Unearthing Netflix’s viewership numbers is about as tough as replicating Steve Harrington’s hairstyle. While companies have claimed to at least partially track Netflix viewership, it appears Nielsen has come the closest with its new SVOD measurements.
Netflix has not confirmed or denied the reports, and they do not take into account mobile viewing, but it appears Stranger Things is on par with television’s highest-rated shows.
The numbers are huge. According to the report (H/T to THR), Stranger Things Season 2 had an audience of 15.8 million viewers for Season 2 Episode 1 in just three days from its launch. In the coveted demo, 11 million of those viewers were adults 18-49. As we noted in our defense of Stranger Things nostalgia, the audience for the show appears to skew younger.
Nielsen approached the numbers the same way it tallies its Live+3 ratings for broadcast television.
For comparison, The Walking Dead season 7 averaged 16.4 million viewers in Live+7, with 10.3 million adults 18-49. TV’s hottest property, Game of Thrones, is tougher to accurately track because so much of the viewership is delayed on HBO Go or HBO Now. The network claims more than 30 million people across all platforms watched each episode of Game of Thrones last season.
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Stranger Things on the November Sci Fi Fidelity podcast (at 36:55):