Bad news for Duck Dynasty: After the controversy surrounding Phil Robertson's suspension from then return to the reality show following a series of anti-gay and racist comments he made to GQ, the season five premiere of the show debuted on A&E last night to significantly lower ratings than last year. According to Deadline, Duck Dynasty's season five premiere pulled in about 8.5 million viewers total, which is 28 percent lower than the season four premiere, which pulled in 12 million viewers. For the advertiser-coveted demographic of viewers 18-49, those numbers were even lower: Only 4.2 million of those viewers turned in to the episode.

So, what do these lower numbers mean for the show? 8.5 million viewers is by no means a bad rating, but it's still possibly indicative of problem when ratings drop this significantly. Only time will tell if this is actually the start of a downfall trend.

[via Deadline]