Game of Thrones Season 5 finale breaks previous ratings record

game of thrones season finale sets record mothers mercy screenshot 4

Even a hotly contested NBA Finals game couldn’t stop Game of Thrones from breaking its own records in the Season 5 finale on Sunday. Variety reports that the episode averaged 8.1 million viewers, slightly eclipsing the previous record holder, the Season 5 opener, which saw 7.99 million viewers. It solidifies an upward trend for the blockbuster HBO series which is now the second most popular show on cable TV behind AMC’s The Walking Dead.

The dramatic season finale, entitled Mother’s Mercy, drew 14 percent more viewers than last year’s finale (7.09 million viewers). In the important 18-49 demo, the episode averaged a 4.1 rating (or about 5.2 million of its 8.1 million viewers). That rating in the coveted demographic is the second highest ever, only behind the aforementioned season 5 series opener, which scored a 4.19 rating.

As Variety reports, the show’s upward ratings trend has been slow and steady through its first five seasons. Game of Thrones first hit 3 million viewers in its season 1 finale. And the new GoT devotees have piled up ever since: 4 million viewers watched the Season 2 finale, 5 million were watching midway through the third season, and then it hit the 6 million mark in its Season 4 premiere. Midway through Season 4, viewership reached 7 million for the first time.

While Mother’s Mercy drew record numbers on cable, the episode also set a new piracy record. The episode was downloaded 1.5 million times within eight hours, according to TorrentFreak. The blog estimates that the download count is expected to reach upwards of 10 million “during the days to come.”

Game of Thrones fans will be eagerly awaiting Season 6, which will premiere on HBO sometime in 2016. And this time there’ll be no way to spoil it — for a while anyway. The series has finally eclipsed the books when it comes to plot, though author George R. R. Martin claims he’s hoping to finish the sixth book in the series, The Winds of Winter, before the Season 6 premiere.

Literature aside, die hard fans needn’t wait too long for more GoT news. Next month’s Comic-Con will probably include some hints on the upcoming season.  In the meantime, fans will have plenty of time to ponder the season finale’s surprising plot developments — and the shocking final death scene.

Movies & TV

Is the end near for Pied Piper? ‘Silicon Valley’ season 6 delayed, might be the last

Season 6 of Silicon Valley might not premiere until 2020, as HBO has delayed production on the season until summer 2019 due to showrunner Alec Berg's work on another HBO series, Barry. Season 6 could be the final one for the show.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Movies & TV

Star Wars series 'The Mandalorian' adds 'Deadpool' actress Gina Carano

The Mandalorian, Jon Favreau's live-action Star Wars series planned for Disney's streaming video service, will be one of the most expensive television shows ever made. Here's everything we know about it so far.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.

The best movie soundtracks of all time, from 'Star Wars' to 'E.T.'

Whether you're a lover of beautifully composed original scores or a fan of perfectly compiled popular music, these are the best movie soundtracks of all time — from Star Wars to Garden State.
Home Theater

From the Roku Ultra to the Fire TV Cube, these are the best streaming devices

There are more options for media streamers than ever, so it’s more difficult to pick the best option. But that’s why we're here. Our curated list of the best streaming devices will get you online in no time.
Movies & TV

'Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald' will seem muddled to mere muggles

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald brings magizoologist Newt Scamander back for more adventures, but the sequel to 2016's Harry Potter spinoff Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them takes a very deep dive into Potter-verse lore.
Home Theater

Put your home theater to the test with these spectacular Blu-ray releases

What's the point of having all of that awesome home theater gear if you can't breed a little jealousy in your friends and family? We've put together this list of fantastic Blu-rays that have the goods to drop a few jaws.
Movies & TV

How to watch NFL games online, with or without cable

The NFL's 2018 season is here, and we know you don't want to miss a moment of the action. Our comprehensive streaming guide will show you all the best options to watch the games online so you can make the right choice.
Movies & TV

More cast members join Jordan Peele’s ‘The Twilight Zone’ reboot

Get Out writer and director Jordan Peele is developing and hosting a reboot of the classic sci-fi anthology series The Twilight Zone for CBS All Access, and the cast for the first season is filling out with some familiar faces.
Movies & TV

‘Moonlight’ film studio A24 to produce movies for Apple

Indie movie studio A24 has entered into an agreement to produce films for Apple. The studio is best known for bringing Oscar-winning drama Moonlight to audiences, as well as Room and Ex Machina.
Home Theater

From game consoles to 4K UHD spinners, these are the best Blu-ray players

Streaming may be popular, but the disc isn't dead yet. To get the very best picture and sound quality from your system, you need to be watching Blu-ray or 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, and these are the best Blu-ray players you can buy.
Home Theater

What’s new on Amazon Prime Video (December 2018)

Amazon Prime Video adds new titles each month that are available for free to all Prime members. Check out our list to find all the content hitting Amazon Prime Video in November and December 2018, from new original series to classic films.

Remembering Stan Lee, Fantastic Beasts 2 review, Apple goes Hollywood

This week on Between the Streams, we'll discuss the passing of comics and entertainment legend Stan Lee, a spoiler-free review of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Apple's new partnership with indie movie studio A24, and more.