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First season of Netflix’s ‘Game of Thrones’ rival has much better ratings than the final season of the real thing

Published Dec 25th, 2019 10:23AM EST
The Witcher Season 2
Image: Netflix

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Netflix, as well as those involved in making the company’s first Game of Thrones alternative, might not be happy that everyone is still comparing it to HBO’s best show ever. But The Witcher, which premiered this past Friday, is almost certainly meant to be a Game of Thrones replacement. The Witcher happens to have launched right after Game of Thrones ended, which can’t be a coincidence. And the TV series is hardly the only one looking to replace Thrones. Amazon and HBO each launched new fantasy series of their own this year, including Carnival Row and His Dark Materials, and Amazon has a Lord of the Rings series in the works.

It’ll be tough to replace Game of Thrones, but it looks like Netflix is off to a good start: the first season of The Witcher already has a much better rating than the final Game of Thrones season.

Fans really didn’t enjoy season 8 of Thrones, especially the second half. The finale is the lowest rated episode in the entire series, with a score of 4.1 stars out of 10 on IMDB at the time of this writing, which is even lower than it was back in May.

The Witcher, meanwhile, did a lot better on the same site. According to Forbes, the show was Netflix’s highest-rated series on IMDB for a short while, scoring better than plenty of other great series including Stranger Things, Peaky Blinders, Black Mirror, The Crown, Ozark, and Haunting of Hill House.

Netflix’s The Witcher had an average rating of 8.9 stars at the time the report came out, before dropping to 8.8 and tying Stranger Things for the top spot. Even so, the first season of The Witcher has much better ratings than Thrones 8 — the finale of The Witcher had a 9.3 rating at the time of this writing. While these scores are likely to drop a few points as more people watch the show, it doesn’t change the fact that The Witcher seems to be a real winner for Netflix in its quest to find a Game of Thrones replacement.

Netflix already confirmed that season 2 is in the making for a 2021 release a few weeks before the show was even released. In the meantime, be sure to check out our Witcher review.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.