'Lost' finale performs solid for Euro channels
About 635K British viewers watched between 5 and 7:15 p.m.LONDON – Some diehard "Lost" fans on this side of the Atlantic did get up early to watch the show's eagerly awaited finale which broadcast in the early hours of Monday morning – but many stayed in bed and only later watched the show that they had recorded.
In the U.K., around 68,000 were up at 5 a.m. U.K.-time to tune into the show -- broadcast on Sky One, a pay TV channel available in around 12 million homes -- at the same time as it aired on ABC.
In total, an average of British viewers 635,000 watched the show between 5 a.m. and 7:15 p.m. on the same day with the figure peaking at 854,000, including time-shifted viewing -- for the revelatory final half hour.
The figures are a strong showing for the channel, equal to around what it would expect for a prime time 9 p.m. slot. But the broadcaster had some technical challenges with the simulcast broadcast, losing transmission for a few seconds.
Spanish free-to-air channel Cuatro set a new channel record for the early morning time slot with the final "Lost" episode, attracting 1.3 million viewers and an average of 31.5% audience share when it aired beginning at 6am Central European time.
The series -- which ran in English with subtitles in Spanish -- hit 47% of the audience at its peak and 45.2% of the commercial target audience.
Spanish viewers also experienced transmission breakup, losing a six-minute chunk in the first half with segments of Jack and Locke's meeting, Lapidus' return to the island and Richard's mortality broadcast out of sequence.
A Cuatro spokesman said the interruption was down to "human and technological error." Cuatro plans to run the final version dubbed into Spanish on Sunday afternoon.
German fans of "Lost" were shut out of the day-and-date broadcast as no German network carried the finale on Sunday/Monday.
Devotees were forced to make due with VOD services such as Deutsche Telekom's Videoload and iTunes, which offered the final episode in English with German subtitles 24 hours after the U.S. bow.
Neither Videoload or iTunes would comment on VOD figures for the episode.
The "Lost" finale will premiere in Germany, in a dubbed format, on pay network Fox Channel on July 7, a month and a half after the U.S. bow. It remains to be seen how many rapid German fans will have already watched the cliffhanger via legal or illegal means before then.
Pamela Rolfe in Spain and Scott Roxborough in Germany contributed to this report.