Q: I was a longtime fan of "Nashville" and was sad to see Connie Britton leave last year. However, I very much enjoy the new season on CMT, even without Connie. How is the show doing ratings-wise? Is it strong enough for CMT to keep it going?

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Adam Thomlison / TV Media

The fifth season of "Nashville" -- its first after moving from broadcast to cable -- started out on a bit of a roller-coaster, but things have leveled out now. And apparently, CMT's quite happy with the level.

The season 5 premiere drew a measly 420,000 viewers, compared to 4.9 million viewers for the season 4 premiere. That's a shocking plummet, except when you consider that season 4 aired on a broadcast network (which everyone gets) while season 5 aired on cable (which you have to pay for).

But it seems that some of the problem was simply people finding "Nashville" in its new home, since viewership actually tripled for the second episode on CMT, to a bit over 1.2 million. Things dropped off a bit after that, so that the fifth season averaged about 850,000 viewers per week. 

Those still aren't amazing numbers, but they're fairly good for cable (in fact, "Nashville" was CMT's highest-rated show this year) -- good enough to inspire CMT to renew "Nashville" for a sixth season before the fifth had even finished.

Series star Charles Esten announced the news on social media, saying to fans, "We're very grateful to keep making these shows for you."

CMT hasn't announced a firm date for the sixth-season premiere, saying only that it will air "early next year."


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