The season six premiere of Game of Thrones April 24 pulled in 10.7 million viewers, according to Nielsen. Fully 7.94 million viewers watched the HBO series when it aired, a shade below last year’s premiere, which had 7.99 million live viewers. Add in viewers across two repeats and on HBO’s digital platforms, and one arrives at 10.7 million.
The fifth season finale last summer notched a record high with 8.1 million viewers, according to Nielsen, despite going up against Game 5 of the NBA Finals. Adding in repeats and digital viewing, the figure came up to 10.3 million.
The season five premiere of the awards magnet series totaled 9.8 million, with all platforms added up.
The season six debut was one of the most eagerly awaited on TV this year. The social analytics company Canvs measured 375,837 Game-related tweets captured by Nielsen—110,932 more than were connected to last year’s premiere.
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Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.