May the Old Gods and the New have mercy on the person who does not watch Game Of Thrones when it airs live, as it's still, in 2019, a televised event, much like the Super Bowl. Anyone hoping to get an early rest of Sunday evening so they can go to work the next morning prepared to chat Thrones and theories may have to reshape their plans based on what time Game Of Thrones Season 8 premieres on HBO. Game Of Thrones episodes will be airing live on HBO at 9 p.m. ET and, if HBO treats the series as it has in the past, the show will be available for streaming on HBOGo and HBO NOW the moment that the show starts streaming on HBO proper.
In the past, that meant that Game Of Thrones fans would be able to go to sleep firmly at 10 p.m. ET as visions of dragons and White Walkers danced in their heads. While it looks like that will be true for the season premiere, UPROXX reports that the final four episode of the series will each come out to around an hour and twenty minutes, suggesting that the series will provide some action-packed sequences — including "the most sustained action sequence ever made for television or film," according to Entertainment Weekly.
If you're the kind of person who likes to wait until a season of television is over to go back and marathon-watch the season in one go, then it really doesn't matter what time the episode starts — unless you want to be able to watch the finale live (which may be for the best as the world is dark and full of spoilers), in which case you'd need to start watching the first episode of Season 8 about six hours before the premiere of the finale with absolutely no breaks until the airing of the series finale.
While everyone is free to watch television their own way, especially in the era of streaming and smartphones where you can catch up at Game Of Thrones at the gym if you so choose, there's a certain beauty in watching Game Of Thrones live with the rest of the internet.
The series finale will likely go down as the biggest television event of the decade, and as more and more niche television networks and streaming services grab their own audiences, Game Of Thrones may be the last show that large swaths of people watch together, at the same time, week-to-week. Game Of Thrones premiered before streaming services made a habit of dropping full seasons of television at once and letting people watch on their own time, effectively eliminating the idea of appointment television.
You can watch Game Of Thrones whenever you want, but if you want the full Game Of Thrones experience, and to enjoy all the reactions, quips, and GIFs on Twitter along with the rest of the world, you'll want to tune in on 9 p.m. every week until the May 19 finale.