Two of the most anticipated new television shows for 2022 are “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” and “House of the Dragon.”
Both shows come with built-in fan bases and may be massive hits for their respective media companies. Here’s who might be in the lead.
What Happened: Data from Nielsen N.V. NLSN points to “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” having better viewership.
The first two episodes of “The Rings of Power” had 1.25 billion minutes of streaming for the week of Aug. 29 through Sept. 4, ranking the show from Amazon.com Inc. AMZN as the most streamed program for the week.
“House of the Dragon” ranked fifth on the Nielsen list with 781 million minutes viewed for the week. The show comes from Warner Bros. Discovery WBD. The original “Game of Thrones” show also ranked fourth on the list with 812 million minutes of viewership for the week.
Data from Nielsen tracks viewing from television sets for the HBO Max app, so it does not include the HBO viewership or viewership on non-television devices. The data is for U.S. households.
Warner Bros. Discovery averaged 29 million viewers for its “House of Dragons” episodes. The new show broke premiere records for HBO and HBO Max.
Amazon says the first two episodes of “The Rings of Power” were watched by 25 million people worldwide in their fist day of availability. That set an Amazon Prime Video record.
Aside from “The Rings of Power,” “House of the Dragon” and the original “Game of Thrones,” streaming giant Netflix Inc. NFLX dominated the top ten. “Me Time” ranked second with 927 million minutes viewed.
“NCIS” and its 354 episodes ranked third with 812 million minutes watched. Netflix also held the sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth positions on the list from Nielsen.
Why It’s Important: While the data isn’t perfect, it does represent a major milestone for Amazon and its streaming platform.
This was the first time Prime Video has ever held the number one position for a show since the Nielsen streaming list was created in 2020. The Eddie Murphy movie “Coming 2 America” previously ranked number one on Amazon.
Nielsen shows 55% of the viewership for “The Rings of Power” as male and 31% among the key demographic adults aged 35 to 49.
“The Rings of Power” is the most expensive series ever made and comes at a time when Amazon is shelling out billions of dollars as part of its strategy to beef up content and become a major player in the streaming race.
Amazon purchased MGM Studios, giving it a huge library of film and television content. The company also acquired the exclusive rights to NFL games as part of coverage of “Thursday Night Football.”
Both “The Rings of Power” and “House of Dragon” have strong viewership and could set records moving forward.
In 2022, Warner Bros. Discovery has struggled, losing billions in market share.
Amazon raised the cost of Amazon Prime earlier this year and the additional exclusive content like “The Rings of Power” and “Thursday Night Football” may justify the cost of the service in a high inflationary environment.
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