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'Dexter' finale breaks ratings record for Showtime

'Dexter' finale breaks ratings record for Showtime
Actor Michael C. Hall, who stars on the series "Dexter," which is ending its run after eight seasons. (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

The finale of "Dexter" is drawing mixed reaction from fans, but it was a ratings smash for Showtime.

The conclusion of the series about forensic investigator Dexter Morgan, who moonlights as a serial killer, was the show's highest-rated telecast ever, and the largest viewership for an original episode in Showtime history.

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The episode attracted 2.8 million viewers at its premiere telecast at 9 p.m., and 3.3 million viewers in repeat viewings later in the evening.

The show's eighth season was also the highest-rated season ever, with a weekly average of 6.4 million viewers across platforms.

Showtime also celebrated the performance of "Ray Donovan," which ended its first season Sunday and ranks as the highest-rated freshman series in the premium network's history. The finale drew 2.1 million viewers for the night, the best finale performance by a freshman series on Showtime.

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