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‘Loki’ Launch A Home Run For Disney+; Marvel’s Kevin Feige “Still Learning” Streaming Success Metrics

While Disney hasn’t reported figures on the first episode of Marvel’s Loki, which dropped last Wednesday, Samba TV updated its stats to reflect that the five-day viewership of the show is the best the streaming service has ever seen with 2.5 million U.S. households views.

That figure beats the five-day numbers of the first episode premiere of Disney /Marvel’s Falcon and the Winter Soldier (1.8M U.S. households) and WandaVision (1.6M). Previously, SambaTV reported that the first day number of Loki was a record for a Disney show with 890K U.S. households tuning in.

Today, during a Paley Dialogue discussion, Marvel Studios president and chief creative officer Kevin Feige said that when it comes to “success in the streaming world, I’m still learning and figuring out.”

“It’s a whole new world,” he said. “As far as I know there aren’t really any Nielsen ratings (for streaming). I haven’t been given any Nielsen ratings for a streaming series.”

“All the different streaming services have access to their own information, but don’t share it so easily to the public or across services,” he continued.

“We knew what success meant at the box office — that was very clear. There were numbers to compare it to,” he added.

“One sign is social discussion of reviews, that’s been helpful,” he said.

Feige brings up an interesting point, and it’s part of the evolution of streaming: What do these streaming numbers actually mean aside from raw numbers? When it comes to measuring streaming viewership, it’s the wild west with no standard streaming data metric determining how well a particular series or special actually did in comparison to the competition. Not to mention, in regards to a global reach, Disney and HBO Max aren’t as wide as, say, Netflix.

SambaTV clocks streaming viewership in 3 million U.S. households which in tune for at least five minutes. The sampling doesn’t include mobile viewers, but rather smart terrestrial TVs. I’ve heard the unit of viewer measurement over at HBO Max is a tune-in rate of 2-3 minutes. Netflix reports audience figures as it sees fit on series and movies, and it’s often a four-week global projection. Most recently, its Zack Snyder movie Army of the Dead is reportedly one of the top nine most watched ever on the service in 72 million households, tied with George Clooney’s The Midnight Sky. 

Prior to talking streaming figures, Feige said that when it comes to the commerce of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about numbers, either the budget numbers or box office numbers. I think about them in as much as it allows us to do more work.”

“If Iron Man didn’t work, we wouldn’t have been able to make another movie,” he explained. “If Avengers didn’t work, we wouldn’t have been able to make another Avengers.

“Success enables you to keep growing and keep evolving,” he said. “We have not and have never embarked on a project because research and analysis said we should. Sometimes, quite the opposite.”

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