Downton Abbey Downton Abbey

Critically acclaimed British drama Downton Abbey will switch into the Best Drama Series category for next year's Emmys, according to Gold Derby.

The show had previously competed in (and won) the Best Miniseries category, but critics claimed the decision to compete as a miniseries  was simply an effort to avoid fierce drama nominees like Mad Men, which this year will be competing for a record fifth straight win in the Best Drama Series category. With Downton joining the mix among other critical darlings Boardwalk Empire, Homeland and Breaking Bad, the category could be a fierce competition.

Downton Abbey finale earns biggest PBS ratings in three years

The British import's season 2 finale, which aired Feb. 19, averaged 5.4 million total viewers, and posted PBS' biggest audience in nearly three years. It was the network's most-watched program since the 2009 premiere of Ken Burns' National Parks

and was also more than double the average prime-time PBS viewership.