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‘Homeland,’ ‘Masters of Sex’ Hold Their Own on Sunday

Showtime dramas draw their largest nightly totals of the season despite tough competition

Sunday night was all about the return of “The Walking Dead” on AMC, but Showtime’s “Homeland” and “Masters of Sex” held up well in the ratings.

According to Nielsen, “Homeland” averaged 1.81 million viewers for its 9 p.m. telecast Sunday and a season best 2.62 million for its three airings (11 p.m. and then 1 a.m. Monday). This was the third-year show’s second largest audience for any night, behind only its second-season finale.

“Homeland” was followed by “Masters of Sex,” which drew 1.04 million for its 10 p.m. airing and a best-yet 1.4 million for the night.

According to Showtime, “Homeland” has about 6.4 million weekly viewers, and “Masters of Sex” has 5.9 million.

Over at HBO, “Boardwalk Empire” drew 1.9 million viewers for its regular-timeslot telecast Sunday, putting in on par with “Homeland.” It was followed by the 10 p.m. airing of “Eastbound & Down” (753,000) and “Hello Ladies” (477,000). “Ladies” was the only show to gain week to week.

In addition to “Walking Dead,” there was also significant live sports action on NBC (“Sunday Night Football”) and Fox (baseball’s American League Championship Series) competing for eyeballs on Sunday night.

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