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‘Stranger Things’ Season 2 Demand Surge Makes It Top TV Show in U.S., Data Shows

The second season of Netflix hit “Stranger Things” gathered strong momentum in the first full week of its release — making it the No. 1 most in-demand show among U.S. viewers, according to third-party data.

The ’80s-set supernatural thriller from Matt and Ross Duffer registered 69.9 million average “demand expressions” (indicating intent to view or actual viewing) for the week of Oct. 29-Nov. 4, according to media-analytics firm Parrot Analytics. Season 2 of the show bowed Oct. 27 on Netflix.

The score for “Stranger Things” was up 60% from the week prior, and pushed the Netflix original series above every other TV show on Parrot Analytics’ rankings. In second place for the week was HBO’s “Game of Thrones” (54 million demand expressions), followed by AMC’s “The Walking Dead” (53.5 million), CBS’s “Star Trek: Discovery” (52.4 million), AMC’s “Preacher” (40.6 million), Netflix’s “Mindhunter” (26.1 million) and Adult Swim’s “Rick and Morty” (23.3 million).

Netflix doesn’t release viewing data, and routinely dismisses third-party attempts to measure its service as inaccurate. (Parrot Analytics says Netflix has not commented on the validity of its data.)

According to Nielsen data released last week, “Stranger Things” season 2 episodes each drew more than 4 million viewers in first three days of the show’s premiere (Oct. 27-29) — with the first episode averaging an impressive 15.8 million viewers.

Netflix has called Nielsen’s figures well off the mark, pointing out that its audio-based content recognition methodology for TV households doesn’t measure viewing on mobile devices. It’s also worth noting that Nielsen’s SVOD data currently covers only the U.S., and Netflix streams its original programming to members worldwide.

Meanwhile, Parrot Analytics’ data doesn’t represent a measure of actual viewing. The company bases its rankings on more than 1 billion daily data points to gauge overall demand for a title, from sources including YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and piracy services, weighting different data sources based on relevance. Parrot Analytics only publishes stats for U.S. demand for TV programming on a weekly basis, but its system covers virtually every country in the world.

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