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‘House of the Dragon’ Viewership Proves ‘GOT’ Is Still a Hit


  • “House of the Dragon” drew nearly 10 million viewers on Sunday, the biggest HBO premiere ever.
  • It shows that there’s still substantial interest in the “Game of Thrones” franchise.
  • “Game of Thrones” ended three years ago with a divisive finale, but remains massively popular.

The “Game of Thrones” prequel “House of the Dragon” was HBO’s biggest premiere ever, the premium cable network announced on Monday. It was watched by nearly 10 million viewers across platforms, including cable and HBO Max, during its debut on Sunday night.

In other words, the “Game of Thrones” franchise is still alive and well, even three years after that series’ finale divided audiences.

The final season of “Game of Thrones” was largely poorly received. It had an overall 55% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes and a 30% audience score, the worst of the series. The final episode, titled “The Iron Throne,” received 47% critic score.

But the show in its totality was a massive success for HBO, setting viewership records for the network and winning the Emmy for best drama series four times. The finale set a series high in viewership, with over 19 million people tuning in in 2019.

The viewing number for “House of the Dragon” shows that there’s still substantial interest in the “Game of Thrones” brand — good news for HBO given that it is developing more spinoffs, including a Jon Snow-centric series.

Engagement with “Game of Thrones” has remained high in the years since it concluded.

Over the last three years, it has consistently ranked in the top 10 most in-demand shows globally, according to the data firm Parrot Analytics, and has been on average the most in-demand show in that time (the company measures audience demand, which reflects the interest in content based on a number of factors, including viewership and online engagement).

“House of the Dragon” drew high engagement leading up to its premiere. In data provided by Parrot Analytics in June, the show had maintained a more consistently higher demand than Amazon’s upcoming “Lord of the Rings” series, “The Rings of Power.”

And according to Diesel Labs, which measures social-media engagement, “House of the Dragon” was driving twice as much online attention as “The Rings of Power” in the 30 days leading up to the former’s debut. The latter premieres just two weeks later, on September 2.

“House of the Dragon” has been received favorably so far, with an 82% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes and an 87% audience score. 

“‘House of the Dragon’ immediately breathes new life into the world of ice and fire, proving that when done with care, adaptations of this rich world can still be enthralling,” wrote Kaiya Shunyata for RogerEbert.com.



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