How much time have you spent in Westeros?
The very nature of streaming has changed how we watch TV so much in the last decade. It used to be that a TV show would air, get solid ratings, live in the cultural lexicon, and then fade away after it ended. But now, thanks to streaming, new audiences can find shows any time they want. They can make them trend for much longer than they actually were on the air. Look at the way The Office and The Sopranos trended over the pandemic.
But the actual behemoth here is Game of Thrones. The show started in 2011 and went off the air in 2019. It was the most popular show in the world for much of its run, with the series finale being one of the most-watched TV episodes of all time. But even though the show has been off the air for three years, people are watching Game of Thrones so much that it still ranks as one of the most popular shows today.
Parrot Analytics, a data firm that measures audience demand, says that the show was the fifth-most popular TV series in the U.S. over the last 30 days. That's pretty incredible.
And those numbers only get higher when you look at global engagement. The show ranks fouth behind shows that have recently aired new seasons like Stranger Things, The Boys, and Better Call Saul. It even ranked above Disney's Obi-Wan show.
This is actually very interesting for filmmakers and audiences, because not only does it explain why networks are trying to find their Game of Thrones, but it also shows why HBO has made it such a priority to spin off the original series. I also like the idea that TV shows have a bit of an unlimited life thanks to streaming. You can always find new audiences and reach more and more people, even if there are no new episodes to entice people.
When you're working on your idea, I think it gives you the liberty to be unique and adventurous. You don't have to worry about casting a wide net, you just have to worry about being good—and hopefully, viewers will find you. Time will tell if Game of Thrones stays this popular. Spinoffs could either dilute the viewership or even bring more new eyes into the original series. We're learning all these lessons in real-time alongside you.
Let me know what you think in the comments.