Ginnifer Goodwin, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Bill Paxton and Chloe Sevigny, Big Love

Though this season of Big Love earned little love in early ratings, HBO has ordered a fourth season of polygamist family drama.

The critical darling, which suffered a long hiatus due to the writers' strike, has rebounded from its slow ratings start, earning 1.5 million viewers on Sunday despite competition with Super Bowl XLIII. The show averages five million viewers, including DVR plays and on-demand or encore episode tune-in.

"The stellar reviews and solid viewership this season confirm that this is a signature series for HBO," said Michael Lombardo, president of programming at HBO. "The series keeps getting better and better."

The show centers on Bill Paxton's Utah businessman and his three wives, played by Jeanne Tripplehorn, Chloe Sevigny and Ginnifer Goodwin. The new season introduced Branka Katic, who plays an Eastern European waitress who could become the fourth wife.

Production will begin later this year, with Season 4 episodes debuting in 2010.