Absence certainly made hearts grow a little fonder on this side of the pond for the return of Luther this week. Season 4 of the Idris Elba drama pulled in 252,000 total viewers for its more than 2-hour special last night on BBC America. That’s up 22% in total viewers from what the Season 3 premiere of the Neil Cross-created series drew on September 3, 2013, a Tuesday on the cusp of the fall season. Among the targeted adults 25-54 demo the 9 – 11:45 PM, Season 4 had 99,000 viewers. That’s a rise of 87% from Season 3 and the highest rated episode of the entire series on BBC America.
More a TV movie than a series in many ways, Thursday’s Luther was the best the series has ever done in the U.S. viewershipwise. The same could not be said of the show’s Season 4 opener in the UK on December 15.
With 4.9 million viewers and a 22.5 share, the results were mixed for the BBC One effort. Down a mere 2% from the July 2, 2013 Season 3 opener of Luther, the Season 4 debut actually snagged the lowest audience the show has ever had. Having said that, Luther was up 4% in share over its last debut more than 2.5 years ago. Having bested the Season 3 average of 4.4 million and won its BBC One slot, Luther Season 4 returns for its second and final episode on December 22 in the UK.