"The Walking Dead" premiere breaks ratings record

In this image released by AMC, actors from left, Laurie Holden, Norman Reedus, Jon Bernthal, Melissa Suzanne McBride, Sarah Wayne Callies and Chandler Riggs appear in a scene from the second season of the AMC original series, "The Walking Dead," in Senoia, Ga.. Just down the road from a tiny country church in rural Georgia, the apocalypse has already arrived. A band of scrappy survivors are fighting the undead, camping in the woods in hopes of outrunning the hordes of zombies roaming their world. (AP Photo/AMC, Gene Page) Gene Page

From left, actors Laurie Holden, Norman Reedus, Jon Bernthal, Melissa Suzanne McBride, Sarah Wayne Callies and Chandler Riggs in a scene from "The Walking Dead."
AP/AMC

(CBS/AP) NEW YORK - AMC's "The Walking Dead" kicked off its second season with a vengeance, delivering 7.3 million viewers for Sunday night's premiere telecast.

4.8 million of those viewers were in the coveted 18-49 age demographic, which the network said is a record for a basic cable series, according to TVLine.

"The Walking Dead" premiere starts season off with a bang

The premiere also drew 4.2 million viewers in the 25-54 demographic, TVLine reports, another record for a basic cable series.

AMC also reported Monday that the zombie drama went on to boost its total viewership to 11 million viewers for the night's three airings of the 90-minute episode.

This eclipsed the year-ago audience for the series, which emerged as a surprise hit by averaging 5.2 million viewers weekly during that first season.

Based on the popular comic book of the same name, "The Walking Dead" depicts the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse confronted by a group of survivors outside Atlanta. Its cast includes Andrew Lincoln, Jon Bernthal and Sarah Wayne Callies.

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