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'True Blood' gives HBO its biggest audience since 'The Sopranos'

June 16, 2009 | 12:18 pm

TB-ratings Some 3.7 million viewers tuned into the second season premiere of HBO's "True Blood" Sunday -- the network's biggest telecast rating in two years.

Another 1.4 million watched the 11 p.m. encore., and by the end of the night, 5.1 million viewers watched to see the conclusion to last season's bone-chilling cliffhanger — was that Lafayette's cold, dead corpse in the back of Andy Bellefleur's car?

That makes the episode HBO's most-watched program since the finale of "The Sopranos."

Altogether, the premiere delivered the network's single biggest audience since the mob drama's 2007 ending, which drew 11.9 million and still ranks its most-watched series.

According to the network, Sunday's 9 p.m. "True Blood" opener was up 157% from last year's series premiere

Over the course of its first season, the Alan Ball series, a Southern dramedy about a telepathic waitress and her undead beau, has attracted a rabid following and now ranks as one of HBO's highest profile series. 

— Denise Martin

Photo credit: HBO