In an unsurprising move, HBO has renewed its hit vampire drama True Blood for a fifth season. The show, currently in the middle of season 4, will return with 12 new episodes next summer. Ratings for the current season have remained high, consistently getting over 5 million viewers every week (except for when the show aired during the Fourth of July weekend).

The continued success of True Blood keeps it as HBO’s lynchpin drama, while other, newer shows like Boardwalk Empire, Game of Thrones and Treme are also helping to keep the network afloat now that many of its top dramas from the past decade are gone (The Sopranos, Six Feet Under and Big Love).

The 12 additional episodes for True Blood season 5 will bring its total to 60, tying it with The Wire as HBO’s third longest-running drama. The only shows with more are Six Feet Under (63 episodes) and The Sopranos (86 episodes). The additional season will help True Blood‘s run surpass Big Love (53 episodes) and Oz (56 episodes).

True Blood currently airs Sundays at 9pm on HBO.

(Image courtesy of HBO)

John Kubicek

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

John watches nearly every show on TV, but he specializes in sci-fi/fantasy like The Vampire DiariesSupernatural and True Blood. However, he can also be found writing about everything from Survivor and Glee to One Tree Hill and Smallville.