Season 9 of The Walking Dead was supposed to be a return to form for the series after an underwhelming reaction to season 8. It seems that this isn’t exactly going to plan, though.
Last week’s episode, “Stradivarius,” scored a poor 4.79 million viewers, giving it a 1.8 rating in the key 18 to 49 demographic, which makes it the least watched live episode in the show’s history. Now that Andrew Lincoln has made his exit, it kind of makes you wonder, are viewers going to stick around much longer?
That’s the question on everyone’s mind at the moment, especially since his departure follows a string of lowly rated outings, with the season 9 premiere in particular really suffering a loss, as it scored the lowest audience for a premiere since the first season, with a relatively anaemic six million tuning in.
Despite this, AMC has no plans to slow things down. In fact, production on season 10 is already underway. Showrunner Angela Kang confirmed as much in a recent interview with ComicBook.com, saying:
“I’m already working on season 10 stuff,” Kang admits. “Yeah, trying to get a little bit of a jump on it, so after I do this round of press calls today I’m actually gonna jump back in with a couple of my senior writers and we’re gonna talk about some stuff, just because it’s like we want to get a head start on things. But it’s sort of like the process doesn’t end on our side of it, because it takes about a year and a half to make a season of the show, but we always air about the same time every year, so there’s always about like a half a year overlap.”
Asked how it feels to have season 9 behind her now, Kang told the outlet it felt great, and explained the following:
“It’s such a whirlwind when we’re making the season, so it just whipped by. And obviously we’re still in post on the second half of the season, and we’ve got some exciting stuff coming up, so that’s really fun to work on, but I’m glad that the first season is out there and that fans seem to be responding well to it, and we appreciate it. Everybody worked really hard this season.”
Season 9 of AMC’s The Walking Dead will air its midseason finale this coming Sunday with “Evolution,” by which point, viewers should have a pretty good understanding of the Whisperers and their unsettling ways. Beyond that, though, it seems we have nothing to worry about so far as ratings go, as production on the next run is already underway and as soon as we learn more about what’s in store, we’ll be sure to let you know.