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Downton Abbey Season-Three Premiere Is the Show’s Most-Watched Episode Ever

Downton Abbey just keeps getting bigger. The third season premiere of the British import drew 7.9 million viewers from 9 to 11 p.m. Sunday, the largest tune-in yet for the PBS-broadcast period drama. The show's audience nearly doubled over last winter's season premiere and was up sharply from its Feburary 2012 finale (5.4 million). What's more, at least in total viewers, PBS beat every broadcast network save for CBS between nine and eleven last night. Interestingly, one of the U.S. cities furthest from the U.K. — Seattle — gave Downton its biggest ratings Sunday. Boston, Austin, and New York were also among the top five biggest markets for the show. As big as Downton is, a bit of perspective: Its ratings are still below those for many of Ken Burns's documentaries and only about 25 percent above the tune-in for this summer's PBS broadcast of A Capitol Fourth (6.3 million). Also, the British still love the show more than we do: ITV broadcasts of season-three episodes drew nearly 10 million viewers on average last fall — in a country of around 62 million. //www.vulture.com/2013/01/downton-abbey-scores-biggest-us-ratings-yet.html

'Downton Abbey' Season 3 premiere ratings quadruple average PBS primetime rating

Ratings are in for the Season 3 premiere of "Downton Abbey," which aired Sunday night (Jan. 6) on PBS after a nearly year-long hiatus from the end of the second season. But "Downton" did not lose any of its Season 2 steam."Downton" returned to an audience of 7.9 million viewers and a 5.1 household rating according to the Nielsen Fast National data. That is quadruple the average PBS primetime rating and is 96% higher than the rating for the Season 2 premiere a year ago. For its two-hour timeslot, "Downton" was only beaten by CBS as far as the network ratings goes; ABC, FOX and NBC all trailed PBS."'Downton Abbey' continues to enthrall audiences nationwide, and this season is especially riveting with the addition of Shirley MacLaine to the cast and the lively interaction between her and Maggie Smith," says PBS president and CEO Paula Kerger. "I'm so pleased that audiences have returned to 'Downton... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/01/downton-abbey-season-3-premiere-ratings-quadruple-average-pbs-primetime-rating.html

'Downton Abbey' Season 3 premiere: Mary's wedding dress debate and more tweets

"Downton Abbey" returned with a mother-in-law, a wedding and financial troubles for the Crawley family. If you'd like our thoughts on the premiere of Season 3, check them out here from when it premiered in the U.K.Instead of a recap, we've brought you the very best tweets from around the Twitterverse while the premiere aired. Enjoy!Episode 1"I'm in a First Line of Downton Abbey Pool. If it's "Get your own f***ing tea" I win $30!" - Seth Meyers"Anybody know what channel that program Down Town Abby is on tonight? (Now look at my @ replies)" - Eric Stonestreet"Laura Linney is the #gossipgirl of #DowntonAbbey #DowntonPBS" -- Scott Rising"Ok, time for the best guilty pleasure on TV - "Downton Abbey." And hopefully the play-by-play commentary on Twitter from @pattonoswalt" -- Michael Moore"Hmmm, new footman may be afoot.... #DowntonPBS" -- Lawrence Library"I sort of wish that they would just kill Bates already, his angst is so annoying.... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/01/downton-abbey-season-3-premiere-marys-wedding-dress-debate-and-more-tweets.html

'Downton Abbey's' Hugh Bonneville: Season 3 has 'plenty of drama and plenty of tears'

Season 3 of "Downton Abbey" premiered Sunday night (Jan. 6) on PBS with the long-awaited wedding between Matthew and Mary. It was indeed a joyous occasion, but star Hugh Bonneville tells Zap2it it isn't going to be smooth sailing for the family for long. "Robert and Cora, there are things that happen that really test the strength of their relationship," says Bonneville. "The relationship deepens in a very profound way."The Crawleys aren't the only relationship that will be tested, either. "[Bates] has been reprieved from the death sentence, but it is life imprisonment," says Bonneville. "Anna is a very determined woman and she totally believes in his innocence, as does Robert. For all the laughs we have with Martha and Violet, it cuts back to the prison and the reality of that situation."But it is this juxtaposition of light-hearted fun and serious drama that makes "Downton Abbey" so wonderful. "[Creator Julian Fellowes] has been wonderful... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/01/downton-abbeys-hugh-bonneville-season-3-has-plenty-of-drama-and-plenty-of-tears.html

'Downton Abbey' Season 3 episode 3 spoilers: A break in Bates' case?

"Downton Abbey" is back in the United Kingdom, with the Season 3 premiere earning big ratings across the pond. ITV has already released a trailer and description of episode 2, but now we have some details from them on episode 3. These are some hefty spoilers, so don't keep reading if you don't want to know what happens.Edith's big day finally arrives. Will her enthusiasm finally convince the family that Strallan's age does not matter? It's the end of the line for Downton's finances and Mary takes matters into her own hands, but the personal price could be high. Mrs Hughes anxiously awaits her results and Anna makes a breakthrough to help Bates. Is O'Brien moving on? So much to discuss! First of all, is Edith getting married already? We figured her romance with Strallan would run all season. Secondly, what exactly is Mary up to regarding the finances of Downton? Does this mean her... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/09/downton-abbey-season-3-episode-3-spoilers-a-break-in-bates-case.html

'Downton Abbey' Season 3 episode 2: Violet and Mary conspiring together

"Downton Abbey" is back in the United Kingdom, with a premiere episode that earned big ratings numbers. Episode two is coming up this Sunday and we've got some details from the ITV episode description.The future of Downton hangs precariously in the balance. In the hope of financial rescue from her American grandmother, Mary and Violet conspire to make sure Downton puts on a bigger show than ever before with a grand party for friends and neighbours. Mrs Hughes faces some worrying personal news, and O'Brien's efforts to accelerate Alfred's progress rankle with Thomas.Anything that rankles Thomas sounds A-OK to us. But we're actually most intrigued by the Mrs. Hughes storyline. We hope it's not a reappearance of Ethel. Check out the trailer for episode two here.... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/09/downton-abbey-season-3-episode-2-violet-and-mary-conspiring-together.html

'Downton Abbey' Series 3 premiere ratings solid, down slightly from Series 2 premiere

"Downton Abbey" returned to the British airwaves Sunday (Sept. 16) to solid ratings. ITV has announced the premiere episode earned 8.64 million viewers during its initial broadcast and added another 380,000 viewers during the delayed broadcast on ITV1+1, giving the period drama just over 9 million viewers total. Those would be good numbers in the U.S., but considering the smaller U.K. audience, those numbers are big. The share of households was 34.6%, which means over a third of the television viewing audience was tuned in to "Downton."The premiere is down just slightly from the Series 2 premiere a year ago, which earned about 200,000 more viewers. If you didn't watch, we've got the scoop here in case you want to find out what happened.Did you watch the Series 3 premiere? What did you think?... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/09/downton-abbey-series-3-premiere-ratings-solid-down-slightly-from-series-2-premiere.html

'Downton Abbey' Season 3 episode 2: The fleecing of Martha Levinson?

"Downton Abbey" Season3 is in full swing in the U.K., having premiered Sunday night -- spoilers here, if you're just dying to know what's going on with the Crawley family and their friends. The second episode looks to be just as exciting as the first, if the above preview trailer is any indication. We already knew Martha Levinson was sticking around -- Shirley MacLaine was in the U.K. filming for several weeks -- but it looks as though the Crawleys will once again have to turn to her to save their estate. That should be fun for them. And something tells us she's much too quick to be "fleeced."Meanwhile, Grandmama Violet and Lord Grantham are sticking their noses in Edith's affairs. Why can't they leave the poor girl alone? Everyone can see she's not the prettiest of the daughters and she's found a nice, handsome man who seems very interested in her. And he isn't... //blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/09/downton-abbey-season-3-episode-2-the-fleecing-of-martha-levinson.html

Season Premiere: Downton Abbey Season 3

Downton Abbey  Series  3 episode premieres tonight Sunday 16 September, 9pm on ITV (UK). Episode Synopsis: Cora’s mother shows up at Downton for Matthew and Mary’s wedding. New footman Alfred attempts to meet Carson’s high standards , under the watch of his aunt O’Brien. Robert’s surprising news brings financial worries to the fore. Read More... //www.tvequals.com/2012/09/16/season-premiere-downton-abbey-season-3/  

Downton Abbey Season 3 Spoilers: Expect More Fireworks in Lady Mary and Matthew Crawley’s Relationship - Exclusive

As if Season 2 wasn’t complicated enough for Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) and Matthew (Dan Stevens), Downton Abbey’s third season apparently won’t be one long happily ever after for the together-at-last couple. Wetpaint Entertainment caught up with executive producer Gareth Neame at the 2012 Creative Arts Emmy Awards on September 14, and he promised even more crazy drama between the twosome, teasing, "It’s a rollercoaster this year." Thanks, Downton, for... //feeds.wetpaint.com/~r/wetpaint/latest/excerpt/~3/F3CEY0e6p1Q/downton-abbey-season-3-spoilers-expect-more-fireworks-in-lady-mary-and-matthew-crawleys-relationship-exclusive