News Briefs: The Walking Dead Sets Cable Ratings Records

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... The Walking Dead returned for Season 2 on Sunday and promptly made a wasteland of the record books. 7.3 million people (editor's note: !!!) tuned in to watch the season opener, and of that ginormous number, 4.8 million of them were in the coveted 18-49-year-old age range. That last factoid is a basic-cable record and was good enough for a 3.8 rating, higher than anything on TV last night except for NBC's Sunday Night Football. If you include repeats, 11 million viewers watched the first episode. In related news, 11 million people nearly threw up when Daryl opened up that zombie's stomach. [TV By the Numbers]

... On the exact opposite end of impressive, MTV renewed Ridiculousness for a second season because people either have never seen the far superior Tosh.0 or don't know how to use YouTube. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Mark V. Olsen and Will Scheffer, the brainses behind Big Love, have another unconventional marriage story in the works for HBO. The duo is working on China Doll, about an interracial couple and their humanoid robot, but they insist the show isn't at all sci-fi. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Fox has bought a project from Mike O'Malley (Glee) called Prodigy Bully. It's about a kid genius who uses his brains and brawn to rule the schoolyard, and is based on the series of shorts Prodigy/Bully: The Henry Tammer Story, which you can see here. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Marlon Wayans is setting up a project at ABC. It's a comedy that will follow two brothers who are cops. [Deadline Hollywood]


... Revenge has booked Hiroyuki Sanada for a guest role. Sanada, who played temple man Dogen in the final season of ABC's Lost, will play a Japanese business man. Remember when you first saw Dogen on Lost and you were all like, what? Those were some weird times, man. [EW]

... Donal Logue, last seen as Hank in FX's beloved Terriers, will next be seen in TNT's Gateway, a Western that follows three brothers who step up when their sheriff father is murdered. Logue will play Auggie, a drinking buddy of one of the brothers. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Check out these upcoming hosts for Saturday Night Live: November 5, Charlie Day (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia); November 12, Emma Stone (teen boys' dreams); and November 19, Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother). [NBC]

... Battlestar Galactica's Jamie Bamber keeps bouncing around from show to show and will next land on House. He'll play a guy who is dying, just like the rest of the show's guest stars. [TV Line]

... I saved the best for last: Ken Marino (Childrens Hospital, Party Down) will guest-star on Happy Endings. He'll play a psychiatrist to Dave in an early 2012 episode. [TV Line]


... McDonald's is getting its own in-store channel. The McNetwork will air in franchise locations and feature local news, movie previews, and subliminal messages to take your mind off the heart attack you're stuffing in your mouth. [LA Times]

Follow writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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