When Fear The Walking Dead premiered on August 23, 2015, it broke cable records. A staggering 10.1 million people tuned in on that first night. Since then, the ratings have been consistently dropping week to week.
Last week Fear The Walking Dead only scored 7.2 million viewers, meaning a 12 percent slump on episode 2. The biggest jump, however, came after the pilot episode, which lost a massive 19 percent of the target audience according to statistics released by Entertainment Weekly.
But 7.2 million is nothing to be ashamed of either. After all, the pilot episode of its companion series, The Walking Dead, only managed to pull in 5.35 million viewers according to Zap2It. And Zap2It expected a natural decline in viewers after that initial response because that is the norm for newly debuting TV series. And the viewers did drop off. By the season 1 finale, however, the viewers had returned and the season closed with 5.97 million viewers.
Something interesting happened with the season 2 return, suddenly a whopping 2 million more viewers had tuned in. Perhaps this is due to the fact the initial season was only six episodes and many were waiting to binge on The Walking Dead rather than lock their Sundays in for six short weeks. If this is the case, then AMC can probably expect a similar thing to occur with Fear The Walking Dead and its season 2 since they are following the same format of a short first season leading into a full length second season. So perhaps it is a little too early yet to call Fear The Walking Dead a failure.
However, Carter Matt pointed out some interesting things that could also account for the drop in viewership for Fear The Walking Dead. After two episodes of a season that is only six episodes long, Fear The Walking Dead went on hiatus for a week thanks to the Labor Day weekend. This is something AMC usually does with its programming, yet for a show that is only two episodes along so far and suffering from second week blues anyway, it is likely many fans simply forgot to tune in to Fear The Walking Dead when it returned. The other issue was episode 3. For the first time Fear The Walking Dead had to compete with regular-season NFL football, something that will draw in viewers at the expense of almost anything else anyway. According to Uproxx, 26 million viewers tuned into the football that Sunday night.
Either way, it will be interesting to see just how many viewers tune in for episode 4 (entitled “Not Far Gone”) of Fear The Walking Dead after episode 3 (“The Dog”) seemed to be a turning point for fans who found the first two episodes just too slow for them. Even critics such as the reviewer from i09, Germain Lussier, who had been quite scathing in their previous reviews had changed their mind considerably with episode 3. Lussier even called his sepisode 3 review “This Was The Episode of Fear the Walking Dead We’d Been Waiting For.”
Fear The Walking Dead returns to AMC with episode 4 (“Not Far Gone”) on Sunday, September 20, 2015.
What do you think, is Fear The Walking Dead worth it or not? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below.
[Image credit: AMC]