‘Tiger King’ Snares More Than 5 Billion Streaming Minutes, Nielsen Says; Joel McHale Hosted New Episode Soars

A shut-in America sure loves them some Joe Exotic and big cats, a lot.

Data released today from Nielsen reveals that the original seven episodes of Netflix’s Tiger King  has racked up over 5.3 billion streaming minutes, according to the metrics company’s SVOD Content Ratings. Just a few weeks into widespread stay-at-home orders across the nation due to the coronavirus pandemic, that measurement over the week of March 23 – 29 is a 50% larger that the pull of the No. #2 show on the list, which is the streamer’s third season of Ozark and its average of 3.5 billion streamed minutes.

Add to that, the fact that the April 12 debuting and Joel McHale hosted new episode Tiger King and I snagged an average 4.6 million viewer on its first day, and you have the biggest blockbuster of this COVID-19 era, where almost everyone is watching their screens right now.

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The subtitled Murder, Mayhem and Madness docuseries drew 34.3 million unique viewers in the first 10 days of its release, from March 20-29, according to Nielsen data earlier this month. That eclipsed the Season 2 numbers for Stranger Things, which drew 31.2 million in its first 10 days. Overall the warts, cats and all Tiger King wasn’t far behind the results for now fellow blockbuster Stranger Things 3, which drew 36.3 million over the 10-day span of its early July 2019 launch.

Slipping back to to the numbers Nielsen released today from last month, Tiger King topped the list of most-viewed titles on subscription video on demand during the week of March 23. It drew some 5.3 million minutes of viewing, the most by far. With a combo of originals and licensed show like The Office, Netflix savaged the competition. The Reed Hastings-run streamer owned all 10 of the top spots, with the Jason Bateman-led latest season of Ozark claiming second place and All American in the third spot.

In the week of April 6 to 12, Nielsen said, overall minutes streaming increased by 8.5 billion.

The total of 169.9 billion minutes of streaming is now the most recorded since the beginning of March, which is when COVID-19 shutdowns were first starting to be contemplated in certain markets. No one platform has benefited, though, with share of streaming percentages remaining the same as the prior week.

TV usage increased the most in LA of any market, rising 20.7% between the week of March 9 to the week of April 6, edging New York, which saw a 20.4% increase. In coming up with the market-by-market stats, Nielsen incorporates live and time-shifted linear viewing, streaming via connected devices and use of gaming platforms through the TV.

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