lunes, 8 de junio de 2015

Killing characters: Why some horrible deaths are okay and some are not

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I don’t know why you’d be reading this if you haven’t watched the last episode of Game of Thrones, but just in case you haven’t and don’t want to be spoiled, please, stop reading. Game of Thrones seems to be the only thing I want to talk about lately, so I might as well take advantage and write about it, hopefully get some interesting discussion on the subject.

A few weeks ago, I ranted at Shonda Rhimes because of McDreamy’s death (STILL NOT OVER THAT). If anything, last night’s Game of Thrones episode nine we all knew it was coming and yet we still hate it death was much more horrifying, not only in the execution, but also in regards to the storyline. A man dying while trying to help others is heroic, even if McDreamy’s death was stupid and unnecessary. A child being burned alive by her father because a priestess insists she needs royal blood to make sure they win the battle to come is just…stupid.

But it works.

It works, because, in this world that Game of Thrones has built for us, these things happen. No one is perfectly good or perfectly evil, and characters we respected, like Stannis, can do incomprehensible things. It works, in a way it didn’t in Grey’s Anatomy, because the Derek Shepherd that we knew and loved wouldn’t have gone back for his stupid cell-phone only to get run over in the middle of an otherwise deserted street.

The unthinkable sometimes make more sense than the seemingly ordinary. Especially when it’s well written.

Of course, there’s also the fact that I could see Shireen’s death coming a mile away. I tried to ignore my instincts, because some things are too horrible to consider, but the foreshadowing was there. In fact, the foreshadowing was so strong that, after the episode, I was left to think that, as angry as we all felt that she was dead, we would have felt cheated if she’d survived.

We don’t have to like all stories. We don’t have to agree with what the writers give us. But, if the writing is good, more often than not, we’ll at least have to bow our head and say: Fine, I can accept that. It makes sense.

That’s the difference between a horrible death and an awful one. The writers. Good writing can tell almost any story. You hear that, Shonda? Almost any story. 

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