March 28, 2011 1:07pm PT by Philiana Ng
'Shameless' Freshman Season Ends on Strong Note
Shameless has proven to be a good bet for Showtime.
Sunday night’s season ender drew the network’s biggest audience for a freshman show in a decade, with 1.51 million viewers tuning in for the entire night, beating the previous record holder Queer as Folk (1.49 million) in 2001.
At 10 p.m., 1.16 million viewers tuned in, up 18 percent from the series premiere, which was just below the 1 million mark (982,000). Shameless added an extra 352,000 viewers at 11 p.m.
The fourth season finale of Californication drew 1.06 million total viewers for the night, including the 9 p.m. (547,000) and midnight telecasts.
The series experienced a slight 7 percent dip in viewership compared with Season 3, when it had a stronger lead-in with Dexter.
Both Shameless and Californication have been renewed for second and fifth seasons, respectively.