The spin-off series to The Walking Dead has had the biggest premiere in US cable TV history.
AMC’s 90-minute series opener of Fear the Walking Dead delivered a record-breaking 10.1 million viewers, the network said.
Set in Los Angeles, the prequel focuses on a group of characters in the early days of the zombie apocalypse.
The first season will run for six episodes and will return for a second season of 15 episodes in 2016.
Sunday’s opening episode beat The Walking Dead’s premiere viewing figures of 5.35 million in 2010.
It delivered 6.3 million adults in the 18-to-49 demographic which is favoured by advertisers. The previous record in the same demographic was AMC’s Breaking Bad spin-off Better Call Saul – 4.4 million – earlier this year.
Reviewing the first episode, Variety’s Brian Lowry said: “For Walking Dead fans, Fear does tap into a fertile vein, since the earlier show’s main protagonist, Rick, slept through humanity’s fall in a coma, leaving flashbacks to putty in only some of the gaps.”
Matt Fowler wrote on IGN that Fear the Walking Dead brought a welcome shift in location, tone, and characters.
“Like Telltale’s The Walking Dead video games, it’s able to present us with an whole new cast of characters while demonstrating that it’s really the zombified world that that’s the star of the show and all that you really need for there to be a spinoff.”