Top Paramount+ Originals - Looking Beyond Star Trek

15 August, 2022

Paramount+ has been a bit of an underdog in the streaming wars, although it has been around longer than many platforms when you consider its earlier incarnation, CBS All Access.  While Paramount ranks in the top 3 corporations when considering the total demand for series from its various arms, the company’s flagship streaming service, Paramount+, has lagged competitors in other measures of the demand for content on the platform.  In terms of its share of demand for Paramount+ originals, it lags newer rivals like HBO Max and Apple TV+.


However, despite flying under the radar for so long, Paramount+ has shown a sustained growth in demand for its original programming beginning at the end of 2021.  Since the second half of 2021, the share of demand for Paramount+ originals has grown each quarter, from 3.4% in Q2 2021 to 5.4% in Q2 2022.  This growth in demand for the platform’s original content has been driven by an expanding Star Trek universe but also the platform’s investments in new series like 1883 and Halo.


The critical importance of the Star Trek franchise to Paramount’s strategy is clear when we look at the most in-demand originals from the platform in Q2. The two most in-demand series for the quarter and five of the top ten are Star Trek series. The Star Trek franchise is clearly still delivering audience attention to the platform, but other recent successful series provide a glimpse of a future where the platform has further diversified its original content.  This will be an important next step if Paramount+ hopes to continue its growth.

In fact, if we look at demand for the most recent series premiere in the Star Trek Universe, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, we see that it failed to surpass demand for Star Trek: Picard in its first season. This could be an indicator that new spinoffs are seeing diminishing returns in an increasingly crowded franchise. It may be a wise decision for Paramount to direct more resources to other projects like its growing Yellowstone universe (18831932) to get the most value out of its investment as it broadens its potential subscriber base. The platform has already cornered the market on die-hard trekkies, further Star Trek series would serve more to keep this fanbase around than to attract new audiences.


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