“The Long Night” breaks overnight ratings record for Game of Thrones and HBO!

The Night King is so happy about the ratings he may just explode

The Night King is so happy about the ratings he may just EXPLODE

“The Long Night” was as close to a mid-season finale as a show with such short seasons could possibly get. As the much-anticipated, fiery, harrowing climactic battle in the war between the living and the dead, how did this episode do in terms of viewership?

As reported by Deadline, “The Long Night”, the third episode of season eight, was viewed on 12.02 million American TVs during HBO’s first airing, almost matching the record held by the season seven finale, “The Dragon and the Wolf”, at 12.07 million viewers.

Game of Thrones Ratings Detailed by 803

At 12.02 million viewers, “The Long Night” is the second most-watched Game of Thrones episode on the first US broadcast. Will the final three episodes break the seeminly insurmountable record set by “The Dragon and the Wolf”? We’ll have to wait and see. Meanwhile, here’s a chart showing how season eight is, overall, ahead of the pack:

Game of Thrones Ratings by Season by 803

Finally, accounting for overnight airings as well as a partial streaming count, which is how increasingly more people are watching TV, “The Long Night” had 17.8 million viewers in the US. This is a new high for Game of Thrones and HBO overall, breaking the record of 17.4 million set by the season eight premiere, “Winterfell”, a few weeks ago.

Though by the traditional broadcast metric season eight has broken no major records, the show’s being watched more than ever before; it’s just spread out among platforms.

93 responses

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    1. Not bad at all….
      I see the NK is happy with “his” ratings!
      Thanks Luka!

      totally OT….
      In Emergency Awesome’s video on Ep 4 trailer, he includes a screen shot of the funeral pyre clip from trailer where we can see or sort of make out many of the survivors. i.e. Ghost. If interested here is a link to the video, and the shot is at about 1:48 and it is easy to pause to study it and see who is there. In the actual trailer, it goes by so fast, I could never pause it.

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    2. Clob:
      just spread out among platforms.
      yep… and a lot on those are watching on an original Nintendo Game Boy apparently.

      😀😀

      Interested in seeing if they’ll surpass the Season 7 finale record.

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    3. Numbers will go down next week because people weren’t happy with the episode?

      But im soooooooo happy to read this!

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    4. Dee Stark:
      Numbers will go down next week because people weren’t happy with the episode?

      But im soooooooo happy to read this!

      There will be a dip, but not necessarily because some people were unhappy. There was a dip from the premeire to 802, so probably just the same for 804. The premeire and 803 were the two most hyped episodes, so more people tuned in for the live airings. I see a dip for 804 and then an increase again for 805 and 806.

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    5. For the first time after watching an episode of GOT, I cant describe my feeling.
      I’m thrilled, amazed, shocked for seeing such epic battle and moments. At the same time i’m so mad and angry at writers for their terrible mistakes.
      I hope second half of the season goes well and they give us a rememberable ending to the story. I’m still waiting for the third and last twist martin told writers. That’s my last hope.

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    6. I’m thinking there was a bigger dip for 8.02 because it was Easter and the beginning of spring break week, so people were traveling. I think 8.04 will be slightly lower than 8.03, and then 8.05 and 8.06 will be the two highest ever.

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    7. Ryan:
      I’m thinking there was a bigger dip for 8.02 because it was Easter and the beginning of spring break week, so people were traveling. I think 8.04 will be slightly lower than 8.03, and then 8.05 and 8.06 will be the two highest ever.

      805 is Mother’s Day.

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    8. People have been theorizing reasoning for dips during the seasons since like season 3. I remember there were people during season 5 who swore the show was getting worse and the mid season dip was just a sign to come. Lol

      The most important number is that each season the average is going up. Imagine that. 8 seasons and all of them higher then the last one. And with streaming involved.

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    9. The Bastard:
      People have been theorizing reasoning for dips during the seasons since like season 3.I remember there were people during season 5 who swore the show was getting worse and the mid season dip was just a sign to come. Lol

      The most important number is that each season the average is going up.Imagine that. 8 seasons and all of them higher then the last one.And with streaming involved.

      Yeah the average this season so far is 11.35 million. Last season was 10.26.

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    10. Wondering what next week will be, a small dip, a huge dip, a raise, we don’t know. We shall see.

      I’m wondering where this episode will be at the end in the list of GoT ratings on imdb. Right now it’s dropped to place 22 of the show.

      As of the battles the list is:
      1 and 2 battle of the bastards and hardhome with a 9,9
      3 spoils of war with a 9,8
      4 blackwater with a 9,7
      5 Watchers on the wall with a 9,6
      6 and 7 The long night and Beyond the Wall 9,2

      Right now it’s rated the lowest of all battles. Ratings doesn’t say much about my personal opinion because my list is different. I’m wondering is The Long Night or Beyond the Wall will be last in the end. And still 9,2 is still an amazing rating in my opinion nothing to be ashamed of.

      And I’m wondering if episode 5 will have an battle, will it top Hardhome. What if they have been lying to us with episode 3 is the episode of the show but in fact it’s episode 5. And thinking of Cersei what madness she could have on her sleeves we can expect great things, terrible things but great.

      edit: what I see with the ratings of GoT is what of an excellent show it is, I look a lot about the ratings with some shows, and with GoT more than 50% of the episodes rated above 9,0 and more than 75% above 8,9. and 98% above 8,5. That’s just amazing and to be proud off

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    11. It’s impossible but it would be fun to know the actual number of individuals that watch. The viewership numbers system(s) are always based on screens/sets. A lot of us watch on our own or just a couple people but we also know that GoT is one of the few shows that has a lot of groups watching.

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    12. The Bastard: People have been theorizing reasoning for dips during the seasons since like season 3. I remember there were people during season 5 who swore the show was getting worse and the mid season dip was just a sign to come. Lol

      Basically, people have been theorizing about stochastic fluctuations that require no explanation. There are a handful of episodes every year (particularly the first and the last) that people make much more of an effort to see immediately. After that, it is just random fluctuation in how convenient it is for viewers to watch it immediately vs. later.

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    13. Clob: It’s impossible but it would be fun to know the actual number of individuals that watch.

      It is a lot. Indeed, it is pretty clear that a lot of people are getting damned tired of all the nerds prattling endlessly about Avengers and Game of Thrones!

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    14. Wimsey,

      And Vladimir Medinsky (the Russian Minister of Culture who has become a meme in the the whole surrounding region) has resently set a goal for Russian TV to surpass GoT. I know you hate Trump, but seriously get some perspective: he’s far from being the worst guy in the fandom:)

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    15. I’m pretty sure the regular Joe loved this episode (unless he watched in full daylight against the sun, then the current GoT lighting choices truly screw the viewer up a lot). It’s just us irredeemable basement dwelling perfectonalists that had a bone (or 3) to pick with the episode.

      The Night King and the dragons bloody deserve all the records they can get.

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    16. Inga: I know you hate Trump, but seriously get some perspective: he’s far from being the worst guy in the fandom

      heh, it was a slightly different joke!

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    17. kevin1989,

      I wouldn’t put much stock in IMDB ratings for individual episodes. IMDB’s movie ratings are surprisingly pretty solid. The overall rating for the TV Shows are just alright. For individual episodes, it is all over the place.

      There actually isn’t a great way to rate TV shows. For example, a Game of Thrones 8.0 on IMDB is probably still better than a 9.5 for a regular sitcom show.

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    18. So here a story I wanted to share about this show and how it came to be and still is, hope people love to read it, and else, sorry for the long post.

      It was 2010, kevin1989 on a dutch LOST forum, where my favorite show at that moment just had ended, and being somewhat lost myself what to do with my enthusiasm for mysteries and feeling connected to a bunch of characters where I cried with.
      Luckily for me one of the moderators there was a huge fan of the Song of Ice and Fire books and started to promote the show when it still was in production. He shared photos and it become something to look forward to with many LOST-fans on that site. Once the show hit in 2011 a big bunch of those fans watched the episode every week and we started to discuss about it.

      After season 1 ended, one great thing started and one great thing ended. I started reading the books with one of that forum-goer there that I had on that ancient old computer program called MSN. We made a deal not to read more than 5 chapters apart from each other so we could talk about it so now and then. I felled in love with the books even more then the show. and at that moment I knew it. this books were going to be my favorite saga and the show will become my favorite show, and it did, I felled in love more than Tyrion could ever fall in love with whores.
      Unfortunately, the forum was closed in that year and I was lost again. Looking for a place to debate, making up theories about those wonderful books and wonderful show. Unfortunately again I stumbled on a forum named after the continent where the most part of this show played out. It was a horror to be part of. Whenever you had a theory the bosses of that forum would show you how wrong and stupid you were. I ran harder than Arya stark being targeted by the waif. And I came to a lovely place called winteriscoming.

      That place sounded colder than the last forum but it was much warmer, the moderators were respectable to everyone, there was no “I’m always right” mentality, people could express their opinions and theories openly. Season 2 was on the way and I found the place again. And we started to discuss the second season. And the second season made one thing clear, you can kill of an character but the story move on and you will fall in love with different aspects of the show and other characters who rose up. Even when they killed our heroes at the Red Wedding season 4 find another spin and it keeps on getting better and better.

      Later on some of the moderators starting there own site watchersonthewall where many commenters moved to. There this amazing journey continued, lots of debate, lots of theories, lots of laughts, cries, shivers we shared. This show become a phenomenal, and this site become a phenomenal for me where I could express a part of myself.

      We had lots of great moments and episode in the course of this wonderful show that we shared together, with the lovely written recaps and stories of Sue, Luka, Ozzy and all the other moderators.
      They did a job that I will always thank them for.

      This wonderful show gave us so many outstanding episodes, like blackwater, Rains of Castamere, Hardhome and many more. They have served us with 500$ bottle of dornish red many times, something other shows never could. Now we are here at the end of the first part of the show at the end of 8×03 the long night. The episode they hyped up as the 800$ bottle of dornish red. And unfortunately for me this didn’t came true, for me it even wasn’t a 500$ bottle of dornish red.
      But I will not look at it that way, I was a little bit disappointing
      I didn’t get that 800$ or 500$ bottle of dornish red. But I still am happy and content we got that 450$ bottle of dornish red, which is still an amazing dornish Red, which should be praised a lot.

      And now we are only 3 episodes left before the end of this wonderful journey, and that part of me that wants to express itself is almost over and needs to find the new show to express myself with. It’s something we have all been waiting for, but it’s something I’m scared of, because what will come next?

      (I hope people liked it, and give advice with my writing if need be)

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    19. TOIVA:
      I’m pretty sure the regular Joe loved this episode (unless he watched in full daylight against the sun, then the current GoT lighting choices truly screw the viewer up a lot). It’s just us irredeemable basement dwelling perfectonalists that had a bone (or 3) to pick with the episode.

      The Night King and the dragons bloody deserve all the records they can get.

      Ironically enough, I just rewatched some of the episode in a sunlit room near a window and was able to see pretty good. Not as good as in the dark obviously, but better then I was expecting.

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    20. So a big complaint I keep seeing is people saying that the Night King and his army didn’t make a big enough impact on Westeros.
      Did people actually believe something like that was going to happen? What impact could they have on the rest of the world if there was one more battle? Wasn’t the whole deal trying to stop the Night King before he invaded Westeros?

      And for book readers: do you really think George is going to write an entire book about Westeros being thrown into darkness and have the army of the dead march all the way to King’s Landing?
      For God’s sake the man is only going to write two more books and Daenerys hasn’t even invaded Westeros yet and Jon is still dead. Was everybody expecting A Dream of Spring to be about battle after battle against the Others?

      I believe that George will spend a lot of time on wrapping everything up like D&D will in the final three episodes. He won’t end the story with a big battle against the Others and end it like that

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    21. Jack Bauer 24: Ironically enough, I just rewatched some of the episode in a sunlit room near a window and was able to see pretty good. Not as good as in the dark obviously, but better then I was expecting.

      I was surprised by the complaints of the darkness. Kind of funny how people were outing themselves as either having a bad TV or not knowing how the calibrate it properly.

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    22. SerKnight,

      Good post.

      In the books, the army of the dead doesn’t feel as big of a plot point as it did in the show. It is very much like Robb Stark. They are background to the main story.

      Because of TV being a different medium, the showrunners were forced to make them a bigger part of the story. But the end game was always the battle for the throne. Heck, the first book is called Game of Thrones.

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    23. The Bastard,

      Agree 100% about ratings of the episodes, I always put that in perspective of the show itself. And got scored very high with that.

      About movies and tv-shows. I think both are very accurate when it comes to movies and TV shows older than 4 a 5 years. They have earned their place there, but I see a lot of newer mediocre movie and shows that just are high because they are popular at the moment. many of those shows are removed from the list after a couple of months. And many high shows on imdb are high on my list, GoT, Breaking bad, sherlock, sopranos, deadwood, band of brothers, the wire, six feet(And more) all excellent. In the top 250shows of the shows I watched (or tried to watched) there’s only a couple I don’t think should be in there. Lot’s of shows I didn’t watch so I couldn’t give my opinion on them.

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    24. SerKnight: I believe that George will spend a lot of time on wrapping everything up like D&D will in the final three episodes. He won’t end the story with a big battle against the Others and end it like that

      The complaint has been somewhat different. For years, Martin has been stating that he’s big on using internal conflict to create story. (Martin frequently cites Faulkner as his primary inspiration there.) Martin also has been stating that this is a very different sort of story to Lord of the Rings: at one point, he went so far as to call it a rebuttal to Lord of the Rings. This was basically fell short on both promises. And, no, I really do not think that it’s down to Benioff & Weiss: I think that it’s much more on Martin not actually having a clear idea of what the big “hook” was going to be.

      That stated, it would have worked perfectly well as a story about how people deal with existential threats, and how they prioritize things in the face of existential threats. Things like climate change were already concerns in the 1970’s, and it was clear then that a lot of people were equally concerned that addressing pollution, overpopulation, etc., would hurt their sociopolitical and socioeconomic power. That would have been fine: but they should have done a few things differently early in the tale to wind up being a story about what compromises people make with themselves when faced with existential crisis.

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    25. The Bastard: In the books, the army of the dead doesn’t feel as big of a plot point as it did in the show. It is very much like Robb Stark. They are background to the main story.

      The comparison is not fair to make now. If you went back to end of Season 5, then the Army of the Dead would not have seemed as big of a plot or story point. It was a plot point only in Jon’s and Bran’s parts of the story: it had no place in Daenerys’, Arya’s, Sansa’s or Tyrion’s (save for a couple of jokes about northern superstitions in Tyrion’s). If you move down to the 2nd-tier protagonists and faux protagonists, then they were relevant to Sam’s and (albeit only indirectly) Davos’s parts of the story; they had zero relevance to Theon’s, Jaime’s, Cersie’s or Brienne’s parts of the story, or to Ned’s & Catelyn’s parts (whatever those are for faux protagonists!).

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    26. kevin1989,

      I like what you wrote! It is wonderful to find a site like Watchers on the Wall and you did a great job of expressing that.

      Awhile back I vaguely remember reading on one of these threads that the WotW crew, in some form or another, will be staying on for the prequels. So, we shall all “stay tuned” to see what happens with the site.

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    27. The Bastard,

      Didn’t George told us already that WoW will be heavily about the Others, I didn’t know what his real words were about that. But george has one advantage with that. He can make things bigger and bigger without any budget cuts. And he can have it easier because he doesn’t need to show the others really, there could be whisperers like he did with hardhome, we feel the horror of them but never see them. The show needed to show that. The first time we see them in action in the books will be once they are in westeros. and I think there’s a chance we will see 2 big battles there with them, but that’s because we didn’t got hardhome and beyond the wall (expect that not be in the books) in the books. So it will not be repetitive to have 2 different locations in the show. I think in the books they will end it at the trident, not KL. I also think the books will take a shorter time with the human drama after the defeat of the WW because he structured his story differently.

      What I think will happen is that the wall will fall in the books at the end of WoW. Jon be at winterfell just took it back at the end of WoW (or somebody else but Jon is there). In KL Cersei will be death at the end of WoW is my guess, probably same way as the show killed by the volanqar (why can’t this be the hound, I think Clegane bowl will happen because of Cersei’s trial in the books and that will be her death). I think Griff will take over KL. Dany will leave Essos at the end of WoW.

      In DoS I think Jon will battle the WW at winterfell in the beginning of the books but will lose (Probably the starks will all be there). Dany will take on Griff and win. (1/3 of the book) Jon will not be the one that will get Dany north but it will be a prohecy, the books have them more. Maybe even Samwell can be the one in the show pointing her there. And I think the battle where the WW are defeated will be at the trident. Where the NK will be defeated. because of the help of Dany. (2/3 of the book) and the last 1/3 of the book is the healing of Westeros, or the last plottwist GRRM though about.

      D&D shifted a lot of storylines, they even let Tyrion meet Dany in 5×07 instead of later like the books, where it will be after she returned from Vaes Dothrak. But for the show it made sense that to deal with Cersei, the NK must be death, else it feels silly to deal with Cersei when the NK is still alive. so I can understand D&D shifting it.

      But still I don’t blame D&D at all if the timeline is much different in the books, even if that timeline is better there. They implemented George mythology in season 1 till 5. They did season 6 till 8 will some small details of George but not all his interpretations of those mythology. Yes he told them some things. And D&D needed to guess what George is thinking with it. Of course there is different interpretations about it.

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    28. Game of Thrones’ cinematographer addresses ‘The Long Night’:

      “Fabian believes the pixelation and muddy dark colors fans saw on their TVs and mobile devices are due to HBO’s compression of the episode … which leads to poorer visual quality. This is made worse if it’s being viewed on a streaming service with a weak connection … or in a room that’s too bright […] Ideally, this means viewing it like you would a movie — in a dark theater.”

      So…. they filmed it to be seen in a movie theater when is a TV show? that sounds dumb and more like an excuse than anything, the same goes with the streaming problem, this is the first time something like this has happened in 8 years, and we have had night setting battles ( blackwater, watchers on the wall) so I think the problem was theirs and not our TV o the streaming , in my case I saw it from my 2 year old TV in my bedroom with lights off and I still had problems to see what was going on.

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    29. onefromaway,

      Thank you. And yes luckily we have the prequels. I hope they will hit big time so that we can stay here for years to come.

      I wanted to add some crazy theories which probably wouldn’t come into play.
      1. What if with the NK, there always needs to be a embodiment of death. Or that the big other always finds a way to get a new NK in place. Maybe the show ends with showing it or that one explains it that there’s always a chance it will happen again.
      To create the NK you need to know how they did it and execute it, as long as magic exist a new one can rise. They even can end the show with Qyburn trying to reenact the making of a night queen with cersei but is being stopped last minute, we all know both of them are crazy enough to do it. Hell even Euron would be crazy enough. Cersei would do anything to avoid death.
      2. Are we sure that there is not a sort of rule like: The one who kill death takes his place?
      3. If there needs to be balance, does that mean all the fighters of the lord of light needs to die also?

      Trailer time
      4. Is Dany in Winterfel in the Iron Islands. What if that moment with Theon and Yara was all about Dany going to the Iron Islands.

      Questions:
      5. What the hell is Cersei’s plan with Dany. Bronn was ordered not to kill Dany. That means Cersei’s plan must be solid and that’s what I’m afraid of the most. And I have a feeling that it’s not just torture. But something more horrible.
      6. What will happen with Dany, and the truthbomb of Aegon. And Sansa and Tyrion moment last episode.

      ps. The Long night dropped to last place on imdb when comes to battles. It ranks now with an 9,1.

      ps2. Can I copy and paste my post about my feeling about the show later on in a article that is more read? (question to mods)

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    30. Clob:
      A lot of us watch on our own or just a couple people but we also know that GoT is one of the few shows that has a lot of groups watching.

      On the flip side, GoT is one of the few shows where ratings for overnight+ streaming and longer timeframes include multiple rewatches by the same people.
      Not that we know anybody who does that…

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    31. Boojam:
      Does Tobias Menzies, Edmure Tully, show up next episode?

      They need more allies now, so I expect the next epsiode to be primarily that. It’s an hour and 18 minutes, and do we need to spend that much time in KL? Maybe a Cersei/Euron wedding? Other then that what do we need from there? To see the GC’s in a quick clip to remind everyone they are there? Mayhe AeJon/Davos go to the Vale to meet with Robin and Jaime/Brienne/Pod go to the Riverlands to meet Edmure? Dany could also call on Daario.

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    32. Jack Bauer 24,

      You know , from appearances, there are still hundreds of thousands of Dothraki left in Essos.
      Interesting, Dany is Empress , of , I guess, even more than Meereen now, gee she must have more wealth than the Iron Bank!
      Also one notes Yara is still a player on the board, seemingly , will be back.

      What happened to the Knights of Vale , they had a lot of cavalry we did not see at Winterfell.

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    33. kevin1989,

      Regarding Cersei’s plan for Dany, there are two options: 1) she can hire Daario whom Dany dropped in cold blood so we cound get a Carmen style poetic denouement; or 2) she can hire the FM, which might be necessary to tie the loose ends with Arya, too.

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    34. Inga,

      Too simple in my opinion. She can hire bronn for that job. It didn’t sound as if cersei is on planning her. Look at Lady shame, or to what she did to ellaria. And still she has 2 dragons that cersei needs to deal with.

      I think what she is planned is truly evil. And I’m wondering if qyburn is part of it.

      I’m wondering what kind of torture cersei can think off. Maybe she will let dany fell isolated, alone. Something dany fears. I think she will try to get hold of Arya or Sansa. And also misandei or Grey worm, and let betray Dany for their love ones.

      Cersei had to long to think of her plan.

      Question about bronn: wonder which brother he will kill next episode or in 5 or 6. My guess is Jaime and that brienne kills bronn.

      Or will he betray cersei. Probably not. Money is money.

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    35. The Bastard,

      I watched it thru HBO on a 12 foot home theater in a dark room which was calibrated perfectly. It was still dark and blurry at times.

      Plenty of people are complaining about it. Its ok to admit it could have been better.

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    36. SerKnight,

      GRRM’s original outline literally calls the Others “the greatest danger” and says that conflict will be resolved in “one huge climax” involving threads from all other aspects of the story.

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    37. The Bastard,

      I watched it on HBO on a brand new 12 foot home theater screen in a dark room that was perfectly calibrated. It was still dark and blurry at times. Plenty of people have made this observation.

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    38. Happy to hear it! The episode was a triumph, and it deserves the record (even if it’s only likely to keep it for 2-3 weeks).

      The Bastard,

      100% this. General GOT viewers aren’t nearly as reactionary as some of the more hardcore people on the Internet think. It’s been a slow and steady climb every year, like clockwork.

      kevin1989,

      Lovely thoughts! Thank you for sharing.

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    39. Ryan:
      SerKnight,

      GRRM’s original outline literally calls the Others “the greatest danger” and says that conflict will be resolved in “one huge climax” involving threads from all other aspects of the story.

      That outline is different then what the final story has become.

      And really it was over in one big battle with threads from all over.

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    40. About the issue when watching the episode. I read the blurry dark parts was in fact a real problem and not the fault of TV of people. Same people watched later a torrent version and it was better there.

      What seems to be the problem if you watched in on cable. It seems something goes wrong there with compression and decompress of the images. I don’t know if this is the fault of hbo or if it’s the fault of cable companies. But the problem seems legit and is explained by many computer experts what the problem was.

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    41. kevin1989,

      The season will be divisive. Everyone i talk to, love The Long Night; they will wait n judge the season as a whole. Many persons who dislike it are far more vocal than those who love it, worse when it don’t meet their expectations. The show runners can’t, season seven is too fast, season 8 is too slow n more ppl need to die now.

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    42. I’m still waiting for Robin Arryn to level-up like Neville Longbottom and make the jaws drop when he arrives on the scene, having spent the past number of years training daily into a skilled swordsman.

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    43. This is wonderful news. This episode is my new no.1 episode on my GOT ranklist and it would be hell of a hard to beat it in my case, unless the finale delivers something really emotional.

      Also, it’s 4am in the morning and I finally finished writing my biggest review… and of course, it’s about this episode. IT has been so draining, but so worth to write it at same time.

      http://forum.watchersonthewall.com/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=337&p=3389#p3389

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    44. Ryan:
      SerKnight,

      GRRM’s original outline literally calls the Others “the greatest danger” and says that conflict will be resolved in “one huge climax” involving threads from all other aspects of the story.

      Yes, it might even have been a budget issue to dispatch the NK in episode 3.

      As large as the budget has become, it’s still fairly small compared to even a ‘cheaper’ blockbuster movie.

      Let’s not kid ourselves, it’s plain to see that The Long Night cost a ton. Likely 1/3 of the entire budget, if not more. I wouldn’t be surprised if it cost 40-50 million to produce. And even then they still had to leave things out.

      This one episode also took 3 months to film. That’s insane. If all episodes had taken that long, they’d only just stopped shooting now.

      So I think we need to consider that they simply didn’t have the time or money to keep the dead in play, even though that could’ve been the original plan.

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    45. kevin1989,

      2. Are we sure that there is not a sort of rule like: The one who kill death takes his place?

      Heh, that would be interesting. I also thought that he had a double who replaces him (remember the Dread Pirate Robert in Princess Bride?)And that even as we speak he is forming a following as he heads south….

      BTW I could keep track of Rhegal and Drago, are both of them still alive? During that beautiful fight up in the night sky it was hard telling who was who and I thought one of then was hurt

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    46. Elisa,

      I watched on a seven year old 32″ and saw everything clearly. It was very well done. No idea what people are griping about.

        Quote  Reply

    47. ash:
      kevin1989,

      Heh, that would be interesting. I also thought that he had a double who replaces him (remember the Dread Pirate Robert in Princess Bride?)And that even as we speak he is forming a following as he heads south….

      BTW I could keep track of Rhegal and Drago, are both of them still alive? During that beautiful fight up in the night sky it was hard telling who was who and I thought one of then was hurt

      They’re both in the 804 preview.

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    48. King in the North East: So I think we need to consider that they simply didn’t have the time or money to keep the dead in play, even though that could’ve been the original plan.

      No, we really do not need to consider this idea. Offing the NK in 803 is not less expensive than offing him in 805. If Winterfell had fallen, then the battle would have been shorter, and substantial time would have been dedicated to the survivors fleeing. Yes, they spent a ton on 803: but they would simply have spent a lot less than they did because that episode would not have been a climax episode and there would have been quite so important to make it so drama-laden.

      And that extra $$$ would have covered the extra effects needed to include the dead in
      the three-way battle between Northern Survivors, the Dead and the Lannisters in 805 instead of just the Northerners vs. the Lannisters in 805. Moreover, given how expensive & effects-laden, then it would not have been appreciably more expensive to shoot.

      Here is the other thing. B&W have known for three years how how the NK was going to go down. I.e., they’ve known since GRRM gave them the lowdown on how things were going to end. This was almost certainly the general “how” of it.

      So, please: stop with the conspiracy theories! If you are going to complain, complain about the lack of character dilemmas induced by the NK.

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    49. Lord of Coffee: I watched on a seven year old 32″ and saw everything clearly. It was very well done. No idea what people are griping about.

      It was no more difficult to watch than DVDs of the Two Towers.

        Quote  Reply

    50. We have known for over a year that the major battle sequence was being shot at night.
      It does not take a rocket scientist to work out that it’s dark at night.
      Why are so many bleating on and being shocked at the result!

      It worked perfectly for me, increasing the drama of the battle.
      Well done GOT!
      And I thought the Arya moment was perfect.

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    51. Ryan:
      SerKnight,

      GRRM’s original outline literally calls the Others “the greatest danger” and says that conflict will be resolved in “one huge climax” involving threads from all other aspects of the story.

      The others were the greatest danger. They decimated the “largest army the world has ever seen” and if it weren’t for Arya, they would have won. They were defeated in “one huge climax.” Just because it wasn’t in the penultimate or the last episode doesn’t mean they weren’t.

      George has always said he was interested in the aftermath of the defeat of Sauron and what that would of looked like. That is where we are now.

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    52. I think the real winner here goes to Specsavers and to sellers of Night Vision goggles.

      “Can’t see a wave of undead running towards your castle walls? Not sure whether to notch that fire arrow and aim true? Can’t tell if your blue-eyed friend is just rambling at you because he’s still alive or joined a faction where he’s more loved? Shoulda gone to Specsavers!…”

        Quote  Reply

    53. Dee Stark,

      well, writers of the show, in season 6 and after what happened to Hodor mentioned that there were 3 major twists which Martin told them about. one of them was burning shireen baratheon by stannis in season 5. the secound one was Hodor and his destiny. and there is also a third major twist which will happen at the very end of story according to the writers. so, I think we haven’t seen the last twist yet.

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    54. JSchmeh: The others were the greatest danger. They decimated the “largest army the world has ever seen” and if it weren’t for Arya, they would have won. They were defeated in “one huge climax.” Just because it wasn’t in the penultimate or the last episode doesn’t mean they weren’t.

      George has always said he was interested in the aftermath of the defeat of Sauron and what that would of looked like. That is where we are now.

      I always took GRRM’s quote (if indeed this is the one you are referring to) to mean that he was interested in the aftermath once the new “good” ruler takes their throne, not necessarily after the defeat of Sauron. Here is the quote I am thinking of, but you may be thinking of something else, so in that case, apologies.

      “Ruling is hard. This was maybe my answer to Tolkien, whom, as much as I admire him, I do quibble with. Lord of the Rings had a very medieval philosophy: that if the king was a good man, the land would prosper. We look at real history and it’s not that simple. Tolkien can say that Aragorn became king and reigned for a hundred years, and he was wise and good. But Tolkien doesn’t ask the question: What was Aragorn’s tax policy? Did he maintain a standing army? What did he do in times of flood and famine? And what about all these orcs? By the end of the war, Sauron is gone but all of the orcs aren’t gone – they’re in the mountains. Did Aragorn pursue a policy of systematic genocide and kill them? Even the little baby orcs, in their little orc cradles?”
      – From his interview with Rolling Stone magazine

      I don’t think we are at this stage of the story yet in GOT. Cersei still sits the throne, there is no resolution to ‘the game of thrones’ yet. I have been saying since season 7 that I thought Cersei would be the final adversary in this story, so I’m not surprised that the AOTD are defeated, but I wouldn’t say this next part of the story is going to come close to what GRRM has in mind for the ending of his books. If he does indeed want to show what the ruler (or rulers, or ruling council) would be like after the battle for the throne has ended, it’ll be whoever sits the throne after Cersei (because she can’t surely stay there at the end of the season, surely?!), then that isn’t something I feel they would show on TV (I could be very wrong of course!). TV and films tend to have such fleeting endings after the resolution. I can imagine George, if he does finish ASOIAF and then still has it in him to write great tomes, might write a history for the post ASOIAF era to truly show what happened in the aftermath of the great war and the game of thrones. I’d read it!

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    55. Onedon,

      Well for me the most people reacted like this: amazing episode. Only little bit disappointed. Expected more.

      They still loved it because they don’t set high expectations for themselves.they just watch en enjoy.

      For me the other battles are better but still this one is amazing. Got doesn’t have a bad episode. Only episodes that are not up to the high quality we have had.

      Like I said. We got in the past 500€ bottle of wine. Now we expected higher but got a 450€ bottle of wine. But still that’s better then we ever could get from other shows.

      King in the North East,

      Great point. And still George should have finish the books first. Then they could have use his outline and maybe found something to get it cheaper and still drag it till the end. But this is what we got and we just have to enjoy it. I expect great things. And maybe we get still an big plottwist concerning the ww because bran could still give us an explanation of sorts.

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    56. Jack Bauer 24: Ironically enough, I just rewatched some of the episode in a sunlit room near a window and was able to see pretty good. Not as good as in the dark obviously, but better then I was expecting.

      Good for you, I’ve had issues on like 3 or 4 different screens roughly since Season 5 or 6, particularly if I watch the episodes in a day. And based on what my father says, he has even more issues on his two large TVs and another screen.

      Thing is I never liked the dark and edgy style that came to TV shows en masse after like 2005 (that was a particular issue for Stargate Universe or Dark Matter).

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    57. Pigeon:
      I’m still waiting for Robin Arryn to level-up like Neville Longbottom and make the jaws drop when he arrives on the scene, having spent the past number of years training daily into a skilled swordsman.

      The jaws will drop because the last lady Giant made her way up to the Vale and met Robin. Robin told her he was hungry. He grew strong like Tormund Giantsbane. It was foreshadowed!

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    58. Wimsey,

      Conspiracy theories?

      Get a grip dude!

      I’m just offering it as a possibility, we know they had to cut back and move things around because of time/budget issues before. It’s not a stretch to imagine that it may have happened again.

      And if you think it wouldn’t have been more expensive to have the dead in a prominent role for episodes 3 to 6 even if they had cut back on ep 3, then I’m sorry but you might be delusional.

      I don’t know if that’s what really happened. It’s entirely possible that I’m completely wrong here. That’s why I called it a possibility, rather than a certainty. But you need to take a step back here. You’re dismissing that it’s even possible for that to have been a factor.

      You don’t know everything, so stop pretending you do.

      (All they’ve said is that they knew Arya was going to take out the NK, nothing more. The how and when could’ve easily been altered in those 3 years. Or perhaps they realized the budget constraints 3 years ago and planned the season around it back then)

        Quote  Reply

    59. Kevin1989,

      Yes, I’m hoping for a very strong finale too. It’s unlikely we’ll get another battle like this, so I think we might see a 20 minute action sequence in episode 5, but that’ll be about it. Most of the remaining episodes will be drama not action.

      Some people are here for the drama.
      Some people are here for the action.
      Some people are here for the fantasy.

      I’m here for all three. And it’s seems that the action and fantasy is largely over and done with, so I’m not sure how I feel about that.

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    60. Dee Stark:
      Mass,

      Or maybe that was Arya killing the NK?

      Based on what they said on the Inside the Episode, they made the decision much later than the meeting when they were told about the other twists. Who knows though.

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    61. Che,

      I think if you did the parallel with the LotR you probably CAN tell where we are in the story:

      And the scouring of the Shire—brilliant piece of work, which I didn’t understand when I was 13 years old: ’Why is this here? The story’s over?’ But every time I read it I understand the brilliance of that segment more and more. All I can say is that’s the kind of tone I will be aiming for

      https://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2015/08/14/george-r-r-martin-aiming-for-a-lord-of-the-rings-ending-to-game-of-thrones/

      Martin said this in several interviews and I believe was expecting to see the Scouring of the Shire on screen which he did not. Anyway, the point is as the 2015 Forbes article pointed out at the time that once Sauron was defeated the hobbits return to a ravaged Shire and defeat Saruman. And maybe after we’ll see half an ep of aftermath when whoever’s still standing tried to rule the ravaged land (?) That may be half a book for Martin.

      Anyway there’s a couple of people here who pointed out this before me in the last few days but I thought maybe if peeps see Martin saying this in 2015 (he said this before actually but couldn’t find an article) maybe they’ll understand why the battle ended in ep 3.

      FYI I always assumed the NK threat was ending here. That WF battle was going to be the end of them but I wasn’t convincing I suppose.

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    62. King in the North East,

      For me I rather have an action episode like hardhome or blackwater. For me it doesn’t have to be non stop action. I think the battle at kings landing will be more to my taste.

      So I’m still very positive the show will end in a big way that I will be happy with. And to think of it. I rather they execute the end of dany Jon cersei Arya and all our main cast perfectly than the end of the nk. Just like with LOTR the ending of Sauron is not very climatic. It’s more the characters how they react to it. The ending after that at the haven that made the movie perfect.

      And I expect a big game changer in 4 or 5.

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    63. I’m wondering if one theory will come true. I remember some of the filming news. I put spoilers on it because maybe it spoils to much.

      Wasn’t there a scene where they put those fire cannon on that suppose to be dragonfire. And supposed to be kings landing. It burned people alive in the streets of kings landing. We assumed to be the night king to do that. But he’s gone. That means only drogon of rheagal can be the one burning innocent. Are they doing that on their own. Or is dany or Jon putting them to the torch?

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    64. We all know that “ratings” make a good episode. It’s not at all an indication that people were just watching, right?

        Quote  Reply

    65. Wimsey,

      Wimsey what happened to “euron won’t be a part of the endgame of game of thrones, he will only serve to help theon’s redemption arc”?

        Quote  Reply

    66. Che,

      Yeah, but the thing is they said this and that and this and that. we never truly know what they talked about or how many times they met.

        Quote  Reply

    67. Che,

      I would read it too. My only point was to counter people who are saying that the AOTD wasn’t the big threat they had hyped them up to be. They absolutely were. As Dany says in the Episode 4 preview “We have won the great war. Now we will win the last war.”

        Quote  Reply

    68. Dee Stark:
      Che,

      Yeah, but the thing is they said this and that and this and that. we never truly know what they talked about or how many times they met.

      According to them, in an interview after “The Door”, they revealed they had met GRRM in 2013 where he revealed three big twists – how Hodor became Hodor being one of them. I believe the other is thought to be the burning of Shireen (??). The third is still to come. According to things they’ve said, this came too late for it to be one of the three and in their commentary, they make it sound like they came up with the Arya twist, which makes sense, because they came up with the NK too.

      That’s not to say that’s GRRM’s final big twist doesn’t involve Arya – because she is clearly being primed for something big – it’s just unlikely it was this particular twist. Personally, I am still excepting a huge twist (another one) and it to be something in the endgame.

        Quote  Reply

    69. TormundsWoman:
      Che,

      I think if you did the parallel with the LotR you probably CAN tell where we are in the story:

      https://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2015/08/14/george-r-r-martin-aiming-for-a-lord-of-the-rings-ending-to-game-of-thrones/

      Martin said this in several interviews and I believe was expecting to see the Scouring of the Shire on screen which he did not. Anyway, the point is as the 2015 Forbes article pointed out at the time that once Sauron was defeated the hobbits return to a ravaged Shire and defeat Saruman. And maybe after we’ll see half an ep of aftermath when whoever’s still standing tried to rule the ravaged land (?) That may be half a book for Martin.

      Anyway there’s a couple of people here who pointed out this before me in the last few days but I thought maybe if peeps see Martin saying this in 2015 (he said this before actually but couldn’t find an article) maybe they’ll understand why the battle ended in ep 3.

      FYI I always assumed the NK threat was ending here. That WF battle was going to be the end of them but I wasn’t convincing I suppose.

      Thanks for this, I hadn’t read that quote. That does seem to fit.

      Off-topic: But now I am really hoping that in the books at least, we get some sort of chapter that gives us a history of what happens to the realm after the story is complete. I am really enjoying his “Fire and Blood” fictional history of Targaryen rule – he writes fake-historical accounts brilliantly! – and would love something similar (obviously not as long!) for the aftermath of his story.

        Quote  Reply

    70. Thanks for posting

      Steady ratings

      Will be interesting to see how they hold up considering many perceive us to be in “Scourging of the Shire” territory

      Personally I’m not so sure, I think we are in the A Dream of Spring or the new Dawn territory (following Winds of Winter and Long Night) which is what the PttwP and Azor Ahai Prophecy is really about

      Let’s hope the ratings hold up

        Quote  Reply

    71. King in the North East: You don’t know everything, so stop pretending you do.

      One need not be omniscient to know that the model you are suggesting is not close to how any of this works. Again, had they initially intended to keep the NK around, then this episode would have been much less expensive to make. And that would not have been to save $$$: but because they would have had to spend a lot more screen time on the issue of the survivors escaping Winterfell and setting up the aftermath.

      And, of course, there is this simple reality: they spent as much as they did because HBO was willing to give them so much. They put a lot more into this than was absolutely required because of the freedom they had with the budget.

      So, yes, we can dismiss your idea: that is not remotely close to how these things work at all.

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    72. Ghost’s Lunch: Let’s hope the ratings hold up

      They will drop for the next two weeks, but probably rebound for the finale.

      That stated, the early word is that Episode 5 will be just as big as Episode 3. If so, then it might get more or less the same ratings as Episode 3. Still, we might bump into some viewer fatigue: I mean, how many times can people get up the energy for a “must-see!!!” episode over the space of a few weeks? (That is a semi-serious question.)

        Quote  Reply

    73. This episode felt to a lot of people that it would be the finale or at least the penultimate one, so I would expect a drop in viewers this week. Looking forward, I wonder if the finale will actually top it, it’s surely the only chance from here on out right?

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    74. Kevin1989:
      I’m wondering if one theory will come true. I remember some of the filming news. I put spoilers on it because maybe it spoils to much.

      The same filming news said there would be Dothraki at Kings Landing which clearly won’t be the case (D&D also confirmed they are done). Also Watchers ran an article about the horse riders with flaming swords and thought this would be the Red Priestesses so although the articles are written in good faith we cannot take them for fact.

      At this point though I’m expecting Dany to unless full fire and blood on kings landing and this be the final twist in which the rest must stop her.

        Quote  Reply

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