Ratings: Dexter Ends With an All-Time High; Breaking Bad, Maids Also Score Series Bests

Ratings Dexter Series FinaleDespite facing stiff competition from the most-watched Emmys in eight years (and, you know, football), Dexter went out on a high note, drawing 2.8 million total viewers to the first airing of its series finale.

That tally marks a series high for the dark drama, the largest audience for any episode of a Showtime series and a 13 percent improvement on this season’s premiere. All that and an average grade of “C-“ from TVLine readers.

Dex is thus on pace to claim his highest-rated season ever.

RELATED | Dexter Series Finale Post Mortem: EP Reveals Why [Spoiler] Had to Live and [Spoiler] Had to Die, Talks Alt Endings and Dissects That Final Scene

Leading out of that, Ray Donovan‘s season ender retained 2.1 mil, a high for a Showtime finale and capping the pay cabler’s highest rated freshman season ever, trumping Homeland‘s.

RELATED | The Devious Maids Season Finale — Grade It!

Over on Lifetime, Devious Maids wrapped its first season with series highs in total audience (3 mil) and in the 18-49 and other key demos, while AMC’s penultimate Breaking Bad yet again broke records, with 6.6 million total viewers and a 6 percent bump in 18-49.

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37 Comments
  1. David4 says:

    I have only seen a few who seemed to like Dexter’s ending, and 95% of the people hated it or were just confused by it’s storyline and potholes. But the alt ending sounds like it would have been great.

    But Breaking bad was amazing. Half the episode was “Oh…” but nothing “OMFJCG” until about halfway through.

    And Walt Jr is amazing on that phone scene. It’s exactly how I would act after everything.

    The best rated emmies in 8 years and the most depressing ones ever.

    • Tookie Clothespin says:

      I beleive that your comment is one of the major problems with the internet. When you say that “95% of the people hated it or were just confused by it” you are taking those comments to represent a majority of the people who watched the show and the episode. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and say that you read 500 comments that were from 500 unique commentors. There were almost 3 million viewers. The comments that you read were from less than 1/10 of 1% of the viewers. You can’t judge whether or not a majority of the people liked something based off of those numbers. People that rush to message boards to immediately tell the world how they feel are mostly fanfatics. They mostly have extreme opinions that go all of the way one way or the other. I’d be willing to bet that if a scientific poll was done you would get mostly “It was a decent ending. Could’ve been better, could’ve been worse.” type answers. As someone that watched the episode, there were parts that were done very well and parts that missed the mark by quite a bit. It probably deserves to be put in the B to B minus area of grading. It was nowhere near the early seasons in terms of quality or consistency but it wasn’t the steaming pile of bull excrement that some would have you beleive it was.

      • Joe says:

        Yeah way off base. It has to be more like 99.6. I have defended Dexter for years over every stupid thing they do but the finale was just crap.

      • Yeah, because no academically verified statistics are ever compiled by taking a sampling of responses across a limited demographic and then applying them to the population as a whole… hold on, that’s exactly how opinion polls are taken… huh. I guess you must be wrong. Oh well.

  2. sheindie says:

    Dexter was and has always been my fav show … the series finale was thought provoking, emotional, gripping, cohesive and … A+ for sure!!

    • Daisy says:

      Agreed. The rage by other TVLine readers baffles me. It wasn’t perfect but it was quite satisfying.

      • Michael Glover says:

        I fully agree. Dexter isn’t my all time favorite show, but having watched the whole series this year, I can say that I think it ended just right. People should stop thinking so much about what could have happened and just enjoy what did. I believe that this season of Dexter was intriguing and was good for a series last season. People had WAY too big expectations, so they were bound to be hurt if they didn’t get the ending they wanted. I would definitely recommend this show to any of my friends.

      • sheindie says:

        Thank You! … the entire 8 seasons followed a trajectory and so, the ending made perfect sense to me ..

    • digitalred93 says:

      Also agreed. Still thinking about it.

      • Me too… Like why is Dexter a toxic influence on Harrison as a serial killer, yet decides he’ll be just fine with Hannah, a serial killer with no code who murders people when they inconvenience her. Why is there a dock custom built for Dexter’s boat size at the hospital? Dexter walks into a police station, murders a man on camera, and still Batista is like ‘something feels slightly hinky here’. Why is Daniel Vogel, a man dubbed ‘The Brain Surgeon’ (despite working as a building inspector) completely incapable of stitching a wound within easy reach on his shoulder? Why did Hannah say she was going to have some tea when it was clearly water in the flask? Why is the disappearance of a forensics technician in Miami considered so newsworthy that it gets super bold, frontpage story font? How exactly does Dexter get from his wrecked boat in the middle of the ocean? Was Dexter’s grand plan at the airport to escape Elway and move to Argentina to report a bomb threat which would obviously shut down the entire airport? Why didn’t airport security – when reviewing the footage – not notice the fact that Dexter himself put the ‘bomb’ there while stood next to someone who looks suspiciously like wanted fugitive Hannah Macay? Elway catches Hannah and then makes no attempt to let anybody else on the bus know that he’s apprehended a fugitive? How is Dexter still technically at Miami Metro until the end of the week, he quite clearly had a last day, after which he would have had to hand in his security clearance, which he was wearing around his neck after murdering Vogel. Is it that easy to kill a defenceless woman, and then carry her body out of a hospital, just because there’s a storm, fairly frequent events by all accounts? Doesn’t Argentina have an extradition treaty with America, and I’m sure the authorities don’t take kindly to fugitives kidnapping young white children. Why exactly did Vogel target Deb in one of the most secure buildings (except in the case of body abduction) where 5 police officers (including a captain) have taken the day off to stand around outside just in case Dexter wants to talk to them. A lumberjack… really? – you’re right, so much to think about.

      • sheindie says:

        I know … I rewatched … it makes sense to have ended that way .. imho

    • Just going to put my 2 cents here. I disagree. I used to love the show and this season started out with potential, but I was quickly bored as it unfolded. I don’t want to hate it. I wanted to love it. I can’t help it. It wasn’t confusing and it wasn’t over my head and there were not things that I simply did not get. It was simply unsatisfying on an entertainment level. Sorry (but not really).

    • Thank you! I enjoyed it as well. It was excellent, and more than appropriate.

    • Denise says:

      I totally agree with this. I have been on the Dexter roller coaster since Michael finished 6 Feet Under. I waited every season with baited breath. I am going to miss my friend Dex. A+

  3. Gabi says:

    Truth be told my first reaction to Dexter’s ending was WTF?! Watched the entire episode again an hour later and it started to sink in then. I think it ended exactly the way it had to. There were some mild annoyances, e.g. I don’t believe for one second that Harrison wouldn’t tell someone about Hannah – just out of pure childish joy – but I’m willing to overlook those in favor of a great TV series overall.
    Oh and please can we have a Hannah-based spin-off now, just so we can keep the wonderful Yvonne Strahovski on our TV screens?

  4. mandy says:

    I still believe that Dexter ended as it should. Maybe not ‘clever’, but certainly organic to the characters.
    A huge thank you to the Dexter cast and crew. Looking forward to the next project for Jennifer and Michael.

  5. Emily S says:

    I wasn’t asking for moonlight and roses for the Dexter finale – I mean, the show is noir – but I hated the ending.

  6. i liked the finale it made perfect sense but the only thing was *spoiler* (why a lumberjack it didn’t matter what he was as proffession or where he lived)

  7. Kim R says:

    I didn’t mind the finale either. I wasn’t crazy over the season however, but I can see what they were trying to do in the finale. The thing that really didn’t set well with me was that he disposed of Deborah like he did with the “big bad’s”. There was no connection with Deb and the sea that would have made it poetic or meaningful. I didn’t like that she was just dumped out of the boat like he has done to many throughout the 8 seasons.

  8. KBecks says:

    I was ok with the majority of the finale, but I just couldn’t be ok with the very end. I thought he would fake his death and then go live overseas somewhere with Hannah and Harrison…..but to go be a lumberjack? And leave his son? Not to mention that people are going to be looking for Harrison….I mean Deb and Dexter dead and the kid just disappears? I get him wanting to protect them from him, I do….but given everything else that whole family has been through I think it’s a little extreme. Plus after 9 years I really did want Dexter to have a slightly happy ending.

    • Kim R says:

      I feel the same way. I wanted him to end up with Hannah and Harrison. Maybe they would assume Harrison was in the boat with his dad? I think I’ll add that he eventually goes to find them in my mind and make my own finale after the finale. :)

    • The end is not the end. What I mean by that is that their lives will go on, and they are the same people. Dexter’s life doesn’t end with him currently hiding out as a lumberjack. He may find Hannah and Harrison eventually. What we saw was the end of one phase of his life. That story is over, but we just don’t know what happens next.

  9. Jen says:

    Very happy to hear Devious Maids hit a high last night! The finale was great and I can’t wait for season two.

  10. Brendan says:

    People were going to be disappointed with the finale no matter what happened… They raised the bar so high with the Season 4 finale that nothing has been able to live up to it since.

  11. Angie S says:

    Pretty bad. Kept waiting for the pay off this season but it never happened. For a series that was so darn good, what a disappointment. To throw Deb overboard like trash was terrible. I know it was supposed to be symbolic – but it was lazy. I could go on and on , but what’s the point?

  12. Mikael says:

    This does not deserve to be Dexter’s most-watched season. It seemed like it had potential but failed miserably in the final episodes. Too many plot holes, even for “tv land.” Yes, I wanted Dexter to run off and be happy with Hannah, and I get that a serial killer probably shouldn’t have a happy ending. But the execution was awful.

  13. If you watched Breaking Bad or Dexter, the writers and acting in BB was far different.

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