Netflix’s The Witcher Season 3 starring Henry Cavill, Anya Chalotra and Freya Allan has come and gone, and there was much talk about ratings, viewership numbers and other measurements people like. There’s quite a bit of confusion, so here we’ll try to compare the viewership numbers between Season 1, Season 2 and Season 3, after the latter dropped from Netflix’s Top-10 chart.
Netflix’s current viewership metric explained
Netflix’s has always been quite vague when it comes to their viewership numbers. In fact, not only Netflix, but all streamers present different metrics in different ways, which makes comparison extremely difficult. Now, however, Netflix has introduced a new viewership metric that helps with this matter.
In the previous two years, the streamer would only report how many hours a season has been viewed by people globally. That metric was favorable towards seasons that have more hours and less favorable to shorter seasons.
For example, if 10 million people watch two series, one lasting 6 hours, one lasting 10 hours, of course the latter would be ranked higher in the past, even if the same amount of people have watched it. That was quite flawed.
Now, with the new metric, viewed hours are divided by the season runtime, in order to eliminate the unfair advantage longer seasons used to have in the ranking. The result Netflix calls now “views”.
The Witcher Season 3 saw a 36% viewership drop from Season 2 and 48% from Season 1
Now let’s get to The Witcher. We’ll take all available viewership data from Netflix’s own charts. Thus, we have 6 weeks of Season 2 and 8 weeks of Season 3. The latter remained in the Top-10 chart for two weeks more than Season 2 thanks to the split release. It’s not a perfect 1-on-1 comparison due to the way Season 3 was released, but rather of the overall performance of each season.
The Witcher Season 2 had 519.4M hours viewed over six weeks after release. Divided by its official Netflix runtime (7h41 converted to decimals), we get 67.6M views per the new metric.
The Witcher Season 3 had 327.7M hours viewed over eight weeks after release. Divided by its official Netflix runtime (7h36 converted to decimals), we get 43.1M views, a 36% drop. If we compared only 6 weeks of Season 3 vs 6 weeks of Season 2, that would be a 39% drop with 41.1M views, but Vol. 2 was only out for two weeks then.
The data for Season 1 is available thanks to Netflix overall Top-10 chart for all time. That is 663.6M hours viewed and 83M views overall based on 91 days after its release. If we were to calculate a percentage drop from S1 to S3, that would be 48%.
Naturally, these numbers aren’t perfectly clean because of the difference of time-frames of data collection, with the third season’s split release complicating things a little.
Netflix is yet to release its 91-day numbers for The Witcher Season 3. It may get several more million views and the percentage drop may change by a few %, but since Season 3 is out of the charts, realistically it won’t be much and it’s not catching up with Season 2, let alone Season 1.
All in all, we now have sufficient data to see how The Witcher‘s audience changed over the years.
The Witcher Season 3 is available on Netflix with The Rats prequel in post-production and The Witcher: Sirens of the Deep anime by Studio Mir is far in production. Stay tuned to Redanian Intelligence and do pop into our Discord server to join in on The Witcher conversation.