The latest hit Netflix series “Wednesday,” the “Addams Family” spin-off directed by Tim Burton, has reached a milestone that only “Stranger Things” Season 4 and “Squid Game” managed to accomplish. “Wednesday” surpassed 1.02 billion total hours viewed in just three weeks since its debut, the company announced, with over 150 million households streaming the show. This means it’s now the second most popular English-language series on Netflix.
“Wednesday” premiered on November 16 and has since become a cultural phenomenon, inspiring billions of TikTokers, including “Mother Monster” herself, Lady Gaga, who recreated Jenna Ortega’s (plays Wednesday Addams) choreographed dance scene in episode four, “Woe What a Night.” The hashtag #wednesdayaddams, has 16.9 billion views on TikTok.
Plus, the kooky young-adult series was responsible for the surge in listening streams for “Goo Goo Muck” by The Cramps, which, as of this writing, has over 16 million plays on Spotify. Similarly, “Stranger Things” resurfaced Kate Bush’s song “Running Up That Hill,” which spiked in popularity on both TikTok and Spotify.
It’s worth noting that “Wednesday” stole the silver medal from “Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story,” the biographical drama series starring “American Horror Story” actor Evan Peters. Previously the second most popular English-language series on Netflix, “Dahmer” reached 856.2 million hours in 28 days, whereas “Wednesday” only needed 21 days to become a smash hit. It took 60 days in total for “Dahmer” to exceed 1 billion viewing hours.
The achievement is notable for the streaming giant, especially after it lost over a million subscribers in 2022. The company finally gained 2.41 million subs in the third quarter. Also, during this year’s Emmy awards, Netflix fell behind rival HBO Max, only grabbing 26 wins versus HBO/HBO Max’s 37.
Netflix is among the top nominees for the 2023 Golden Globe Awards, earning 14 TV nominations and nine film noms. “Wednesday” nabbed two nominations, including Best Television Series (Comedy) and Ortega was nominated for Best Actress.
Is there a chance the show will win a Golden Globe? Most likely not. But having a family-friendly show be recognized at any award show is a big deal for Netflix, especially since the series is a runner-up against popular shows like “Abbott Elementary” and “Only Murders in the Building.”
It’s also important to point out that “Wednesday” is a spin-off, hence was guaranteed to draw in a bunch of nostalgic viewers. Yes, the show is brilliant and takes a creative spin on the 1964 TV series, as well as the 1991 and 2019 films. It’s also directed by Tim Burton, the iconic filmmaker behind “Beetlejuice,” “Edward Scissorhands” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas.” But unlike “Stranger Things” and “Squid Game,” which are completely different in their own wild ways, “Wednesday” copies an arguably overdone tactic that many streamers opt for–rebooting franchise after franchise until something sticks.
So while Netflix pulled it off this time around, the streaming giant needs to release more high-quality original series that have totally new concepts and characters if it wants to keep up with its rivals.