Industry News

2021 was the year binge-watching took a back seat to weekly TV

16 December, 2021

2020, one could argue, was the year of the binge. The practice of platforms releasing entire seasons of television at once, and audiences consuming them in hours-long bursts, was almost a decade old by the time the pandemic struck. But with the onset of lockdown, the average subscriber had more time than ever to watch TV—and in the absence of dining out or travel, often more disposable income, too.

The effect was obvious in the numbers. Netflix, the company that popularized the binge watch and remains its most ardent evangelist, added 37 million subscribers in 2020, a record figure that pushed its global tally past the 200 million mark. Wall Street responded accordingly, boosting the share price by roughly two-thirds over the course of the year. But there were less tangible signs, too. With productions on hiatus, competitors without Netflix’s scale of output conserved their resources, allowing the streamer to dominate a zeitgeist less crowded by competition from other services. Titles like Bridgerton, The Queen’s Gambit, The Crown, and, of course, Tiger King surged to the forefront, packaged in blocks and raced through in sprints.

Visit The Ringer to read this article.

Other insights you may enjoy


Get a glimpse into the future of global audience demand measurement with TV and talent audience demand data and consolidated insights on global entertainment industry trends.

Exclusive global, regional and market-specific content and talent analyses
Rank 10,000+ talent in 50+ markets across all platforms
Rank 18,000+ TV shows in 50+ markets across all platforms

The Global Television Demand Report 2021

  • Truly understand the global SVOD originals landscape
  • Comprehensive platform market share benchmarks
  • Released each quarter covering 10 global markets
  • Get exclusive access to our comprehensive reports
  • Available for FREE with a DEMAND360LITE subscription