AMC's zombie smash "Walking Dead" went out with a bang on Sunday (Dec. 5) night, narratively and audience-wise.
 
Leaving aside the narrative bang -- some people haven't watched the episode yet -- "The Walking Dead" drew more than 6 million total viewers in its first 10 p.m. airing, rising to 8.1 million viewers with the addition of 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. encores.
 
In its first airing, "The Walking Dead" pulled in 4 million viewers in the key 18-49 demo, ranking first in that demo among basic cable for a drama series. For its truncated six-episode first season, "The Walking Dead" averaged 3.5 million viewers in the 18-49 demo, making it the most watched drama series in basic cable history for the demo.
 
"The Walking Dead" is far-and-away the most successful original series in AMC's history and has already been renewed for a second season. The 13-episode second season of "The Walking Dead" isn't expected to premiere until next fall.
 
Dan-feinberg-med
A long-time member of the TCA Board and a longer-time blogger of "American Idol," Dan Fienberg writes about TV, except for when he writes about movies or sometimes writes about the Red Sox. But never music. He would sound stupid talking about music.