AMC Series Breaks Well


AMC’s second original series Breaking Bad cooked up some good numbers in its debut Sunday night.

The Jan. 20 debut recorded a 1.1 household rating in the 10 p.m. hour, translating into some 1.4 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. The performance marked a 33% rise over AMC’s 2007 primetime average and resulted in a doubling of the network’s average among adults 18 to 49 and a 107% jump against men of that age, according to network officials.

Among its target audience of men 25 to 54, AMC ranked fourth in cable Sunday night

The series stars Bryan Cranston as Walter White, a chemistry teacher who breaks bad from his middle-age, middle-class existence after he finds out he has cancer by making crystal meth as a means to secure his family’s financial future.

The show’s premiere came against the finale of Fox’s NFC Championship game between the New York Giants and Green Bay Packers that drew a gigantic 53.9 million viewers. However, men evidently migrated to the series upon the football’s game conclusion as its audience among males 18 to 34 and 18 to 49 grew 90% and 47%, respectively, after 10:30 p.m.

Breaking Bad’s initial tally fell short of the 1.4 rating and 1.64 million viewers that tuned in the July 19 debut of AMC’s Golden Globe Award-winning retro advertising series Mad Men.