3 Body Problem enjoys belated Netflix success as season 2 hopes get a rocket-fueled boost

Sophon hovers in the air with 3 suns behind her in Netflix's 3 Body Problem TV series
3 Body Problem's audience figure increased by nearly a third in its second week on Netflix (Image credit: Netflix)

After a lackluster debut, Netflix's 3 Body Problem has seemingly overcome its viewership issues to become the streamer's most popular show of the week.

Releasing its latest internal weekly viewing figures yesterday (April 2), Netflix revealed that 3 Body Problem performed better in its second week on the platform. Per Netflix's Top 10 TV chart, the expensive sci-fi series, whose 11 million views in its first four days post-launch was a disappointing return for everyone involved, posted a far healthier 15.6 million views for the week running March 25 to 31. That's 2.1 million more than its nearest rival Testament: The Story of Moses, and almost four million more views than 3 Body Problem achieved between March 18 and 24 (NB: it wasn't released until March 21).

In total, Netflix users streamed 115.6 million hours of 3 Body Problem – a figure two times larger than The Story of Moses' 57.4 million hours during the same six-day period. The Gentlemen, which surprisingly saw off 3 Body Problem's top spot challenge  last week, finished third with 7.8 million views and 51.9 million hours streamed.

Shooting for the season 2 stars

Jin Cheng points at something in the sky in a VR simulation in Netflix's 3 Body Problem

Pointing the way to a potential second season like... (Image credit: Ed Miller/Netflix)

3 Body Problem's belated success will come as a relief to Netflix. The world's best streaming service had high hopes for its first project from Game of Thrones' TV creators D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, but its sluggish start is sure to have worried Netflix executives. Indeed, the show's underwhelming 11 million views in its first week was a galactic misfire for Netflix, but it appears to have found some unused rocket fuel to boost its standing among Netflix's global fanbase.

Increasing its viewership by a third in just seven days certainly improves its chances of securing a second season, too. Weiss, Benioff, and 3 Body Problem's other creators are already working on season 2, which would adapt The Dark Forest – the second novel in Liu Cixin's 3 Body Problem book series – for the streaming titan. Netflix hasn't commented on the show's prospects of being renewed, but an uptick in viewers will strengthen 3 Body Problem's case for another outing. With GoT's TV creators crafting a mind-boggling sci-fi show with a surprising amount of heart, I'm sure many fans would be disappointed if it's cancelled after a single season.

That all said, it remains to be seen if 3 Body Problem can continue to dominate the streamer's TV chart. With new Netflix shows, including the Andrew Scott-starring thriller series Ripley and dark comedy Baby Reindeer set to arrive on April 4 and April 11 respectively, 3 Body Problem might not be able to hold onto top spot for much longer. If you're unsure whether it's worth watching, you'll want to check out my 3 Body Problem review first – and if you're not sold after reading that, you can find plenty more suggestions for series to stream in my best Netflix shows guide.

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Senior Entertainment Reporter

As TechRadar's senior entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You'll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.

An NCTJ-accredited journalist, Tom also writes reviews, analytical articles, opinion pieces, and interview-led features on the biggest franchises, actors, directors and other industry leaders. You may see his quotes pop up in the odd official Marvel Studios video, too, such as this Moon Knight TV spot.

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