Published: Wed, October 10, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Dora Pope

The Walking Dead Season 9 Had the Lowest Rated Premiere Ever

The Walking Dead Season 9 Had the Lowest Rated Premiere Ever

Nielsen's Live+Same Day data reveals that the latest premiere earned a 2.5 rating in adults 18-49 and 6.1 million viewers this past Sunday. And while secondary to the human toll it took on everyone who suddenly found themselves out of work, it also left fans of The Walking Dead video game in the dark about what would happen with the last, unfinished episodes for The Final Season, the conclusion of Clementine's story.

The Walking Dead's premiere was also down sharply from both Season 8's average (7.8 mil/3.4) and finale (7.9 mil/3.4). The previous low number belonged to the 2010 series premiere, which stood with a 2.7 rating.

While the title of the The Walking Dead Season 9 premiere may have - in its very title - touted "A New Beginning", said beginning got off to a rough start for the veteran AMC series.

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To be fair, it's still one of the biggest shows on television, behind only This Is Us in key demo ratings. More and more people are watching on a delayed viewing schedule, either through On Demand or Apps, or even just waiting until the full season is available on Netflix to binge it. What's more, given The Walking Dead is going into its ninth season, the show is battling not only industry trends but the laws of TV gravity: Shows of a certain age are nearly always destined to suffer serious ratings erosion they grow older.

The Walking Dead returned for its ninth season on Sunday, but many of its former fans have apparently checked out.

With Andrew Lincoln leaving the series this season and the character of Rick Grimes being subsequently written off the show, the series has to find a way to reengage its viewership. AMC also notes it had a record day of sign-ups for its AMC Premiere service, which lets subscribers watch the premiere a day early and without ads.

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