The final season of HBO's megahit fantasy series Game of Thrones was always destined to disappoint at least some of the fanbase. But, Season 8 turned out to be even more divisive than many could have guessed, with a group of fans on Reddit even going so far as to start a petition to re-write, re-film, re-edit and then re-air the whole damn season.
While the insane idea behind that petition has been blasted by tons of people (including several GOT stars), it also got a whopping response from fans and tons of signatures and has kind of taken on a life of its own. Now, though, others in that same subreddit have decided that the negativity embraced by those who started and signed that petition needs to be countered. So, they've decided to use their considerable platform to do something good, and are raising money for a charity begun by Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke: Daenerys Stormborn, Burner of Innocents, herself.
According to a user who goes by Elle Ellaria, a member of the r/freefolk subreddit that started that much derided petition, the goal was to show that even though many fans in the group have problems with how Game of Thrones wrapped up, they still support the hard work of the cast and crew who entertained them for many years. To that end, a Just Giving fundraising page has been started to send donations to SameYou, the charity Emilia Clarke started to help "increase rehabilitation services after brain injury and stroke for young adults."
And, the donation effort has taken off. As of this writing, 2,117 supporters have given around $45,332 toward the goal of $63,305 they hope to reach with the campaign.
In late March of this year, Emilia Clarke came out and spoke about the two terrifying brain aneurysms she suffered at 24, shortly after filming ended on the first season of Game of Thrones. As Clarke wrote in her article for The New Yorker, after finding herself with a horrible headache she couldn't shake while trying to exercise one day, she was eventually rushed to the hospital and diagnosed with a subarachnoid hemorrhage, a frequently lethal type of stroke, which required surgery. She ended up needing multiple brain surgeries, and had to fight through a lot to continue her work on the show.
The person who started the fundraiser noted that this particular charity was chosen because of their own battle with chronic illness and the inspiration that Clarke's story has brought to many people, saying:
On a personal note, as someone who suffers from chronic illness, Emilia's portrayal of Daenerys means so much more to me since finding out what she went through. The fact that she stared her mortality in the face and did not give up, did not give in, and was able to come through with such a stellar performance...is beyond inspiring. I can't wait to rewatch the entire series again.
The Just Giving page also makes sure to give shout-outs to the other cast members, some by name, as well as everyone behind the scenes who helped put GOT together. And, in an effort to make sure that people can spread their appreciation around as much as possible, it also puts the spotlight on several charities which are supported by other stars on the long-running show.
It's nice to see something good come out of such a confusing and wrong-headed call to re-make an entire season of television, especially for a show as epic in scope as Game of Thrones. While donations have slowed down in the last couple of days, the page will remain up so that people can continue to give, with the funds being transferred to SameYou by Just Giving on a weekly basis, so, you've still got plenty of time to help out if you'd like.