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AMC announced today that The Walking Dead's second season premiere would have the same treatment as the first season with a 90 minute extended episode. The network also stated that the second season would be split in half. The first seven episodes will air this fall as planned, beginning on October 16 and kicking off AMC's annual Fearfest lineup. The season will finish its run with the final six episodes beginning on February 12.
It is commonplace for cable networks to divide their show's seasons, though this marks the first occasion for AMC. It won't be their last, as the network will likely also be splitting Breaking Bad's final sixteen episode season. The network's newest series, Hell on Wheels, which begins November 6, will be airing along with The Walking Dead's first half, and will maintain AMC's presence on Sunday nights until the the second half begins.
Though the extended premiere will please fans, a change to the scheduling will always be met with some opposition. And with AMC's latest decisions regarding The Walking Dead -as well as their other series- generating quite a bit of negative feedback, the network should tread lightly.
The Walking Dead's 90 minute premiere airs on October 16 at 9:00PM EST.