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Draper's dark descent in 'Mad Men' finale draws 2.7 million viewers

Actor Jon Hamm of the TV drama "Mad Men" and his girlfriend Jennifer Westfeldt arrive at the 19th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los A
Actor Jon Hamm of the TV drama "Mad Men" and his girlfriend Jennifer Westfeldt arrive at the 19th annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in Los A

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The sixth season finale of the Emmy-winning drama "Mad Men" was watched by 2.7 million viewers, matching last season's record high, as the AMC period-advertising series wrapped up a season of change for lead ad man Don Draper.

U.S. cable channel AMC said on Monday that the finale to the 13-episode season was the network's highest rated, citing a 5 percent growth in its share of television viewers this year.

While the overall viewership was stable, there was a drop in viewers within the 25-54 age demographic coveted by advertisers, with 1.3 million viewers, down from 2012's 1.4 million viewers.

Enigmatic advertising executive Draper, played by Jon Hamm, faced his biggest challenges this season as he grappled with late 1960s cultural changes, as well as drifting apart from his wife as he engaged in a steamy affair with a married neighbor.

In the finale, Draper finds himself unraveling at the seams as he tries to counter his excessive drinking, a suspension from his firm by his partners and efforts to come to terms with his own identity.

The episode ends with Draper taking his three children to the brothel where he grew up.

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner said in recent interviews that season seven, scheduled to air in 2014, will be the final one of the series.

The drama is a strong player during Hollywood's awards season, often taking top television honors for its cast and creators at both the Emmys and Golden Globes.

"Mad Men" is produced by Lionsgate Television, a division of Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. AMC cable channel is a unit of AMC Networks Inc..

(Reporting by Piya Sinha-Roy; Editing by Eric Kelsey and Leslie Adler)

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