TV | August 29, 2017 9:26 am

‘Game of Thrones’ Season Finale Guts Previous Record With 16.5 Million Viewers

Nielsen totals includes those who watched show live or streamed on same night.

No need to choke on your morning doughnut, Joffrey-style: We’re not going to spoil anything about Sunday night’s Game of Thrones season finale for those of you who haven’t watched it.

What we will reveal is this: A lot of people were watching. A record number, actually. According to Nielsen ratings data, Thrones raked in 16.5 million viewers for subscription-based cable network HBO. As Variety reports, that included fans watching the show live, as well as those who streamed it on the same night. And those aren’t even the final tallies.

It was easily the most-watch episode in the series’ history, and bested the Season 6 finale, up 3.2 million viewers year-over-year.

That number also eclipsed the Season 7 premiere, which hit 16.1 total viewers, counting viewers and streamers.

Episodes this season have been raking in an average of 30.6 million viewers, eclipsing 2016’s totals by 8 million.

Variety rightly notes that Thrones is somewhat of an anomaly in today’s TV landscape, as each of its seasons has built on the next regarding viewership. There’s usually falloff, but Thrones seems just to continue chugging ahead.

The series will end after its eighth season, which is set to air sometime next year. As Thrones‘ showrunners announced at this past year’s SXSW, the final season will be just six episodes long.