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AMC's BREAKING BAD Season 5 Premiere is Series' Most-Watched Episode with 2.9 Million Viewers

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Related: AMC, Breaking Bad

Last night's season five debut of AMC's "Breaking Bad" was the most watched episode in the history of the series. From 10pm - 11pm, the network earned a 2.2 HH rating delivering 2.9 million viewers. This marks an increase of +22%/ +14% respectively. Even more impressive is the exceptional growth among the coveted 18-49 demo, which saw a +34% increase versus last season's premiere. Among the Adults 25-54 demo, "Breaking Bad" delivered 1.8 million marking an increase of +28%. For the night, "Breaking Bad's" season 5 premiere attracted 3.5 million viewers with the 10:00 pm EST premiere and the 11:30pm EST encore. In August, AMC announced the final 16 episodes to conclude the series. "Breaking Bad" airs on AMC Sunday nights at 10pm ET/PT.

"From day one, 'Breaking Bad' has been a passion project for all of us at AMC. This show has helped define what our brand stands for in terms of supporting quality storytelling and creative risk-taking. Working with these terrifically creative people on such outstanding material has been a joy-filled ride. I'm so pleased to share this success with the entire 'Breaking Bad' team," said Charlie Collier, AMC's president. "We look forward to sharing the final 16 episodes with 'Breaking Bad's' passionate fans. As our marketing campaign says, 'All hail 'The King.'"

AMC is carried on every cable, satellite and TelCo provider except the Dish network.

Key Nielsen Highlights for the season five premiere of "Breaking Bad":

· 10pm airing - 2.2 HH rating with 2.9 million viewers: +22%/+14% vs. season 4 premiere

· 10pm airing - 1.9 million Adults 18-49: +34% vs. season 4 premiere

· 10pm airing - 1.8 million Adults 25-54: +28% vs. season 4 premiere

· 10 pm, 11:30 pm airings cumed to 3.5 million viewers

Source: The Nielsen Company, L+SD, 7/15/2012

Over the past five seasons, "Breaking Bad" has been heralded as one of the best TV dramas on television.

USA Today said, "As hard and sharp and brilliant as a diamond, and in the TV landscape, just as valuable. And, with only 16 episodes left, almost as rare." The New York Post said, "the best antihero on television. Not just today, but ever." People Magazine called it, ""the best TV drama ever... Bad has taken the complexity of modern television storytelling to new levels." The Toronto Star states, "the beginning of the end for the best show on television."

"Breaking Bad" stars Emmy(R) Award-winner Bryan Cranston as Walter White; Emmy(R) Award-winner AaRon Paul as Jesse Pinkman; Anna Gunn as Skyler White; Dean Norris as Hank Schrader; Betsy Brandt as Marie Schrader; RJ Mitte as Walter, Jr; Bob Odenkirk as Saul Goodman; and Jonathan Banks as Mike. "Breaking Bad" is filmed on location in Albuquerque, NM.

The series first premiered on AMC in January 2008 and follows protagonist Walter White, a milquetoast high school chemistry teacher who lives in New Mexico with his wife, teenage son who has cerebral palsy and a new baby girl. White is diagnosed with Stage III cancer and given a prognosis of two years left to live. With a new sense of fearlessness based on his medical prognosis, and a desire to gain financial security for his family, White chooses to enter a dangerous world of drugs and crime and ascends to power in this world. The series explores how a fatal diagnosis such as White's releases a typical man from the daily concerns and constraints of normal society and follows his transformation from mild-mannered family man to a kingpin of the drug trade.

"Breaking Bad" has received sixteen Emmy(R) Award nominations in the following categories: "Outstanding Drama Series" (2009, 2010); "Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series" for Bryan Cranston (2008, 2009, 2010); "Outstanding Supporting Actor" for AaRon Paul (2009, 2010); "Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series" for Vince Gilligan (2008) and Michelle MacLaren (2010); "Outstanding Cinematography for a one-hour series" for John Toll (2008) and Michael Slovis (2009, 2010); "Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series;" "Outstanding Single Picture Camera Editing for a Drama Series" for Lynne Willingham (2008, 2009) and Skip McDonald (2010); with six wins overall for Cranston (2008, 2009, 2010); Paul (2010); and Willingham (2008, 2009).


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