Game of Thrones Premiere Sets Series Ratings Record

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This just in: A lot of people like Game of Thrones.

The numbers are in, according to Variety, and more people than ever tuned in Sunday night for Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1, as the premiere drew approximately 8 million total households.

That figure is an increase of around 17 percent (or 1.16 million viewers) from the Season 4 opener, clocking in at roughly 800,000 more viewers than any other Game of Thrones installment to date.

Death to Mance - Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1

The previous series ratings high arose from Game of Thrones Season 4 Episode 7 (“Mockingbird"), which is best remembered as the one where Littlefinger murdered Lysa by pushing her out the moon door; it garnered 7.195 million viewers.

Sunday’s premiere also averaged 5.3 million viewers among 18-49-year olds, a 14 percent increase from last year’s first episode.

This advertiser-friendly demographic is far less important on a network that has no ads, however, of course. But still. Solid stuff!

Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 2 airs this Sunday at 9/8c.

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 1 Quotes

Cersei: The man who murdered our father, he tore us apart. He's the enemy. I've been telling you for years, you've been defending him for years.
Jaime: This is exactly what they want.
Cersei: And now our father is dead, and that little monster is out there somewhere drawing breath. Did you set him free? Tyrion may be a monster, but at least he killed our father on purpose. You killed him by mistake, a stupidity.

John: Your grace, you want the wildlings to march in your army?
Stannis: They swear to follow me, I'll pardon them. We take Winterfell, once the North is won I'll declare them citizens of the realm. I'll give them land to live on.
Davos: It's a fair offer. More than fair.
Stannis: I'll offer them their lives and their freedom if Mance kneels before me and swears his loyalty.
John: I don't think that's likely.