June 19, 2012 12:15pm PT by Michael O'Connell
Cable Ratings: 'Girls' Finale Grows, Showtime Soft, 'Client List' Bests Average
For the summer, this past Sunday was hardly a sleepy one for the TV schedule.
Although broadcast coverage of the NBA Finals and golf's U.S. Open dominated viewership -- and both were at least partly responsible for softer showings from Falling Skies and The Killing -- one cable series did get a boost.
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HBO's Girls, which has seen steady growth throughout its freshman season, drew 1 million viewers during its inaugural broadcast at 10 p.m. That was up nearly 200,000 from the previous week's episode and topped April's 872,000-viewer debut. With encores at 10:30 and 11 p.m., the already renewed comedy pulled in 2 million over the course of the night. Girls' gross audience -- including DVR, encores, On Demand and HBO Go views -- is at 4.1 million for the season.
Showtime had three finales with Nurse Jackie, The Big C and The Borgias. The papal drama dropped from April's second-season premiere -- slipping from 604,000 to 517,000 viewers -- while both comedies saw steeper dips. Nurse Jackie, already renewed for a fifth season, was down to 535,000 from its 653,000-strong premiere, and The Big C, which has yet to get a green light for a fourth run, was down nearly 140,000 from its premiere for 445,000 viewers. Season to date, all three have fared considerably stronger, with Nurse Jackie grossing 2.7 million viewers every week, followed by The Borgias with 2.4 million and The Big C with 2.1 million.
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On Lifetime, The Client List bested its freshman average by 8 percent but was still just shy of its April premiere with 2.7 million viewers. The series starring Jennifer Love Hewitt has been renewed for a second season.
The cable victor for the night was True Blood, though the HBO series did see a rather steep drop from its fifth-season opener last week. It pulled 4.4 million viewers and a 2.6 rating among adults 18-49, down from 5.2 million and a 2.9 adults rating the week prior.