'Breaking Bad' Flying High In Season Opener

Breaking-Bad-AA mid-July Sunday night brought back the long-awaited return of AMC's "Breaking Bad" to higher levels in season five versus the previous year.

The show pulled in a Nielsen 2.9 million total average viewers for its season five debut, amounting to a 22% increase over season four.

Looking at key viewing groups, 18-49 viewers climbed 34% to 1.9 million and 25-54 viewers were up 28% to 1.8 million. Overall, "Bad" pulled in another 600,000 total viewers for the night in a re-air of the season premiere to land at 3.5 million viewers.

Back in August, AMC announced that this would be the show's last season; 16 episodes will run.

These numbers would have landed the critically acclaimed cable series in the middle of the pack when it comes to TV broadcast shows.

CBS' "60 Minutes" was the highest-rated show of the evening, pulling in 7.2 million viewers (a 1.0 rating/4 share among 18-49 viewers). The network's "Big Brother" was next at 6.2 million and a 2.2/7 among 18-49 viewers, the best numbers for that viewer group of the evening.

ABC and Fox were the best performers here for the night, both earning a 1.4/4 among 18-49 viewers with 4.8 million and 3.1 million total average viewers, respectively. CBS was at a 1.1/3 among 18-49 viewers and a network-leading 5.4 million average total viewers.

Univision came in at a 1.0/3 in the 18-49 demo (and 2.7 million average viewers) and NBC at 0.9/3 (and 4.6 million viewers).



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