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HBO’s Game of Thrones Returns to Series-High Ratings

HBO’s Game of Thrones returned for a second season Sunday as the most-watched scripted show on cable television last week, attracting a series-high 3.9 million viewers in its first airing. That’s a 74 percent jump from the 2.2 million that tuned in last year for the series debut.

The New York Times notes that while HBO is available in only about one-third of the homes in the country, Game of Thrones out-performed the second episode of AMC’s Mad Men, which averaged about 2.9 million viewers Sunday at 10 p.m. ET/PT. The fantasy drama also tromped the two-hour second-season premiere of AMC’s The Killing, which drew just 1.8 million viewers.

Adding together all three Sunday airings, Game of Thrones totaled 6.3 million viewers, erasing any lingering doubts — were there any? — that HBO will renew the series for a third season.


  • Coryjameson

    YES! I love A Game of Thrones, but I hate the utterly INERT “Mad Men”. The only reason “Mad Men” have any ratings is because women have a boner on for Jon Hamm (who’s aging really badly, BTW)

  • Scarletspeed7

    Despite the fact that I know EXACTLY what is coming via the books, I’m still riveted to this show.  That says something.

  • Paul

    Mad Men is actually the finest scripted show on television (I’m afraid any one of Roger Sterling’s zingers is worth a hundred of the above user’s wan complaints about the show being “inert”; itself an odd complaint given that GoT is an epic adventure series that mostly consists of… a lot of talking), but Game of Thrones is also very good. As long as we have quality shows like these to enjoy instead of crap like The Walking Dead and CSI, I’m a happy camper.

  • Tomfitz1

    Let’s not forget that men have a boner for Jessica Pare and Christina Hendricks (Joan — everybody’s favorite redhead).  ;-)

  • Anonymous

    Wait, the most watched scripted show on cable [that air] last week?

  • Jerry Souza

    Game of Thrones is awesome, very true to the books. I love every minute of it. For those that haven’t read the books stick around it gets so much better, you’ll crap your pants halfway through season 3 but I’m not telling why :)