9:22am PT by Michael O'Connell
TV Ratings: 'Into the Badlands' Gives AMC Its Third Huge Launch of 2015
AMC heads towards the end of the year with a pretty exceptional launch record for 2015.
After the successes of Better Call Saul and the record-breaking debut of Fear the Walking Dead, the cable network's third original series this year, Into the Badlands, is also off to a great start with viewers. After three days of time-shifting, the premiere episode has already nabbed 8.2 million viewers — 5.1 million of them adults 18-49.
That puts Into the Badlands as the No. 3 cable launch of the year and of all time, trailing the other two record-breaking launches this year for Fear (No. 1) and Saul (No. 2). It's pretty good news for the network, which saw longtime flagship Mad Men take its final bow earlier in the year.
Into the Badlands did not get all those ratings on its own, of course. The show owes a debt to the lead-in from The Walking Dead — which saw 17 million live-plus-three day viewers for this latest episode. The highest-rated show on TV, it previously helped launch Saul earlier in 2015.
As for Into the Badlands, it did also get a solid bump from time-shifters. The show rose 29 percent in total viewers (an increase of 1.8 million) and 28 percent in adults 18-49 (an increase of 1.1 million) since its Sunday, Nov. 15 opener.