His Dark Materials, the BBC and HBO’s ambitious retelling of Philip Pullman’s Northern Lights novel, came to a close in the UK with just over 4M viewers, as the season struggled to maintain the audience highs of early episodes.
The final installment of Bad Wolf’s drama, starring Ruth Wilson, James Mcavoy and Dafne Keen, was watched by 4.1M viewers across the 8PM hour on BBC One, according to BARB figures provided by overnights.tv.
This was marginally above last week’s season-low audience of 4M viewers, but the drama was beaten for some of the hour by ITV entertainment show Dancing On Ice, which averaged 4M from 7PM to 9PM.
His Dark Materials‘ finale audience was 43%, or 3.1M viewers below the debut episode, which was watched by 7.2M viewers in November. This made it the biggest new drama launch on British TV in more than five years.
The Jack Thorne-penned show has been adding more than 1.6M viewers to some previous episodes once catch-up viewing is factored in, meaning the audience for Sunday’s finale could end up increasing significantly. A second series of His Dark Materials is already on the way and could premiere next year.
Elsewhere on Sunday night, BBC One and FX’s retelling of A Christmas Carol premiered with 4.7M viewers in the UK. Steven Knight’s drama was comfortably the highest-rated show in the 9PM slot and was in line with recent Sunday night BBC One show, The War Of The Worlds, which was also seen by 4.7M people.