(NEW YORK) — Game of Thrones aired its sixth-season finale Sunday night to a record show audience.
Some 8.9 million people watched the episode, which featured some of the most ruthless ever dispatching of characters both liked and hated, in a show known for its unsentimental killing off of fan favorites.
That number is the show’s biggest audience ever, according to Variety, which notes last season’s final episode drew 8.1 million viewers, which was then also a record audience.
Indeed, the audience for Game of Thrones has grown steadily in the six years it’s been on the air, beginning with the 2.2 million who watched the series premiere and the three million who watched the first season finale.
When you add in everyone who watched Sunday’s finale on all available platforms, the total audience estimate nearly triples, to 23.3 million, notes Variety.
If you’re not yet a fan, there’s plenty of time to binge-watch the first six seasons. Game of Thrones season seven – which will either be the show’s final season or the next-to-last one, depending on reports – returns in April, 2017.
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