'Game of Thrones' Season 5 Premiere Sets New Ratings Record, Despite Episode Leaks
Take that, pirates and leakers! The old gods and the new have smiled on "Game of Thrones" Season 5, giving last Sunday's April 12 premiere a record audience of 8 million people. According to Variety, that's up 1.16 million (17 percent) from the Season 4 premiere of 6.84 million, and roughly 800,000 more viewers than any other episode of the HBO series to date.
Those are huge numbers, especially for a premium service like HBO. It's even more impressive when you consider that GoT is the most pirated show on the planet, with more than 7 million people illegally downloading the series. Plus, HBO just had a security breach, with someone leaking the first four episodes of Season 5 online just before the premiere aired. And it still broke records. GoT's audience keeps growing each year, much like "The Walking Dead," which has had similar success over on AMC. We'll have to see if GoT can sustain this ratings high throughout Season 5 or watch it fly away like Drogon.