The season finale of Game of Thrones on HBO drew the biggest US audience for the hit show yet: 12.1 million viewers for its 9pm airing.
Once later viewing is taken into account (via linear reruns of the episode and on-demand access on the HBO Go and HBO Now apps) Sunday night’s total viewing swells to 16.5 million.
HBO said that the size of the viewership was 13% above the previous record of 10.7 million viewers (two weeks ago), and 36% bigger than last season’s finale. It also improved over the viewership of this year’s debut episode by 35%.
The news comes after the hacking group responsible for stealing 1.5 terabytes of data from HBO struck again, leaking information about the impending finale on Friday. The group claimed that its latest data dump contains confidential plot summaries and detailed outlines for the show.
Fans have a while to wait for more: season eight, the final season, will premiere likely in 2019, with six extra-long episodes.