Downton Abbey is PBS' most popular series since 1990 war saga
In this image released by PBS, Maggie Smith as the Dowager Countess Grantham, is shown in a scene from the second season on "Downton Abbey." (AP Photo/PBS/Nick Briggs)
Published Wednesday, February 20, 2013 4:44PM EST
NEW YORK -- The season-ending episode of "Downton Abbey" was a ratings success for PBS, if not a fan favourite.
The public television network disappointed many fans by killing off a popular character to end the third season on Sunday. The Nielsen company said 8.2 million people saw it.
The show's third season is the most-watched series on PBS since Ken Burns' epic "The Civil War," which first aired in 1990.
CBS had 15 of the 20 most popular shows on the air last week, led by "The Big Bang Theory." But CBS also had a rare misstep, firing "The Job" after only two episodes appeared on the air.