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HBO finally responded to that remake GoT petition

It's no secret that many Game of Thrones fans were upset over the way the series wrapped. After nearly a decade on television and following seven largely fantastic seasons, the acclaimed fantasy drama soured during its swan song — delivering a season most viewers felt was rushed, poorly constructed, unsatisfying, and basically one big, frantic mess. Contention over the final season of Game of Thrones came to a head when one fan created a petition demanding HBO to remake all six episodes with writers other than David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, whom the petitioner described as "woefully incompetent."

More than 1.7 million disgruntled Game of Thrones fans signed the remake petition, but those efforts were evidently made in vein. HBO has finally responded to the petition, and anyone who was hoping that the network would actually remake Thrones season 8 will be sorely disappointed. 

During the Television Critics Association's recent summer press tour in California, HBO president of programming Casey Bloys discussed the divisive final season of Game of Thrones and addressed the online fan petition calling for a remake. Bloys said that there's essentially zero chance HBO (or any other network, for that matter) would ever redo the last chapter of Thrones with a brand-new storyline and a different ending. 

"There are very few downsides to having a hugely popular show. One I can think of, when you try to end it, many people have opinions on how to end it. I think that comes with the territory," said Bloys (via Entertainment Weekly). "The petition shows a lot of enthusiasm and passion for the show, but it wasn't something we seriously considered. I can't imagine another network would."

Bloys also mentioned that HBO doesn't have as much creative control over a series like Game of Thrones as one would expect. Speaking about how involved the network was in the eighth season of Thrones, Bloys explained that there is "a rhythm between showrunners and [the] network, a minimal back-and-forth here and there" when a series gets into the later seasons of its "highly successful run." He added, "That's not just GoT. Silicon Valley is doing their final season, they have a really good handle on what the show is and what the end will look like. It's not like we are all over them."

In May, Bloys admitted to Variety that he predicted this kind of intense response before the final season even aired. He shared with the outlet, "I think to a certain extent it was expected that for a show this big, there's no way you're going to please everybody … I think [Benioff and Weiss] landed a massive plane and did a great job doing it. But you're never going to make everybody happy, nor should that be the goal."

Bloys' comments follow after a string of remarks from the Game of Thrones cast, who were none too pleased with the fact that their fans would go so far as to urge HBO to remake the final season simply because they didn't like how things ended. 

Sophie Turner, the actress who played Sansa Stark, said that she wasn't surprised that response to the series finale in particular was so divisive, but did find the fan petition upsetting and extremely disrespectful. 

"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. 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," she said. "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. 

Turner further noted that the shocking twist that came when Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) descended into madness shouldn't have been "such a negative thing" for audiences at home. "It's a shock for sure, but I think it's just because it hasn't gone their way," she stated. 

For his part, Isaac Hempstead Wright, who portrayed the eventual ruler of the Six Kingdoms (Winterfell claimed independence after the siege of King's Landing) Bran Stark, slammed the fan petition as "absurd." Wright told The Hollywood Reporter, "I saw today there's a petition to redo the ending… It's just absurd. I can't even fathom it. It's just ridiculous. It's ridiculous that people think they can just demand a different ending because they don't like it."

Another Thrones favorite, Jon Snow actor Kit Harington, didn't mince words when responding to the backlash the show's final season received. He told Esquire prior to the series finale, "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 f*** themselves. 'Cause I know how much work was put into this. I know how much people cared about this … Now if people feel let down by it, I don't give a f*** — 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."

Everything considered, the petition is quite silly. There was no way that HBO would ever genuinely consider remaking an entire season of one of the biggest shows on television — and certainly the biggest series the network has released thus far — just because a group of fans didn't like how the story ended. Season 8 of Game of Thrones cost a reported $90 million to make, which is the most money HBO has ever shelled out for Thrones. To think that the network would expend another $90 million (or potentially more) to redo the final season of Game of Thrones is pretty laughable. 

And it's clear that the negative response to Game of Thrones season 8 hasn't affected the series as a whole in any discernible way. Sure, it may be remembered by fans as substandard, but Thrones is still considered prestige television, poised to sweep up several accolades at this year's Emmy Awards. Game of Thrones scored 32 Emmy nominations (the most for any show this year), including one for Best Drama Series. A number of its stars are in the running for awards as well, with most categories being dominated by Thrones alumni. 

Nearly two million upset fans may have tried to get HBO to remake Game of Thrones season 8, but it's clear that the rest of the world doesn't feel the same way.