January 14, 2012 3:55pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
TCA: 'The Walking Dead' Season 3 Expands to 16 Episodes
AMC is adding more of The Walking Dead.
The zombie series based on the comic books by Robert Kirkman will expand its third season with three additional episodes for a total of 16.
Season 1 featured six episodes, while Season 2 has 13 episodes, with the current sophomore frame split into two parts and set to return for its back half on Sunday, Feb. 12 at 9 p.m. Season 3 will also follow the same broadcast pattern, with a fourth-quarter bow and subsequent split.
Leading up to the Season 2 return, which will find Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and his group of rag-tag survivors cope with Sophia's death, AMC has scheduled a marathon of episodes from Seasons 1 and 2.
On Saturday, Feb. 11, starting at 8 p.m., the network will marathon all of Season 1, while on Sunday, viewers can catch up on the first seven episodes of the second frame starting at 1:30 p.m. and leading up to the show's return at 9 p.m. with an episode titled "Nebraska."
The Season 2 midseason finale topped the show's freshman year finale, drawing 6.6 million total viewers and 4.5 million in the advertiser-coveted adults 18-49 demographic, pulling in 3.9 million in the adults 25-54 demo, according to Nielsen.The zombie drama was renewed for a third season in October after the Season 2 bow shattered basic cable ratings records.