Though it's delivering some of the biggest twists and turns the show has ever seen, AMC's zombie apocalypse series 'The Walking Dead' is still suffering from declining ratings in America, with numbers going down week on week and the action-packed episodes failing to bring the high ratings of seasons gone by back to the network.
Now, don't get us wrong, 'The Walking Dead' is still one of the most successful shows on television, but when it averaged an incredible 18 million viewers back in season 6, but went into a midseason finale with just 12.13 million total viewers in the current eighth season, there's something not quite right.
Fortunately, those behind-the-scenes don't seem to be worried about the future. Differences in viewing patterns, they say, are part of the reason why viewers don't immediately consume their favourite media. It's certainly something worth thinking about.
Speaking with Variety, the CEO of Skybound Entertainment, David Alpert, who also works as an executive producer on the series addressed the fall in numbers of viewers. He said: "I don’t think in any way the brand has lost its relevance in general, I think we’re just seeing a decline in urgency across all media to consume something at a specific time.
"I think overall we're seeing increased competition, not just from television and not just from streaming services, but you get content everywhere."
What Alpert does in this statement however may come back to bite him. He seems to laugh in the face of the idea that a decline in the actual content being presented to viewers is the reason for the ratings drop, which actually could very likely be the case. Plenty have taken to social media to voice their concerns about the direction the story has taken as of late, with the midseason finale twist even leading to a petition being set up, demanding AMC fire their showrunner Scott Gimple.
Some fans may be watching 'The Walking Dead' later than usual, but there are those who have grown tired of the show entirely and are turning off for good. What the end-result of that is remains to be seen, but we hope the show has a lot of steam left in its tank!
'The Walking Dead' season 8 returns Sunday, February 25 on AMC in the US and Monday, February 26 on FOX and NOW TV in the UK.