Sunday evening’s series finale to Game of Thrones offered a true water cooler moment for everyone across the world. Sadly, the people of China were mum on Monday morning.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the ongoing trade dispute between the United States and China prevented HBO from airing the series finale in China. Reason being, Tencent Video, which has exclusive streaming rights to HBO content in China, was restricted by China to air the episode.
Here’s where it gets tense: At the time, Tencent stated they were having “transmission medium problems”, even instructing viewers that they would notify them of “another broadcasting time.” However, an HBO spokesperson told the publication that there were no issues on their end.
As The Hill points out, the show’s Chinese fans were rather pissed and demanded refunds on social media for their annual fees of 198 yuan — which amounts to about $28.61 — and even threatened to cancel their accounts and delete the app.
Earlier this month, trade negotiations between the United States and China reached a dead end when China reneged on a deal over intellectual property issues. In retaliation, President Trump hiked tariffs on $200 billion of imports from 10 percent to 25 percent, to which China retaliated by targeting $60 billion worth of U.S. agricultural exports.
Since then, Trump has threatened another round of tariffs, coming off more like Joffrey Lannister by each passing minute, all of which makes China seeing Game of Thrones that much more difficult. Here’s hoping it gets resolved before Deadwood!