“The Walking Dead” averaged about 11 million viewers for the Nov. 20 episode, “Go Getters.” The key word being “averaged” — a real-time graphic of the show’s audience shows some definite ebbs and flows.
The remainder of the post discusses some plot points in the episode. Proceed with caution if you haven’t watched yet.
TV by the Numbers‘ partner Gracenote can track a show’s audience as it unfolds. On Sunday, the audience for “The Walking Dead” peaked in a couple of different places — and briefly cratered for a moment as well. Here’s what the graph of real-time viewing from Gracenote looks like:
The horizontal lines show the percentage of all active TV sets in Gracenote’s data sample tuned into “The Walking Dead.” Viewers started tuning in to AMC a few minutes before the show began (start time on the graph is 20:00, 8 p.m. Central time), and there’s an early spike in viewership about five minutes in as Hilltop leader Gregory (Xander Berkeley) tells Maggie (Lauren Cohan) she needs to leave the compound, the sooner the better.
The audience stays fairly consistent for most of the episode, hovering around 4 percent of all TV users Gracenote measures. There’s another spike about three-quarters of the way through the episode when Negan’s henchman Simon (Steven Ogg) humiliates Gregory and takes some supplies from Hilltop. The biggest jump happens just before the end of the episode, albeit over a fairly quiet scene — Maggie, Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Enid (Katelyn Nacon) discussing their situation over sandwiches and soup.
That one big decline in the episode comes at the 23-minute mark — which was, as you might expect, right in the middle of a commercial break.
“Go Getters” wasn’t an especially action-packed episode of “The Walking Dead,” which may explain the relatively calm track of the viewing graph. We may check in again for the last episode before the midseason break to see if the pattern stays the same.