‘Walking Dead’ finale sets AMC record

9 million tune in to second-season closer

AMC’s “The Walking Dead” continues to shatter ratings records.

Sunday night’s season-two finale drew 9 million viewers, including 6 million in the 18-49 demo, according to Nielsen. Both are all-time bests for any series on the cabler, with the demo score topping February’s midseason return to also stand as the all-time basic cable record.

Add in another 1.5 million viewers who watched the second airing late Sunday, and the show drew 10.5 million viewers for the night.

The previous high for “Walking Dead” in total viewers also came with last month’s first episode back from a hiatus (8.1 million). And the largest aud to date for any AMC program was 9.8 million for two-part Robert Duvall telepic “Broken Trail” in 2006.

“The Walking Dead” is based on the comicbook series written by Robert Kirkman and published by Image Comics. Showrunner Glen Mazzara exec produces with Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert and Frank Darabont.

AMC now shifts from monsters to “Mad Men.” The Emmy-winning drama will launch this Sunday with a two-hour premiere after being off the air since October 2010.

The following week the cabler will bring back “The Killing” with a two-hour premiere of its own at a special time of 8. The Veena Sud-created series suffered a serious viewer and critical lashing when the season one finale failed to identify the killer of a high school student murdered in the pilot episode.

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