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Farewells are Fond to the Nielsens

With Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report the latest popular show to wrap up its successful run last week, Ratings Intelligence examined some of the most popular television series to air their final installments. These include programs like HBO’s True Blood, Boardwalk Empire and The Newsroom. FX said goodbye to Sons of Anarchy earlier this month after seven seasons, and CBS’s How I Met Your Mother came to an end at the end of March. USA’s White Collar wrapped up its run on Dec. 18, the same day Stephen Colbert’s faux pundit signed off.

In the graphic at right are final-episode ratings for Sons of Anarchy, True Blood, Boardwalk Empire, The Newsroom and How I Met Your Mother.

Per live-plus-same-day Nielsen data, the series finale of How I Met Your Mother on March 31, pulled a 5.42 rating among persons 18-49 and a 5.56 rating with persons 25-54. The final-season persons 18-49 average was 3.40, and the persons 25-54 average was 3.79. According to live-plus-same-day Nielsen data, 13.2 million viewers in total tuned into the finale. The final season’s total viewer average was 8.9 million.

Dec. 9’s series finale of Sons of Anarchy, titled “Papa’s Goods,” generated an average rating of 3.32 among viewers 18-49 and a 3.62 among viewers 25-54. Average rating for the final season was 2.44 among 18-49s and 2.65 among 25-54s. Early live-plus-same day numbers put the finale at 6.4 million total viewers, but the average will increase significantly as time-shifted Nielsen data continues to trickle in.

The series finale of True Blood, titled “Thank You,” pulled a 2.09 rating among persons 18-49 (live-plus-SD) and a 2.30 rating among persons 25-54. The final season live-plus-same-day average for persons 18-49 was 1.84, and the average for persons 25-54 was 2.03. The finale hauled in a total of 4.0 million viewers, per live-plus-same-day data, about 500,000 viewers above the final season total viewership average.

“El Dorado,” the finale of Boardwalk Empire, hauled in a live-plus-same-day persons 18-49 rating of 0.89 and a live-plus-same-day persons 25-54 rating of 1.05. The final-season averages on a live-plus-same-day basis were 0.81 and 0.92, respectively. The finale hauled in mor thanr 2.3 million total viewers — about 300,000 more than the live-plus-same-day season average.

The series finale of HBO’s The Newsroom, which aired Dec. 14, hauled in 1.6 million total viewers, per live-plus-same-day data. The Newsroom had been averaging more than 1.3 million total viewers. The finale grabbed a 0.56 rating in persons 18-49 and a 0.64 rating in persons 25-54. These ratings are above the season averages of 0.52 (18-49) and 0.59 (25-54).