Welp, winter is… over? The army of the dead is vanquished, as are the Lannisters and lots of innocent people. All that’s left to wrap up this decade-long journey into Westeros is figuring out just how mad Daenerys Targaryan is, and maybe even bothering to figure out why. after a terrible showing against the army of the dead. As the final episode of the final season looms, it’s worth a quick refresher on how and when to watch Game of Thrones live, no matter what coast you’re on. This is the one you don’t want to miss.
Game of Thrones airs Sunday nights on HBO, at 9 pm in each respective time zone. Simple enough! But that also means New Yorkers get to watch it three hours earlier than Californians, a deep injustice. That’s plenty of time for spoilers to slip past your defenses like Arya sneaking into the Twins. Or like a baby shadow monster? (Simpler times. RIP Renly.) No matter what metaphor you pick, it’s bad.
But like a dragonglass dagger to the torso of the Night King, a ready solution exists for this existential crisis. HBO streams its shows over two apps. People who already subscribe to HBO through their cable companies can use those logins to access HBO Go (iOS, Android), while cord-cutters can pay $14.99 per month directly through HBO Now (iOS, Android). The best part? They care not a whit about time zones. New episodes launch on the apps at 9 pm Eastern Time no matter where you are in the US, meaning West Coasters can watch along in real time.
Depending on your streaming setup, you may also want to consider signing up for HBO through an existing service. You can tack it onto your Hulu account, giving you access to the network’s entire library—including every episode of Game of Thrones—plus a curated selections of clips broken down into “Shocking Deaths,” “Fiercest Duels,” and “Worst Accent Drifts.” (That one’s a joke but please consider it, Hulu!) Or you can add it as a channel on Amazon Prime. Or through the Roku Channel, why not! The main benefit here is being able to stay within the app you’re already using, instead of having to hop around. Either way, all of these options still score you access to HBO Now.
Not fully caught up yet? No worries. We have recaps aplenty, going back years and years. Here’s the one for last week’s episode. For the more forward-looking among you, here’s a rubble-filled trailer for the finale.
A reported 54 million people pirated the season 8 Game of Thrones premiere. But to watch the show in real time—and support the people who made it; those CGI dragons don’t come cheap—you’ll want to go through official channels. Besides, this is the very last episode, at least until a wave of prequels hits. You can always cancel when it’s done. Valar morghulis!
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