While Netflix still keeps their internal means of judging the success of an original series a secret, an independent, San Diego based research firm is trying to crack the Netflix ratings code for themselves, and their results reveal that Marvel’s first Netflix series may be king of the hill.
Given its popularity and visibility in the current pop culture landscape, many may guess that Netflix’s first original series, House of Cards, is their highest rated show. Luth Research’s findings suggest otherwise, showing Daredevil as the series with the largest audience.
An estimated 10.7% of the research firm’s sampling of 2,500 Netflix subscribers watched at least one episode of Marvel’s Daredevil within 11 days of the series premiere. The third season of House of Cards was only viewed by 6.5% of the sampled subscribers within 30 days of the season’s premiere. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt was viewed by 7.3 percent in its first month, and Bloodline by just 2.4 percent.
It’s worth noting that the Daredevil and House of Cards comparison is not an entirely fair one. House of Cards is three seasons deep, whereas Daredevil is Netflix’s new hotness. It would be more interesting to see how Daredevil’s first season compared to the first season of House of Cards, if that data were available.
With all three season taken into account, House of Cards was the most popular show on all of Netflix in March. Season 3 was also the most binge-watched of all the Netflix Originals, with almost 50 percent of the subscribers saying they watched at least three episodes in one day within the first month of the season’s release.
It’s also worth noting that Luth’s research tracked viewing habits across computers, tablets, and smartphones, but not via smart TVs, gaming consoles or set top boxes like the Apple TV. Since Netflix has not released data concerning which devices are most often used to view their programming, there’s no way of knowing how many potential viewers are left unaccounted for by this lapse in tracking.
Netflix declined to comment on Luth Research's findings.
Daredevil premiered on Netflix on April 10, and has been renewed for a second season.