Overnight ratings for Sunday’s Westworld finale are in, and they are not amazing: It scored 1.56 million viewers in the Nielsen ratings. Compared to last season, they’re down a little more than 20 percent in both overall viewers and the 18-49 demo. However, where it concerns an HBO series, overnight rights are even more meaningless than a typical cable series. People who watch Westworld live through their cable boxes represent a small fraction of the overall viewership for the show.
Once DVR viewership over three days is accounted for, the Westworld finale ratings will jump to somewhere between 2.5 and 3 million viewers, but while the Live+3 ratings might matter a lot for a show on AMC like The Walking Dead, they don’t tell the whole story with Westworld, because there are so many more viewers who watch the series on HBO Go or HBO now or On Demand or HBO replays. In fact, all told, ratings for Westworld nearly triple once all the platforms are accounted for — on average, around 10 million viewers watched the show this season.
Ten million viewers is solid, although it’s a drop in the bucket compared to overall viewership for the seventh season of Game of Thrones, which was seen by around 30 million viewers a week. That is more than Friends averaged during its highest-rated season. More concerning for Westworld, however, is that while viewership for Game of Thrones has risen every since since its inception, Wesworld ratings are actually down from its first season, when it averaged about 12 million viewers.