AMC’s The Walking Dead continues to be an unstoppable ratings juggernaut—last night’s premiere of season 3.5 debuted with even higher ratings than the full-season premiere in October:
Season three’s midseason premiere collected 12.3 million total viewers in its initial broadcast at 9 p.m., more than the 10.9 million who tuned in to the season three opener. The total viewer record is up 5` percent over season two’s midseason bow.
In the adults 18-49 demo, the episode — up against the Grammys on CBS — scored 7.7 million total viewers, the strongest telecast in basic-cable history in the metric and up 6 percent over the October opener. So far this season, the zombie drama is averaging 6.8 million adults in the demo, outperforming everything including The Big Bang Theory, Modern Family and NCIS in the measure. The demo is up 44 percent compared with the season two’s midseason premiere. Among adults 25-54, the 9 p.m. broadcast scored 6.7 million viewers, up 51 percent year-over-year.
Either snowbound viewers wanted a little zombie-stomping action or adults in the 18-49 demo are fascinated by showrunner drama.
Either way, it’s good news for Image Comics and Robert Kirkman, as the comics and graphic novels should continue to sell.