In its seventh season on AMC, "The Walking Dead" remains a huge ratings powerhouse, the top show on the network. After reporting that their fourth-quarter stock earnings were higher than expected, AMC CEO Josh Sapan announced that the zombie action-drama was a large reason for the profits. In what should come as no surprise, AMC has no plans of shuttering their top rated show anytime soon. According to the network, AMC has big plans for "The Walking Dead" and they believe it has a long lifespan for them.

'The Walking Dead' Season 7

Currently, the hit zombie show is in the second half of its seventh season.

The year started out rough as many people protested the show over the summer because of the huge cliffhanger that left a major character dead without letting anyone know which character it was. Turns out there were two deaths at the hands of the new bad guy Negan. Glenn and Abraham, both fan favorite characters died at the hands of Negan and his barbed wire baseball bat Lucille. The show then began to work a slow burn angle that will eentually lead to the Great War from the comics.

'The Walking Dead' ratings decline

While it is true that the show has the highest ratings on AMC, there is also the fact that ratings in the seventh season are lower than normal and have been up and down all season long.

Losing two popular characters at once will cost viewers and the brutality of those deaths turned others away. Furthermore, the show has been slow going all season and that causes those who want zombie action to grow bored and drift away -- at least until they hear something is going to happen. With fantastic characters like Negan and Abraham joining the cast, this should be the season everything gets interesting.

It hasn't yet.

The Future of 'The Walking Dead'

When it comes to the long lifespan of the property that AMC was talking about, it isn't just the main TV show. There has already been a spin-off series in "Fear the Walking Dead" that gets good ratings although nothing as good as the main series. However, AMC is also talking about streaming venues in the future, different distribution platforms, and more.

"The Walking Dead" will stick around for a while longer but expect the franchise to continue to grow in one way or another.