The Walking Dead viewership numbers are falling so fast that the last remaining fans have to wonder if the spinoffs and Rick Grimes movies are ever going to happen. The Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) centered episode was the lowest viewed episode of all-time. In fact, the show lost almost 500,000 viewers in one week. What is worse, that is about 20% of the remaining audience.
The Maggie return episode of The Walking Dead registered 2.89 million viewers. The prior episode was 2.73 million (the Season 10 Special Event in October). At the peak of its popularity, the show was bringing in an average of 15 million viewers. In its Season 5 premier, the show brought in a staggering 17.29 million viewers in 2014.
The newest episode, which followed Daryl’s search for Rick and then introduced a love-interest for Daryl saw just 2,259,000 viewers. That’s a huge fall.
No other show has seen such a quick, massive ratings decline and stayed on the air.
Where have all of the viewers gone? The question can be answered with its own question: Where have all of the characters gone?
Unfortunately, a show that has made a living by shocking its fans with unexpected deaths at any moment went too many deaths too far. If you polled fans (as we have over the years), the losses of Abraham, Glenn, and Carl took major chunks out of viewership numbers. The departure of Rick Grimes, it’s central character, took all of the rest.
However, AMC continues to hang onto the property. Why? The network has to be betting that viewers will return when Rick Grimes does. When that is, who knows? Or, they’re happy with the minimal viewership numbers they are receiving, which are still better than what most networks are receiving for the same targeted demographic.
Yet, did AMC kill the franchise? Probably so. Had it ran 5-6 seasons, it may have gone down as one of the greatest shows ever on television. Instead, it will be remembered as a zombie. A show that somehow stumbled on when no one is noticing and without the humanity that once made it live.
What do you think about the state of The Walking Dead franchise? Let us know in the comments below!
Covering superheroes, anything dark, horror, and more! Lead writer for Fan Fest