HBO Renews Boardwalk Empire for Season 4

By Tim Surette

Oct 02, 2012

Raise a glass and pour some illegally procured booze into it, because HBO has ordered a fourth season of Prohibition-era drama Boardwalk Empire. The decision comes three episodes into the show's third season and just over a week after it grabbed four Emmys, the biggest of which was a directing nod for Tim Van Patten. In 2011, the show won eight Emmy awards.

Though HBO programming president Michael Lombardo praised the show in the required press release, the drama isn't exactly the smash the network hoped it would be. HBO estimates the total viewers for the Season 3 premiere came in at around 7.2 million viewers across all platforms and DVR numbers, down from the 8.6 million viewers per episode average the show maintained last season. And in terms of buzz, the big-budget Boardwalk Empire trails HBO hits Game of Thrones and True Blood by a lot. Heck, you could even argue that Girls has more of the media's attention than Boardwalk Empire does.

But a familiar name at Emmys time and 7 million viewers means HBO has no reason to cut things off anytime soon. And come on... Martin Scorsese, Steve Buscemi, and tons of incredible supporting actors? The show should be good for at least a few more seasons. If HBO is willing to keep Treme around for four seasons, Boardwalk Empire should be good for six.

Follow writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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  • smithinjapan Oct 03, 2012

    There is just nothing to compete with this show in terms of 'period pieces', and even if one got thrown out there they would have to do an AMAZING job to keep up with the meticulous attention to detail that Van Patten and the costume people, as well as the writers, put into it. Even if you're not really into the show, you have to admit it is something to look at.

  • efonsecajr Oct 03, 2012

    Season 2 was incredible. Season 3 is very good so far. Five seasons sounds about right.

  • goldtop2007 Oct 03, 2012

    Shows with this kind of mature and intelligent writing are not commonplace these days. I love being transferred into the prohibition era of New York, being reminded of how much our societies have changed in less than a century. One of my favorite shows right now!

  • waltmor Oct 03, 2012

    As an HBO subscriber I am so ready for Boardwalk to wrap it up and be done. I watch it occasionally and enjoy it but I've never been able to commit like I do to Game of Thrones and True Blood. To me it's an uninteresting hole in their schedule like Big Love used to be. Wish I could swap it for Homeland or Boss.

  • Flatlegz Oct 04, 2012

    I love it! But, I can see how someone might not.

  • efonsecajr Oct 03, 2012

    Get rid of Girls, Treme and The Newsrooms before BE. Thems the brakes.

  • patsully Oct 03, 2012

    As long as the quality stays as high as it's been, I'll enjoy watching this show wander aimlessly, killing off lots of characters along the way. When you think about it that way - it's sort of on the Game of Thrones path.