Nielsen estimates that “Dead” averaged a 6.9 rating in adults 18-49 (about 8.7 million in this age range), down about 15% from its monster 8.2 — a cable record — for its winter premiere. It was up more than 20% for its second winter episode last season (5.6) and the third-highest rating for any telecast in series history.
The zombie drama’s tough competition included the Sochi Games on NBC (a preliminary 5.7 rating in adults 18-49 for the hour) as well as the NBA All-Star Game on TNT.
In total viewers, Sunday’s tally of 13.3 million was also down about 15% from its winter premiere (15.8 million) and more than 2 million higher than its comparable episode of a year ago (11.05 million).
The live “Talking Dead” aftershow averaged a 2.4 demo rating and 4.8 million total viewers.