Season 7 leaves previous Game of Thrones ratings record behind with Dragonstone!

701 - King's Landing - Euron

The Winds of Winter, the finale for season six, brought record ratings for Game of Thrones, but the show can only have as many viewers as there are HBO subscribers, and for the first time ever the show is airing in the summer, when ratings are notoriously lower, so one would be forgiven for assuming the numbers would begin to plateau.

One would be wrong. Horribly, wonderfully wrong. Dragonstone has just broken the record established by its preceding episode, and by quite a wide margin!

EW reports on these viewing figures, which honestly surprised me quite a bit: at first airing on HBO, the season seven premiere was watched by 10.1 million people, according to Nielsen’s overnight figures. That is more than a million ahead of the season six finale, which stood at 8.89 million — and two and a half million more than the 7.68 million season six average. The show has experienced a forward leap this significant only once, from seasons three to four, when the show really hit its stride. We appear to have transcended into an entirely new phase of Game of Thrones‘ popularity.

The episode is breaking other records as well: for a while, Dragonstone held the first 100% score for a Game of Thrones season premiere on Rotten Tomatoes; and it caused 2.4 million tweets, making it the most-tweeted episode of the show, according to Twitter.

Even more impressively, across all HBO platforms —including repeat broadcasts, HBO Go, HBO Now and DVR), Dragonstone broke new ground with 16.1 million viewers —as EW points out, that’s 150% the ratings of the season six premiere. There is sure to be a dip after the premiere (though this year, who knows!), but this is still quite impressive.

120 responses

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    1. I thought the ratings this year would be massive, but I did NOT expect 10 million for the premiere. Holy fuck. The hype is real.

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    2. It was 100 percent, Film Rejects Neil Miller felt it necessary to give the only rotten review with razor thin reasoning.

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    3. Unprecedented for a premium channel. This is groundbreaking for HBO and Game of Thrones.

      This series is coming for the ratings Throne and it’s not giving a shit who it tramples over.

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    4. I’ll admit I was a little concerned that airing in the summer would affect the ratings to some degree so I’m pleasantly shocked to see that they’ve broken their own record!! fantastic

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    5. By the end of S8 this will become the most popular TV show ever created. There is nothing that comes even close to this, there is no record that this show won’t break.

      Trully unstoppable.

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    6. Vaporize:
      It was 100 percent, Film Rejects Neil Miller felt it necessary to give theonly rotten review with razor thin reasoning.

      I read Neil’s review, and though I disagree with him, his reasoning is perfectly sound; not ‘razor thin.’ The fact is he was bored. Yes, that’s subjective, as all reviews are. But he couldn’t give it a positive review if he has bored! Fair enough, isn’t it? He’s within his rights to give his honest opinion; hell, I’d argue he’s within his obligation as a critic to do so. Let’s not hound critics who stray from the consensus, please, especially not just because of a damn score on an aggregate site. Not a good look on a fandom. Not at all.

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    7. I will always remember that girl from Game of Owns (I don’t remember her name) who said after the show got so many Emmys for S5 that the success of the show feels somehow personal. And I completely agree.

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    8. Happy to see success.

      On the actual quality, there were definitely some high points but there were 2 incredibly terrible points that sadly pulled the episode down for me.

      (My own personal subjective opinion) Did we really need to spend 3 minutes of the 13 hours left watching Sam gag over cleaning latrine pots? No.

      Was the Ed Sheeran cameo a mistake? Yes. Yes it was. This is 100% scientific factual analysis.

      It was NOT a terrible episode, not the best and not the worst. A lukewarmer for me.

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    9. Cathair,

      I don’t listen to any of Sheeran’s music and didn’t know who he was before Maisie Williams started talking about him all the time, so the cameo didn’t bother me at all. But as a rule, I find celeb cameos on TV shows to be self-indulgent.

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    10. Sue the Fury:
      Cathair,

      I don’t listen to any of Sheeran’s music and didn’t know who he was before Maisie Williams started talking about him all the time, so the cameo didn’t bother me at all. But as a rule, I find celeb cameos on TV shows to be self-indulgent.

      Yeah, he is huge here in UK and Ireland like you cannot avoid him at all. He’s not a bad guy, I have nothing against him but I prefer cameos to be like the band at Arya’s plays in Braavos, they were barely noticeable. Sheeran just took me right out of Westeros and into Earth.

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    11. I’d be curious to see how many were watching via Hulu. Unless I’m mistaken, this is the first season you can both subscribe to and watch HBO via your computer.
      In other words, did the piracy numbers take a corresponding dip or did they skyrocket as well?

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    12. Funny, I remember some westeros org toxic folk saying how the show went downhill in S5 and how the viewership will rapidly fall, resulting in the show getting cancelled… and here I read about new records.

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    13. Wow, I’m going to be honest and say I didn’t expect that, well certainly not the scale of it anyway. In some ways ratings are almost meaningless at this stage, because the show isn’t getting cancelled, but I’m really happy about them because it is vindication of the hard work of all of the cast and crew. They really do deserve it, because they work their socks off each year, and manage to produce the greatest TV show on the planet. They make it look easy when it is very far from it.

      Cathair,
      Agree. The Sheeran cameo was ridiculous. I almost expected him to wink at the camera, it was just too much. Great for Maisie and Ed, annoying for a lot of people. If they had to include him, dress him up a bit, and have a blink-or-you’ll-miss-it appearance, but they went way too far. I’ll let them off this once, but I hope they won’t consider doing this again, especially given the poor reception it has received.

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    14. Great news! More reason to support a good spin-off and maybe presenting a few episodes as IMAX theatrical releases. I saw the Castle Black battle and The Children episodes in IMAX and really enjoyed it. With rumors that the season 8 episodes will be much longer, maybe this will happen. One can hope!

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    15. All I know is if I encounter people who don’t watch it, I hate them and hope they get a real poop dropped on their face !

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    16. Amazing, astounding! The ratings will continue to rise, but slowly. HBO was smart to release it now because the season ends the week before American football season begins.
      On that note, I predict GoT’s 8th season premieres two weeks after the 2019 Super Bowl, and therefore the final episode airs either the last week of winter or first week of spring.

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    17. Jenny:

      This is insane.Like we are in the seventh season??It’s summer?It’s truly a phenomenon now.

      All of this. These numbers would be a godsend for network TV in September. And here we are. GO THRONES!!!

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    18. Remember back in season one when we were simply hoping the ratings would be enough for the show to get renewed? Now we’ve got over 10 million people all watching together! That’s just staggering for a show like this on a premium channel.

      Random aside: I met Ed Sheeran a few years ago here in Nashville; does that count as meeting a GOT actor? LOL

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    19. I wouldn’t consider myself a Sheeran fan, but I thought his cameo was fine. He had a lovely voice, and had only one or two lines of dialogue, which is normal for a cameo. I don’t understand the outrage.

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    20. Incredible ratings and great news indeed!

      Although, I wonder if the fact it was free HBO on xFinity from July 10 – 16? had some effect. I would assume some of the viewers could be non-subscribers, but who knows… Maybe they will sign up!

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    21. I fail to see what was wrong with Ed Sheeran’s cameo? He sang, which has happened with many soldiers before, both in GoT & other shows. The scene he was in wasn’t unnaturally slated to spotlight him once he’d finished singing, with two of the other soldiers arguably taking slightly stronger roles. He was barely more than an extra who sang. It didn’t spoil anything unless you made more of it than just someone in a minor role.

      Also is that the first time we’ve seen Arya laugh other than when she found out her Aunt Lysa was dead?

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    22. Young Dragon,

      Same. It’s completely unwarranted. People that didn’t know who Sheeran was have unanimously cited that they didn’t even notice anything amiss. So how jarring could it have been?

      I think what the scene represented — which was that there’s good guys laden in all armies, superseded any minimal disbelief I had.

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    23. Ed Sheeran is one of those singers who I know by sight, but have never really listened to his music. Personally, I thought his cameo was just fine. Yeah, I knew it was him, but that didn’t take me out of the show. If the scene had really focused on him, as if shouting “HEY! LOOK! ED SHEERAN! ED SHEERAN!”, I would have had a problem, but it didn’t. I thought it was a very nice scene, showing some humanity among the Lannister soldiers, and showing Arya that things aren’t so black & white.

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    24. 16.1 million total viewers across all platforms in a single night … and that only counts the U.S. audience that watched the show legally. Incredible! We wonder every year if the ratings are going to plateau, but they go up every year, seemingly without exception!

      Perhaps moving to the summer helped contribute to the show’s even-larger-than-usual ratings spike this year. Less competition and a longer wait between seasons had whipped audience anticipation into a frenzy, and of course, more people discover Game of Thrones each and every year. Regardless, it’s truly remarkable and gratifying to see the sheer heights of success that the show continues to attain and exceed with each passing season.

      Game of Thrones is a bona fide cultural phenomenon, and has been for a while. This train isn’t stopping until we reach the end, and perhaps not even then.

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    25. Great to hear, amazing to hear about it!!!!
      I’ll be keeping my eye on Euron this season, loved his kings landing scene.
      Also Ship Battle next week, Get Hyped <3 😀

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    26. Luka Nieto: I read Neil’s review, and though I disagree with him, his reasoning is perfectly sound; not ‘razor thin.’ The fact is he was bored. Yes, that’s subjective, as all reviews are. But he couldn’t give it a positive review if he has bored! Fair enough, isn’t it? He’s within his rights to give his honest opinion; hell, I’d argue he’s within his obligation as a critic to do so. Let’s not hound critics who stray from the consensus, please, especially not just because of a damn score on an aggregate site. Not a good look on a fandom. Not at all.

      I was sort of bored by this episode as well. The Hound scene and the second Arya scene were pleasant, but the first Arya scene was too fan-servicy and makes her appear invincible, the citadel scene over-long and with a nerds-lack-common-sense vibe that I generally don’t like, the Euron scene like a drunk hitting on chicks at the bar*, and the Dany scene a nuttin’burger. Jon vs Sansa again range false. Even when she’s half right she’s wrong. I can’t want for the Hound to come along, tell her how LF betrayed Ned, and cheer as she flings that lying little snit from the battlements so she can go full Stark.

      Next week is looking better, though. Less setup, more go go go.

      * Not to mention the absurd idea that he built the greatest fleet ever in the matter of weeks/months, on a barren island with few trees no less. The population and resources of the Iron Islands are one of the bigger technical flaws in the books, and D&D seem to be quadrupling down on it.

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    27. I always wonder how is it in Europe. Like French twitter is all abt GoT. Im in Berlin and people speak abt it on the streets and at work. I believe its even more in the UK also Asia/Middleast? Anyone ever seen any numbers? Or Africa even? Anyway incredible!!!

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    28. Jenny,

      I actually think the long wait for the season is part of the reason. The hype has been building for much longer than usual, and as a result, the fans are starving for GoT. Plus, Season 6 was very well received, and many people caught up on the show during the break.

      Similar to what happened after Season 3. Everyone heard how amazing the show was, and started watching.

      I’m guessing the praise and reception of the last two episodes of Season 6 are largely responsible for the new viewers.

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    29. Wow! That’s a lot of people who are going to be waiting for the big finale with us 🙂

      Ed Sheeran. Okay this is my take. If he wasn’t a singer? He would still be cast in Game of Thrones. There is no modern famous person out there who looks more like a messy medieval-ish ginger dude than Ed.
      I’d be ticked if they cast a Kardashian lol-but I’m cool with smiling Sheeran.
      Also pretty much every single minstrel group or singer from day one has been a quasi known to semi-famous band or band member. Coldplay guy. That chick. He’s just the most famous currently.

      Plus I loved someone singing another song from the book. I’ve missed the rounds of Bear and the Maiden Fair.

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    30. EncounterPeople:
      All I know is if I encounter people who don’t watch it, I hate them and hope they get a real poop dropped on their face !

      Ha! While I personally know more and more people that started late and have caught up, I still have some friends that just keep saying they want to watch it but don’t have the time. Lame excuse!

      I listen to a morning radio show daily and one of the three guys has watched the show religiously every week since it debuted and always says it’s one of his favorite shows of all time. One of the other two finally buckled down and has made it halfway through season 5 and now loves it too. He was upset he couldn’t catch up before yesterday. The third has still only seen the very first episode despite what they say.

      I just feel people are really missing out if they refuse to watch it. It will always be available to watch but I think it has to be more fun when it’s ongoing and people are talking about it.

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    31. I didn’t mind the Sheeran cameo either. My honest thoughts when the scene started were more about being glad they had a guy that can actually sing than it being somebody I recognize. Nothing against Emun Elliott (Marillion) and Paul Kaye (Thoros) but they were awful singing on the show. Maybe they can sing just fine and were told not to be too good on the show. I don’t know, but they were not. 😛

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    32. Cathair,

      A co-worker said the same thing that the cameo took him out of Westeros and back to reality. Not for me though since I am not familiar with his face nor his music.

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    33. Amazing numbers!!
      By this point, I think people who didn’t watch GoT in earlier seasons, can’t escape the GoT phenomenon as the new season approaches, and have to catch up on earlier seasons and become new fans. Too much social pressure.
      I didn’t know who Ed Sheeran was before the episode and his cameo didn’t bother me in the slightest.

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    34. I loved all of it. I am not a film critic, just a dedicated GOT fan who thought the day would never get here. I am dismayed at some of the negative or critical comments. Geez, it is a show, meant to entertain, and it is full of magic. Looking forward to next week. Oh, and let me add, I am a book reader so it is a little more exciting to finally not have a clue as to what will happen next!!!

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    35. I am so confused. According to westeros org, this show is not only bad, but one of the worst of all time. How can it be doing so well? lol

      Only 12 episodes left is super sad.

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    36. Ed’s cameo was hardly an “Ooooh look at the FAMOUS person!” type of thing – I’m somewhat baffled by the response. He barely said a word after singing, the focus was on the other group members. He’s a good friend of Kit as well as Maisie.

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    37. Chad Brick: Of course. Have you noticed which way the winter winds have been blowing lately?

      Wasn’t 2018 the date to beat? If so, and the winter winds really are blowing, GRRM is cutting it pretty dang close.

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    38. One important question Luka:

      Is your picture choice a Euron Cock reference? Because I think that’s what you did there.

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    39. Yeah, I don’t get the extreme reaction to Ed Sheeran. I get that lots of people hate him online (who has time to care that much about a celebrity who hasn’t, to my knowledge, beaten, killed or raped anyone?), but if I didn’t know he was guest-starring in the show, I wouldn’t have even noticed he was a guest star on the show. Also, he doesn’t seem to have a very important role on the show, as I doubt Arya sticks with that group for long.

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    40. mind blowing!!!!!! And this is why Game of Thrones is, without a doubt, the BIGGEST and most popular show on television..IN THE ENTIRE WORLD!!! Now imagine the ratings in the SERIES FINALE..oh boy..!!

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    41. mau:
      By the end of S8 this will become the most popular TV show ever created. There is nothing that comes even close to this, there is no record that this show won’t break.

      Trully unstoppable.

      Well, Game of Thrones is by now the most popular TV show ever created!! No need to wait for season 8..:)

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    42. Kay:
      Amazing numbers!!
      By this point, I think people who didn’t watch GoT in earlier seasons, can’t escape the GoT phenomenon as the new season approaches, and have to catch up on earlier seasons and become new fans. Too much social pressure.
      I didn’t know who Ed Sheeran was before the episode and his cameo didn’t bother me in the slightest.

      lol, so true!!! The people who didn’t watch are dying because they re like some weird kid alone in this massive, biggest party place haha. I made my cousin and his girlfriend become obsessed with GoT and i’m so proud 🙂 I really can’t understand someone who don’t watch GoT..like: HOW DO YOU LIVE ? ? ? HAHA, not to be dramatic but..:)

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    43. Sorry but this wasnt a “100%” episode. It was good, I liked it, but lets be real… this wasn’t a Hardhome or Winds of Winter.

      Not much plot advancement, Aryas unnecessary scene w Ed Sheeran, the poop montage…. it was not a flawless episode.

      Ratings will dip, but not by much.

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    44. Jenny:
      This is insane.Like we are in the seventh season??It’s summer?It’s truly a phenomenon now.

      This. I know people were wondering if the summer screening will affect ratings. It’s amazing that the show is pulling these numbers in it’s seventh season. I now wonder if the finale will cross 11 million lol.

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    45. I just hope HBO doesn’t kill the momentum by leaving fans to fester until 2019 but instead gives us our finale in the SUMMER of 2018. As these numbers show, the summer quarter is a perfectly viable slot for GOT.

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    46. Thi Targaryen: Well, Game of Thrones is by now the most popular TV show ever created!! No need to wait for season 8..:)

      GoT still has a lot of work to do. The last episode of MASH had over 50 million viewers.

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    47. Ricky Chau: GoT still has a lot of work to do.The last episode of MASH had over 50 million viewers.

      That was achieved when there was no internet, no streaming, no cable. Nothing will ever reach those tv numbers.

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    48. Oh wow this is great

      Any chance of getting them graphs someone on here puts up, they are great for really seeing the jump and comparing to other shows

      I generally quite liked this Premiere despite it being “slower” in some parts, seemed to flow quite well and when I wasn’t wretching I was able to get a good laugh out of the Sam “same shit everyday” montage on second watch

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    49. Cathair:
      Happy to see success.

      On the actual quality, there were definitely some high points but there were 2 incredibly terrible points that sadly pulled the episode down for me.

      (My own personal subjective opinion) Did we really need to spend 3 minutes of the 13 hours left watching Sam gag over cleaning latrine pots? No.

      Was the Ed Sheeran cameo a mistake? Yes. Yes it was. This is 100% scientific factual analysis.

      It was NOT a terrible episode, not the best and not the worst. A lukewarmer for me.

      Personally I don’t think so, if you listen closely it touches on a theme about “home” that weaved through the episode, eg Jon and Sansa lost their home Winterfell, which is probably why Jon is not so quick to strip the Umbers and Karstarks of theirs

      The Soldiers are thinking of Home

      The Freys slaughtered people after inviting them into their home etc

      The father and daughter died in their home, after they had invited Hound and Arya in etc etc

      In this case though we as viewers tend to think of Lannister soldiers executing the will of Tywin/Cersei etc and they’ve been put into something of a villain role given the Mountains antics along with Polliver,

      But it was good to see them somewhat humanised and it touches on the point made by Septon Meribald in the books, eg the soldier has to act on his Lords whims, so an Umber soldier could have been really pro-Robb under the Greatjon and fought in Robbs victories, and then anti-Jon at BoB under Smalljon on behalf of Ramsay, and now perhaps on Jons Snows side under Ned Umber? Same goes for Frey foot soldiers, speaking of which this was a nice inverse mirror of Arya killing the Frey soldiers in S3E10.

      Their honour is completely bound up with their Lords whims, this is why I found their nonchalant laughter at “I’m going to kill the Queen” a great touch, Lords and Monarchs who don’t care about them have been dying like flies but they are concerned with helping their Dad fish and and their wives childbirth

      A great way to add to this theme is if we see them again, eg imagine we notice the one guy wanting with the daughter in the ranks of Lannister soldiers getting slaughtered by Dothraki or roasted by Drogon? A little less cheering for Daenarys I suspect, and imagine we see Boat boy getting his throat slit by Greyworm infliltrating Casterly Rock?

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    50. I have to say the articles here have become increasingly difficult to read. They read like mediocre bachelor student essays. Barely correct grammar and syntax with a vocabulary that truly reminds me of non-native students trying to impress their teachers in essays. I don’t remember the situation being this dire when I first started visiting this website. I am only posting this because this is not an exception but the standard now of watchers.

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    51. Young Dragon,

      Agreed. I’m utterly confounded by it.

      During the Golden Age, many stars of the silver screen acted, danced, sang… even swam!!! The hissy fits being pitched about a singer, um, singing and having one or two lines of dialogue are incomprehensible to me.

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    52. m3shwerks,

      In another thread, Dee Stark noted that this is really bad logic. What difference does it make that he’s a famous singer? (After all, as I noted above, in another time many silver-screen stars acted, danced, and sang.) Did anyone complain about Sean Bean being widely recognizable? It’s Boromir! Now I’m stuck in LotR! Or Lena Headey? It’s Queen Gorgo! Now I’m stuck in 300! Or, oh yeah, Max von Sydow, a cinema legend? Was anyone making cracks about the 3ER playing cyvasse with the Night King?

      It’s totally bizarre.

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    53. Mr Fixit,

      …and far fewer viewing choices, in a far less specialized TV universe. (And that’s certainly not to bash on M*A*S*H, one of the first TV shows I fell in love with upon coming to the U.S. in 1981.)

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    54. Wolfish,

      It’s not that bizarre. It didnt bother me cause I’ve never seen or hears him before but this kid is apparently a modern pop sensation or something, I’m guessing. It’s different when you have veteran actors playing a part. If they’re good actors you will get submerged in their character. With singer cameos, you know of the person as just a singer, so putting them in an actor setting where they just pop up singing can be jarring.

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    55. Carole H:
      May sound stupid but does this include Sky figures in UK?

      It’s only US figures, as stated in the article. HBO US figures.

      A critic: Barely correct grammar and syntax with a vocabulary that truly reminds me of non-native students trying to impress their teachers in essays.

      I mean, I am non-native, so my English may sound more academic than natural sometimes, in written form. It’s just how I was taught. If you do find any grammar or syntax mistake, however, please do tell — constructive criticism is appreciated; complaints as non-specific as “difficult to read,” not so much 😉

      Something I notice is in Spanish we use much longer, paragraph-length sentences without a full stop. English is usually much snappier. And, when speaking English, we use many more Latin-derived words that may be intepreted as “highbrow”… but we just use them because they are more similar to our equivalent but very colloquial Latin-derived terms, not because we’re trying to impress anyone. “Big words,” longer sentences… I see what you mean, how that could appear; though I must say, there are better ways to say it.

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    56. With regard to the Ed Sheeran thing I have to say it did distract me. He is absolutely everywhere in the UK and Ireland at the moment and while I had no issue with his singing at the beginning of the scene followed by his one line after, it was the many shots of him then sitting next to Arya that distracted me. I could feel myself thinking – “oh he’s there basically because Maisie’s a fan, I wonder how she found filming with him, I hope they got on well” etc. That is not something that should be crossing my mind during a scene! If she hadn’t been sitting directly next to him and there was a random extra in between them I don’t think it would have been so distracting.

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    57. A critic,

      Ugh. Aren’t we lucky to have guys like you to remind us of proper style, my lord… I mean, milord! Us poor peasants say milord, right?

      Pay no heed, Luka. I very much enjoy your writing and can recognize it immediately. You combine a literate style with no small dose of humor. Do I sense a romantic with a side dish of playful cynic lurking in there somewhere? 🙂

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    58. BigMac,

      I don’t get it you guys. Why am I having trouble understanding the outrage on this Sheeran cameo. Wtffff hahaha
      Whats the difference between a recognizable face that’s a singer and a recognizable face that’s an actor.

      explaaaainnnn lol

      Actually his face was perfect for the scene its self, all the soldiers were so nice and sweet and a couple of them including Ed had baby faces.
      Love that scene, a top in my books!

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    59. (Copied from other ratings thread).

      For those interested, Game of Thrones drew an audience of 2.83 million in the UK (2am +9pm airings). That’s up 30% on the season 6 premiere of 2.20 million. The article mentions that 4.5 million viewers are expected to have watched the episode on catch up after a week. Huge (record) numbers for Sky!

      http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/game-thrones-season-7-premiere-sets-ratings-record-uks-sky-atlantic-1021993

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    60. Ravyn,

      I’m smart enough to figure it out, thanks.

      This was not a 100% episode.

      If you’re going to call it that, then half of the show’s episodes at least are all 100%. Kinda loses its luster.

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    61. Dee Stark,

      To me, the scene felt forced into the episode for cameo’s sake. Not sure what it accomplished. It also brings you out of the ASOIAF universe and “back” to the real world.

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    62. Clob:
      I didn’t mind the Sheeran cameo either.My honest thoughts when the scene started were more about being glad they had a guy that can actually sing than it being somebody I recognize.Nothing against Emun Elliott (Marillion) and Paul Kaye (Thoros) but they were awful singing on the show.Maybe they can sing just fine and were told not to be too good on the show.I don’t know, but they were not.

      Wolfish:
      m3shwerks,

      In another thread, Dee Stark noted that this is really bad logic. What difference does it make that he’s a famous singer? (After all, as I noted above, in another time many silver-screen stars acted, danced, and sang.) Did anyone complain about Sean Bean being widely recognizable? It’s Boromir! Now I’m stuck in LotR! Or Lena Headey? It’s Queen Gorgo! Now I’m stuck in 300! Or, oh yeah, Max von Sydow, a cinema legend? Was anyone making cracks about the 3ER playing cyvasse with the Night King?

      It’s totally bizarre.

      He’s not even the first holder of a UK #1 to sing in the show. I think a lot of people are forgetting or didn’t know about Jerome Flynn’s (Bronn) music career. Although it spawn from his acting career it led to numerous #1 singles and a #1 album. It would be argued by many that prior to Bronn & to Ripper Street, the thing he was most famous for is the Unchained Melody cover that was played over and over again to a the point of nausea!

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    63. Dee Stark,

      That’s fine, but what did you get out of that scene? Just that Arya is going to try to kill Cersei? Did they need a 5 minute scene and a cameo for that?

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    64. Luka Nieto,

      About English writing, I totally get what you’re talking about. I’m not a native English speaker myself and thus my sentences are often very long as well. But any way, your writing is great, at least from my non-English perspective. And of course, we’re from many different countries here.

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    65. Ryan,

      From my own perspective, the point of the scene was to show that Lannister soldiers are also just people, not monsters. I feel this scene indicated that Arya may not be “too far gone” when it comes to her desire for revenge.

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    66. Ryan,

      No. That’s not what the scene was about only…

      It was about showing us a few things:
      – Where Arya is, and where she is headed, to King’s Landing (to kill the Queen as you said)
      – That Arya is still a good person and not a psychopath killer, and giving her a sweet moment with people almost her age, moments she never has.. a moment that may eventually want to make her go home (since the soldiers were talking about home) … so it could be setting up for that
      – To add a little humour and a light scene in an almost always dark show.. with a song from the books sung by one of the soliders (so a nod to book readers)
      – And I also took that it shows us, the viewer, that not all Lannister soldiers are horrible.. and that even they are sick of the war…

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    67. I’d be surprised if that was the focus re: the Lannister soldiers.

      Lannister soldiers have basically been faceless nameless automatons for 6 years, doing the “evil” houses bidding…. I’d be surprised if they’re really trying to finally humanize them 2 episodes before they are wiped out.

      As for Arya, the scene right before this one she murdered about 100 people at once…so take that for what its worth.

      I agree it was most likely a ‘light’ scene and clearly a shoutout to the song in the books….

      Everyone’s opinion is valid and I liked the episode… I just didn’t think it was a “100%” top of the line episode like some do…. better than some previous premiere episodes? Sure.

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    68. Ryan:
      Dee Stark,
      To me, the scene felt forced into the episode for cameo’s sake.Not sure what it accomplished. It also brings you out of the ASOIAF universe and “back” to the real world.

      Purpose of scene was to demonstrate Arya is not only a psychopath vengeance demon ala LSH. I felt it had real tension because I wasn’t sure which way she would go – thought it was clear she was weighting whether these guys deserved to die just for being Lannister men, but decided no.

      In short, it was no less “pointless” than the scene of the Hound burying that family. Which I don’t think anyone with a heart would argue…

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    69. I like the scene with Arya and the Lannister soldiers more and more each time I watch it.

      To be honest, when I first saw it on Sunday, I was a bit distracted by the Ed Sheeran cameo too. However, on subsequent viewings, I found that it didn’t bother me at all.

      It’s a nice scene that helps chip away at Arya’s intentions to finish her revenge tour rather than go home to her family. I think this, and by the looks of the preview for next week, a few events (possibly reunions) will take place that convince Arya to go home instead of continue on with her killing tour.

      The Lannister soldiers have never been given a human face or touch. There’s no reason why they couldn’t do it now. I don’t see how it’s too late. I thought it was well done and realistic. Just because they fight for the Lannisters doesn’t necessarily mean they’re evil. They offered Arya food, wine, and warmth, which took her completely by surprise and I think it took the audience by surprise as well. Any war throughout history has both good and bad men on BOTH sides. This scene simply illustrates that point.

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    70. Mr Fixit: Do I sense a romantic with a side dish of playful cynic lurking in there somewhere?

      You basically got me. I was once an awful cynic with a romantic buried in there somewhere, now it’s more the other way around, which feels better 😛

      Dee Stark:
      Ryan,

      No. That’s not what the scene was about only…

      It was about showing us a few things:
      – Where Arya is, and where she is headed, to King’s Landing (to kill the Queen as you said)
      – That Arya is still a good person and not a psychopath killer, and giving her a sweet moment with people almost her age, moments she never has.. a moment that may eventually want to make her go home (since the soldiers were talking about home) … so it could be setting up for that
      – To add a little humour and a light scene in an almost always dark show.. with a song from the books sung by one of the soliders (so a nod to book readers)
      – And I also took that it shows us, the viewer, that not all Lannister soldiers are horrible.. and that even they are sick of the war…

      THANK YOU. Apparently, so many people were so distracted by the cameo they missed the important point the scene made regarding Arya’s humanity. Petra and I just discussed this, for our new Thursday feature 😉

        Quote  Reply

    71. Mr Derp,

      VERY well said!!!!!!!! That’s what I am trying to say also.
      And you know what, I was so nervous the entire time that they would do something to her, or that they were playing her, so I pleasantly surprised, and to be honest, quite disappointment in myself for automatically assuming they were bad people.

      I absolutely loved that scene.

      And Mr Derp, in regards to your comments about Arya maybe changing her mind about going home… I DID NOT see the preview, and I am going to try hard to avoid it… but I am soooo hype NOW !! WOOO

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    72. Dee Stark,

      I just read your comments too. Very well said! I probably didn’t even need to bother typing out mine now that Ive seen yours.

      I hope I didn’t spoil anything for you Dee! I kept the preview info vague just in case because I know how you like to go in as unsullied as possible! I apologize if I said too much.

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    73. Mr Derp,

      Haha, great minds YADA YADA.
      No its fine.. you didn’t really say what it is, just that it could make her change her mind. IM PSYCHED!

      Luka Nieto,

      RIGHT? hahaha.
      And I am excited for that piece!

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    74. Mr Derp,

      Well said for sure and the scene really has a significant meaning. I honestly still don’t understand what was wrong with Sheeran’s cameo apperiance. I heard of him but to think there are actors in the show we know from movies and stuff… are they distracting as well?

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    75. Ryan:
      I’d be surprised if that was the focus re: the Lannister soldiers.

      Lannister soldiers have basically been faceless nameless automatons for 6 years, doing the “evil” houses bidding…. I’d be surprised if they’re really trying to finally humanize them 2 episodes before they are wiped out.

      And what exactly would be strange in that? Isn’t GoT supposed to be a show with complex and layered characters and no straight “good vs evil”?

        Quote  Reply

    76. Lord Parramandas:
      Mr Derp,

      Well said for sure and the scene really has a significant meaning. I honestly still don’t understand what was wrong with Sheeran’s cameo apperiance. I heard of him but to think there are actors in the show we know from movies and stuff… are they distracting as well?

      Lord Parramandas,

      It certainly wasn’t distracting to the point where I had trouble focusing or paying attention. I think it was momentarily distracting because his face is so famous and it kinda took my focus out of the GoT world and back into my own, which I don’t like when watching a fantasy show.

      The other cameos in previous seasons weren’t distracting at all because the camera didn’t focus on their faces. They just looked like another Wilding, another Bolton soldier, and so on. Also, the musicians who made cameos in other seasons were fairly obscure bands that aren’t particularly mainstream. Ed Sheeran is about as mainstream is it gets.

      Anyway, it didn’t really bother me and in subsequent viewings I’ve been able to focus much more on the other actors rather than Ed. I like the scene more each time I watch it, which has probably been like 5 times by now!

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    77. Ryan,

      But it’s not like the Lannister soldiers were the only ones doing questionable things… Remember the Northern soldiers back in season 2 that hanged those tavern wenches because “They Lay With Lions“? The soldiers that Brienne killed?

      We are conditioned to think that the Lannister soldiers must be a bunch of psychopaths… This scene shows that many of them are not. They are just lowborns caught up in the quarrels of the nobility.

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    78. Lord Parramandas,

      You’d have to be more specific, but any actor that has an actual role that lasts for more than 1 minute in the show has never bothered me. I expect to see actors playing roles because it’s what they do for a living.

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    79. Mr Derp,

      I mean in a way how Ned always reminded me of Boromir and the character himself looked very similar. And then I know Ellaria from Rome, I know Max von Sydow from many movies in modern setting, along with some other actors, and by that logic, I could say these roles are “distracting” as well.

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    80. Lord Parramandas,

      Well they either distract you or they don’t.

      I don’t usually get distracted by actors because it’s expected to see them on tv or on screen, just like seeing Ed Sheeran on stage wouldn’t distract me because it’s what he does for a living. There’s nothing unusual about it. However, if Sean Bean was on stage with Ed Sheeran playing one of his songs, then yes, Sean Bean would be “distracting”, but it wouldn’t bother me. Just like how I felt the first time I saw Ed in “Dragonstone”.

      And some actors are just so damn good that they can play any role and it wouldn’t distract me at all. When I see Ned, I don’t really automatically go to Boromir in my mind. I actually think more of him in Patriot Games and marvel at how different he looks when playing different roles. He fits in whatever role he’s playing. Thats the mark of a great actor.

        Quote  Reply

    81. Mr Derp,

      I must say for myself that I was positively surprised Sheeran’s apperiance was an actual scene, not just a couple seconds standing in the background like usual cameo apperiances. I personally feel he blended well with other young Lannister soldiers and if I didn’t know he would make cameo apperiance, I probably wouldn’t even recognize him.

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    82. Lord Parramandas,

      Yea, I would agree with that. If I didn’t know him then there’s no way I would’ve noticed anything different. Having said that, since I do know his face, I noticed him right away. But as I said earlier, it was a very minor distraction and on subsequent viewings I couldn’t care less that he’s in the scene. My focus was on the purpose of the conversation and I liked it.

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    83. Dee Stark,

      OMG, LOL is right!!! How could I have forgotten? (Oh, yeah… Dornish red chased with whiskey.) I get almost daily memes from my daughter about Walder Filch! 😛 😛 😛

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    84. Luka Nieto:

      Something I notice is in Spanish we use much longer, paragraph-length sentences without a full stop. English is usually much snappier. And, when speaking English, we use many more Latin-derived words that may be interpreted as “highbrow”… but we just use them because they are more similar to our equivalent but very colloquial Latin-derived terms, not because we’re trying to impress anyone. “Big words,” longer sentences… I see what you mean, how that could appear; though I must say, there are better ways to say it.

      I was really taken aback by that comment about grammar and syntax. Yes, there are definitely “better ways to say it.”

      Incidentally, I love your essays and do not find your English awkward at all. I grew up bilingual (Portuguese and English), and was reading classic 19th-century novels at 10 or 11; my mother has a master’s in English literature, so I grew up in a house full of books. Those early influences definitely come across in my writing: I tend to write longer sentences and employ dashes, colons, and semicolons far too often for most of my professors’ taste. (I just earned my bachelor’s last year.)

      To be honest, I’m often annoyed by the fact that current-day writing in English, especially American English, is expected to be staccato. And it downright offends me when people who use “big words” are accused of trying to impress professors, as though employing a larger vocabulary—the greatest hallmark of intelligence in a human being—is nothing more than 1) a sign of arrogance or 2) what we, ahem, colloquially refer to as “brown-nosing.”

      Keep up the great work, Luka. I, for one, am very thankful for all the literate people who contribute to this site, moderators and regular commenters alike.

        Quote  Reply

    85. Wolfish,

      I didn’t notice the grammar comment but I honestly find it silly that someone would complain about it… I’m not a native English speaker either and of course, we have a different manner of writing. And like you said, there’s also nothing wrong with English speakers writing in longer sentences. I know for myself I enjoy that style even more.

      I generally find it funny how on many fansites, people write a lengthy comment and then apologize for their “bad English” or some are even afraid to comment. And then I read that “bad english” comment and I’m perfectly able to understand it and in most of the cases, they are quite rich in words, even if the grammar is not fully correct. Who cares about mistakes in those cases… isn’t it better that people around the world are able to have conversations instead of them being limited to only native English speakers?

      Like I said above, I personally enjoy Luka’s posts as well.

        Quote  Reply

    86. Nice interpersonal scenes, but yet again too much junk. Game of Thrones has a huge problem generating meaningful content over junk. The farther they get from the novels, the less material they can pillage for writing the television show. Quips, insight, and far deeper content is rarer, and echoes the emptiness exhibited by media creations versus written works. The amount of time they spent on The Hound and Daenerys walking in silence were examples of overly extended filler material. Season 6 had a big problem with it. They could have easily finished Game of Thrones this season without all of the junk. I understand their financial motivations for extending it, but it is detrimental to the overall quality of the show. Still enjoyable, but the “golden age” of its writing is over.

        Quote  Reply

    87. Lord Parramandas,

      I couldn’t agree more. Incidentally, the majority of people here for whom English is a second (or third, or fourth, or fifth…) language contribute far more intelligent and well-written comments than 99% of English-speaking Facebook commenters I encounter. So that complaint really did stick in my craw (to use another colloquial expression).

        Quote  Reply

    88. Lord Parramandas:
      Funny, I remember some westeros org toxic folk saying how the show went downhill in S5 and how the viewership will rapidly fall, resulting in the show getting cancelled… and here I read about new records.

      It is such a strange place. In the book forum side, you’re basically supposed to assume the show doesn’t exist, which leads to all kinds of strangeness like Jon Snow’s parents, the popular “R+L=J” theory, not being confirmed and made canon.

      TBF, the show only confirmed Jon’s mother (or, according to some, not even that because the shot of a solemn-looking brown-eyed baby in ToJ, cut to solemn-looking, brown-eyed Jon Snow doesn’t mean anything), his father hasn’t been confirmed on screen but all clues lead to Rhaegar.

      People who’ve had way too much time to analyse every detail (thanks, GRRM!) get bored of the well-clued, foreshadowed and storywise logical answer and go on a rampage of making just about everybody in Ned’s generation fuck everybody else, producing a plethora of secret babies. We get glorious crackpots, babyswaps, 15 month pregnancies, 6 month pregnancies, all just to “disprove” R+L=J.

      By now, it’s imperative for all the theorists and crackpotters to discount the show… Because the show has basically confirmed the fandom’s most popular theory, R+L=J, and crackpotters have had the rug pulled from under their feet. So the defence is “GRRM would never write that” and “We don’t know before GRRM publishes his next books.” Ignoring all rules of storytelling, and even hints from GRRM himself. Ho-hum. (yawn)

        Quote  Reply

    89. talvikorppi,

      Yes, on books thread, you must pretend the show does not exist, and on show threads, you must bash the show and its fans as much as possible. I got personally insulted there on so many occassions and people were so extremely arrogant and dismissive towards everyone who even tried to defend the show. Toth, Borodin, Annara Snow, Marsyao, PyatDaenerys… I remember so many names.

        Quote  Reply

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