AMC Edges Fox News in Weekly Primetime Race

Ultimately, zombies and a bodacious barrister topped news about ISIS and Jordan, as AMC edged Fox News for the top position in basic cable primetime last week.

AMC, boosted by the return of The Walking Dead and the bow of Breaking Bad prequel Better Call Saul on Feb. 8 averaged just under 1.91 million primetime watchers, according to Nielsen data. That performance edged Fox News Channel’s average audience of nearly 1.90 million watchers from Feb. 2 through Feb. 8, with the news category leader placing second for the third week running.

USA was third with 1.87 million viewers, TBS fourth with 1.83 million and Disney Channel with 1.71 million.

Rounding out the top 10: Discovery, whose Gold Rush and Alaskan Bush People were the fourth- and eighth-ranked programs of the week, finished sixth with 1.6 million; History was seventh at 1.45 million; HGTV eighth at 1.42; FX ninth with 1.33 million, and ESPN, without the benefit of football, 10th at 1.28 million. Family-friendly Hallmark Channel was just outside the money with over 1 million watchers on average.

Extending primetime from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., Fox News was first with 1.87 million watchers, ahead of USA’s 1.84 million, AMC’s 1.69 million, TBS’s 1.68 million and Discovery’s 1.44 million.

Gauged on a total-day basis, Disney Channel edged Fox News with 1.20 million watchers to 1.19 million. Cartoon spinoff Adult Swim was third with 1.17 million, Nickelodeon fourth at 1.15 million and USA fifth at 1.09 million.

The period marked the first time Fox News ranked that highly in both the total-day and the 7-11 p.m. measures in the same week, since On the Record was shifted to 7 p.m. in October 2013.