Everyone in the world watched the Game of Thrones season four premiere back in April, and the numbers have only gotten bigger since. Every episode is watched by approximately 7.2 million viewers, but that figure doesn’t include encores, HBO GO, and On Demand views. If you add ‘em all up, you’ve got 18 million people taking in every head crush, every tongue rip, every Ser Pounce pounce.
I’d say let’s celebrate with a cup of wine, but, y’know…
Huge by HBO standards, it’s approaching The Sopranos‘ 18.2 million watermark set by its own fourth season prior to Nielsen’s 2004 measurement change. Passing that number, which it might very well accomplish after the book closes on the fourth season, would make this run of Game of Thrones the most watched of any original in network history.
The world loves dragons and Pie-o-Mys. But how does 18 million compare to the rest of TV?
Over on the Big Four, where live-plus-7 data is the most comprehensive thing going, the recent season ended with only three series averaging north of 18 million viewers: Sunday Night Football, NCIS, and The Big Bang Theory (23.1 million viewers). Game of Thrones now tops NBC’s The Blacklist as well as marquee reality shows The Voice, Dancing With the Stars, and American Idol.
And look at The Walking Dead. TV’s gold standard, thanks to its dominance among adults 18-49, currently ranks as cable’s most watched television series. The recent season averaged 18.4 million viewers in live-plus-7, placing another record well within Game of Thrones‘ sights.
If HBO ever starts counting torrents in their live-plus-7 data, Game of Thrones would become the TV version of the 1927 Yankees plus 1995 Bulls plus a bunch of dragons.
UPDATE: AMC had the following to say about the Reporter’s initial story.
The most recent season of The Walking Dead, all told, actually averaged just a shade over 28 million viewers every week. AMC, when asked for gross metrics for its flagship drama, points out that the series’ fourth season jumped by nearly 10 million viewers weekly once replays, on-demand, and TV Everywhere views are taken into account. That’s up from the already daunting 18.4 million viewers the series gets from the original broadcasts’ live-plus-7 day ratings. (Via)
Compared to The Walking Dead, even Game of Thrones is Oberyn going against the Mountain.