An incredible era of television came to an end Sunday night with the series finale of Game of Thrones on HBO. In the wake of millions of fans bidding farewell to Westeros, we wanted to serve up some final viewership insights on a series that’s gone down in pop-culture history. Below, insights on fans’ emotions from Canvs, a look at season eight viewership trends from Inscape and some social video insights via Tubular Labs. (Warning: spoilers below!)
GoT is excellent proof that on TV characters rule. Emotion measurement company Canvs tracked the percent of show conversation that was about viewers emotionally reacting to specific characters, and it’s grown over the course of this season.
According to Canvs, GoT airings this season represented six of the top 10 most emotionally engaging episodes on TV and had the most emotionally reacted-to characters across all of TV since the year started. While Bran Stark and Tyrion Lannister were two of the top emotional drivers during the final episode, when looking at season 8 as a whole, Arya Stark and Jon Snow led.
Some notable moments that sparked specific Emotional Reactions (ERs) during the finale include the beginning of the episode (when people talked about how excited they were), about halfway through when Jon killed Daenerys (and people talked about how crazy it was), and the end when Jon was reunited with — and finally got to pet — his direwolf Ghost.
Inscape, the TV measurement company with glass-level data from a panel of more than 11 million smart TVs and devices, examined viewership trends for the Game of Thrones audience, including other shows watched by GoT fans this season. It’s a fairly diverse list, topped by The Walking Dead, NFL RedZone, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Modern Family and Saturday Night Live.
Inscape also looked at key locations of GoT viewers across U.S. DMAs this season. Particular hotspots include areas of the Northeast, Chicago, Austin, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle (the darker the color on the map below, the more households were tuning in).
Insights from video measurement company Tubular Labs show that Game of Thrones-related videos on social platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram collected 100 million views per day over the course of the final season (starting in April, when it began). View counts peaked the day after each episode, though stayed pretty steady especially toward the end. Over the last week, cross-platform views have trended toward 200 million-plus per day.
While many top creators around GoT content seemed like more natural fits, food site Tasty also had great success during the timeframe with three videos, all about GoT-based food and drink, that generated 15.5 million views. The show’s own YouTube page had the most views (245 million) of any account in the stretch, and was joined near the top by other GoT-owned accounts across platforms. However, publishers like LADbible (76.1 million), Emergency Awesome (49.7 million) and 9GAG (38.6 million) also found themselves among the top creators speaking to the show’s passionate fan base.