Unstoppable Virgin River

Unstoppable Virgin River still tops the Nielsens by some distance

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Three weeks since the drop of season 3, the unstoppable Virgin River has over a billion minutes viewed again

The Nielsens are out for the week July 19 – 25, and Virgin River maintains what looks to be an unstoppable lead over all other shows. Last week our prediction was:

Virgin River must, surely, hold the top, and we’re interested in how Loki performs now the season has ended. We’re also keeping an eye on Lucifer as fans were now aware of the September 10 data for season 6, and may well be doing some rewatching.

Atypical should hold firm, Bosch might well drop out, and we expect some newcomers.

We weren’t a long way off, though there were fewer newcomers than we suspected would happen. As last week’s analysis was so sharp, we’ve given the team another well-deserved break at the Edinburgh Fringe. As this year it includes a large online element, we put the them in the Cultbox media suite with an endless supply of herbal tea, Peruvian street food and suggested they do this week’s analysis while they wait for the comedy to commence.

The Nielsen data

Once more we use the published US viewing data from Nielsen, add columns marked with ‘*’ and give our views. First here’s the data:

Rank Streamer Series # Episodes Ep length (mins)* Total Minutes (Millions) Episode Watches*
1 NETFLIX Virgin River 30 45 1,270 28,222,222
2 NETFLIX Never Have I Ever 20 39 567 14,538,462
3 NETFLIX Atypical 38 30 422 14,066,667
4 DISNEY+ Loki 6 45 386 8,577,778
5 NETFLIX Heist (2021) 6 43 316 7,348,837
6 NETFLIX Lucifer 83 50 277 5,540,000
7 AMAZON Bosch 64 43 231 5,372,093
8 NETFLIX Sex/Life 8 48 216 4,500,000
9 NETFLIX The Cook Of Castamar 12 50 179 3,580,000
10 NETFLIX The Movies That Made Us 8 47 165 3,510,638


So what does that all mean?

The unstoppable Virgin River

For the third week, Virgin River clocked over one billion minutes (here’s our helpful guide to envisioning that number), bringing its three-week total to a juicy 4.8 billion minutes. That looks like a record to us, even higher than the 4.1 billion minutes Lucifer reached three weeks after season 5B dropped. Positions 2-4 shuffled, with Never Have I Ever climbing, while Atypical kept the #3 spot but with far fewer minutes (last week was over 600 million).

The other big change is Loki. On what we see, a large percentage of fans watched Loki as it happened. The previous week’s finale garnered over 1 billion minutes, so this is a dramatic drop-off.

What else happened?

We were pretty close with the idea of Atypical holding firm, but Bosch did better than we predicted, only losing 20% of its viewing. Lucifer actually shed some minutes as well, but rose two places due to larger falls elsewhere. It’s evidence of the pre season 6 bounce, but not as conclusive as it could have been. We won’t see the impact of the trailer for a few more weeks yet.

The only newcomer was The Movies That Made Us.

What about next week?

Surely Virgin River has another week at the top, based on what we’ve seen, though keeping abreast of all releases gets tricky. Loki looks like it’s up for another hefty drop, and we think four or five titles might drop out. Numbers are generally lower than they have been, so it would be easy for a couple of new names to grab spots high up the chart.

Whatever happens, we’ll be back next week to discuss.