'The Walking Dead' Mid-Season Finale Draws 12.1 Million Viewers

Categories: 1-Featured,Network TV Press Releases

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December 2nd, 2013

hershel the walking dead

The Walking Dead mid-season finale earned a 6.1 adults 18-49 rating. Your predictions were far too optimistic. See below for more.

via press release:











NEW YORK, NY – December 2, 2013 – The mid-season finale of AMC’s The Walking Dead capped the first half of season four and posted gains of 29% over the first half of season 3, running against NFL football, broadcast sweeps and high-profile special events. Last night’s explosive episode delivered 12.1 million viewers and 7.7 million adults 18-49. The show will return for the second half of its fourth season at 9 p.m. on Sunday, February 9, followed by a new episode of Talking Dead at 10 p.m. Comic Book Men, which has been delivering 1 million viewers at midnight consistently across the first half of its third season, will also return to AMC on Sunday, February 9.


The Walking Dead continues to be the #1 show on all of television among the coveted 18-49 demographic and remains the highest-rated series in the history of cable television. The first eight episodes of its fourth season delivered an average of 13 million viewers and 8.4 million adults 18-49.


“We couldn’t be happier that audiences are continuing to respond in ever-larger numbers to the outstanding work of this amazingly talented team,” said Charlie Collier, AMC’s president. “We’re only at the mid-point of this fourth season, but I know I speak for the entire cast and crew in Atlanta when I say thank you to the fans for joining in our passion for these characters and their journey.”


Now in its third season, The Walking Dead aftershow, Talking Dead, also is seeing strong gains in viewership. The mid-season finale of Talking Dead delivered a record 6 million viewers, including 3.8 million adults 18-49. For the first eight episodes of this season, airing at 10 p.m., Talking Dead is averaging 4.5 million viewers and 3 million adults 18-49. Up +128% in viewers over the first half of season two (when it aired at 11 p.m.), and up +120% among adults 18-49. Hosted by Chris Hardwick, Talking Dead features Hardwick and fans, actors, producers and other TV enthusiasts discussing and dissecting that night’s Dead premiere. The mid-season finale episode featured cast members Scott Wilson (Hershel Greene), Lauren Cohan (Maggie Greene) and Robert Kirkman, executive producer of the show and creator and writer of The Walking Dead comic book.


Key Nielsen Highlights for the mid-season (season four) finale of The Walking Dead


  • 9 pm airing – 6.5 HH rating
  • 9 pm airing – 12.1 million viewers
  • 9 pm airing – 7.7 million adults 18-49


Key Nielsen Highlights (averages) for the first eight episodes of The Walking Dead Season Four

  • 9 pm airing – 6.8 HH rating
  • 9 pm airing – 13.0 million viewers
  • 9 pm airing – 8.4 million adults 18-49


Key Nielsen Highlights for the mid-season (season three) finale of Talking Dead


  • 10 pm airing – 3.2 HH rating
  • 10 pm airing – 6.0 million viewers
  • 10 pm airing – 3.8 million adults 18-49


Key Nielsen Highlights (averages) for the first eight episodes of Talking Dead Season Three


  • 10 pm airing – 2.4 HH rating
  • 10 pm airing – 4.5 million viewers
  • 10 pm airing – 3.0 million adults 18-49


Source: Nielsen Media Research fast nationals (US ratings) 12/1/13. Excludes sports programs. Growth Season 4A 10/13/13- 12/1/13 vs. 3A 10/14/12-12/2/12.


The mid-season finale of The Walking Dead also dominated TV-related social media Twitter activity, and was the #1 show of the night on Twitter across all cable and broadcast networks with 880,450 show-related Tweets from 391,210 unique authors, generating a total of 43.9 million impressions, according to Nielsen SocialGuide. Twitter activity peaked at 9:48 p.m. EST with 31,861 Tweets-per-minute, representing 83 percent of all television-related Twitter activity at that time. The Walking Dead was also the #1 program for the day in TV-related social media Twitter activity, including the mid-season finale and seven previous episodes that ran during a catch-up marathon on AMC, with the most unique authors and total Tweets. The mid-season finale also generated a number of simultaneous trending topics including #TheWalkingDead, TWD, Hershel, RIP Hershel, Not Hershel and #PrisonShowdown.


About AMC

Whether commemorating favorite films from every genre and decade or creating acclaimed original programming, AMC brings to its audience something deeper, something richer, Something More. The network reigns as the only cable network in history ever to win the Emmy® Award for Outstanding Drama Series four years in a row, and five out of the last six, and boasts the most-watched drama series in basic cable history with The Walking Dead. AMC’s original drama series include Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Hell on Wheels and Low Winter Sun.  The network will premiere two new drama series, Halt and Catch Fire and Turn, in 2014. AMC also explores authentic worlds with bold characters through its slate of unscripted original series including Comic Book Men, Small Town Security, Talking Dead and Freakshow. AMC is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc. and its sister networks include IFC, Sundance Channel, and WE tv. AMC is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile. AMC: Something More.


  • Dan


    I got the 6.2 from a tweet from TV MoJoe. I have yet to see him be wrong.

  • Scandalfan

    Last night episode was a total disappointment to me, killing Hershel and the Governor big mistake. They’re the 2 most interesting characters on the show. I’d have preferred seeing either Rick or Daryl die than Hersh and the Gov.

  • Chris

    WTF? this show sucks…what’s up with the high ratings?

  • Matt

    Just so those know, it was in the comic books that Hershel dies etc. I never read them and I am sure the majority of the viewers never did either, but letting those who are mad at or blaming the director/writers for this.

    Sad to see him go. The Governor I hated, which is why I am sure he was so popular because you love to hate him. Just like when Daryl’s brother got killed. I actually liked him better then the Governor. But that is just my opinion.

  • Janie

    LOL, I was so so so happy to see the Governor go – was so done with his I am a lunatic storyline. So I of course do not agree with the couple that said he was the best character on the show lol. But very sad to see Hershel go.

  • YourMirrorIsUgly

    Good, I’m glad it didn’t surge up. The Governor plot drag-out was terrible and served zero purpose. The episode was really good, but it should have all happened last spring. People just got tired of everything going nowhere. High hopes for the return which should be creatively more interesting.

  • Matt C.

    The finale was amazing and I’m sure more fans would have tuned in if the 2 previous episodes weren’t such a drag. I’m sure the ratings for 4B will tick upwards again now that everyone knows The Governor is gone and the prison storyline has finally come to an end. I love having all the characters separated and on the run…there’s so much potential there, so I hope Scott Gimple and the writers don’t mess this up.

  • chort


    I just watched an archived AMC showing of this series.
    Some of the fellas I play tennis with have been mentioning it and on Thanksgiving some kids (18-49) were gossiping also.

    Gotta tell you, viewers, it ranks right up there with american football for mindless violence and void of merit.

    No wonder you all compare the two in audience participation.
    I, for one, am not surprised.
    Didn’t Mr. Minnow tell us in ’61 this very thing.
    I.e., television presentations are without merit.
    ’tis true, with very, very few exceptions.

  • omabin

    The episode was mind blowing, it should blow through the roof again when it returns sans football come Spring. It was absolutely out of this world!

  • HeadlessHorseman

    The 2 whole episodes about the Governor were so boring. I suspect that that’s why the finale didn’t go higher. They could have wrapped up the 2 Governor centered episodes in one episode.

    Amazing ratings regardless. This episode was in my opinion, the best of the series. So much suspense. This changes the show’s creative direction entirely. Can’t wait to see what’s in store.

  • I like this show

    Jesus the trolls on this site…..

    Excellent mid season finale which could of just as easy served as a season finale. This made up for the semi weak season 3 finale. As for the people hating on the previous two governor centric episodes those episodes were done to give us a better understanding of who he was and who he became and what he is about. ALSO gave us a break from the prison which im sure some of you like to complain about. #NEVER HAPPY.

    I think this season has had a lot more happening then season 2 or 3 so once more not sure why all the complaining. Like season 2 and 3 has had some great episodes and some where most of the show is dialogue. Episode 2 when the walkers attacked the cell block, Episode 5 when Herschel was taking care of business, Episode 7 when the Governor REALLY returned, and Episode 8 were all GREAT! Some of the best episodes of the entire series. Didn’t even mention some of the best visual stuff such as the Zombie herd and the Zombies falling through the roof at the Big Spot. They are out of the prison i look forward to what happens next.

  • Marsinvestigations1@gmail.com

    Awesome to see so many spoilers. This is actually a ratings discussion. Not a show discussion. Just sayin’

  • Chris_SAdvisor

    @Matt – No, you can blame the show runner and the AMC execs for letting Kirkman turn this into a TV version of the comic, even though he keeps claiming that is not what he is doing.

    I was wrong about the bait and switch, they did not build-up to the action for the entire episode. Too bad the battle scene was so badly written, directed, and generally carried out. I wonder if Kirkman’s episode is going to split off Daryl to find Carrol, with the two of them being the starting group for the spin-off?

    I shudder at the claims that this was a good episode. Everyone got less accurate at closer ranges, Zombies magically teleported into the prison to come up behind Daryl (no the fence behind him was not breached [35m34s]), Michonne did not finish the Gov. off (again), the Zombie in the mud waited hours before executing a (ninja-style) attack on the little girl, the tank was targeting walls instead of the cars/cover Rick’s group was hiding behind, the shells inside the tank did not blow when the grenade blew, the high-accuracy hunting rifles were as inaccurate as the M16s, and finally no one was watching the fences from Rick’s group even though two of their people were outside! How were Hershel and Michonne supposed to get back in, especially if being chased by Zombies?

    Watch it again, and you will see all the Gov’s people moving, firing, and covering each other as if militarily trained. It was completely contradictory to the previous two episodes, when they were untrained civilians. No continuity, ninja-teleporting zombies, and bad action directing results in a less than stellar mid-season finale. The original version in the comic was actually superior, since the Gov was not trying to take the prison, just to kill everyone. Hell, his claim that he wanted the prison to live in was rendered invalid when he ordered the tank to crush the fences. Given the BS he spun for the first half of this episode, his own people should have refused. Hell, when he murdered the old man, they should have shot him themselves. But no, it was a total matter of convenience that they all become soldiers willing to die behind the murderer. Hell the mother even waited to put a bullet in him, when she should have emptied her magazine into his back the second after he shot her dead daughter.

    To pretend that the Gov. had *any* hope of redemption was laughable. So the last two episodes were totally wasted time, and half of this episode was as well. The real kicker is that now we get to watch Kirkman make Rick into a nutcase (again) for the next 18+ episodes (depends on the comic to episode conversion rate). There is a reason the comic is referred to as “The Walking Soap” after the prison, and it looks like that is what will be starting after the break. Break out the crazy phone, “Rick, it’s for you”.

  • Carol_R

    It could have been a lot higher if the Governor wasn’t in it. The previous 2 episodes were the worst in the entire series.

  • Chris_SAdvisor

    @Carol_R – If he was not in it, the previous two eps. would have been an even less acceptable waste of time. Not even the fanatic fans would have accepted that. This was the big showdown and is the only reason this season looks stronger than it really is. Give it three episodes into the second-half and it will be below 10m (probably closer to 9m).

  • CBSviewer

    Last year midseason Finale got a 5.4 so this 6.1 is AWESOME !!!

  • Chris_SAdvisor

    @CBSviewer – It would be if they could sustain anywhere near this rating, which is highly unlikely. Also take into account the change from start to mid-season finale at -4.01m vs last year -0.39m (I do not know the demos). This result is definitely not AWESOME from AMC’s POV, having lost so much of the ground (and therefore money) it made.

  • Dan

    Ratings are what i expected. Great finale.

  • rob60990

    This show has thankfully peaked. All downhill from here.

  • Lisa

    So darn happy the Governor is finally dead. Horrible boring character we had to waste 2.5 episodes on. The last half was great. But I don’t think it makes up for the craptastic last two

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