Have Ratings For The Never-Better ‘The Walking Dead’ Reached Their Peak?

Compared to every other show on television, The Walking Dead‘s fantastic mid-season premiere was a massive ratings success. “No Way Out” was seen by 13.7 million viewers, with a 6.8 rating in the key adults 18-49 demographic. That’s good. But here’s the bad (relatively speaking): “That’s off 15 percent from the midseason opener last year,” according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Here are the ratings for previous season and mid-season premieres, in millions. (Season one was only six episodes and therefore didn’t have a midseason premiere.)

Season 2

Season premiere: 7.26
Midseason premiere: 8.10

Season 3

Season premiere: 10.87
Midseason premiere: 12.26

Season 4

Season premiere: 16.11
Midseason premiere: 15.76

Season 5

Season premiere: 17.29
Midseason premiere: 15.84

Season 6

Season premiere: 14.63
Midseason premiere: 13.7

Those are still monstrous numbers, and Sunday’s episode will rise slightly once live-plus-three day ratings are factored in (plus, it aired during a long weekend when TV viewership typically dips). But one thing seems clear: Ratings for The Walking Dead reached their peak with the season five premiere. That’s not to say AMC has anything to be worried about — this is still TV’s highest-rated show, by a comfortable margin, and it’s not going anywhere for a very, very, very long time — but it’s a trend worth following, especially if the channel goes through with its plan for another spinoff.

It’s a shame they’re down, too. The Walking Dead has never been better, and if annoying kids getting their zombie comeuppance doesn’t bring in record-breaking ratings, I don’t know what will.

(Via the Hollywood Reporter)