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The most popular Netflix show right now is not what you think it is

Netflix has a surprise hit on its hands.

The most popular Netflix show right now is not what you think it is
Marc Chacksfield
21 January 2021

Netflix has just revealed some of its top movies and shows right now and the results aren't hugely surprising. But there is one show that has rocketed to the top that has surprised us.

At a recent earnings call, Netflix revealed that it was doing pretty damn good in the market right now, and that's despite plucky upstart Disney Plus nipping at its heels. It reckons that it should be in a position to stop borrowing money, which is exactly the sort of thing its investors want to hear.

But, to do this, it needs to make sure it has the right content ('content is king' is what the fat cats at the top smoking cigars always belch). Of that, it has plenty - and while its franchises may not match Marvel and Star Wars for brand power, its original programming is going strong.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings is excited about the Disney Plus fight: "It's super impressive what Disney has done. I mean, it's the incredible execution for an incumbent to pivot and taking on an insurgent. And so that's great," he said in an earnings call and even reckoned they might be able to surpass Disney in the animation stakes.

"And it shows that members are interested and willing to pay more for more content because they're hungry for great stories, and Disney does have some great stories. And so it gets us fired up about increasing our membership, increasing our content budget. And it's going to be great for the world that Disney and Netflix are competing show by show, movie by movie.

"We're very fired up about catching them in family animation, maybe eventually passing them, we'll see, a long way to go just to catch them and maintaining our lead in general entertainment that's so stimulating like Bridgerton, which I don't think you're going to see on Disney anytime soon."

As for Netflix's most popular shows, well the usuals are in there. According to the streaming giant, season four of the critically acclaimed The Crown was the biggest season so far and drove new watchers of prior seasons. It also mentions Bridgerton as being a big success.

But it's a French detective drama that has gotten them really excited. Lupin, a French language heist series, was released in January and so far it has hit 2 in the US Top 10 list and has been ranked first in dozens of other countries including Brazil, Argentina, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Vietnam, the Philippines and many more.

Netflix is projecting 70m member households will choose to watch Lupin in its first 28 days of release. Compare that to its last big hit, which was The Queen's Gambit - which reached 62m in its first 28 days - and Netflix has a huge, and unexpected, hit on its hands.

It does have history of its foreign-language fare doing well, though, with Money Heist consistently in the charts and a new series on the way.

When it comes to movies, its original content has done well. George Clooney's Midnight Sky is set to be watched by 72m viewers in its first 28 days and 53m members are set to watch We Can Be Heroes, Robert Rodriguez's kids superhero movie.

As for what's next, well a shuffle function is heading to Netflix which means you won't even need to browse the site anymore - Netflix will choose something for you to watch, based on your viewing habits.

Lupin is already in our best crime dramas on Netflix guide. And these are the best Netflix shows right now.

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