'When Calls the Heart' Season 8 a Ratings Win for Hallmark Channel

The When Calls the Heart love triangle may have frustrated some viewers, but it didn’t hurt the show’s ratings. Season 8 of the Hallmark Channel drama was the most watched in the show’s history, the network has revealed. 

More than 3 million people watched the ‘When Calls the Heart’ Season 8 finale 

The Elizabeth-Lucas-Nathan love triangle stretched over two seasons, but the show promised a resolution to the drama in the season 8 finale, “The Kiss,” which aired May 9. 

The big reveal proved pretty enticing, with 3.6 million viewers (on an L+3 basis) tuning in to watch Elizabeth Thornton (Erin Krakow) gently let down Mountie Nathan Grant (Kevin McGarry) and end the episode by locking lips with saloon owner Lucas Bouchard (Chris McNally). That’s similar to the number of viewers the show attracted for its season 7 finale in 2020. The finale was the No. 1 most-watched entertainment cable program of the week among households and women 18+, according to Hallmark.

This was the most-watched season of ‘When Calls the Heart’

The strong finish capped off what has been the most-watched season of When Calls the Heart in the show’s history. An average of 3.3 million people watched each season 8 episode. 

During When Calls the Heart’s Season 8 run, Hallmark was the most-watched entertainment cable network in weekend primetime. Eleven of the season’s 12 episodes were the No. 1 program among women 18+ in the week they aired.  

‘When Calls the Heart’ renewed for season 9 

Even before season 8 viewership numbers were made public, Hallmark had committed to another season of the frontier-set period drama, which also features Pascale Hutton, Kavan Smith, and Jack Wagner in its ensemble cast. Krakow made the announcement in a video message that aired during the season finale.

“I’ve got some big news. Now, I’m just as sad as you are that this season of When Calls the Heart is over, but we’ll be returning next year for another all-new season, season 9,” the actor shared. “So, what’s next for Elizabeth and the rest of Hope Valley? We’ve got so many great new stories to share, and I can’t wait for you to find out.”

Some unhappy fans have vowed to quit watching the show  

When Calls the Heart will be back for season 9, but some viewers may not be. Elizabeth’s choice of Lucas over Nathan in the season 8 finale didn’t go over well with all of the show’s loyal fans, aka Hearties. 

Among those who were on Team Nathan, there was disappointment and, in some cases, anger, over “The Kiss.” A few were so upset by the show’s general direction in season 8 that they say they will not watch season 9. 

“I’m not happy when the way the writers took this season! I won’t be watching WCTH anymore,” one person commented on a post from the show’s official Instagram account. 

However, there were many other Hearties who said they were excited about season 9, even if some were disappointed that Elizabeth is now with Lucas. 

“[L]ove the show, loved the ending, and can’t wait for the next season!” another wrote.  

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