The fifth, and penultimate, season finale of FX‘s drama Justified copped a crowd 2.37 million strong, according to Nielsen. That’s a 5% uptick compared with the show’s Season 4 finale, back when viewers did not know it was coming to an end at Season 6. Ditto the demo numbers — a 0.8 rating compared vs 0.7 a year ago. But the season wrapper was no match for the season starter in January; that clocked 2.84 million viewers and a 1.1 demo rating.
Justified, like other FX original drama series, jumps noticeably when delayed viewing is added to the mix. Last April, when the dust settled, more than 3.82 million viewers had watched that Season 4 finale, according to Nielsen’s Live+7 numbers ( a 70% jump over the 2.25 million initially reported). That Season 4 finale nonetheless wound up short of the 3.95 million who watched the Season 3 ender.
In January FX CEO John Landgraf confirmed that Justified will end its run with a sixth season. Making the sixth season the final installment of the series, executive produced by Graham Yost and starring Timothy Olyphant, “was really Graham and Tim Olyphant’s decision,” Landgraf said at a Q&A with TV critics. “We talked about it a year ago, and they felt that the arc of the show and what they had to say [fit better with six seasons than seven]. Regretfully, that’s their decision.”
Season 5 of Justified saw U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens heading to Florida then back to Kentucky for a case and the debut of Michael Rapaport as the latest bad guy.