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'Homeland' defends Showtime's ratings turf

October 3, 2011 |  5:15 pm

The terrorism thriller "Homeland" hunted down some solid premiere numbers for Showtime on Sunday.

Starring Claire Danes as a CIA officer investigating the case of a Marine returning home to the U.S. after being held captive for years by Al Qaeda, "Homeland" rounded up 1.1 million total viewers in its 10 p.m. time slot, according to Nielsen Co. That was in line with the network's costume epic "The Borgias" premiere and slightly higher than the seriocomic family drama "Shameless" (982,000).

An additional 243,000 viewers tuned in to a midnight repeat of "Homeland," while 56,000 watched a 2 a.m. airing.

Meanwhile, "Dexter" sliced up its best premiere ratings ever, with 2.2 million viewers tied down for the Season 6 premiere. That was up 24% compared with last year.


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-- Scott Collins (

Photo: Claire Danes in "Homeland." Credit: Kent Smith / Showtime.