Hog Heaven: ‘Sons of Anarchy’ Gets Record Ratings, Third Season

FX has renewed its biker drama hit following a stellar performance for the season two finale. Creator Kurt Sutter extends his deal for two more years.

Last Updated: December 2, 2009 @ 4:58 PM

That rumble you might have heard last night was the sound of "Sounds of Anarchy" revving up to break another ratings record– and score a third season.

FX today announced that its hit biker drama "SOA" will be back for a third season, which is scheduled to bow in September. Hardly a shocker, given the show’s on-fire ratings this season, but now it’s official.

The news comes just as the ratings for last night’s 90-minute finale have been tallied. The series, from creator Kurt Sutter, scored its biggest audience yet, attracting 4.33 million viewers. FX also said Sutter has extended his showrunner/writer deal for two more years (which means we can all but guarantee a season four of "Sons."

Here’s the release from FX:

LOS ANGELES, December 2, 2009 – Tuesday’s 90-minute season two finale of FX’s critically acclaimed drama Sons of Anarchy was cable’s number-one program for the night, delivering 4.33 million total viewers and 2.99 million Adults 18-49. It was also the top-rated show on television in the 10:00 PM time period among Men 18-49 (1.92 million) and Men 18-34 (1.09 million), beating all three broadcast networks. The episode was the most-watched ever for Sons, surpassing its season two premiere (4.29 million total viewers).

On the heels of its stellar performance this season, FX President and General Manager John Landgraf announced that the network has ordered 13 episodes for the show’s third season, which is scheduled to begin in September 2010. Creator/Executive Producer Kurt Sutter reached a deal on a two-year extension to continue his services as showrunner/writer on Sons. All series regulars are in place to return next season. Sons of Anarchy is produced by Fox 21 and FX Productions.

In addition to taking cable’s top spot Tuesday among total viewers, Adults 18-49, Men 18-49 and Men 18-34, the season finale, written and directed by Sutter, was also number one in delivery of Adults 18-34 (1.57 million), Women 18-49 (1.06 million), Adults 25-54 (2.77 million), Men 25-54 (1.71 million), and Women 25-54 (1.06 million).

For its 13-episode second season, Sons averaged 3.67 million total viewers and 2.56 million Adults 18-49, which represented respective gains of +66% and +75% versus season one averages. Sons of Anarchy is basic cable’s top scripted series for 2009 in delivery of Adults 18-49 and Men 18-49.

During its 13-week run, the second season of Sons of Anarchy was television’s #1 series in the Tuesday 10:00 PM time period in average delivery of Adults 18-34, Men 18-34 and Men 18-49 (BROADCAST and CABLE).

“The success of Sons of Anarchy is very gratifying and the show has become a bona-fide hit,” said Landgraf. “The critics have recognized Sons as one the best series on television, and the show has earned its place alongside FX’s great drama series The Shield, Nip/Tuck, Rescue Me and Damages. Creatively, this season was spectacular and all credit goes to Kurt and the incredible cast led by Katey Sagal, Charlie Hunnam and Ron Perlman.”

Sutter said, “This has been a wonderful ride and we’re just getting started. I’m really proud of the work by our incredible cast and crew. The response this season from the fans and critics has been terrific and I can’t wait to get back to the writer’s room and start on season three.”