but what their reactions are to the situations around them could make them seem villainous to others. We need this so much right now. In our world where we are so divided on the issues and can't find a way to relate to each other and are too quick to label other people who don't think/look/dress/act like us as the "other" or as the "villain". We need storytellers who focus on the sociological, the big picture, because right now all we see are egotistical representations of writing. "I'm good. They're bad."
Hollywood writes in the psychological. That seems to be all they know as of late. Think of every single movie released in the last decade. Has any of them had a commentary on the social aspect of our culture? If they have they're rare. Hollywood is focused on the hero/villain binary, a psychological aspect that is deeply imprinted on our society currently. We can't have a thoughtful conversation with each other because we're too busy vilifying each other. If we could actually talk, we would see that we have much more in common with each other than we are led to believe.
Even if Westoros is fake and dragons don't exist, the early tellings of Game of Thrones provide a stark look at our reality of sociological misunderstanding. This was unfortunately left behind in Season 8 as Hollywood took over Martin's work and trashed any character development and retribution that the Mother of Dragons might have reclaimed. (Seriously, WTF?)