While the ‘game of thrones’ is still going on in the Seven Kingdoms, HBO has crowned a new king. Game of Thrones has officially surpassed The Sopranos as the most watched show in HBO’s history.
According to Entertainment Weekly, HBO confirmed that Game of Thrones now has a gross average of 18.4 million viewers eight episodes into season four of the show, which tops The Sopranos’ peak viewership of 18.2 million from 2002. Many had assumed the throne had already been won by Thrones, but apparently, HBO wanted to be certain of the numbers before announcing it to the public.
Although technology has allowed Thrones to have more viewers through DVR recordings and HBO Go, the ratings do not count the millions of viewers that watch pirated versions of the show, something that wasn’t as prevalent with Sopranos. Game of Thrones is believed to be the most pirated show on the air at the moment.
In the drama area, The Walking Dead did not appear to be ahead of Thrones, with an equal average of 18.4 million viewers per episode. Considering that AMC’s show is free while HBO is a paid channel says even more about the rising popularity of the show. With that in mind, some outlets were speculating that Thrones is already more watched than The Walking Dead.
However, according to The Hollywood Reporter, AMC responded to the numbers talk by adding in that with other distribution factors taken into account, The Walking Dead actually averages 28 million viewers per episode, a whopping 10 million more than the number being thrown around earlier today. So while Game of Thrones has officially “whacked” Tony Soprano, it appears it’s still got a way to go before it can officially axe the zombie king of AMC.
Currently in its fourth season, Game of Thrones has only two episodes left, with a pivotal battle at the Wall looming close. Fans were in for a shock in this past week’s episode with The Mountain and the Viper, which saw Prince Oberyn Martell go head to head against Gregor Clegane, otherwise known as The Mountain that Rides. Emmy-award winning Peter Dinklage, who plays Tyrion Lannister, has seen a rising popularity for his character over the course of the four seasons, but now, Tyrion’s very life hangs in the balance.
What do you think? Is it possible that even with 28 million viewers for The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones is more popular due to the pay wall it must stand behind? Do you watch both shows?