Thrones ratings back at the old high
By Hear Me Roar on in News.

The latest episode of Thrones garnered rating numbers that reached the old high-water mark with 3.9 million for the initial airing and a 2.0 demo rating. The repeat added over a million for 4.9 viewers in total for the night. This matches the series record, not counting the premiere night with three airings.

As level as it gets. Will the full-throttle promotion of Blackwater push more viewers to the 9 p.m. airing next week? Tune in seven days from now to find out.


82 Comments

  1. Belwas's Stool
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    This show is incredibly steady,lol

  2. Knurk
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    Lol, this probably must be some kind of steady-record indeed. Just compare it to the decline of Mad Men, it had 3.5 million viewers and a 1.2 demo for the season premiere this year and last sunday it had 1.9 million and 0.6 demo. Pretty alarming for that show.

  3. paylor
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Does anyone know what the ratings were like for the episode that aired during Memorial Day weekend last year?

    ETA: The only thing important to note is that Mad Men has been renewed for what, 3 more years, to complete the series. That’s the only thing I’d care about when it comes to GOT.

  4. Mike Chair
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    paylor: Does anyone know what the ratings were like for the episode that aired during Memorial Day weekend last year?

    The May 29, 2011 episode “You Win or You Die” recored 2.4 million U.S. viewers according to wiki.

  5. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:15 am | Permalink

    Sweet. Surely Blackwater will reach 4 ?

    BTW can anyone please explain to me why GOT is absent from The Sunday Times tv ratings in their culture section ? The first season cracked the top ten but this one has yet to break in.

  6. Szymon W.
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Hard to believe. Season II quality is really bad. Propably one of the worst series seasons made by HBO … [*]

  7. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Please you must have missed the last couple seasons of Entourage or that horrible attempt by The Sopranos to tackle gay gangsters in season six.

  8. paylor
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    It looks like the ratings went slightly down for the episode that aired during Memorial Day weekend last year. I think the ratings will slightly increase, despite it being a holiday weekend.

  9. Winter Is Coming
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    I don’t think looking at the numbers for last Memorial Day weekend is going to tell us anything. Remember that was the week that HBO released the episode a week early on HBO Go, which probably effected the initial viewer number more than it being a holiday weekend.

  10. Szymon W.
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,
    Yep, haven’t watch those two. But still it’s hard to think that GoT II was made by HBO.
    Even Starz with their cheap CGI would make this much better will lots of schemes and action.

  11. Hear Me Roar
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Knurk,

    Well, Bordwalk S2 trend was also almost completely steady, for what is worth. But that was of course at a level lower than the final S1 episodes, not to mention the premiere record.

  12. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    You can’t be serious ? I’ll admit this series has suffered a bit without Bean and Addy but it’s still easily one the best shows on tv at the moment, it’s insulting to compare GOT to that abomination that is Spartacus.

  13. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.:
    Hard to believe. Season II quality is really bad. Propably one of the worst series seasons made by HBO … [*]

    Can you please outline/explain why you think it’s so bad?

    I don’t mean to be a douchebag, I seriously want to know. Making a huge claim like that — positive or negative — and then not backing it up kinda just makes everyone do this.

  14. Szymon W.
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    Two words: Mad Men. And really there is not much competition.

    If you don’t take Spartacus too serious it’s really entertaining show. I also reccomend Pillars of Earth ( Starz ) – this is how you make medieval-themed show.

  15. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    I’m really not sure you can compare Pillars and GoT — they’re not the same genre. I know, I know, they both have castles and peasants and shit, but one’s historical fiction and one’s an entire fantasy world in which the creators can do whatever the fuck they want. At least in Pillars, there’s gotta be historical basis; ultimately, in GoT, GRRM/D&D can play it how they please. If suddenly Westerosi culture is based on the Ancient Romans, well, fuck, who are we to judge?

    So it’s a little like apples to oranges, is what I’m saying.

  16. Mirri Maz
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Great hopefully a 100,000 more will tune in next week to watch the battle so we can finally crack the 4 million viewers.

  17. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:40 am | Permalink

    Also, Pillars was a miniseries based on one book; GoT is a full-fledged series based on a fucking huge, massive universe rivaled in scale maybe only by Expanded Star Wars.

  18. Morgan King
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon,

    Trolls, man, it’s just not worth your effort. I mean, who in their right mind would hang around a fan forum after 8 episodes they didn’t like AND still feel compelled to comment repeatedly? Sad, bored people.

  19. jkb
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    The Kingslayer:
    or that horrible attempt by The Sopranos to tackle gay gangsters in season six.

    you gotta be kiddin, that was awesome.

  20. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Pillars Of The Earth was not bad, a bit hammy at times but enjoyable. I wouldn’t mind seeing some of those actors in GOT like Rufus Swell.

    That’s why I said” one of the best” Mad Men is outstanding but it’s got competition especially from Breaking Bad.

  21. mrbrando62
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    4.9 million total viewers is pretty solid. Im expecting 4.0 for black water and 4.1 for the season finale

  22. Mirri Maz
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    i hated Pillars of the Earth, what i remember from it is that they built the cathedral only for the bad guys to come and destroy it again and again and again.

  23. paylor
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    I think that’s the troll’s point. Ignore him.

  24. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    jkb,

    Watching Vito roll around in the grass with that fireman has been giving me nightmares for years.

  25. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Morgan King,

    Sigh. I’ve just taken the Vow of Relative Politeness and I’m really trying to see where the naysayers, book purists or otherwise, are coming from.

    Having been twelve years old and ON THE INTERNET! myself once, I guess I should know that there’s nothing there but a huge desire to cause chaos for little-to-no reason.

  26. SerCountryFriedSteak
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    I don’t know.

    The great ratings tend to fall on the episode which follows an episode with a great cliffhanger ending:
    aka:
    After Ned was killed, Series 1 season finale had great ratings.
    After smoke baby cliffhanger, the next episode had great rating.
    After Theon kills the kids, we see the ratings tick up again.

    This last episode was not only the calm before the storm… as reviews have noted, it was melancholy. The episode was really slow and it felt like the show was stalling. Personally, the promo got me excited for next week, but the show didn’t. And I wonder how many other people feel the same.

    I’d guess the episode AFTER Blackwater will reap the rewards of higher ratings.

  27. Pastor_of_Muppets
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    “Easy to believe. Season II quality is really good. Propably one of the best series seasons made by HBO … [*]”

    Fixed.

  28. desdemona
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    Morgan King:
    ThePinkDragon,

    Trolls, man, it’s just not worth your effort. I mean, who in their right mind would hang around a fan forum after 8 episodes they didn’t like AND still feel compelled to comment repeatedly? Sad, bored people.

    Completely agree!

  29. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    Pastor_of_Muppets,

    Well, wait a sec, now, let’s not swing the other way without explaining why first.

    Unless you’ve seen most modern HBO shows from start-to-finish — which is totally possible, I know quite a few people who just love everything HBO puts out — in which case, feel free to make that judgement call.

  30. garik16
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:49 am | Permalink

    I actually expect a ratings drop for Blackwater or not any rise. Two episodes ago they setup things in motion, particularly in Qarth, which made it seem like E8 would be huge. E8…..was not.

    As a result, I don’t think people will be that super hyped to tune into E9, even if they know the battle is coming. Think of it like Baelor last year, which actually had a ratings drop from E8. Ratings reflect a good deal of interest in the previous episode.

  31. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Does anyone have the UK ratings for the show ?

  32. ThePinkDragon
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Oh, right. I have exams today, don’t I? Sigh.

    walks out of comments section dejectedly, dressed in black, etc.

  33. WompWomp
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    garik16,

    Someone brought this up on gods-know-what-thread, but a ratings spike isn’t a huge likelihood this season because there’s so much to catch up on. It’s hard to imagine someone impulse-subscribing to HBO to catch the penultimate episode of a show’s sophomore season. I think they marked down the GoT S1 boxed sets to really penetrate the untapped audience market and I assume the S2 boxed set will play the same role.

  34. tysnow
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:56 am | Permalink

    Alot of these trolls are actually rival corporate and show bloggers, their purpose is to build negativity for the competition by creating doubts in readers and hopefully award show members. The Weinstein Bros. were big for this and still are concerning competitors to their films. Say a lie enough and some will believe it, build ? marks concerning a rival studio/film so Academy voters (who really don’t watch all the films in question) believe some of the naysayers and therefore exclude any votes for those films/shows. It basically is covert psych ops of the studio kind.

  35. Mean25
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.:
    Hard to believe. Season II quality is really bad. Propably one of the worst series seasons made by HBO … [*]

    I wouldn’t go so far, but it’s not on the level of season 1.
    Borgias season 2 is really good, I find it more enjoying then GoT this season.
    PS: funny how everybody here calls you a troll or a purist if they don’t agree with you.
    And in the same day they cry that some other people insult Bryan on twitter, but they act the same way here and insult you if you dare to say something negative about this season.

  36. SerCountryFriedSteak
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    garik16: I actually expect a ratings drop for Blackwater or not any rise. Two episodes ago they setup things in motion, particularly in Qarth, which made it seem like E8 would be huge. E8…..was not. As a result, I don’t think people will be that super hyped to tune into E9, even if they know the battle is coming. Think of it like Baelor last year, which actually had a ratings drop from E8. Ratings reflect a good deal of interest in the previous episode.

    That’s exactly what I was getting at. The Prince of Winterfell had some great scenes, but as an episode it was flat… it’s getting not only fans but professional critics grumbling too. It’s not a shock that this is the episode that gave poor Cogman the most grief… and thank the Seven that he left Twitter before “chain-gate”

    But Blackwater should pull people back in, so ratings for the finale will tick up.

  37. Arthur
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Hmm.

    I think the steady ratings are a great sign. It shows that people who invested the time to watch season one are enjoying the ride. Unlike True Blood and many other series where you get many small payoffs within that single episode, GoTs payoffs usalky take half a season. So I’m betting season 3 will have another million per episode added and be just as steady because by that time a million more people will be caught up and invested in the characters.

    But I do really hope next week breaks the 4 million mark. I understand this is a drama but this seasons lack of action is noticeable. You got to remember young males, like myself, had the great Khal Drogo to look forward to every episode and the Jaime vs Ned build-up.

    That is the only thing missing this season IMO. Though I really enjoyed last episode with all the dialog taking right from the books.

  38. Szymon W.
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    I’m very sorry. You guys are right. This show is great and nobody should ever say a bad word about it. Here are a few things:
    - Jon S. story – they made look like moron and he acts like moron – even arrogant moron! Not to mention that Qhorin ( veteran ranger ) lost him like what – after 5 minutes in ice wasteland ? I mean how ? Bad writing … really bad.
    - Robb – oh dear. Classic, cliche romance. It’s torture to watch this badly writen dialogs and scenes. Boltons faces, everytime he sees this foreign w…. says everything.
    - Dany – propably worst story in the book and they managed to make it even …. meh. Even non readers are tired of hearing about dragons, fire and blood etc.
    - Arya – pointless scenes with Tywin sum it up. Not to mention that after sitting on his a.. for three episodes he has to go and save KL …really HBO, really ? No Weasel Soup [*]

    there are propably couple more”nitpicks” but with much lesser importance.

  39. Pastor_of_Muppets
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon,

    I’ve been an HBO aficionado for several years, and have completely watched through most of their original series (some, such as Deadwood, more than once). I wouldn’t put season two of Game of Thrones up there with the absolute best that HBO has ever done (first season of Deadwood; third season of The Wire; second season of The Sopranos), but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s an excellent show, second only to Breaking Bad as far as shows currently airing or in-production (and directly ahead of Mad Men and Boardwalk Empire).

    Game of Thrones, as a whole, is certainly one of the most ambitious shows I’ve ever seen, and the fact that (for me) it succeeds 99% of the time is honestly a revelation. As far as my comment to Szymon W., I was simply showing him how easy it is to be dismissive of something without providing any relevant context or criticisms. Essentially, I’m calling him/her out for being a troll. You might be on this, “polite” kick, but I prefer to go about it by calling it as I see it.

    Edit: I see he went and posted some reasoning, nearly all of which is centered around differences from the books. Even less ground to stand on than before, in that case. Book purism is not something I’ll ever use as a legitimate criticism against this show or any other adaptation, nor acknowledge as valid coming from anyone else. The show is the show; the book is the book. Simple as that.

  40. tysnow
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    With Mad Men ratings waaaaay down and dropping, the studio will attempt to build negativity for the competition, especially those high or climbing in viewership, so when noms go out, hopefully the false lies will have had enough of an impact so voters shy away. I would say GoT and BB are MM’s main competition for the next awards and with the critical acclaim the same for all three, but with GoT’s ratings way ahead, MM fans and studio heads will ramp up the PR machine, especially since MM didn’t get the awards it was expected to this past season.
    This might sound a little out there, but my dad was military intel and you cannot believe all the stuff I learned about what goes on and why people and organizations can and will do, too manipulate others and events to reach their end goals.

  41. paylor
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Mean25,

    I think the troll part comes in when you hang out on the boards to a show you don’t like and have no interest in.

  42. sjwenings
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Thank the seven for “next week-previews”! I don’t think ep 8 being slow will matter much when ep 9 looks this exiting!

    I almost assume we’ll finally get at least a 4.0, and wouldn’t be surprised with 100-200 k ekstra.

  43. Mean25
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

    paylor:
    Mean25,

    I think the troll part comes in when you hang out on the boards to a show you don’t like and have no interest in.

    I think people like it too much, and are very invested in it. That’s why we see many sad and angry people, when we know they could do it better, we saw it in season one. People voice their opinions here, and get bashed, they’re called purist, trolls etc.

  44. Nomisum
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

    For me, a big plus for the series is the slow developing but nevertheless early recognizable big picture of the action. This will help many over the little interwinglings of not-their-favorite characters throughout the show and hopefully seasons. Not sure if other shows can compete in this matter

  45. Dennis
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    Great news again.

    It will be VERY telling and interesting to see what the ratings for the next episode (Blackwater) will be. Lots of folks will be out and about for Memorial Day weekend but if a lot of them are anything like me I will consider watching GoT part of the tradition (only going on a trip sat and sun but back before 9pm haha!)
    Seems like HBO is trying to promote the crap out of the next episode so despite the potential drop due to the holiday, I think the odds for it breaking 4m on the initial showing are still very good. It better be, because I want the HBO execs to get the point that extra money thrown towards epic battle scenes is money well spent!

    I am sssoooo looking forward to Sunday!

  46. Arthur
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    I’m very sorry. You guys are right. This show is great and nobody should ever say a bad word about it. Here are a few things:
    – Jon S. story – they made look like moron and he acts like moron – even arrogant moron! Not to mention that Qhorin ( veteran ranger ) lost him like what – after 5 minutes in ice wasteland ? I mean how ? Bad writing … really bad.
    – Robb – oh dear. Classic, cliche romance. It’s torture to watch this badly writen dialogs and scenes. Boltons faces, everytime he sees this foreign w…. says everything.
    – Dany – propably worst story in the book and they managed to make it even …. meh. Even non readers are tired of hearing about dragons, fire and blood etc.
    – Arya – pointless scenes with Tywin sum it up. Not to mention that after sitting on his a.. for three episodes he has to go and save KL …really HBO, really ? No Weasel Soup [*]

    there are propably couple more”nitpicks” but with much lesser importance.

    First off, I do not think you are a troll or a book purist. I think you are simply a disappointed fan.

    I want to address your complaints and take the opposing side in a friendly discussing.

    1). Jon Snow’s storyline. To be fair, at this point in the book, Jon Snow is basically a child that in fact “knows nothing”. He is the male version of Sansa. Through his experiences with Ygritte and the Wildlings he loses that immature view of the world and becomes a “man-grown”. So I do not mind them making him look like a fool because IMHO he is kind of a fool at that point of time.

    2). Robb Stark’s storyline. I actually am very happy D&D gave us a meaningful romance scene. I think it was done beautifully. This show needs some more of that kind of stuff. I hope the jon/Ygritte stuff gets romantic/sexual as well. Dude, would you rather them show us Ros/brothel scenes? Hell no, I will take Robb’s storyline any day over that, wouldn’t you?

    3). Dany’s storyline. Yeah I agree, her storyline is rather boring in book 2. I do enjoy the changes D&D have made. It makes it more interesting for the book reader to watch. Yeah, she still is a whining little girl, but just like Jon Snow, her character at that point in the books is still rather naive. After book 2 she becomes much better at political things. So to be fair, Dany is the same Dany in the books as she is in the show.

    4). Arya’ storyline. Come on man. You didn’t enjoy that scene? It was pretty awesome how it all paned out.

    This show is amazing. There are several minor things all of us can nitpick on. but overall D&D are staying true to the books as much as possible. We got to remember that have a budget and time constraints. Take that in affect before you criticize. That is all I am saying.

  47. Viserion
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    glad its holding steady. Hopefully HBO execs now have genuine passion for the series behind all the $ signs so we visually get to complete the entire saga.

  48. JA
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Who would watch a show because they wish it was different? That makes zero sense. It is what it is. If you don’t like a show, you stop watching it. Very simple. Continuing to watch for the purpose of whining is just being a troll, period.

  49. WompWomp
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Unprovoked personal attacks are a sure sign of someone not worth listening to.

  50. Oi!
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    Love the season so far (i find it superior to most of S1) the dialogue (verbal jib-jab between characters, especially Arya vs. Tywin (best change so far). The same with Qarth they actually managed to make Danys story interesting (and again the best character for me was not from the books –> the spice king (to bad he died). Plus i love it that actors like Alfie have been hitting it out of the park with increasing screen time. The only thing that has been lacking is action, i mean last year we had Jaime vs. Ned, Drogo vs. Mago, Jorah vs. bloodrider, Broon vs. Vardis and this year we only got Yoren vs. Lannisters.

  51. WompWomp
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    Oi!,

    And we’re only going to get “Blackwater.” [laughs]

    Full speed ahead!

  52. Dennis
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    The other day I was watching a bit of Gladiator again on HBO…a movie I loved to death. Now after watching GoT for nearly 2 seasons it almost seems kind of lame. That’s how awesome GoT is to me! (Though the opening battle in Gladiator is still freakin epic and GoT would do well with a bit more sword action).

  53. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Arthur:
    Szymon W.,

    This show is amazing.There are several minor things all of us can nitpick on.but overall D&D are staying true to the books as much as possible.We got to remember that have a budget and time constraints.Take that in affect before you criticize.That is all I am saying.

    I think the problem maybe an structural one. They probaly couldn’t do a much better job (without Martin’s help, that is), due to this time and budget constraints you mention. I agree they are doing the best they can, but you could also agree, or at least understand (wich I think you do) the point of view of ppl like me that are a bit dissapointed at this second season.

    They had to find new solutions to some of the plotlines due to this constraints, and I think they didn’t find the best paths. As many (including winter) have mentioned, some of the changes they did in past episodes have come back to bite them. Also some changes don’t really make sense…(for example, book Catelyn did thought Bran&Rickon were dead, why change that? they had to add a scene shoking all the ravens dead, so that was not due to monetary or time issues).

    I think they should try to dedicate more time to check over and over and over if a particular change will make some people act out of character later on, and if that’s the case, either rethink that change, or make more changes in the future. I don’t care if they deviate more from the books if that makes everyone act more morepn character, but if we have lets say “Show Joffrey” in one episode and “Book Joffrey” in another, or “SHow Cersei” reacting to “Show Joffrey” in one episode and “Book Joffrey” in another, that makes thinks confusing.

    If you think about it, all this work they have to do is almost double the work Martin did, as they have to deal with 2 versions of each character. I think they didn’t really think things through when they changed some stuff at the start, and now is scaleting more and more, as Martin predicted with the butterfly effect. He mentioned Mago, wich really didnt make much sense becasue is the easiest change to fix, but, as smart as he is, I think he was refering to all the inconsistencies we are seeing now. Now those complaints make much more sense

  54. Morgan King
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    Look, guys, its not about not wanting to hear negative criticism, its that it’s completely pointless whining. Complaining about, say, Arya’s dialogs with Tywin and how those (I’d argue brilliantly externalizing internal-and-unspoken motivations from the book) scenes cost you a fairly-convoluted soup-throwing scene is utterly fruitless, regardless of what you think about it. It’s already, been written, acted, filmed, aired and completed. It’s not ever going to change, and every complaint you will ever, ever have about it is falling on deaf ears. If insanely-hot Carice van Houten isn’t insanely hot enough for you – who cares? They’re not going to recast the role. This is the Game of Thrones TV show that exists, if you want a different one, you’d better get work on it (I’m, clearly, no purist, but I’d love to see a completely-literal animated adaptation, and I think there’s room for that to exist, eventually).

    Anyway, I know that immature people have a hard time coming to terms with how truly ineffectual they are in the world around them, and that giving them a voice, much less an anonymous one, via the Internet exacerbates that, but you’ve got to hope that the insipid, entitled mewling will someday cease. It serves absolutely no benefit for anyone.

    I know it’s cliche and kind of trite, but learning to accept the things you cannot change, and working to change the things that you can, is a big part of being an adult.

  55. Pastor_of_Muppets
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Except that nothing you mentioned is a plot-hole. The fact that you don’t like it when these characters make irrational or illogical decisions seems to be the point the author was trying to make. Unlike the characters on the show, we get to see how this story and these characters evolve and act through the perspective of all the major players, which is something Jon Snow or Catelyn Stark or Daenarys Targaeryan don’t get to do. They don’t have the ability to look up “common sense when attempting to execute a Wildling woman” or “what do baby dragons eat?” on Google. They don’t live in our world, let alone live in a world with the kind of access to information that we have (not to mention the fact that they’re all fictional characters…), so why would you judge them as such?

    Just for the sake of the argument (and because I’m really bored at work) – nevermind. Just saw that Arthur beat me to it. Regardless, I find it increasingly hilarious that some members of the audience expect the characters to act like we think they should, when the characters in the show have only a fraction of the knowledge that we do (or none at all) concerning the plans and motivations of the other people sharing the story with them. It’s easier to keep that in mind when reading the book, as every chapter is told from a P.O.V., but it doesn’t change the fact that people always have and always will make dumb decisions throughout their life. For example: the point of Catelyn releasing Jaime is that it’s an irrational, emotionally fueled decision and not something she thought about and debated on a Westerosi message board for hours on end.

    I guess we just fundamentally disagree, but if every character in this story suddenly started making the right decisions, the rational decisions, the logical decisions, then there wouldn’t be any story at all. And perhaps more importantly, if the characters all started doing these things it would be completely UNrealistic. Myself and everyone I know make mistakes all the time, just like every other person who ever lived. Some mistakes are bigger than others, and some have more consequences than others, but that’s simply a part of life. Didn’t mean to turn this into a life lesson type spiel, but as I said, I’m bored at work.

  56. serum
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    ThePinkDragon,

    Read the Dune series by Frank Herbert and the continued dune series by his son and kevin j. anderson if you want massive scale, the original has been around a lot longer than star wars and its a way better story, in my opinion

  57. Alan
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.:
    I’m very sorry. You guys are right. This show is great and nobody should ever say a bad word about it. Here are a few things:
    - Jon S. story – they made look like moron and he acts like moron – even arrogant moron! Not to mention that Qhorin ( veteran ranger ) lost him like what – after 5 minutes in ice wasteland ? I mean how ? Bad writing … really bad.
    - Robb – oh dear. Classic, cliche romance. It’s torture to watch this badly writen dialogs and scenes. Boltons faces, everytime he sees this foreign w…. says everything.
    - Dany – propably worst story in the book and they managed to make it even …. meh. Even non readers are tired of hearing about dragons, fire and blood etc.
    - Arya – pointless scenes with Tywin sum it up. Not to mention that after sitting on his a.. for three episodes he has to go and save KL …really HBO, really ? No Weasel Soup [*]

    there are propably couple more”nitpicks” but with much lesser importance.

    The problem is not criticism; it’s the ridiculous idea that any of the above criticisms make GOT “one of the worst seasons on HBO.”

  58. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

    Morgan King:
    Look, guys, its not about not wanting to hear negative criticism, its that it’s completely pointless whining. Complaining about, say, Arya’s dialogs with Tywin and how those (I’d argue brilliantly externalizing internal-and-unspoken motivations from the book) scenes cost you a fairly-convoluted soup-throwing scene is utterly fruitless, regardless of what you think about it. It’s already, been written, acted, filmed, aired and completed. It’s not ever going to change, and every complaint you will ever, ever have about it is falling on deaf ears.If insanely-hot Carice van Houten isn’t insanely hot enough for you – who cares? They’re not going to recast the role. This is the Game of Thrones TV show that exists, if you want a different one, you’d better get work on it (I’m, clearly, no purist, but I’d love to see a completely-literal animated adaptation, and I think there’s room for that to exist, eventually).

    Anyway, I know that immature people have a hard time coming to terms with how truly ineffectual they are in the world around them, and that giving them a voice, much less an anonymous one, via the Internet exacerbates that, but you’ve got to hope that the insipid, entitled mewling will someday cease. It serves absolutely no benefit for anyone.

    I know it’s cliche and kind of trite, but learning to accept the things you cannot change, and working to change the things that you can, is a big part of being an adult.

    Do you know that you are doing exactly the same here, complaining about the complainers, because nothing you say is gonna make them change their ways? :P

    Not that I’m complaining( becasue then I’d would fall into the endless circle hehe), but is just that I found it funny ;)

  59. Morgan King
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    I was aware of the futility as I was writing that, but I’d like to think that everybody’s next post is always as-yet unwritten, that the person is a work-in-progress as opposed to a completed television episode.

  60. Drfunk
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.:
    I’m very sorry. You guys are right. This show is great and nobody should ever say a bad word about it. Here are a few things:
    - Jon S. story – they made look like moron and he acts like moron – even arrogant moron! Not to mention that Qhorin ( veteran ranger ) lost him like what – after 5 minutes in ice wasteland ? I mean how ? Bad writing … really bad.
    - Robb – oh dear. Classic, cliche romance. It’s torture to watch this badly writen dialogs and scenes. Boltons faces, everytime he sees this foreign w…. says everything.
    - Dany – propably worst story in the book and they managed to make it even …. meh. Even non readers are tired of hearing about dragons, fire and blood etc.
    - Arya – pointless scenes with Tywin sum it up. Not to mention that after sitting on his a.. for three episodes he has to go and save KL …really HBO, really ? No Weasel Soup [*]

    there are propably couple more”nitpicks” but with much lesser importance.

    I’m quite critical of the show since I’m a purist myself but seriously despite all of its flaws this show is still far superior to what I’ve expected so far. It’s far from perfect but you can’t just blindly fault the writers for making this “one of the worst” seasons (which it isn’t). Everyone can agree that the source material is great but I don’t think you quite realize what a monumental task it is to adapt that leviathan into a 10 hour slot.

    The problem is resources. If the show were to get a bigger budget to make more episodes or hire more writers, perhaps it’ll go the way of Deadwood/Rome in this economy. In fact, it is a testament to D&D that they’ve stuck to their guns and taken on the responsibilities of what would normally be a 4~5 person workload. It’s simple math, more people they hire means less money for the show budget. You want more extras in fight scenes? Or better dialogue, scenary, better cgi etc…

    The key issue is time. Due to shooting schedules, casting calls, availability of actors etc.. D&D not only are the main writers but they’re also the main promoters. Honestly i don’t know how they do it, flying all over the world conducting interviews, micro managing hundreds of people producing the show WHILE TRYING TO ADAPT THE SOURCE for your whiny pleasure. I’m sure if they had 10 years to produce 1 season it would be phenomenal, as it is the show is likely as good as it’ll get and it’s still pretty damn good.

    Just be glad that we’re actually watching a rather faithful rendition of the books rather than a travesty of a show *cough legend of the seeker, camelot.. cough*.

  61. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Morgan King:
    Pau Soriano,

    I was aware of the futility as I was writing that, but I’d like to think that everybody’s next post is always as-yet unwritten, that the person is a work-in-progress as opposed to a completed television episode.

    Yeah but ppl could argue that mb the showrunners could change things for future seasons…that depends on the complains of course, but I for example try to make constructive criticism, that I know wont reach them in a direct way, but who knows if in an indirect way…

    But well I think most of the ppl that complains are just ventilating their frustration, and mb that is helpul for them in some way, who knows :)

  62. Thiago Slash
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    nice news! I expect the next two episodes will increase the ratings

  63. morbiczer
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    I am also disappointed with the second season. Season one overall was much better (so far).

    While I certainly still enjoy the show, some of the writing is simply bad. Jon and Ygritte’s aimless wandering through the snowy wasteland was probably the low point so far. I find the entire Robb-Talisa storyline also bad. The Talisa character doesn’t make sense at all. Also, I would have hoped we would get more direwolves (and dragons) this season, but they get probably even less screentime than last year.

    The show has really good parts (King’s Landing, Brienne, most of the Greyjoy-Winterfell stuff). And I think that things will improve next season when there will be less source material to be covered, so the pace should be slower.

    PS No wonder Mad Men’s ratings are falling. The current season is quite boring.

  64. Morgan King
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    Yeah, but complaining about a lack of a peach, or a chain, or Weasel Soup are things that simply can’t be changed, no matter how much complaining happens. Complaining about more esoteric narrative constructs, like the frequency of non-plot-related sex scenes – Littlefinger’s peeping tom bit, and the like – maybe-might-a-tiny-bit have some slight future traction. And you won’t see me calling anyone out for it, either. I think it’s still a waste of time, but at least that’s not the internet equivalent of collapsing on the floor and crying because, even though you got the chocolate cereal you wanted, it didn’t have the exact toy at the bottom of the box you were hoping for.

    Moreover, if anybody needs to ‘vent frustration’ over a TV show that exists purely to cater to your need for hedonistic pleasure (and, of course, the funds you’d be willing to spend in the pursuit of that pleasure), those people, again, need to grow up and think about how completely foolish that is. There’s a lot of things that are perfectly reasonable to be frustrated over in life, but the exactness of one form of entertainment in adapting another already-enjoyed form of entertainment is simply not one of them.

  65. Tyrion Pimpslap
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    I’ll be shocked if they don’t top 4 million by the finale. The steadiness of the ratings is very encouraging. Season 2 was always going to be more difficult to follow. It’s nice to see that viewers have stuck with it. After the final 2 episodes I expect season 2 to be thought of more fondly.

  66. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Morgan King:
    Pau Soriano,

    Yeah, but complaining about a lack of a peach, or a chain, or Weasel Soup are things that simply can’t be changed, no matter how much complaining happens. Complaining about more esoteric narrative constructs, like the frequency of non-plot-related sex scenes – Littlefinger’s peeping tom bit, and the like – maybe-might-a-tiny-bit have some slight future traction. And you won’t see me calling anyone out for it, either. I think it’s still a waste of time, but at least that’s not the internet equivalent of collapsing on the floor and crying because, even though you got the chocolate cereal you wanted, it didn’t have the exact toy at the bottom of the box you were hoping for.

    Moreover, if anybody needs to ‘vent frustration’ over a TV show that exists purely to cater to your need for hedonistic pleasure (and, of course, the funds you’d be willing to spend in the pursuit of that pleasure), those people, again, need to grow up and think about how completely foolish that is. There’s a lot of things that are perfectly reasonable to be frustrated over in life, but the exactness of one form of entertainment in adapting another already-enjoyed form of entertainment is simply not one of them.

    I read the books 3 times and I didn’t remember the peach so imagine ;)

    I agree with your post, and that is a lesson not only aplicable here, but in all aspects of life

  67. paul plutt
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    I read the books 3 times and I didn’t remember the peach so imagine ;)

    Well Pau Soriano, no one will ever call you “purist” thats for sure, what did you do? skim through the books or just read your favourite characters chapters?

  68. Lucazzy
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    I think you guys should relax. Book 3 has 20 hours, which should make season 3 and 4 very similar to book 3.

    Also, has anyone else noticed that book 3 has quite a bit climactic events in the middle? It’ll make for the perfect season finale. Here are some examples:

    The Red Wedding is the most obvious. The entire season 3 will be building Robb’s dire situation, choosing between the Freys and the woman he loves. We also get to see how things are falling apart for his kingdom. (Losing the north, losing the Freys, losing the Kingslayer, etc.)

    Jaime’s storyline also reaches a bit of a climax when he rescues Brienne and takes her with him to King’s Landing. After everything they’ve been through, with all the fighting and arguing and being held captive and Jaime losing his hand, everything seems to end in a climactic way when he goes back for Brienne despite everything.
    The bad news is that Season 3 will feature very little of King’s Landing due to Tyrion and those people not doing much until the second half of the book.

  69. Pau Soriano
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    paul plutt: Well Pau Soriano, no one will ever call you “purist” thats for sure, what did you do? skim through the books or just read your favourite characters chapters?

    Well Paul,( you can call me just Pau btw) you’d be very surprised because ppl do call me a purist all the time so go figure…I didn’t skim through the books, I just didn’t find that little detail significant (mb ’cause the spanish word for peach doesnt have further meaning, like in english has? No idea). For me could have been an apple for all I cared ;)

  70. Mirri Maz
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Pau Soriano,

    Different things for different people, i couldn’t for the life of me remember who was Arya’s third kill and what Jaquen does when she names him because for me Arya’s storyline isn’t my favorite. Eventually everyone will have moments that they connect with that won’t make it to the show and i’m fine with that because i enjoy the show as a separate entity.

    Lucazzy,
    i’m sure they can add things to Kings Landing with Tyrion, Sansa, Shae, Margery, Cersei, Tywin all there and if they are casting The Red Viper it means more focus on KL.

  71. LordStarkington
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    But ratings are supposed to fall when the show doesn’t religiously follow the books!

  72. Blackfish
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

    tysnow,

    I’m not sure what your father told you but you should ask him about opsec, especially on an internet forum. :)

  73. MW
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Really? I was going to say worst season of television every produced or even conceived. You need to work on your hyperbole.

    Give me a break.

  74. wyvernwood
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    The Kingslayer,

    Figures for UK viewing are only available in a consolidated format up to S2E6.

    I complied a chart showing both series up to that point:

    UK Viewing Figures Chart

    The average does show a decline in total consolidated viewers across both series, although the show did out-perform both True Blood (satellite transmission – not terrestrial) and Boardwalk Empire, the trend does seem to be a drop in viewers – not a drastic drop, but a gradual trend.

  75. gfp
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    I am in the middle of book 4. When I imagine the characters, I see the actors that are playing the parts. It has been casted so well!! D&D have done a great job!! The ratings are killing everything on Cable on Sunday, except the basketball playoffs. Great to hear the numbers are back after a very small drop off. Looking forward to Blackwater, especially GRRM wrote this one! Should be fun to watch! Thank you HBO for bringing us this great epic story.

  76. Coltaine777
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    I’m glad to hear ratings are steady and with 20eps for book 3 hopefully the show can become a tighter written show ala Breaking Bad , which for me is the current gold standard for tv …

  77. Emmy Greene
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    Yes. I think there will be more people watching the Blackwater episode. It has all been building up to this. Clips of the Blackwater preview are all over facebook (mine, anyway). HBO keeps showing the preview. There are still people waiting for the House of the Undying to be resolved, too. Danaerys has fans all over. If you don’t believe it, just look at the fan artwork for the show.

    Don’t let one negative person become the focus of the thread when the real focus is the show. Can’t the admins block him for trying to start an argument? Seriously

  78. DH87
    Posted May 22, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    Where was the poster remembering “Pillars of the Earth” so fondly? Deadline Hollywood is reporting the 8-hr. miniseries sequel, “World without End,” has been picked up by Reelz Channel for broadcast later this year.

  79. ASOIAF Fan
    Posted May 23, 2012 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    Mad Men is the worst serie in recent television history, it is known.
    See it’s easy to not back anything with arguments.

    And you had to wait until this episode to understand that there would be no weasel soup, Weasel’s absence didn’t tick you off?

  80. ASOIAF Fan
    Posted May 23, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    Even if i find book 2 less eventful than the first. I judge S2 as being clearly better than S1.
    Where were the extras during the Hand’s tourney or Dany’s wedding? (see Brienne’s introduction as a comparison, that looked like a tourney.)
    Where were the sigil on armors even when it served as plot items ? (see end of episode 4, “is that the bat of harrenhal i see on your coat?” WHERE IS THE DAMN BAT?).
    Where were the direwolves? (agreed on that point it’s still not perfect but they have a solution, they just didn’t use it enough).
    Where were the environment shots? (like the one of king’s Landing when Shae is on the balcony or those from iceland).
    Some actors seem more confident in their shoes, D&D more confident in their liberty to adapt, and, story-wise, the only thing bothering me for now is the weakening of Robb by taking away some of the reasons he had to get it on with his nurse.
    1 nitpick on the story for a season that was better than the last on absolutely every other point is not enough, long live S2.

  81. TC
    Posted May 23, 2012 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Szymon W.,

    This is a ridiculous statement. Agree i don’t like what is being done with John Snow this season but to say this is bad TV/worst series on HBO history is asinine. You are welcome to your opinion and I am welcome to call you nuts. You sound like a jaded ex-GF.

  82. The Kingslayer
    Posted May 23, 2012 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    wyvernwood,

    Thank you kind sir.

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