Squid Game Is Netflix's Most Popular Series Ever, With 111 Million Viewers
Squid Game easily defeats Bridgerton and sets a high bar.
Netflix has revealed that quid Game, the global smash thriller series from South Korean filmmaker Hwang Dong-hyuk, is now the streaming service's most popular original series of all time. In the first 28 days after its September 17 premiere, Squid Game was seen by over 111 million Netflix households. Squid Game has now surpassed Bridgerton, a Regency-era London love drama series, which set a record of 82 million views in January, and has become the first Netflix series to reach 100 million viewers in its first four weeks. Netflix counts watching two minutes of any episode as a view.
Netflix has been chastised for its loose approach to production, particularly with its original shows, which can extend for many hours. Squid Game season 1 has a total playtime of 8 hours and 12 minutes with nine episodes. This is why Ted Sarandos, Netflix's co-CEO and chief content officer, recently gave us a clearer look behind the company's viewership metrics. It indicated that most Netflix members were binge-watching shows like Bridgerton, Money Heist, Stranger Things, and The Witcher all the way to the end, with some even repeating episodes.
We don't yet have that information for Squid Game. Outside of the 111 million Netflix subscribers, the only data point we have is that the South Korean series debuted at number one on Netflix's daily "Top 10" lists in 90 countries. Bridgerton had already done so in 83 different markets. This is undoubtedly aided by the fact that Squid Game is available on Netflix with subtitles and dubs in over 30 languages, allowing it to reach areas where it could not otherwise be seen. Squid Game isn't the first, but it is the most popular.
Before Squid Game, the Omar Sy-led French mystery thriller Lupin was Netflix's biggest non-English-language original hit, garnering 76 million viewers in the first 28 days after release back in January. The hit Spanish thriller series Money Heist accounts for two slots — for Money Heist seasons 3 and 4 — on Netflix's top 10 most popular series by watch time. (It's been over four weeks since Money Heist season 5 was released, but Netflix has yet to give us an equivalent figure for it unlike Squid Game). It will be interesting to see where Squid Game lands in terms of viewing hours.
Squid Game has yet to be renewed for season 2, but that seems all but inevitable at this point.