'Game of Thrones' Ratings Slip in Episode 2, Remain Huge

The HBO series records another big audience in its second episode of season eight, just not as big as its premiere.
Helen Sloan/HBO

Game of Thrones delivered more big viewing numbers for the second episode of its final season — although not quite as massive as its premiere.

Nielsen figures show 10.29 million people tuning in to initial airing of Sunday's episode, "A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms." The linear audience is down 12.5 percent from the premiere's 11.76 million. That's more or less in line with second-episode declines for each of the past three seasons, which have declined by an average of 10.5 percent from their premieres. 

With streaming and replays, the audience grew to 15.9 million for the night, off about 9 percent from the record  17.4 million first-night viewers for the season premiere. There was only one replay of the episode within the Nielsen measuring period, vs. two for the premiere.

The 10.29 million people is the fourth-largest initial audience in the show's history, behind the season seven finale (12.07 million), the final-season premiere and season seven's fifth episode (10.72 million).

The linear ratings topped everything else on broadcast or cable Sunday night by a sizable margin. The next most-watched show, CBS' 60 Minutes, trailed Game of Thrones by about 1.8 million viewers.

Meanwhile, HBO says the audience for the season premiere, "Winterfell," has grown to 27.7 million — a boost of 59 percent — with a week of multi-platform viewing and additional on-air replays. That's 6.5 million more people than the number who watched the season seven debut over the same amount of time.

Follow THR.com/GameofThrones for more coverage of the series, and THR.com/Ratings for more numbers.

April 23, 8:40 a.m. Updated with streaming figures.