‘Fear the Walking Dead’ Sets All-Time Cable Ratings Premiere Record

Fear the Walking Dead Season 2
Courtesy of AMC

AMC’s “Fear the Walking Dead,” the much-anticipated companion series to megahit zombie drama “The Walking Dead,” opened to monster — and record-setting — ratings of its own own Sunday night.

Nielsen estimates that the 90-minute debut of “Fear the Walking Dead” became the No. 1-rated cable series launch on record with 10.1 million viewers, including 6.3 million adults 18-49. In total viewers, “Fear” surpasses TNT’s “Raising the Bar” (7.7 million in 2008) as top dog among cable premieres.

The previous record in the 18-49 demo was AMC’s “Better Call Saul” (4.4 million) earlier this year. In fact, AMC now has three of the top five cable launches of all time, with “Walking Dead” ranking fifth.

In both 18-49 and total viewers, Sunday’s premiere out-rated all 22 episodes from the first two seasons of “The Walking Dead.” The original’s third-season premiere did a 5.8 demo rating and 10.87 million total viewers.

Leading into the “Fear” premiere Sunday, a special “Talking Dead” season-6 preview episode did a 1.9 rating in 18-49 and 4.2 million viewers overall.

AMC is expected to release Live+3 ratings for “Fear the Walking Dead” and “Talking Dead” on Friday.

See More: ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ Producers Talk Potential ‘Walking Dead’ Crossovers

“Fear the Walking Dead,” created by Robert Kirkman and Dave Erickson, differentiates itself from the original by being set both in a different place (Los Angeles) and time (at the very beginning of the apocalyptic outbreak). Its cast includes Kim Dickens, Cliff Curtis, Frank Dillane and Ruben Blades.

Helping serve as a seat-warmer for the mothership’s return on Oct. 11, “Fear” will air six episodes in its first season. It was handed a straight-to-series, two-season order by AMC in March. Season two is slated for 2016.

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  1. Juliza says:

    Hi my name is juliza and I can’t bolive I am brave inofe to do this but the thing is my dream has alwes Ben to meet you gays and I now I won’t but its worth to Trey you now you should do same thing ells for the people like not doing the code like put the names and that’s it but its not I can act we can all act and sing alote I don’t now if my inglesh is good because I am from Puerto Rico sou thank for reeding bay
    :-|

  2. ariel taylor says:

    Keep the seasons coming on fear the walking dead and add more shows to the seasons I love this show

  3. Timmy says:

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE Feartwd!! I wanted to see the beginning of the epidemic and how things fell apart…we missed it in the walking dead because rick was in a coma. We saw a hint of it when shane was in the hospital and the military was shooting nurses and drs but it wasn’t enough. I wanted to know HOW it got to that hysteria. If anything I think FEAR is going too fast. Like I think the lights would be the last to go..hospitals would be the first. I HOPE DUMB PEOPLE WHO RIOT OVER STUPID CRAP WATCH EPISODE 3!!! haha!! I wanted them eat by zombies the flippin idiots! nothing good ever comes from rioting. It’s just confusion to the hilt and the cops are caught in the middle. ugh.

  4. Well I watched the first episode but not good actors nor plot. Same old, same old. And trying to beat TWD, no way. Plus short series with no more till next year, no way by that time will forget it. TV nowadays putting series on tv with short seasons, no good, you forget from year to year. I’ll just wait till it hits netflix and go from there, however don’t think I’ll even bother with this one,. its really BAD!!!!

  5. Chuck says:

    I loved Walking Dead I hope it has many many more seasons. Fear The Walking Dead started pretty slow but I sorta expected that since it is about the beginning of the outbreak. The 2nd episode definitely got better and I’m sure in couple more it will be everything I expect it to be. I wish the story was based out of the East Coast so that if in time they wanted to do crossovers it wouldn’t seam so far fetched. If it had been Washington or Philly heck Texas would have been pretty cool. Regardless I’m Walking Dead head so I will watch every show of both. So AMC keep ordering more episodes!!

  6. Jackie says:

    I am so disappointed in the spin off “Fear the Walking Dead”. Each African American character that is introduced or that the audience gets to know is killed off. I know quite the contrary would happen during a real apocalyptic event. Black people are strong and have survived slavery, “Jim Crow” laws, the “Civil Rights movement” and most recently police brutality.

    Your depiction of devaluing black people to allow other groups to shine is unacceptable. You have not taken the time to develop African American characters who are survivors and who have families who care for each other. Black people do not need to be attached to white people’s lives to be relevant in
    in any story line. Develop a black family/individuals who care about their community and their own needs. Hire some black writers, since you are lacking the skills to write a balanced story about survivors of an apocalyptic event

    I will be boycotting your show because you are characterizing black people as disposable and irrelevant now and in the future. I will also be tweeting my discontent. The Cable network may be reporting record ratings and record audiences, but your show can still be canceled if the content is discriminatory and offensive.

    Black lives matter in fiction and in non-fiction!

    A disappointed ex-viewer.

  7. John Sheet says:

    As an avid WD Fan this show SUCKED.

    Anyone notice the hard core liberal slant? Everyone is brown or black except the women their slit slinging. Disgusting! Left wing teachers all black especially the one teaching physics? Really? OWS/DNC fanatics Indoctrination at its finest. Why not have a banner for Bernie Sanders in the background too.

    Again, Hollywood trying to engineer their utopian world except for the man eaters.

    This SHOW SUCKS!

  8. Ann says:

    LOVED IT! Absolutely can’t wait for the second episode. TWD starts when the “apocalypse” is already in full swing and I love how FWD is depicting the beginning. Unlike other fans, I don’t miss the TWD characters, we get to see enough of their early storylines in flash backs. I really like getting to see a different group with different challenges try to handle the radical shift in “reality” that a zombie apocalypse brings. Easily the best premier of the year to date. 💙💙💙💙💙

  9. taylor shook says:

    I didn’t watch it and ant going to watch it cause to me how can u base it on the time period of Rick grimes in a coma and not have all the old actors true walking dead fans would have loved to see the old actors in this to show what THEY went through when this happen and how all of them got together cause the walking dead don’t show any of that all we see is Rick getting shot that’s it what about everyone else

  10. bo says:

    it`s nice to finally explore what`s happening outside georgia

  11. Miss JEM says:

    This show was not as good as the walking dead. In the show The Walking dead season ep. 1 they pulled you in, you couldn’t wait until ep. 2. But not this show I found myself fast forwarding most of the scenes.

  12. Americans are SICK of watching a bunch of yuppies in California with the same problems and the same narratives. Frank Darabont deserves WAAAY more credit. HE is the one who set the stage for the walking dead, before AMC stole his hard work and flushed him. The walking dead was created by people who haven’t completely lost touch with us peasants outside the Hollywood Guild Gate. I didn’t even bother to watch this. The trailer told me everything I needed to know. God forbid they make SOMETHING outside of California or New York. There’s actually other states and lifestyles that exist in 48 other states. They just crap shows for their buddies over there and make each other rich, and that’s it. Just like Washington DC. You think the average American who can barely afford their mortgage or pay for gas really gives a shit about snotty kids and their bland yuppie parents living in a sunny perfect part of California? Somehow a public school teacher manages to afford that life style? Ppffft. !!! I’m a white person, and I don’t care about your white people problems#

    • Ann says:

      You clearly didn’t watch the show. Here is a little life hack for you, pay attention… KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT BEFORE YOU VOMIT YOUR 🐃💩 OPINION ALL OVER THE INTERNET. You’re welcome.

  13. I effing love the show… I love it slow, I love the build up… can’t wait for more TWD

  14. Mike Discolo says:

    The whole idea of spinning off a series is as old as Norman Lear and just as dated. Where the first Walking Dead was the epitome of counter-culture summer programing, giving the viewer a never seen lanscape of visceral black-humor, the ploddenly paced “fwd” was a story that didn’t need to be told.
    When does corporate television ever stay true to an original idea instead of bleeding it dry with uninspired retreads. Even the title is insulting in it’s command to mindless enjoyment!

  15. knightfish1 says:

    OK. Yes it started slow, BUT, it was supposed to start slow. They said it would start slow. They were just introducing everyone in the first episode and setting the stage. Act One as it were. I totally expected it to be exactly as it ended up. I was surprised that we saw a “Walker”, in the form of the female junkie, as early in the show as we did. The only reason I could see is they are doing only 6 episodes. So all in all the slow build up is exactly what they promised. We saw at the end of the episode that the junkie son was vindicated in that it proved to his mother and step dad that his hysterical story was true and he is not crazy. I think this will also be a way for them to “Scare” him straight or have him go somewhere to overdose. So it was a gradual build up but they were just trying to portray the average life in L.A. for a fairly average mixed family. The point as I see it is to contrast it to what happens next as the “Walker” virus starts spreading in the next episode, if I got the preview right. If my prediction is right, episode 2 is going to be a bit more action and introduce more fear and zombies. I am ready for Episode 2 and I hope a lot of the folks that were “bored” with the premiere can give it a chance with episode 2. Like previous posts said; This is a different show with a different tone, a totally different setting and a group of new actors portraying a completely different group of people with different backgrounds from our beloved TWD faves. Lets give it a chance before we give up on it over one pilot episode. I remember reading that the series M.A.S.H. had an awful premiere but became a smash hit. We need to give them a chance to prove themselves.

  16. PrP says:

    A premier episode should serve to set the basic cast and especially actually entice the viewing audience to want to continue to watch the pending further episodes. With this “premier”, that was not the case, the whole show, very poor quality, very poor acting, stoic, almost robotic, VERY boring and uninteresting, looked very cheap and very low budget, completely failed to keeps one’s interest or even caring to continue to watch. Believe did about 20 minutes of it, at best, and by then bored out of my mind, truly greatly disappointed in the poor quality of the filming and very poor acting of the cast, would give it a 1 out of 10, at best! Even Z Nation is better, and that alone should be a red flag to continue watching FTWD. FTWD, a very poor show, on all levels, very poor! To each their own, but for those that truly enjoyed this opening, and what will prove to be a very poor show, have to be very hard up and desperate, looking for a TWD fix until it’s return. Again, VERY poor show! Truly doubt next episode FTWD will have anything near the audience their premier managed to con into tuning into. FTWD is just a bad show, cheap, poorly done, poorly planned, sold this past year with the hype of a pretty box with a bright colorful ribbon, but when one opens the pretty box, they find it totally empty, completely void of anything.

  17. MikeG says:

    Agreed the whole hour and a half was too much time wasted for a six episode season I can see that the show wants to seem different than the original Walking Dead thus giving us a slow start and build up unlike the original which had action almost immediately but come on there was more than enough time to set up for a more hardcore 2nd episode maybe that way the show would have had a more appealing first impression

  18. It is the premiere so of course a lot of people tuned in, Wait til they see how utterly boring it is, the ratings will drop. There was no tension, no suspense, not that feeling of dread and terror about the dead coming back to life. It just sort of dragged on and on and things got side tracked with the family’s personal history and issues. I thought the female lead was stoic and unlikable. Just seemed like a bad actress and very unlikable. In fact unlike in the Walking Dead, I did not care for any of the characters. There were too many long, boring scenes of characters walking through hall ways and alleys or school premises. The problems of the drug addict son just seemed too distracting and were almost a plot of their own. The pilot of The walking Dead was amazing – from the first 2 minutes where Rick walks up to the gas station and encounters the zombie kid to the last minute where he is stuck in the tank in the middle of Atlanta surrounded by walkers. This, on the other hand, was just boring. It only got interesting toward the last 5 minutes. And i hope people know why this show is falling flat right? The TWD was developed by Frank Darabont – he set the tone and direction that the rest of the producers continued. On their own, Kirkman et al seem able to come up with mainly trite, boring garbage. This show just does not measure up so surrender the fantasy AMC and cancel it. And for god;s sake hire some better and more skilled actors. These people couldnt act.

  19. Cean cel Mare says:

    What is AMC doing that other networks aren’t, besides making great shows? In other words, who or what do they have on staff that enables AMC to be such a creative powerhouse?

  20. hass johns says:

    Nothing to see here folks, just move along.
    Not much of a premier. Will watch more, but not much hope for a good series.

  21. jokon says:

    Not good enough…. bad choice in almost all acting cast.

  22. Jordan says:

    I know a lot of people are complaining about the slow lead up, but I love the character development and the anticipation of all hell breaking loose. Plus I just love all this Walking Dead nonsense so I’ll be watching every episode religiously. They should have just order a full season, they could have ran Fear and Walking Dead back to back and scraped that Talking Dead crap! LOL

    • what character development? Long shots of unlikable characters walking through hospital and school hallways making long faces and looking bored is not character development.

  23. Bill says:

    This is a shame….just a reboot of a series that is dying out

  24. Soheyl says:

    i give FTWD E01 55/100…I agree with most of the reviews…bad cast…overeager actors…but the episode was alright…not a patch on TWD characters…the actors & writers show clearly that they have the burden of being compared to TWD

  25. Deliver A Punch! says:

    The premiere had enough to keep me interested and involved, but to me, it was lacking in a few aspects. It didn’t convey the tenseness TWD does, and the acting seemed too low key. I did like the fact there was some focus on character development — and this is needed in order to become sympathetic with characters and their being thrust into an unimaginable situation of a zombie apocalypse. I’ll be anticipating the excitement of when everything falls into a complete meltdown. It’s my hope the following episodes will deliver more of a punch.

  26. skip says:

    not impressed so far, just filling in time till TWD returns

  27. Jose Roth says:

    Worst character the poor man’s Johnny Depp guy. He is the new Carl and I want to see him bleed out.

  28. CerysKelly4 says:

    thats great

  29. Bill B. says:

    It was much better than I had expected. Well done, well acted, suspenseful and obviously taking it’s time which might not be so smart if it’s only going to have 6 episodes until next year. I really hate the way television series are presented these days with these short seasons. These long breaks have caused me to forget about a number of shows or just not care if I see them anymore. In any event, this wasn’t bad and I will watch the next 5, but as ridiculous as this will sound to many, I wish the slow build up was to something other than more zombies. We have enough now and they are not at all scary anymore.

    • Bill B. says:

      And I hope someone chomps up the daughter quickly. The character is a very annoying stereotype as is her relationship with her brother and the actress is a bore.

  30. mdschwartz31 says:

    Leading up to the premiere, the producers were saying it will be a slow build. With the exit ramp scene and the main characters first multi-person encounter we’ll start to see things building up. My expectations were met with the pilot episode. I wasn’t expecting a lot of walkers yet as all infections start slow and then spread faster when there are more and more of the virus.

    I’m not connected with any of the characters as of yet and I hope they can grow into their roles a little better. A lot of the show seemed forced and seemed new to the actors as well. I’ll give it these first six episodes to see what they can bring to the table.

  31. angelicanang says:

    I’ve watched TWD from episode one and watched FTWD wondering if it was going to hook me the same way. Can’t say it “got me” the same way episode one of TWD did. I knew within 15 minutes that it was different and I liked it. FTWD is a different show, with different actors and I’m hoping it will be able to stand on it’s own and be as good as the original series. Time will tell.

    I don’t have a problem with the “dad” or the “mom”. I understand their characters. The drug addict “son” may wind up bugging me (kind of like Gabriel has). The “daughter” and the angry “son” living with the ex-wife are the two characters who may drive me totally nuts and have me hoping they get killed off. It’s too soon to tell. I’ll be patient and wait and see.

    I’m not real happy that there are only six introductory episodes. That isn’t enough time for us to get “invested” in the characters but they didn’t ask me what I think. The one good thing about it only running for six weeks is that on week seven TWD is back!!! I’m so looking forward to the new season. I hope it’s a good one!

  32. Jim Speed says:

    Moderators.. you got some spammers in here..

  33. Jim Speed says:

    I think they did a good job of showing just plain ole average people going about their sometimes hectic and crazy lives. I’ll be interested to see how it shakes out now that the outbreak is on them.

  34. KemaKeem says:

    The location is perfect for zombie mayhem. The junkie son did a pretty good job, but some of the other actors missed the mark. I like the dynamics of the characters, it shows the reality of how complex a family structure can be… But a pure overload in building the characters in the 1st show. It’s like they put everything they had on a plate and served it cold. “Here ya go!” I’m a huge fan of TWD, and will give this show a chance. At this point it gets a B –

  35. C Jakes says:

    I already noticed a crossover in this first episode. Travis is teaching from Jack London’s book, which we also saw in “The Walking Dead” episode “Claimed.” Rick is reading one of Jack London’s books. Also in the scene where “Glo” is munching the guys face, the portion of his face that is missing resembles the face of the little “bunny girl” in the pilot episode of “The Walking Dead.” That said, I loved it and watched three more times to catch things I may have missed. Was that shadow of a person/walker dashing past the entrance when Travis was leaving the church a mistake?

  36. Chelsea Dabbs says:

    Honestly it wasnt that bad lol. Not as bad as people are making it out to be. People forget we’ve had time to connect with rick and the group and thats why we care and keep coming back. This is a new group, and we need time to let them draw us in. So I’m going to give it an honest review.

    Pros:
    The idea seed for this spin off is spot on, Showing the fall and decay. I’m personally super excited to see this play out.
    I think with the location of LA, and the abrasive topics of drugs and suicide touched on in the first episode they are trying to promise us a very gritty world, which is why we loved TWD.
    By the end of the 90 minutes I had begun to care about the characters, and looked forward to see what would happen to them, and how they would handle it with their family dynamics.

    Cons:
    I had to admit, the actors seemed a little poorly chosen. The one thing I cant stand in a tv show is bad actors, and some of the cast was bordering on flipping over to the dark side. I’m hoping after a few episodes they fall into their roles more naturally.
    This second issues plays in with the last, The relationships felt forced, the characters felt forced. Like the writers were trying way to hard for interesting characters. Comparing it back to TWD (cause lets be honest, you can’t NOT) Rick isn’t a super interesting character. He’s a southern cop, with a decent moral compass, falling into a world with zombies, Thats it, nothing special, he didnt need a kid with drug problems, or a mixed race tension, or step kids, or a son from another relationship to be special. Where as it felt like they were throwing all these “seeds” at you to try and make their main characters special and interesting that it just felt suffocating.

    • Boris says:

      Let’s see what next few episodes look like, As you know, the five remaining
      episodes were shot in Vancouver. How do you make Van. look like LA?
      And they spent more on this pilot than they will spend on five remaining
      eps. Overall, it looked pretty cheesy, none of the characters set any hooks.
      I already despise the druggie and the BIG NOSE dad, the others were so-so.

  37. ruth says:

    I am a TWD fan. Didn’t care to watch FWD at all. The next morning I thought “ok I’ll be open-minded & watch it.” I watched & yawned. Watched some more & yawned. Thought what bad actor’s they were & yawned.
    I will not be watching any more. Even my husband who is not a fan of TWD(but will watch it) thought FWD was stupid & boring. He got up after 15 minutes & went to do something else.

  38. brokedog says:

    Okay … it seems that “Fear” is getting totally blasted here. Well … I came to complain, also, but … U know what … I understand what they are trying to do here. U can’t just put a “Walking Dead” clone out there. Yes, I wanted zombies and kitanas and crossbows, too, but … I did NOT want to see a “Rick, Daryl, And Michonne “lite”. I wanted to learn how Rick and the crew became stuck in their world … how it started, why they couldn’t curb it, etc.. We have to let “Fear” get its footing (which, granted, may be very difficult with only 6 episodes).
    I, too, was VERY bored with the first 70 minutes. But, U know what … that last 20 minutes saved the show, for me, anyhow. I’ll make a prediction. Everyone “blasting” Fear right now … I think by episode 4, just might be screaming for an extended contract with AMC. “Fear” will probably take off like a match to gasoline, next week. Let’s give it a chance, folks … U didn’t really expect it to be as good as the “Gold-Standard”, did ya? No show is ever gonna be as good as The Walking Dead but … “Fear” just might end up giving us a few extra weeks (each year) of our “zombie” fix!
    And don’t waste your time lamenting the “only 6 episodes” thing. Why would they go back to the standard 23 episode seasons of shows in the past? They can make just as much (if not MORE) money for these 6 to 13 episode arcs. I wouldn’t make hundreds of episodes, either, if I could make a living like cable tv is, now … feeding us show after show of 6 or 13 episode seasons. The first season is always so short, just so they can gauge interest. These folks just didn’t fall off the turnip truck!

    • Miss JEM says:

      Please, that show “Fear of the walking dead” sucked. Walking dead made you fall in love with all the characters. I loved how in the walking dead they would take you back to find how that character used to be before the outbreak of the walkers.

  39. WILFRED ALEX says:

    coz’ I want to see Nick n’ adalind story develop more than just sharing the child.

  40. Slick Grimes says:

    I made it about 30 minutes into FTWD and fell asleep, boring.

  41. rob carnes says:

    slow… boring…. terrible cast… can say more negatives but seems most others already got it covered. the sister was the best of the lot.

  42. It was crap.. Hoping that annoying mom dies sooner rather than later.. I think she is overplaying the “strong Woman” role and the writers missed the mark..

  43. leeuniverse says:

    And yet it was terrible….. Terrible writing, terrible choice of actors and acting.
    It wasn’t even close to as good as the original Walking Dead.

    And FYI, the Walking Dead didn’t do as well at first because nobody knew about it.
    I found out about it 2 Seasons in….. and I’m online all the time and watching every good show out there every day.

  44. Mo says:

    Ha! It really amazes me that some has the imagination of a dish rag. – Fear The Walking Dead has already broken all records for a pilot – Just to refresh memories, TWD hadn’t done this well until it was well into the end of the first two seasons. – So for those whose negativity has it’s 2 seconds of fame on a comment section, you shall eat crow, Would you like a little cheese with that whine, when you eat that crow?! LOL!!

  45. -_- says:

    Wow…the amount of pure stupidity and rash judgement from some people in this comments section is almost overwhelming. Maybe, just maybe, give it a little time??

  46. Steve says:

    So we have to wait a year for season two? and we only get 6 episodes of this one, how does that work? Back in the day we got like 20-30 episodes a season, now we only get 12 or less? Star Trek TNG gave us 26 episodes a season for almost a decade… I understand its a work and time consuming show TWD, but why the hell do we get 3 months of the show then have to wait 9 months for more…

  47. DEAD & DEADER says:

    MAX has to be the biggest idiot troll on the internet entertainment websites. He writes the same bull s. on every site like it’s his job. Other people have the right to like what they like. Get over yourself. Stop being a mindless prick. You’re as sick and stupid as the homosexuals that think everything has to go their way and have no tolerance for Christians and their values. Your values are your own and not superior to anyone else.

  48. Max says:

    People have the attention span and patience of a nat…If you want mindless action and non stop zombies go watch Z Nation….I like a little story and character development with my apocalypse…FTWD was awesome…

  49. max says:

    Junkies! – It’s about an all American Family all right … I don’t relate to junkies – they are zombies yo start with so who cares?

  50. It always breaks viewing records even during football season. Yet it never wins Best TV show or any awards like peoples choice or other awards. This pisses me off! The Walking Dead needs to be up there in categories but just because it’s not playing or is in off season during award time they never include it.

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