Original: James Jean - Fable #74

If you've watched BoJack Horseman, read recent Archie comics, or been rejected by someone who says they like you but your genitals gross them out, then you're familiar with asexuality⁠—but probably not as familiar as you think.

A 2019 poll found that 76% of those surveyed weren't able to accurately define asexuality, despite 53% of respondents asserting that they could.

And that's fine. I can barely do it after years of research, and according to modern definitions I'm a full-fledged "heteroromantic" "asexual," which, according to Dr. Google, places me among an estimated 1% of the population who are incapable of feeling sexually attracted to anyone, regardless of gender or sex. Or, as Stefani Goerlich explains in sex-therapist-speak, "Whereas heterosexuals are sexually attracted to people of the opposite sex, and homosexuals are attracted to folks of the same sex, asexuals are [sexually] attracted to nobody."

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How David Benioff and D.B. Weiss Destroyed Every Main Character in Game of Thrones Season 8

Game of Thrones' showrunners basically declared "Dracarys" on all the character development in their series.

Showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss seem to have approached Game of Thrones season 8 with one goal in mind––to destroy every single narrative arc that has made the series compelling thus far.

The final season is so god awful that hating it is becoming cliche. From the hacky, fan-fiction-esque dialogue of every interpersonal scene to the unwatchable lighting of the most important battle of the series, the only salvageable element might be the set design. Minus the Starbucks cup snafu, of course.

But worse than any surface-level issues, this season of Game of Thrones seems to completely throw away everything that makes our favorite characters compelling. It's fine to make a character we love do something we don't want them to do, even if that something is downright evil––as long as that action is properly motivated. Likewise, we might enjoy watching a character we like doing something cool (like shanking the Night King), but unless that action feels earned, their feat rings hollow. So without further ado, let's dissect exactly how Benioff and Weiss have decimated all the best narrative arcs:

Daenerys

daenerys

The core issue with Daenerys laying waste to King's Landing was not that she did something evil. In fact, Daenerys' shift from "Breaker of Chains" to "homicidal lunatic" could have been a fantastic character shift if it made even a lick of sense. But based on everything we've seen in the entire show, Daenerys destroying the townsfolk of King's Landing was simply something her character wouldn't do.

D&D want us to believe that Dany, whose entire arc has revolved around freeing slaves and coming into her own as a benevolent ruler and figurehead, would suddenly commit genocide because her friend was murdered, a few of her advisors are gone, and her nephew (Jon Snow) doesn't want to sleep with her anymore. They try to convince us of this by having characters around her say things like "don't do anything crazy, Daenerys!" and second-guess her authority in the episodes leading up to the genocide, even though she hadn't done anything to warrant those actions.

They could have found ways to make her descent into madness convincing. They also could have reached the same point in the plot without actually making her intentionally genocidal. For instance, she could have burnt the Red Keep, triggering a chain reaction of wildfire planted by Cersei beneath the city. This would have been consistent with Daenerys' impulsive nature, while not going against everything she's stood for as a character (ie: freeing slaves, killing slavers, not murdering innocent people). It also would have looked like genocide to the people on the ground, meaning the need for her political removal would still ring true. But nope, Daenerys is a genocidal monster now because girl power or something.

Jaime

jaime lannister

Everyone loves a great redemption arc, and Jaime certainly seemed to be heading in that direction. Jaime's case was especially interesting because the actions he was being redeemed from––chief amongst them, pushing a child out a window––seemed so unforgivable. This made his general likeability, a budding friendship with Brienne, and occasionally noble actions all the more compelling. Jaime may have done awful things because he loved Cersei, but he also understood his flaws and wanted to change for the better. Could a character like that ever be redeemed?

Everything in the show seemed to point towards "yes," giving Jaime one of the most powerful redemption arcs in fiction. He had fully broken free of Cersei's grip and moved on to another woman (Brienne) who accepted him for who he was––that is, until Cersei sent Bronn to murder him with a crossbow and, for some reason, that experience makes Jaime decide to leave everything behind and return to her. It's fine that Jaime never completed his redemption arc; it's not fine that his motivation for going back was nonsensical. Why, after everything Jaime had been through, would Cersei sending someone to murder him cause him to run back to her?

Brienne

brienne of tarth

What better way to deal with a strong bastion of female empowerment like Brienne––a woman in a patriarchal society who has dedicated her entire life to subverting gender roles and becoming a knight––than turning her into a sobbing mess over a man leaving her for his sister after taking her virginity? Would the Brienne we knew in the first seven seasons ever act like that? Really? REALLY?

Tyrion

tyrion

Tyrion is very clever. We know this because everyone in the show is always talking about how clever Tyrion is supposed to be. Except he's not clever anymore. He was certainly clever during the earlier seasons, but that might as well have been a different character. Currently, Tyrion has an almost prophetic ability to pick the most incorrect option imaginable, from thinking Cersei would actually help him fight the White Walkers to backing Daenerys right before she commits genocide. For whatever reason, D&D turned Tyrion into a total moron.

Jon Snow

jon snow

Jon is a great leader. We know this because...sensing a pattern here...everyone tells us he is. At one point in the show, Jon really did broker some degree of peace between the Night's Watch and their sworn enemy, the Wildlings. But at this point in the show, Jon seems to prefer being entirely useless at all times. His best recent "leadership" moves were kind of shouting at a zombie dragon and meekly telling two dudes to "fall back" after King's Landing had already been on fire for three hours. He also really loves "muh queen," which is apparent because the script makes him say this constantly.

Varys

varys

People say Varys is one of the few characters who stayed consistent. They're wrong. Old Varys would never have politicked out in the open. He was the "Master of Whispers," not the "Master of Shouting Intent." Why, then, did he make his intentions to overthrow Daenerys so crystal clear to everyone around her? Did he forget how to Game of Thrones? Good riddance.

Night King

night king

The Night King was set up to be the greatest evil in the history of the world, the worst threat humanity has ever faced. From the beginning of Game of Thrones, we heard one refrain over and over: "Winter is coming." The Night King was winter, and he came only to get single-handedly thrashed by a teenager. He never got reason or motivation or character development either, which probably would have been fine if he had actually been the great evil he was chalked up to be. But, again, he got absolutely bodied by a teenager within two seconds of meeting her. Total waste of space.

Arya

arya stark

Yes, Arya is very badass. She can teleport and shoot arrows and kill the world's most ultimate evil, no problem. She can also steal people's faces, or at least she could at one point but seems to have forgotten how, so who knows? When she's running scared in the middle of King's Landing she doesn't seem to have her teleport powers either, but luckily she still has the thickest layer of plot armor that anybody has ever had. Her plot armor is so thick that everyone seems to die in her part of King's Landing except her. So Arya's still totally cool, she just doesn't make any sense whatsoever.

Euron

euron

Euron is the best character on the show, hands down. People love shitting on Euron, but he's the perfect embodiment of everything Game of Thrones has become. Every scene with Euron is like watching some guy from a different set wander on to create a mess. Need something killed to move on the plot? Have Euron do it. Need a ten-minute fight scene for no reason with a character nobody currently has any reason to fight? Have Euron do it. Want somebody to talk about sticking fingers up people's butts out of nowhere? Euron's your guy. He's like some weird Jack Sparrow x Game of Thrones fanfiction bullshit and the show is totally ruined now so hey, why the hell not? #TeamEuron


Dan Kahan is a writer & screenwriter from Brooklyn, usually rocking a man bun. Find more at dankahanwriter.com


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CULTURE

This Week in Internet Hell: "Game of Thrones" Is Sexist and YouTube Gets Emotionally Violent

What's a "ProJared" and why should we care? Society has proven once more that we love sticking our noses into strangers' emotional conflicts and watching their personal lives burn.

VectorStock

But on to the really important news this week: Society has proven once more that we love sticking our noses into strangers' emotional conflicts and watching their personal lives burn. It's not that we love or condone emotional violence—we're just terrible people who are glad not to be one of the following individuals.

1. No One Knew What "Camp" Meant at the Met Gala—but Neither Do We?

All we learned from this year's exclusive event is that its theme of camp isn't gender-bending fashion, Zendaya in a Cinderella dress, or Lady Gaga removing layers like she's melting from all the attention. It might be Lena Waithe's historic jacket, though.

AsiaTatler

2. Game of Thrones Doesn't Know How a Woman Thinks or Speaks or Acts or Survives

With its final season winding down, Game of Thrones seems to believe that women can't be strong without men and that people can suddenly see in the dark. With female characters showing poor development, weepy dependence on others for validation, and given deeply problematic lines, it's almost like the show...maybe...just isn't that good or worth the hype in the first place? Sorry, never mind me: I'm a "Never Seen an Episode and Don't Care" type of viewer, according to our writer's Dan Kahan's Game of Thrones quiz, "What Type of Viewer Are You?"

popdust internet hell Brienne ugly-crying like the amazing, strong, beautiful woman that she isMetro

But on to the important questions: Was that or was that NOT a damn Starbucks cup in front of Dany?!

popdust game of thrones starbucks cup What was news like before "Game of Thrones"?USA Today

3. YouTube Gamers ProJared and JonTron Trended on Twitter

This man is an online "celebrity." Gaming YouTuber ProJared is apparently divorcing his wife, who, among other things, accused him of soliciting nude photos from his underage fans. Once again, this man earns his living by owning a YouTube account.

Twitter

4. Honor the release of It: Chapter Two's trailer by buying your very own Pennywise!

We loved Stephen King's classic novel It, we enjoyed the film adaptation, and we maybe peed ourselves a little when the trailer for the sequel premiered this week. So in the vein of evil clown fandom, please consider purchasing this eBay seller's "Haunted 20 inch tall CLOWN Doll spirit Vessel. Supernatural Paranormal power."

Meet Ollie, "a spiritual hobo clown vessel that is 20 inches tall. Sometimes late at night you will hear talking in his room. We have seen Shadow figures all around him. Ollie the hobo like's to play with the car keys, like hiding them at times and putting them right back where you first looked for them, he is a joker. He also likes to play with the lights and TV remote, Radio and much more. I got his name from my spirit box voice recorder and confirmed it on my Ouija Board as Ollie."

User: terris145 /eBay Everything Else>Metaphysical>Psychic, Paranormal

User: terris145 /eBay Everything Else>Metaphysical>Psychic, Paranormal

5. Please Let This "Nice Man" Drive Your Car to Florida

Here at Popdust Internet Hell we usually feature one of Florida's gloriously dumb criminals, from posing as a police officer to pull over an actual police officer to smearing your own feces all over a public picnic table. But this week, we just want to spotlight this lovely Craigslist user who wants the best for you and your car and is maybe also fleeing the state: "➡ Nice Man Will Drive Your Car To South Florida"➡ Nice Man Will Drive Your Car To South Florida." Good luck, Michael!

Craigslist



Meg Hanson is a Brooklyn-based writer, teacher, and jaywalker. Find Meg at her website and on Twitter @megsoyung.


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