As expected, the much anticipated and much scrutinized final episode of Game of Thrones aired on Sunday night, and the reports have come out with its impressive viewership.
The episode’s viewership numbered 19.3 million across the various HBO platforms, including the television channel, HBO Go, and HBO NOW. The previous episode, The Bells, had held the record for a week with 18.4 million. The telecast also broke HBO records, with 13.6 million. The previous record-holder was The Sopranos with its Season 4 premiere at 13.4 million.
As divisive as the fanbase has been over this final season of the hit HBO fantasy series, everyone still turned out to see if showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss were going to stick the landing.
This writer and fan believes they did.
I was truly engaged with the series and happened to find a lot to love in the final season. Really, my two biggest problems were the pacing (a necessary aspect due to the production budget and scheduling that I just had to accept) and the treatment of Bronn. While the latter is perfectly tied up, it worked well enough for me to give is a pass. I also have things I didn’t agree with in the finale, but I’m not the storyteller here and, even though none of my predictions came to fruition, I didn’t really care. I would rather be surprised with a plot point than have everything I want at the end. It was still a very satisfying ending to a very satisfyingly frustrating show.
Not everyone agrees with me, though, and critical reviews of the last half of Season 8 will drag the entire season into the lowest-rated season of the series.
So where were you when Game of Thrones ended? Did you view the telecast or catch it the next day? Did you watch it at all? Let me know/Drop a comment below.
-Kyle A. Goethe