The Season 5 premiere of AMC’s The Walking Dead delivered the highest ratings in series history. The episode was watched by 17.3 million viewers and 11 million adults aged 18-49, increases of 7% and 6%, respectively, over the Season 4 premiere, the previous record-holder.The Walking Dead continues to be the No. 1 show on television among adults 18-49. Last night’s episode outperformed everything else on television in this key demographic, including Sunday Night Football, by over 2.5 million adults 18-49. With time-shifted playback, the Season 5 premiere should exceed 22 million viewers.
“It’s a Dead man’s party. Who could ask for more?” said Charlie Collier, AMC president. “Enormous thanks to our friends and executive producers Robert Kirkman, Scott Gimple, Greg Nicotero – who also directed last night’s terrific premiere – Gale Anne Hurd, Dave Alpert andTom Luse and all of their fellow producers, cast and crew for everything they do to make the #1 show on television such a unique and incredible experience for the fans. The Walking Dead is one of those increasingly rare shows today that can command a live audience not significantly cannibalized by time-shifted viewing. Who would have thought that cannibalized television could be curtailed by cannibal-ized television?”
The episode was jam packed with emotion from major zombie kills to an all time fave tear jerker reunion. It was truly one of the BEST season premieres I have seen of any show, ever!
The previous ratings record for an episode of The Walking Dead was 16.1 million total viewers and 10.4 million viewers 18-49 for the season four premiere, live/same day. With seven days of DVR playback included, the Season 4 premiere delivered 21.1 million total viewers and 13.9 million adults 18-49, becoming the most highly-rated episode in cable television history.
Talking Dead,” the live aftershow of The Walking Dead, also enjoyed record ratings last night, as its fourth season premiere on Sunday was the highest-rated premiere in series history with 6.9 million viewers and 4.5 million adults aged 18-49. That is an increase over last year’s premiere of 34% and 35% respectively. Each week, Talking Dead features host Chris Hardwick and fans, actors, producers and other TV enthusiasts discussing that night’s The Walking Dead premiere.