HBO has a long history of smash shows, and they’ve recently added a new one to the pile: The Last of Us, the adaptation of the popular dystopian video game. It’s even gotten the kids into both Linda Ronstadt and Depeche Mode. Its eighth and most recent episode tackled the most horrifying part of the game, but instead of scaring off viewers, it helped it become even more popular.
As per ScreenRant, Warner Bros. Discovery reports that Episode 8, titled “When We Are in Need,” drew an impressive 8.1 million viewers, based on Nielsen and first-party data. It’s a record for the show, beating out Episode 4. But that’s not all: The new episode nearly doubled the viewership of the pilot, which drew 4.7 million viewers — the biggest debut since the Game of Thrones spinoff House of the Dragon.
It’s no surprise The Last of Us kicked off swimmingly. It had a built-in audience from the video game, to say nothing of the all-star cast. Doubling it, of course, implies that people not only genuinely like it but are also telling others to tune in. It’s not a fluke; it’s a show that is increasing viewers because of its quality. So kudos to a show that was always going to do well but which is now exceeding those lofty expectations.