We knew already that the Line of Duty finale on the BBC this past weekend was a winner and the ratings only quantify that fact further.
With an average of 7.5 million viewers over the course of Sunday watching live, this episode helps to further mark Line of Duty as one of Britain’s premier dramas. It also helps to cement it as the heir apparent to Broadchurch as one of the most-discussed drama series of its type. This is the highest total viewership of the series to date, and after three seasons over on BBC Two, this rating validates the move over to the flagship BBC One network.
As for if a Line of Duty season 5 will somehow match these viewing figures, there will be a few challenges with that. For one, much of the appeal for first-time viewers this season was the presence of Thandie Newton, who was brilliant over on Westworld and was just as excellent here as DCI Roz Huntley, a woman who was masterfully crafted into so much more than just a suspect and target for the AC-12. Pound for pound, the twists in the finale regarding her and several other characters may be some of the most well-executed in recent British TV memory. They not only tied together the murder of Timothy Ifield, but also brought the show back to its BBC Two roots for those who have been watching since the beginning.
Line of Duty season 5 could premiere as early as next year. However, like with most British shows with a single writer there is a certain amount of flux. Ultimately, the new season will be filmed whenever it is ready, and once there is a worthy story to translate over to the screen. Also, we imagine that the producers will be eager to try and find another performer of Newton’s caliber to add to the cast. With ratings like these, they may have an easier time attracting good talent. If proportionally the same number of viewers watched the show in America, it’d be the biggest stateside hit on the air here.
If you are interested in gathering up some further news on Line of Duty prior to the finale airing, just be sure to head over to the link here now. Leave us a comment in the box below with your thoughts on the show and the ratings. (Photo: BBC.)