WALKING DEAD First Season Finale is Highest Rated Episode Yet

Well, it's pretty much official: AMC's The Walking Dead was, by all measure, a giant success for everyone involved. As predicted, the season one final drew the biggest ratings of the season.

Not only were the 6 million total viewers enough to make The Walking Dead the most watched show on cable (not ot mention AMC) but when you take into account the 11pm re-airing, the total number of viewers jumps to 8.1 million.

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 6

  • 10pm airing – 6 million viewers
  • Adults 18-49 – 4 million viewers

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 5

  • 10pm airing – 5.6 million viewers
  • Adults 18-49 – 3.7 million viewers

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 4

  • 10pm airing – 4.8 million viewers

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 3

  • 10pm airing – 5.1 million viewers
  • Adults 18-49 – 3.3 million viewers

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 2

  • 10pm airing – 4.7 million viewers
  • Adults 18-49 – 3.3 million viewers

Ratings for The Walking Dead – Episode 1

  •  10pm airing – 5.3 million viewers
  •  Adults 18-49 – 3.6 million viewers

And now we wait a year for a new episode…

Talk about the show itself here. Talk about the ratings below.


  1. I’d be interested to see the ratings for the marathon they had on Sunday…

  2. A frigging year!

  3. I’m a little worried about the year-long wait (most people have short attention spans), but maybe premiering around Halloween again will prime viewers. 

    This is certainly a better annual tradition than Saw 27.5 next October. 

  4. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    It’s not a year. It’s more like 11 months. 

  5. I really hope the long haitus doesn’t effect the actors too much. it would be a shame to lose anyone due to scheduling conflicts

  6. @srh1son  –seemed to be ok for True Blood. 
    @RoiVampire  –its not that long of a haitus for the actors….they’re prob already in pre-production. 

  7. I’m still very worried about little Carl going thru a “Walt”-like (Lost) growth spurt and being six feet tall before they even get to the third trades worth of stories.

  8. The child actors will be the toughest to handle over long time frames between seasons for obvious reasons.

  9. if they recast carl and that little girl would anyone really notice? they haven’t really done anything with them. I can’t even picture carl in my head besides the fact that he has brown hair that’s short

  10. I’ve thought from day one that Carl should’ve been cast younger. That kid’s gonna be 6′ by third season. The problem with casting a really young child actors is this: The only things worse than kids on TV is really young kids on TV. It would be hard to find a really young child that could pull off the emotional exercise that Carl has ahead of him. On the other hand, a lot of the trauma Carl goes through is made more effective because he is so young. On the third hand, they haven’t done anything with Carl yet so maybe he won’t be as central to the show as he is to the books.

  11. I’m interested to see how the ratings will be after the year lo…..sorry @fuzztypewriter….11 month wait.

    That’s an awful long time for letting people wait for anything new. I should know, I dealt with a long hiatus with LOST for 3-4 years when they went with that format.

  12. @TheNextChampion  A break that long between seasons is not unheard of in cable — THE SOPRANOS, BREAKING BAD, TRUE BLOOD, MAD MEN have all had a year between seasons in the past — but it does warrant watching.

  13. it really is a good thing that, aside from the whisper, they’re aren’t any hanging plot threads. basically if you just remember who died you should be fine for season 2. they put a nice little button on the end of the season

  14. @RoiVampire  –well there is Merle…

    i’m sure they have all the actors locked down to multi season contracts which is pretty standard. The kid actors are the biggest challenge, but we barely even saw them. They do it a lot with movies so actors can’t hold a production hostage with unreasonable pay raises and kill a show before it starts a second season. 

  15. Incredible.  If you’d told me a year ago that a TV series based on a comic book would be drawing 6 million viewers and positive critical response I wouldn’t have believed it.  Good for Mr. Kirkman.  

  16. 6 episodes is more like a min series- than a full season.

  17. Not when it is being followed up by a second season.

  18. What’s really amazing is the consistency of the ratings. Most shows drop precipitously after the first couple of eps, but this actually improved over time. How many other shows, network or cable, can boast that?

  19. @KRYPTOTIM  If you want to talk about last night’s episode there’s a place for that. This is for discussing the ratings.

  20. @ResurrectionFlan  If you want to talk aout last night’s episode there’ s a place for that. This is for discussing the ratings.

  21. On average, TWD beat Terriers in viewers by a six-to-one ratio. I like TWD but there’s something wrong – no, AWFUL – about that stat.

    Terriers, R.I.P.

  22. I hear a lot of peeps saying how the long wait will take the wind from the show’s sails, however, I’m sure we’ll have the promos for Season 2 by San Diego, and if they put half as much effort into Season 2’s promotion as they did Season 1, I wouldn’t be surprised if that premier’s ratings beat that of the Season 1 finale?

  23. @RobAbsten  I liked Terriers too. Ratings.

  24. TWD deserves this. now that amc knows they have a strong, loyal viewership i’m expecting season 2 to really shift into high hear (up the drama).

  25. There was also the 1am airing… yes, I did watch all three

  26. @conor: All the shows you named are on AMC or HBO. I think it’s more of a network by network basis rather than cable as a whole but you’re right it’s not unheard of. I bet just like the shows you named after the second season of TWD the time off inbetween lessens greatly.

  27. @JesTr  I know, but we’re talking about premium quality cable shows here and those are on HBO and AMC.

    BREAKING BAD still takes eleven months off between the season finale and the season premiere. MAD MEN still takes the same nine months between the season premiere. TRUE BLOOD takes the same nine months between the season finale and the season premiere. They’re all pretty much on the same production schedule that they were when they started.

  28. @JesTr  — there is no other way to produce one camera hour long dramas like this. I think even the major networks do this. Shows like Fringe, House etc. They have to take large amounts of time off. You just don’t notice because they keep the time slots active with re-runs, and space the season out with off weeks. 

    AMC will air re-runs, and do marathons to coincide with DVD releases and all that. It’ll still be on our minds in the next few months. I had the same doubts as you after S1 of True Blood, and i was able to follow that show fine.  

  29. Nine months is hard but still somehow seems manageable.  As the buzz wears off, there is a period to push new shows (if you are AMC), and then start marketing for the new season, release the previous season DVDs to get people piqued, etc.

    I know the difference between 9 and 11 isn’t much, and yet, it is. 2 months at the beginning of a wait and 2 months at the end aren’t equal.