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    Tom Dougherty CEO, Stealing Share

    Tom Dougherty is the President and CEO of Stealing Share, Inc., and has helped national and global brands such as Lexus, IKEA and Tide steal market share over his 25-year career.

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Did GOT have to kill Jon Snow?

I’m pissed at Game of Thrones.

Who are they going to kill off next? That’s all I can think about after the devastating season five finale.

If you’re as much a fan of the show as I am, I’m bet you’ve been wondering the same darn thing since Sunday night

Is he really dead?
Is he really dead? Do we care?

Unfortunately, as is the case with Game of Thrones, it continues to kill off all of the characters with any real meat. It began with the first season beheading of Ned Stark (in my estimation, the best character in the entire series). Followed by the Rob and Catherine Stark in the Red Wedding, then Joffrey and now (spoiler alert!) Jon Snow!

I’m tired of it and with investing anymore of my emotion into the series.

Why Game of Thrones? Why?

Why do you need to always kill off the characters worth loving? I realize this isn’t exactly the fault of HBO or show-runners David Benioff and DB Weiss. Rather, it’s the fault of the sadist, George R. R. Martin, the series’ author. But I am starting to resent all this death.

Enough already, George.

Give me someone to care about, please! And for goodness sake, just let them be. For once.

I am left with three people in the series who mean anything to me at all anymore: Tyrion, Arya and that big female knight, Brienne of Tarth.

I imagine all three will be dead by the second episode of season six. Right? I wouldn’t be surprised.

Am I misguided?

Not being a reader of the books, I am shooting from the hip here a bit. As even the most passively aware of the text knows, Jon Snow may not be dead. And, for those defenders of the books, the purpose of Game of Thrones is to upend traditional fantasy motifs that have lasted for centuries. The most likely heroes don’t win – and that it also doesn’t matter with the White Walkers coming. That is, the game of thrones that the characters are playing is moot. The appearance of the Night King made all the actions among the characters irrelevant. (The killing of Jon Snow, for example, is a parable against mob mentality that can’t get over past digressions for the greater good. The humans become petty.)

As purely a TV viewer, I’ve shared just how far HBO has come with its programming. The GOT series is a testament to the network’s growth. But unnecessary plot twists and the killing off of all of your golden gems is going to lose viewers too. I, for one, don’t think I can tolerate a loss of another hero.

This, ironically, was something I appreciated about an earlier HBO show, The Sopranos. Complex characters in this series were often whacked. But their deaths had merit and made sense in the grand scheme of the story.

Jon Snow’s death, if he really did die, seems unnecessary.

What was the point? Why drag us along for five seasons, allowing us to care about a character, only to stab him and let him wither away in the cold.

I know what the GOT defenders say, but it still leaves me feeling empty.

Where is any of this going?

I wonder if Martin and the show runners who have reached the end of the books now have written themselves into a hole with Game of Thrones and they can’t think their way out of it. Sometimes it feels like that. The easiest way, after all, to avoid giving proper closure to a character’s story arc is to erroneously kill them off.

So, while all this seems like a bit of a rant (I’ll admit it, it is), it’s also about brand. What makes the GOT brand powerful? By providing characters we can relate to who, on occasion, win.

I don’t care about the blond dragon girl.

And I really don’t care about the Lannister incest storyline.

But I did really care about Jon Snow. A bastard who always tried to listen to his heart, who acted in the face of fear. He deserved a win or two.

You could have killed off anyone, just not Jon.

Damn you, George.

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