Culture

‘Shadow and Bone’ has hit the ground running Netflix. And, as it turns out, its popularity is unmatched in 2021 thanks to this feat.

SPAIN – 2021/03/23: In this photo illustration the Netflix App seen displayed on a smartphone … [+] screen. (Photo Illustration by Thiago Prudêncio/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Weve seen lots of great feats on Netflix this past year. A number of showsincluding Bridgerton, Night Stalker: The Hunt for a Serial Kill, Who Killed Sara? and Behind Her Eyes, to name a fewhave spent at least seven consecutive days atop the Top 10 charts. Weve even had one show, Ginny & Georgia, break Tiger Kings record for the longest #1 streak ever with 29 consecutive days. All in all, its been a great year for Netflix shows.
But none of them were able to pull off what Shadow and Bone just did. In fact, only two other programs have ever done this on Netflix.
That feat? Shadow and Bone spent its first 12 days on Netflix at the top of the Top 10 charts. Dating back to the Top 10 lists introduction 14 months ago, only two other showsFloor is Lava and Ratchedwere able to pull that off during their opening days.
The key difference that separate Shadow and Bone from every other show in 2021 are those words opening days. Its not very typical for a show to hit the ground running like that, as was the case for juggernaut shows such as Ginny & Georgia, Tiger King and The Queens Gambit.
Its an interesting distinction to make, because while ten shows besides Shadow and Bone were able to accrue 12-day streaks atop the Top 10 charts (and its a pretty stacked list: Ginny & Georgia, Tiger King, The Queens Gambit, Ratched, The Umbrella Academy, 13 Reasons Why, Who Killed Sara?, Away, Unsolved Mysteries and Floor is Lava), only three of them have been able to pull that off during their first 12 days. This could have happened for a number of different reasonswith a lack of competition being the most obvious.
But thats not really the case on Netflix right now. The streaming service has been dominated by viral programs like Life in Color with David Attenborough and The Baker and the Beauty, as well as the familiar ratings beasts like CoComelon and Selena: The Series. Shadow and Bone has even been able to hold off The Circle, which currently ranks as the ninth-most popular show on Netflix this year and benefits from premiering new episodes weekly.
The streak is truly notable because as Netflix continues to gain more and more subscribers with each passing month, the ability to control the worlds most popular streaming platform becomes a bigger and bigger accomplishment. Being able to dominate the Top 10 list means your program must perform well across a number of demographicsand to do that for 12 straight days? Well, its become increasingly apparent that that is getting harder and harder to pull off.
So while Shadow and Bone has fallen from its #1 position in the past couple days, its presence has been felt. With that record streak for 2021, the fantastical drama has already risen to 17th place on Netflixs yearly popularity charts (if you want to learn more about these rankings, be sure to tune into my weekly articles) and 56th on the all-time rankings. And it shouldnt be too long before Shadow and Bone joins The Circle amongst the years Top 10 most popular shows.