‘Walking Dead’ Breaks New Basic Cable Recods

While I can’t imagine anyone particularly wanting to transform themselves into a zombie, that doesn’t stop the mainstream masses from wanting to hang out with the flesh-eaters. That’s my takeaway from the latest ratings numbers to come in on behalf of “The Walking Dead,” at least!

Deadline reports that the “Walking Dead” midseason premiere on Sunday (February 12) bested series highs and broke all new basic cable ratings. The premiere of the episode “Nebraska” at 9PM netted 8.1 million total viewers, with 5.4 million aged 18-49 and 4.4 million in the 25-54 range. Those deliveries are the highest ever for a basic cable drama series, according to Deadline, with the record previously established by — you guessed it — the “Walking Dead” season two premiere in October.

Overall for the night, between its 9PM debut and two subsequent airings, “Walking Dead” drew in 10.1 million viewers. It also paved the way for a solid premiere for Kevin Smith’s new unscripted series “Comic Book Men,” which followed “Walking Dead” with 2 million viewers.

“It is a great night for AMC,” network president Charlie Collier tells Deadline. “We’re thrilled to see this incredible record breaking response to The Walking Dead, and Comic Book Men is off to a strong start as well.”

Indeed, it was a great night for television overall. In addition to the success of “Walking Dead,” this year’s Grammys presentation netted an enormous 39.9 million viewers in the wake of Whitney Houston’s death. It was the second most watched Grammy Awards of all time behind the 1984 telecast.

Did you tune into “Walking Dead” and “Comic Book Men” on Sunday? Tell us what you thought of both in the comments section and on Twitter!