Image: The Walking Dead, AMC
This week continues the high performance of digital original series in the United States. In total, half of the ten most demanded series in the USA are from streaming services; this figure is unchanged from last week. At the top of the chart, demand for YouTube Premium’s Cobra Kai continues to increase, rising to the third most in-demand series from last week’s fourth. Spongebob Squarepants from Nickelodeon remains the overall most in-demand series.
Another digital original series doing well in the overall most in-demand series in the USA is Amazon Prime Video’s The Boys. The superhero series arrives in the overall top ten as this week’s fastest rising show. Against the US market, demand for The Boys has increased by 54.5% compared to last week after the premiere of Season 2. It now has 49.5 times the demand of the average US series.
Demand for AMC’s The Walking Dead also rose compared to last week, increasing by 10.3% against the US average. This increase comes after September 9th brought news that the upcoming Season 11 will be the final season of the zombie drama. However, The Walking Dead fans got some good news at the same time: Season 11 will be an extended season with extra episodes.
The chart this week brings with it some departures. It appears the ‘Netflix bump’ is over for the Avatar animated series as both The Legend Of Korra and Avatar: The Last Airbender drop out of the top ten. Demand for Netflix original series Lucifer also subsided as fans now wait for the second half of Season 5.
As we predicted last week, Cobra Kai has supplanted Netflix's The Umbrella Academy as the original with the highest OTT TV demand in the United States. Cobra Kai has been in the top spot before, most recently in April 2019 after the premiere of Season 2 on YouTube Premium. The key difference between then and now is there is no new Cobra Kai content. The series has become the most in-demand digital original on the back of increased exposure to US audiences afforded by its addition to the Netflix library. Netflix now has the rights to the series and has already ordered Cobra Kai Season 3.
The increase in rank in the overall top ten for The Boys also comes with an increase in the digital original top ten. The superhero series rises from eighth most in-demand last week to fifth this week. The Boys is now releasing new episodes on a weekly schedule so we anticipate it will maintain high OTT TV demand over the next few weeks.
Finally, you can’t keep a good comic book villain down and this week DC Universe’s Harley Quinn once again re-enters the digital original top ten. The major outstanding questions over Harley Quinn – if it has been renewed and if so, will it go to HBO Max or DC Universe – are still unresolved. However, an interview with the executive producers revealed that any Season 3 will focus on the relationship between Harley and another female character. The increase in demand for the show following this reveal fits in with trends we have observed in other markets. A recent study on series in Latin America showed that shows with LGBTIQA+ characters are on average 48% more in-demand than shows without LGBTQIA+ characters.