Squid Game is officially Netflix’s most watched new series, drawing in 142million people in its first month – nearly double the previous record held by Bridgerton.
Since becoming available on September 17, 142million subscribers have watched Squid Game – the most ever in the first 30 days of a show on the streaming site.
‘Released on September 17, [Squid Game] has become our biggest TV show ever.
‘A mind-boggling 142m member households globally have chosen to watch the title in its first four weeks.
‘The breadth of Squid Game’s popularity is truly amazing; this show has been ranked as our #1 program in 94 countries (including the US),’ Netflix bosses told shareholders in a letter on Tuesday.
The Korean drama is also being praised with adding 4.4million new subscribers – increasing Netflix global subscriptions to 213.5 million up from 209million.
It boosted the company’s profits to $1.4billion – nearly double the amount it took in in Q3 2020.
Squid Game has officially become Netflix’s biggest ever show, drawing in 142million viewers in its first month
Netflix also celebrated how Squid Game has ‘pierced the cultural zeitgeist’ with skits on Saturday Night Live dedicated to it and TikTok videos that have garnered more than 42billion views
MOST WATCHED NEW NETFLIX SERIES
1. Squid Game: Season 1 – 142million
2. Bridgerton: Season 1 – 82million
3. Lupin: Part 1: 76million
4. The Witcher: Season 1 – 76million
5. Sex/Life: Season 1 – 67million
6. Stanger Things 3 – 67million
7. Money Heist: Part 4 – 65million
8. Tiger King: Season 1 – 64million
9. The Queen’s Gambit – 62million
10. Sweet Tooth: Season 1 – 60million
‘Demand for consumer products to celebrate the fandom for Squid Game is high and those items are on their way to retail now,’ the company said in its letter.
Bosses also said they planned for more content in the fourth quarter, and blamed a lack of new shows this year on delays to production caused by COVID-19.
‘Assuming no new Covid waves or unforeseen events that result in large scale production shutdowns, we currently anticipate a more normalized content slate in 2022, with a greater number of originals in 2022 vs. 2021 and a release schedule that is more balanced over the course of the year, as compared to 2021.’
Squid Game tells the story of a survival game in which 456 contestants risk their lives in deadly games with prizes of $45.6 billion available.
Netflix said that the show, which was penned and directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk, has also seen a sharp spike in demand for Halloween items, which are currently being shipped to retail locations.
The series, which stars Lee Jung-jae, Park Hae-soo, Wi Ha-joon, Jung Ho-yeon, O Yeong-su, Heo Sung-tae, Anupam Tripathi and Kim Joo-ryoung, is streaming on Netflix.
The huge success comes at the right time for Netflix amid a row over Dave Chappelle’s latest stand-up that some viewers claimed was transphobic.
On Tuesday, Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos said he regretted how he spoke with staff about the show, but that he still stands behind Chappelle and does not believe his show was transphobic.
‘My stance hasn’t changed.
‘I can tell you I screwed up those communications in two ways.
‘One of them was, I should have first and foremost acknowledged in those emails that a group of our employees were in pain, and they were really feeling hurt from a business decision that we made.
‘And I, instead of acknowledging that first, I went right into some rationales.
‘And so first of all, I’d say those emails lacked humanity, in which I like to and I do generally communicate with our teams,’ he said.
The row was over a group of Netflix employees who said Chappelle’s show should be dropped from the streaming service.
The streaming service said that the show has ‘pierced the cultural zeitgeist’ in garnering a parody skit on Saturday Night Live featuring Rami Malek and Pete Davidson
Chappelle said: ‘Gender is a fact…I’m team TERF.’
STREAMING WARS – NETFLIX IS STILL ON TOP
Netflix: 213million subscribers
Amazon Prime Video: 200million
(included with Amazon Prime subscriptions)
Disney+: 100million subscribers
HBO Max: 44million subscribers
Hulu: 39.4million subscribers
Paramount+: 36million subscribers
Peacock: 33million subscribers
Apple TV+ 33.6mmillion subscribers
TERF stands for trans-exclusionary radical feminist, and is used by some trans activists to describe women who are not fully on board with all their calls for equality.
The word has been applied to JK Rowling before, who sparked outcry with a blogpost where she said she feared too many young people were transitioning because it had become trendy and encouraged on social media, not because the were genuinely transgender.
Chappelle received support from some – including the family of Daphne Dorman, a transgender comedian who killed herself in 2019.
‘Daphne was in awe of Dave’s graciousness. She did not find his jokes rude, crude, off-coloring, off-putting, anything. She thought his jokes were funny. Daphne understood humor and comedy—she was not offended. Why would her family be offended?’
‘Dave loved my sister and is an LGBTQ ally. His entire set was begging to end this very situation,’ Dorman’s sister said.
Netflix added more monthly new subscribers in 2020 than in previous years but 2021’s numbers have been slow, according to the letter to investors.
It is still the biggest streaming giant.
Next is Amazon Prime, which also has 200million subscribers. With an Amazon Prime membership, shoppers get access to Amazon Prime Video.
Next is Disney+ with over 100million subscribers and HBO Max is fourth with 44million subscribers.