In a surprise to absolutely no one, the British drama series Downton Abbey has been renewed for a fifth season. The show ended its fourth season in the UK on ITV this past Sunday night with the highest ratings of any UK drama this year, so clearly the series is not dwindling in popularity. Season four doesn’t premiere here in the US until January, and presumably season five won’t air on PBS until January 2015. Creator Julian Fellowes recently stated that Downton “won’t be like an American show that goes on for 12 years,” adding that he doesn’t know what there will be after season five, so it’s possible that next year could be the last run of new Downton episodes.
Of course, the studio behind the show will likely work to keep it going as long as possible, so who knows how long Downton Abbey will continue to grace our TV screens.