The Walking Dead is one of the biggest shows on television, and it somehow manages to raise the stakes higher and higher with every passing season. Fans have already been waiting months for the show to return, but AMC still has not announced an official date for The Walking Dead's Season 8 premiere. That said, AMC has released some fall dates for Fear the Walking Dead that give us an idea of when The Walking Dead could be back on the airwaves. After all, seasons of The Walking Dead historically pick up right after seasons of Fear the Walking Dead come to an end.
The second half of Fear the Walking Dead Season 3 will consist of eight episodes, and the action will kick off on Sunday, September 10 at 9 p.m. with two back-to-back episodes. That will leave us with six episodes before Fear the Walking Dead will end and The Walking Dead can pick up again. If AMC schedules the remaining six episodes to air in the subsequent six weeks, as per usual television scheduling, then Fear the Walking Dead's finale would fall on October 22, and The Walking Dead would almost certainly premiere a week later on October 29. If Rick and Co. are back to battle Negan on October 29, that would make Season 8 the latest premiere date since way back in Season 1, when the series premiered on Halloween.
Of course, there's also the chance that AMC will air more sets of back-to-back episodes in the last leg of Season 3. The Season 2 finale and the Season 3 midseason finale were both two-hour events, so it's quite possible that Season 3 will ultimately consist of a two-part premiere, four middle episodes, and a two-part finale. If that is the case, then Fear the Walking Dead would end on October 15, with The Walking Dead likely premiering on October 22. An October 22 premiere would still be later than the average for The Walking Dead, but closer to the middle than October 29.
A third possibility is that AMC will simply double-up on all eight of the episodes of the second half of Fear the Walking Dead Season 3, with the entire batch of episodes airing in the span of a single month. If that is the case, then the finale would be a two-parter that airs on October 1, placing the Walking Dead premiere on October 8. This would also be out of the average, as no season of The Walking Dead to date was debuted earlier than October 11. Still, it wouldn't be too much of a stretch.
Personally, my money is on October 22 as a Season 8 premiere night for The Walking Dead. A lot may depend on how much faith AMC has in the sustainability of Fear the Walking Dead. The spinoff has never been the ratings juggernaut of its parent show, and it experienced a huge drop in both ratings and viewership between Seasons 2 and 3. The numbers haven't recovered in Season 3 so far; if AMC loses faith that Fear the Walking Dead has the power to retain a sizable audience indefinitely, we may see the network air all the episodes as two-parters to burn them off ASAP.
Yes, Fear the Walking Dead has already been renewed for Season 4, but with showrunner Dave Erickson departing and unfortunate ratings, a future beyond Season 4 is far from guaranteed. All things considered, the final scheduling for the second half of Fear the Walking Dead Season 3 could say a lot about both The Walking Dead Season 8 and how AMC views Fear the Walking Dead's future. We can only wait and see at this point.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for the latest zombie apocalypse news, and take a crack at our breakdown of what we know so far about The Walking Dead Season 8. Our summer TV premiere guide can point you toward what to watch while we wait for Fear the Walking Dead in September and The Walking Dead at some point in October.