AMC's 2016 is off to a great (and bloody) start. Which should come as no surprise, given titles like The Walking Dead and Chris Hardwick's after-show Talking Dead to its credit, as well as the Breaking Bad spinoff Better Call Saul.
Following The Walking Dead's midseason premiere two weeks ago, the estimates on viewership and key demographics are still rolling in. Although it may cost characters like Jessie an arm and two sons, it means nothing but good things for the network.
According to Variety, The Walking Dead's bloodbath episode "No Way Out" brought in a total of 19.1 million viewers and 12.1 million adults aged 18-49. Talking Dead hit its biggest viewership in almost a year with 7.5 million total viewers, including 4.6 million adults aged 18-49.
Better Call Saul's Season Two premiere episode averaged 4.7 million viewers overall, including 2.7 million adults aged 18-49. This might not be the heaviest hitter on the network's current slate, but it was also pitted against the Grammys on the same night.
Charlie Collier, president of AMC, SundanceTV and AMC, discussed his excitement for each of these programs and those involved:
"What a terrific start to the year for these iconic AMC series, and what a pleasure to share our biggest weekend of originals ever with such passionate and engaged fans.
"We are proud to be working with all the remarkable creative talent driving these shows. Five premieres over one holiday weekend: Together, we walked, we talked, we called and now we can’t wait to explore what’s next for these unforgettable characters and unique worlds.”
For anyone saying The Walking Dead is slowing down, these numbers prove that the series is only ramping up. If the comic books are a fair reference point, AMC and TWD writers have plenty of adrenaline-pumping episodes up their blood-soaked sleeves.