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Game of Thrones Season 8 premiere breaks viewership records

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Game of Thrones is without a doubt the most popular TV series in the world right now, and has been, for a while. The final season of the show premiered recently, with the first episode receiving a positive welcome from the fans. Now, HBO has revealed the viewership numbers of the episode, and it beats all records that have been set by the show. Read on!

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HBO reported a record viewership for the show, at 17.4 million viewers. This surpassed the 16.1 million viewers for the Season 7 premiere, and 16.9 million viewers for the Season 7 finale. These numbers are not unusually high for Game of Thrones, which usually sees every next episode get more viewers than the previous one.

The show returned after almost 600 days, and its return marked “the largest night of streaming activity ever for HBO,” according to HBO itself. The total figure of 17.4 million includes the live TV channel, HBO Go and HBO Now viewership. The live TV viewer count tallied up to 11.8 million, with half the rest of the viewers coming in through HBO Now, reports The Wrap.

To get a perspective, here are the US viewership figures for all the past seasons, including HBO Go and HBO Now viewership up till 30 days after each season finale:

Season 1: 9.3 million
Season 2: 11.6 million
Season 3: 14.4 million
Season 4: 19.1 million
Season 5: 20.2 million
Season 6: 25.7 million
Season 7: 32.8 million

Well, as the anticipation amps up for the final season, viewership figures are only expected to rise. Not to forget that streaming has also become more common in other nations, like India, where fans of the show can watch Game Of Thrones online on Hotstar at the same time it airs in USA. This means more live viewers. The next episode airs on 21st April, and from what we can tell from the preview, the pace picks up.

What do you think? Excited for this season? How are you watching the show, this time around? Talk to us in the comments, down below!

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Game of Thrones is one of the most popular, most pirated, and most leaked show on the internet. You might remember, back when Season 7 was airing, there was a record high number of leaks. HBO has taken extreme measures this time around to make sure none of Season 8 leaks out. However, with the Season 8 premiere, there was a bit of a goof up. DirecTV aired the Seaosn 8 premiere nearly 4 hours earlier than the schedule. Read on!

Twitter and other social media went abuzz with reports of the episode being available to stream on DirecTV hours before the scheduled premiere. People received notifications about the episode being available to stream at 5 p.m., a full four hours before the premiere.

Four hours early? I’ll take it pic.twitter.com/upp3cWrc11

— Cody Keenan (@codykeenan) April 14, 2019

The interesting part? DirecTV is an AT&T-owned service, which also owns HBO through the recent acquisition. This means the leak occurred, sort of, from within. An AT&T representative commented:

“Apparently our system was as excited as we are for Game of Thrones tonight and gave a few DirecTV Now customers early access to the episode by mistake. When we became aware of the error, we immediately fixed it and we look forward to tuning in this evening.”

Well, it wasn’t too much of a big deal since it was just a few hours before, and to a few people. Still, looks like DirecTV will have to be extra careful henceforth.

What do you think about this? Talk to us in the comments, down below!

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Actor Emilia Clarke, who plays Daenerys Targaryen admitted that she was so overwhelmed after reading the script of the final season of Game of Thrones that she went into a “daze”.

It’s not just Game of Thrones fans who are in an emotional and anxious state of mind as the final season of the series knocks on their doors. The very own Khaleesi, the woman on reel life who slays the bad guys like a boss, could not come to terms with it in real life

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Okay, so I read the scripts this season, and I, in some kind of a daze, walked out of my house” she told Access Hollywood. Clarke expressed that once she got to know about her character’s fate in the show, she lost the sense of direction and presence of mind! 

The only thing I took was my keys, and about three hours later I arrived back home, and i still hadn’t taken it all in…I don’t know if anyone’s ready. I don’t know if TVs are ready”, she warned. 

Hear that? Even the leading actor thinks nobody is ready for the conclusion!

The cast of the show received the scripts of the final season via email and everybody else could not wait to skim through the scripts and peek into what their character’s destiny was routed for. Clarke was no exception. 

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Kit Harington, who plays Jon Snow in the show, perhaps had an inkling about the happenings and he said that he skipped reading the script all alone when he received the email, and waited until the cast met for a read through. That sure must have been one hell of a time for Harington. 

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Remember how you cried during the Red Wedding? Well brace yourself, Game Of Thrones Season 8 has moments that will produce a similar kind of horror and shock, claims veteran Game of Thrones director David Nutter. There’s little reason to doubt Nutter on this, as he helmed the Season 3 “Rains of Castamere” episode that featured the Red Wedding. May as well prepare for carnage, folks.

Nutter confirmed this in his recent interview with Metro.co.uk, where he was asked whether the shock level of Season 8 compares to the mother of all GoT shockers, the Red Wedding. Nutter replied, “The short answer is – yes!”

If this short answer is too short for you, Nutter has also hinted to this effect in a recent Reddit AMA. In response to a similar question there, Nutter said,

“As far as season 8 comparing The Red Wedding, I would tell you that, get ready, hold on sit down and hold yourself in your seat because it’s going to be special.”

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The Red Wedding is a perfect example of the utter unpredictability and ruthlessness of the Game of Thrones world. The shocking nature of the crime aside, it also saw the deaths of fan favourites like Robb and Catelyn Stark who were until then considered to be crucial to the story. (Read how the Red Wedding was filmed) If that is anything to go by, Season 8 will require ample supply of tissues for us all.

Nutter also spoke at length about the challenges of directing the massive battle sequences in Season 8. In his words,

Battle scenes are just incredibly exhausting for all concerned … There’s so much minute detail to deal with, from both an acting and directing standpoint. ‘Horses, armaments, special effects are all vying for our attention and energy, in a lot of cases, and it’s true that it’s exhausting trying to lasso all of these elements into a coherent whole.’

All in all, Nutter promises both shock and scale on an unprecedented level. We better brace ourselves, winter is well and truly here!

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