This must be the most elaborate premiere date reveal for any TV show ever.
To announce the season 7 return date of Game of Thrones, HBO is staging a Facebook Live event which encased the plate containing the date (July 16, as it was later revealed) in a large block of ice. Fans were urged to type “fire” in the comments to ignite streams of blowtorch-like flames that gradually — very, very, very gradually — melted the block.
The entire process took more than an hour and was twice interrupted by technical malfunctions, which took the stream offline for about 20 minutes. At around 3 p.m. ET, the production team just turned the flamethrowers on full blast, presumably to speed up the process.
But viewership peaked at around 142,000 concurrent fans, which is considered an enormous amount for a Facebook Live stream.
HBO also debuted the first teaser video from the new season as well.
Fans seemed all over the map on the stunt, with some getting rather impatient and others praising it as a playful idea: