The Washington Post

‘Downton Abbey’ season finale scores big numbers for PBS

Maggie Smith as the Dowager Countess, left, and Hugh Boneville as Lord Grantham on "Downton Abbey.: (Nick Briggs/AP)

Despite some mixed reviews, the show’s second season drew about 25 percent more viewers than the critically adored first season. And based on demographic numbers for the first half of “Downton’s second season, the crunchy-gravel drama improbably delivered lots more young viewers to the “Masterpiece” umbrella under which it aired on PBS stations.

Most dramatically, the period drama attracted 88 percent more teens, 251 percent more 18- to 34-year-old females and 111 percent more 18- to 34-year-old guys than “Masterpiece’s” 2010-11 average.

“It is so gratifying to see our beloved ‘Masterpiece,’ after more than 40 years on PBS, attracting a whole new audience,” exuded “Masterpiece” exec producer Rebecca Eaton.

PBS has not yet confirmed that it will air the third season of “Downton,” which is in production now, with Shirley MacLaine added to the cast. But PBS would be nuts not to.


Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read


Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
What can babies teach students?
Unconventional warfare with a side of ale
A veteran finds healing on a dog sled
Play Videos
A fighter pilot helmet with 360 degrees of sky
Is fencing the answer to brain health?
Scenes from Brazil's Carajás Railway
Play Videos
How a hacker group came to Washington
The woman behind the Nats’ presidents ‘Star Wars’ makeover
How hackers can control your car from miles away
Play Videos
Philadelphia's real signature sandwich
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Europe's migrant crisis, explained