'Yellowstone' Snaps Ratings Record With Cliffhanger-Heavy Season 3 Finale

Yellowstone's third season came to a close on Sunday, stunning fans with a massive cliffhanger. Millions tuned in to watch the popular show and helped set new records. Yellowstone officially became the most-watched cable telecast of 2020.

According to Nielsen, the Season 3 finale drew 7.6 million total viewers in Live+3. This was an increase from 5.2M in Live+same day. The explosive episode drew one million more viewers than any other episode in the three-season run. Additionally, Deadline reports that the simulcast across multiple networks and the encores helped increase the number of total viewers to 10.7 million.

Initially created by writer Taylor Sheridan and John Linson, Yellowstone has become a top-rated series on the Paramount Network. The ratings have risen each year, including a 19% increase in viewers 25-54 over the Season 2 finale. The end of Season 3 continued this trend and set the stage for potential records when the series returns in June 2021.

The viewers will wait for several answers considering that Season 3 ended with four main characters facing uncertain futures. Fans want to know which ones died and which ones lived after the finale left several questions unanswered. Actor Denim Richards would not provide any answers during an exclusive interview with PopCulture.com, but he did say that he "feels bad" that the fans have to wait for almost an entire year.


"I don't know if anyone's going to be able to guess. I mean, it's such an intense thing," Richards said. "I'm gonna be as interested as anybody else to just see what the fans, what they think and how they react — and just how devastated so many of them will be at the end of this episode. I laugh not because I think it's funny, but because it's uncomfortable because I know, we have some of the best fans that you can have for entertainment and to see how invested they are from week to week. And then to leave them hanging for so long is really, really hard."

Before the Season 3 premiere, Paramount announced that the show was being renewed for another year. Additionally, Sheridan signed a deal with ViacomCBS' Entertainment & Youth Brands. This deal covers multiple projects for the newly-created studios, including a new drama called Mayor of Kingstown. This series focuses on a small, Michigan town centered on seven federal prisons, as well as the figures heavily involved in the area.