Season 7 has been a mixed bag for The Walking Dead, ratings-wise. The series, still one of the most-watched shows on TV, saw some pretty steep declines from time to time in the numbers, and a wave of negative buzz and bad press coming out of the season premiere allowed associations to be made between the decline in viewership and some of the show’s most violent and controversial episodes and imagery.
Even in that context, the numbers have, objectively, been very good. A 30% decline for a show that’s as big a ratings monster as The Walking Dead still leaves the show as one of the most popular series not just on TV, but that TV has seen in years.
Nevertheless, it’s hard to shake bad buzz and there have been discussions and debates all season long about whether season 7 was the start of the next big chapter of the series or the beginning of the end. And so it’s always nice to end on a high note, which appears to be the direction the show is heading in.
The penultimate seventh-season The Walking Dead posted slight week-over-week gains in adults 18-49 and total viewership. According to live+same-day data, Sunday’s episode drew a 4.88 among adults 18-49 rating, and averaged 10.54 million overall viewers. The numbers top the 4.72 rating and 10.32 million viewer average drawn last week.
Talking Dead, which has been airing after Into the Badlands, also improved slightly over last week, although a 0.91 rating and 2.14 million viewers is significantly less than the show used to pull when its lead-in was The Walking Dead.
Based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman, this gritty drama portrays life in the weeks and months following a zombie apocalypse. Led by police officer Rick Grimes, his family and a group of other survivors find themselves constantly on the move in search of a safe and secure home. But the pressure each day to stay alive sends many in the group to the deepest depths of human cruelty, and Rick discovers that the overwhelming fear of the survivors can be more deadly than the zombies walking among them.