'Shameless' Season 9 Premiere Ratings Take a Hit

Shameless recently aired its season nine premiere, but appears to have taken a hit in the ratings.

According to Variety, the debut episode of the new season brought in 1.3 million viewers, which is about 30 percent fewer watchers than the season eight premiere nabbed.

However, streaming and OnDemand numbers actually bring its total viewership up to about 2.2 million watchers.

It seems like the fact that the series is available to stream more conveniently outside of its regular air-time explains why the live numbers were lower, but the news that series star Emmy Rossum is leaving the show might have also been a reason.

Ahead of the season nine premiere, the actress took to Facebook to post a statement that revealed this would be her last season.

"This business is always an adventure, full of travel and opportunities to tell stories," Rossum wrote in her statement. "Usually as an actor, every few months, you travel to a new place, start a new project, build a new character, learn new rhythms, new inside jokes with your crew, make new friends."

"Until Shameless came into my life 8 years ago, I led that kind of transient wonderful life of an actor," she added. "And I never realized how much I actually craved the kind of continuity that this show has given me. And given all of us in the crew. Season after season I'm amazed that our same crew comes back. And it's not just because it's a wonderfully written, wonderfully layered show. There are these real connections, real friendships that bring us back season after season after season."

She went on to praise the cast and crew saying it is "no small feat" that they have "made over 100 hours of television together."

"There's a new study that says it takes 100 hours to become friends with someone. The Gallaghers have been in people's living rooms for 100 hours. So, it makes sense. We can feel your connection to us, to these characters," she explained. "In the airport, in restaurants, on the street, when people call out 'Hi Fiona' 'Oh my god, it's Lip' or 'Screw you Frank!'... it feels good."

In conclusion, Rossum said that she is "proud and...filled with gratitude," at the time she played Fiona Gallagher.

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"I know you will continue on without me, for now. There is much more Gallagher story to be told. I will always be rooting for my family," she finally added. "Try not to think of me as gone, just think of me as moving down the block."

Shameless airs Sunday nights on Showtime.