The Walking Dead closed its sixth season Sunday with a 90-minute finale that delivered 18.4 million viewers and 11.5 million adults 18-49 (9.1 US RTG) in Nielsen live+3 ratings. The episode is expected to generate more than a million additional digital views, and capped a season that again saw The Walking Dead as the #1 show on television among adults 18-49, with an average live+3 viewership across the season's 16 episodes of 18 million total viewers, 11.5 million adults 18-49 and 11.3 million adults 25-54. The Talking Dead finale delivered 7.4 million viewers in live+3 ratings, including 4.5 million adults 18-49 (3.5 US RTG) and 4.7 million adults 25-54. Here's what AMC president Charlie Collier had to say in a statement.
"We know how rare it is to have the #1 show on television for four years running and to share a season six finale on AMC with more than 18 million fans, to say nothing of the passionate and appreciated conversations that followed. So, as we close this season, first and foremost, a heartfelt 'thank you' is on all of our minds. Thank you to everyone who makes The Walking Dead possible, from those working in the Los Angeles-Senoia-New York 'zombie triangle' to our fans around the world. We now put down Lucille for a while and leave the 'at bats' to baseball until our October return."
The Walking Dead season finale drew in 18.4 million viewers in live+3, up 30% from live/same day (growth of 4.2 million). The show attracted 11.5 million Adults 18-49, up 32% from live/same day (growth of 2.8 million), along with 11.7 million Adults 25-54, up 32% from live/same day (growth of 2.9 million). Talking Dead finale drew in 7.4 million viewers in L+3, up 16% from live/same day (growth of 1.1 million), with 4.5 million Adults 18-49, up 15% from live/same day (growth of 595k) and 4.7 million Adults 25-54, up 17% from live/same day (growth of 680k).
The Walking Dead ended The Walking Dead Season 6 with the highest live+3 season average for all of television (cable and broadcast) among adults 18-49. The hit series averaged a 9.1 average audience rating with 11.4 million viewers each week in the adults 18-49 demographic, beating shows such as NBC Sunday Night Football (7.5 rating, 9.5 million viewers), Empire (6.7 rating, 8.5 million viewers) and The Big Bang Theory (5.6 rating, 7.05 million viewers).
On finale night and across its entire sixth season, The Walking Dead was again a major focus of attention in social media on platforms including Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. On the day of the season six finale, The Walking Dead ranked as the most talked about television show on all three platforms and generated nearly 3 million social engagements on Sunday night. Across the entire season, The Walking Dead social content garnered more than 47 million total social engagements during primetime with Twitter and Instagram social engagements seeing double-digit gains of 35% and 55% over the previous year.