Much like the fungal virus which has decimated the world of The Last of Us, the show’s success has become an unstoppable force over the last few weeks, culminating in record-breaking figures for the season finale which have surpassed those set by 2022’s Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon.
According to reports Sunday’s divisive finale averaged 8.2 million viewers across all platforms for HBO, which was up slightly from the previous week’s 8.1 million. It was an opening night high for the season though, up 74.5% from The Last of Us premiere, which bowed with a still-impressive 4.7 million in January.
The cross-platform way in which audiences consume their TV shows mean that it’s the cumulative audience figures which hold the key to a series success, and this is where the The Last of Us has grown exponentially over the course of its nine-week run. According to HBO, The Last of Us’ first six episodes are averaging at 30.4 million viewers since the premiere, with the debut episode closing in on 40 million viewers. Should that upward trajectory continue, and let’s be honest here, who would even consider bailing on Joel and Ellie at this point in their journey, then The Last of Us would fly past House of the Dragon, which has an average cumulative audience of 29 million viewers.
Having just received the news that The Last of Us Part II will be spread over multiple seasons, these figures only underline what a phenomenon the videogame adaptation has become. We called The Last of Us “a game-changer for how video game adaptations are handled in the future”, with “Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey delivering the greatest performances ever based on video game characters” in our glowing review, which you can read here.
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Source: The Hollywood Reporter