The numbers are in and the most popular show worldwide on Netflix this week is season four of the mystery drama series Manifest. Not bad for a show that's been canceled, not once but twice before. NBC killed Netflix's latest hit TV show after season three back in 2021 and turns out that season four, which is currently wowing Netflix viewers, will be the final season.
Some fans of the show are surprised that Netflix hasn't given season five the green-light, given that the series has been clocking up close to 80 million viewing hours this week. Even the show's first season is in this week's top 10 most watched series, with nearly 20 million hours being watched.
But while that sounds a lot, it's not huge by Netflix standards. In their first 28 days, Squid Game amassed 1.65 billion viewing hours (which is why the inevitable sequel, Squid Game 2, is imminent), Stranger Things 4 delivered 1.35 billion hours and season one of Wednesday racked up 1.23 billion hours.
And there's more to it than viewers. Unlike the cliffhanger ending to season three of Manifest, which was written by people fully expecting it to return for a fourth series before NBC canned it, Netflix never said it planned to make more than one season of the show. That means nobody went into this season expecting it to live beyond the final episode of season four.
What other shows are big hits on Netflix this week?
There's a new entry at number two of the most TV shows on the world's best streaming service this week, Never Have I Ever. This lovable comedy-drama featuring Maitreyi Ramakrishnan is now in its fourth season – it will also be its last with Netflix confirming the end of another beloved comedy – and continuing to garner rave reviews. It's pushed FUBAR into third place, and Arnie's there again at number four with his life story in Arnold.
As mentioned, the first season of Manifest is in the top 10 most-watched shows at number five as new viewers find out what all the fuss is about, and The Ultimatum: Queer Love is in at number six. After that you'll find Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story, XO, Kitty, season five of All American and bringing up the rear there's tactical cop drama S.W.A.T.
It's interesting to look at the global breakdown of these shows, so for example Manifest was in the top 10 in 88 different countries and Never Have I Ever in 85. Meanwhile, XO, Kitty and Queen Charlotte had more specific appeal, making the top 10 in 24 and 29 countries respectively. Those shows were most popular in Europe, but Manifest and Never Have I Ever were popular almost everywhere.
Earlier this month, we included Manifest in our weekly roundup of new movies and TV shows to watch on streaming services – in fact we rate it as one of the 50 best Netflix series to watch in June, but if you're after more drama mysteries then try these 6 great thrillers on Netflix next.
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Writer, broadcaster, musician and kitchen gadget obsessive Carrie Marshall (Twitter) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to all kinds of magazines and websites as well as writing more than a dozen books. Her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, is on sale now. She is the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR.