The Washington Post

‘Downton Abbey’ scores highest ratings ever for Season 4 premiere

Big ratings for “Downton.” (PBS)

The ratings are in — and “Downton Abbey” is still a hit.

About 10.2 million people tuned in for Sunday’s (depressing) Season 4 opener to see what happened after the death of Matthew Crawley. That breaks the show’s own records, and officially makes it the highest-rated drama premiere in PBS history.

In other words, while lots of viewers are still mad about Dan Stevens walking off the show, turns out that was great news for PBS — there’s nothing like a good cliffhanger.

Sunday’s audience was significantly larger than the one that tuned in for last season’s premiere (8 million viewers), and shows why PBS is in no hurry to show the drama at the same time it airs in the UK.

Recap:  Season 4 begins, and it’s a bummer

Review: In season 4, ‘Downton Abbey’ tries to stick to its knitting

Emily Yahr covers pop culture and entertainment for the Post. Follow her on Twitter @EmilyYahr.



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Emily Yahr · January 6, 2014