Downton Abbey finale draws US network’s largest audience for three years

As the period drama boosts PBS's ratings, US star David Boreanaz is angling for a part...

The season two finale of Downton Abbey has won US broadcaster PBS its biggest audience in almost three years.

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5.4 million viewers tuned in on Sunday to watch the two-hour episode – first shown in the UK on Christmas Day – in which lovers Matthew Crawley and Lady Mary were reconciled.

It was the public service broadcaster’s most-watched programme since the premiere of documentary-maker Ken Burns’s National Parks in 2009, and drew a greater US audience than successful shows such as American Horror Story and Mad Men, according to EntertainmentWeekly.com.

As a whole, the second series of Downton garnered average audiences on PBS 25 per cent larger than the first series.

Meanwhile, America’s viewers are not the only ones seduced by Downton. Actor David Boreanaz, star of Bones and formerly of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, is angling for a role in the show. 

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After watching the Earl of Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) suggest that his daughter Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) might flee to America and meet “an American cowboy”, Boreanaz took to Twitter to tell the show’s writer Julian Fellowes “I’d like to be that American cowboy who shakes things up at Downton Abbey. I’m open for a visit Mr. Fellowes.”