‘Game of Thrones’ and ‘Breaking Bad’ were the most pirated TV shows of 2013

“Better than an Emmy.”
“Better than an Emmy.”
Image: Reuters/Lucy Nicholson
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Jeff Bewkes, the CEO of Time Warner, which owns HBO, has said that having the most pirated show on the internet is “better than an Emmy.”

Well, congratulations! HBO’s Game of Thrones was illegally downloaded more than any other TV show in 2013, according to numbers just released by TorrentFreak. It was followed by AMC’s meth-fueled drama Breaking Bad.

Game of Thrones was the only HBO show to crack the top 10. AMC had two entries, including The Walking Dead. Showtime also had two shows on the list: Dexter and Homeland.

Netflix didn’t make the top 10 at all. That could be because its original programming, like House of Cards and Orange Is the New Black, isn’t popular enough. Or, more intriguingly, it could be because Netflix only costs $8 a month, rather than the bulky and expensive cable subscriptions required to get HBO content.

Here’s the full list:

  1. Game of Thrones (HBO) — 5.9 million downloads
  2. Breaking Bad (AMC) — 4.2
  3. The Walking Dead (AMC) — 3.6
  4. The Big Bang Theory (CBS) — 3.4
  5. Dexter (Showtime) — 3.1
  6. How I Met Your Mother (CBS) — 3.0
  7. Suits (USA) — 2.6
  8. Homeland (Showtime) — 2.4
  9. Vikings (History) — 2.3
  10. Arrow (CW) — 2.2