While Showtime and HBO were cleaning up at the Golden Globes Sunday night (Jan. 13), the two cable channels were also debuting new seasons of several original series to ratings ranging from OK to record-setting.
The records belong to Showtime’s “Shameless” and “House of Lies,” both of which scored series bests in viewers. “Shameless” drew 2 million viewers for its third-season premiere, a big improvement over the Season 2 premiere (1.58 million). Additional airings of the episode brought its total to 2.6 million viewers for the night.
“House of Lies” drew 1.19 million people (1.54 million with additional airings), also a record, shortly after star Don Cheadle accepted his Golden Globe for best actor in a TV comedy. “Californication” followed “House of Lies” and came in at 1.07 million viewers (1.3 million for the night overall), a 41 percent improvement over last season’s debut (758,000).
The news wasn’t quite as positive at HBO, where Season 2 of “Girls” premiered to 866,000 viewers. That’s basically even with the 872,000 who watched last year’s series premiere. Two additional airings pushed its total for the night to 1.6 million.
“Enlightened,” however, got a bit of a bump by moving to Sunday from its Monday-night berth last fall. The premiere brought in 300,000 viewers, up from 210,000 last year, and a cumulative 609,000 people over three airings.