‘Breaking Bad’ ends with record-breaking ratings

September 30, 2013

AMC’s “Breaking Bad” went out with a bang with Sunday’s series finale, in more ways than one: About 10.3 million people watched the final episode, by far the most-watched episode in the show’s history.

That’s just shy of the numbers achieved by the network’s “The Walking Dead,” but way more than “Mad Men.”

To put it in more perspective, around 2.8 million viewers caught the Season 5, Part 1 finale of “Breaking Bad” when it aired last September. Guess a few more people have caught up with the series since then.

And, of course, that 10 million-plus figure isn’t counting DVR users, or those who caught the episode through other means. According to reports, the episode has already been illegally downloaded more than 500,000 times on pirated sites.

Regardless, AMC is still thrilled. “’Breaking Bad’ is simply unique,” AMC president Charlie Collier said in a statement. “It all starts with Vince Gilligan who really only ever asked for one thing – the opportunity to end the show on his own terms. That is exactly what Vince did last night and, as always, brilliantly so.”

Even though “Breaking Bad” shattered records for the show itself, it still didn’t quite reach zombie status; AMC’s “The Walking Dead” third season finale in April attracted 12.4 million, its most-watched episode. However, “BB” can still brag to Don Draper; that’s about three times the amount that watched “Mad Men” wrap up the sixth season, which got its highest ratings ever with 2.7 million.

Meanwhile, over on Twitter, Nielsen’s SocialGuide announced that there were 1.2 million tweets about “Breaking Bad” last night, the most for any show last week. That easily topped the No. 2 spot, last Monday’s episode of NBC’s “The Voice,” with 273,000 tweets.

Emily Yahr covers pop culture and entertainment for the Post. Follow her on Twitter @EmilyYahr.
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