There are few TV or movie brands as strong as Marvel. Put that stamp in front of anything and you’re almost guaranteed success, even the if the quality isn’t always there (the recent “Fantastic Four” reboot being a notable exception, though that had nothing to do with the studio proper). Marvel’s Netflix shows haven’t always been strong, but riding on the coattails of “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and “Luke Cage,” all “Iron Fist” had to do was not be terrible. Well, it couldn’t even manage that, with critics mostly coming down hard on the series, but it turns out, it doesn’t really matter.
While Netflix keeps their data secret, research firm 7Park Data have some alchemical way of adding up the numbers, and according to them, on the day “Iron Fist” dropped, 54.7% of viewers binged three episodes or more. The average for an hour-long Netflix show is 46.9%.
The show also accounted for 14.6% of all Netflix streaming on that day, another record high, beating other original programming including “Luke Cage” (12.8%), “Daredevil” Season 2 (13.8%), and “Stranger Things” (a measly 4%, which suggests word of mouth really got that show going).
So, does this mean critics can’t influence viewership? Partially, maybe. I’d argue it speaks more to the Marvel brand itself, which will always have a core viewership no matter what reviews say. And that core has only grown bigger, the more Marvel has become mainstream. But still, it must be good news for Finn Jones, who got beat up in the press a bit, and bodes well for Netflix’s “The Defenders” to do even better. [Variety]