‘The Walking Dead’ exploded back on screens last night with a stunning 17.3 million viewers for its season 5 bow. That number is a record high for both the series, which is up 6% from last year, and cable television as a whole.
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 and Tom 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.”
Directed by effects guru Greg Nicotero, the explosive premiere crushed all of its competition in its time slot on Sunday night including Sunday Night Football. These numbers aren’t even the finals, which will be reconciled after the Live+7 data comes in.
Season 5 of ‘The Walking Dead’ will take its traditional mid-season break for the holiday season, but will return on February 8, 2015