The Super Bowl Ended The Last Of Us’s Unprecedented Ratings Climb

The Super Bowl Ended The Last Of Us’s Unprecedented Ratings Climb

The Last of Us


Well, I was worried this was probably going to happen, and it did. After some truly ridiculous jumps week to week for The Last of Us on HBO, which increased its live viewership by a significant amount for four weeks straight, that streak has come to an end.

The Last of Us was going up around 15-20% a week, but now according to early numbers, it came crashing down in episode 5. But really, it wasn’t its fault.

In US viewershipthe show has followed this trend:

  • Episode 1 – 0.588 million
  • Episode 2 – 0.633 million
  • Episode 3 – 0.747 million
  • Episode 4 – 0.991 million
  • Episode 5 – 0.382 million

The absolute plunge that just happened was because The Last of Us wanted to dodge the Super Bowl airing this past Sunday night between the Chiefs and the Eagles. So, it aired two days early on Friday instead. Despite HBO doing everything possible to let people know this was happening as soon as a week earlier, clearly not enough people got the memo, and so the live numbers crashed hard, ending what could have been another record increase.

Episode 5, of course, was not bad at all. In fact, Endure and Survive is currently the highest rated episode on IMDB with a 9.6, though episode 3, which many people consider to be its best episode, was review bombed in part due to its focus on a same-sex couple, and is the worst scored episode with an 8.0. But the point is, Episode 5 was very, very good, so the ratings drop should not be any kind of indicator as to its quality.

We will no doubt see ratings rise for the show this coming Sunday, and I expect the non-live viewings for episode 5 to be pretty good once everyone catches up with it. We just got word that The Last of Us debuted at #6 on Nielsen’s Streaming Top 10 list with 837 million minutes. That’s for episode 1, given that the Nielsen numbers lag quite a bit behind, so I would expect it to climb in future weeks, especially considering there really has not been all that much out this past month to compete with it. Netflix’s Ginny and Georgia and That ‘90s Show were in the top two spots on this current list. Interestingly, so is rival zombie series The Walking Dead, which actually had more minutes viewed at 1.1 billion because of the final season airing on Netflix.

More to come. The Last of Us hasn’t peaked yet, that’s for sure.

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Pick up my sci-fi novels the Herokiller series and The Earthborn Trilogy.

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