The Walking Dead Gets Ratings Boost With Penultimate Season 8 Episode
The second half of The Walking Dead‘s eighth season has seen the ratings for AMC’s ever-successful zombie drama take a massive hit. Apart from the midseason premiere, which had the hook of Carl Grimes’ death, no episode has risen above the 7 million mark. That’s a good deal lower than the 10-11 million average that the preceding installments in the season received.
The penultimate episode of this run has given the show a bit of a reprieve, though. The previous week’s outing scored a relatively paltry 6.295 million live viewers, making it the least-watched episode of this season and the lowest overall since the early days of way back in season 2. However, this past Sunday’s installment saw the series bounce back with a slight but worthwhile rise.
Titled “Worth,” the episode accrued 6.7 million viewers in Live+Same Day viewing, earning a 2.8 rating in the key 18-49 demo. That’s a 7% bump in the key demo and 6% increase in the total viewers from episode 8×14. This puts it back up to the levels of the other episodes in the second half of this season.
As has been discussed a lot by disgruntled fans, one likely reason for the recent downturn in viewership is because of the show’s slow, drawn-out narrative style of late. The current comic book storyline that’s playing out on screen, for instance, is the “All-Out War” arc that lasted just 12 issues on the page. On TV, however, it’s been the fuel for the series since halfway through season 6. It seems that hardcore TWD lovers and many casual TV viewers have just got tired of this slow-burning approach.
On the upside, though, this weekend’s season finale, titled “Wrath,” promises to bring the current arc to a grand conclusion with the battle between the Alexandrians and their allies and the Saviors finally coming to a climax. Finales always get a ratings boost, so expect that to maybe rise closer to the numbers of the midseason premiere. Hopefully it’ll also install enough interest in viewers so they come back in their droves for season 9 later this year.
Be sure to catch The Walking Dead “Wrath” on AMC this Sunday, April 15th.