Netflix Ratings For Original Shows Have Finally Been Revealed

Netflix has guarded its ratings like nuclear launch codes, but a research firm has published their own independent findings that reveal those highly secretive viewership ratings.

Luth Research, based out of San Diego, figured out the numbers through a sampling of 2,500 Netflix subscribers, who watched on various devices (although, ironically, this sampling does not include people who watched on their TVs, since Luth Research has yet to devise a way to include them). The result?

Marvel’s Daredevil is Netflix’s No. 1 show, although we should probably qualify it by saying “No. 1 show at the moment.”

Roughly 10.7 percent of Netflix subscribers watched at least one episode since the series premiered on April 10. This was enough to topple House of Cards, which approximately 6.5 percent of subscribers sampled at some point since the Season 3 premiere on February 27. However, while Daredevil did best House of Cards in the ratings, research reveals that the third season of House of Cards was the most binge-watched overall, since I suppose fans wanted to keep ahead of the spoiler hounds. Hell, that’s why I binge-watched. Well, partially why. The biggest reason was that this season of House of Cards pretty much demanded to be watched in long sittings. I swear, every time I told myself I’d go to bed after finishing an episode, that episode would end on some wild-ass cliffhanger that kept me up for another hour. This was probably the most critically-divisive season of the show, but it was still pretty damn riveting, just the same.

Netflix Ratings For Original Shows Have Finally Been Revealed

Credit: Netflix

But back to more data: believe it or not, Daredevil wasn’t the only show that managed to beat out House of Cards, which many presumed to be Netflix’s top-rated show. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt actually managed to take the No. 2 spot with 7.3 percent of subscribers giving the show a look. However, the news wasn’t so good for new arrival Bloodline. The critically-acclaimed drama, starring Kyle Chandler, Linda Cardellini, Sissy Spacek and Ben Mendelsohn, brought in the lowest rating of any new series, with only 2.4 percent of subscribers giving it a shot. Which is a shame, considering it’s one of the better new dramas I’ve watched on TV all year, with Mendelsohn’s performance being one of the best of the year. Seriously, the man is downright electric, and I’d be stunned if he didn’t get Emmy attention for it. I mean, Netflix would have to campaign him first, but they’d be fools not to.

Luth’s data does not factor in other shows such as Orange Is the New Black, for the same reason we don’t use last year’s ratings for The Big Bang Theory to determine how well this season of Survivor is doing, for example. Luth’s algorithm is predicated on measuring a show’s viewership data over the course of its first 30 days after premiere. In fact, Variety has a far better explanation of how it works than I could ever provide, since I’m allergic to math. In short, if Luth’s data is accurate, we won’t know what Netflix’s No. 1 show for the year will be until…well, the end of the year. Naturally, Netflix declined to comment on Luth’s findings, which isn’t that surprising, since President Ted Sarandos has been fairly clear about never revealing the ratings data, noting that it makes no business sense for them to do so since 1) they don’t sell advertising (so they don’t need to use ratings to justify ad rates) and 2) they don’t have any partnerships with cable companies, so they don’t need to use ratings to justify carriage fees. Still, even while it doesn’t make business sense to reveal the numbers, the selfish side of me wants to know what the top show of the year is going to be, regardless.

My prediction? Either Orange Is the New Black or Marvel’s AKA Jessica Jones will be tops. But those are just wild guesses at this point. Considering how much Netflix has grown over the past year, nothing would surprise me.

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