Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni have struck gold with The Mandalorian. The first season was a great way to launch Disney+ and as the platform’s subscriber base has increased, most new viewers have checked out the exclusive flagship show. All that, in combination with a barnstorming season 1 finale, meant that there were a lot of people looking forward to last week’s second season premiere.
Thankfully, it didn’t let us down, providing an awesome sci-fi Western adventure with an amazing monster, the talents of Timothy Olyphant, beautifully shot action sequences and the reappearance of iconic bounty hunter Boba Fett. Critics and audiences loved it and it seems as if it’ll set the stage for another great season.
Now, this positivity has been borne out by the viewing figures. Reelgood is reporting that The Mandalorian‘s season 2 premiere had as big an opening weekend as the season 3 opener of Netflix’s Stranger Things, which is seriously impressive given the disparity in the two streaming service’s subscriber counts (160m vs. 60m). Another point of data provided by Reelgood is that the episode had roughly half as many viewers as those who watched the World Series a few weeks ago.
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Of course, you should bear in mind that the streaming networks are very protective of their data, so Reelgood is inferring these figures based on publicly available information rather than getting it straight from the source. Still, they have a great track record in accurately figuring this stuff out.
Regardless of the exact numbers, the show is a hit and this news will be music to Disney’s ears. The corporation has had a terrible 2020 due to COVID-19, with their parks shuttered, major movies delayed and merchandizing spending cratering. Disney+ has been a success story, but there’ve been grumblings from subscribers that there’s a drought of high profile exclusive content and that the most of the promised MCU shows were delayed. If nothing else, season 2 of The Mandalorian should at least neatly answer that criticism.