Netflix Ratings Exposed? Nielsen Claims Huge Viewership for 'Stranger Things 2'

The leader in TV measurement cites significant bingeing in its new SVOD data on the streamer's hit.
Courtesy of Netflix
'Stranger Things'

As promised, Nielsen is releasing more and more viewership measurements it has mined from Netflix data — including for Stranger Things 2.

The company released its latest, and most interesting, SVOD measurement to date on Thursday afternoon, citing an audience of 15.8 million viewers, nearly 11 million of them adults 18-49, watched the sophomore season premiere, "Chapter One," within three days of its launch. (Eat your undead heart out, The Walking Dead.) Both of those numbers, by Nielsen standards, are equivalent to the live-plus-3 ratings data you see from traditional TV.

These numbers are not authenticated by Netlfix, which has kept mum on the subject, and don't yet include mobile. But they do paint the most vivid picture yet of who's viewing the streamer's biggest pop culture hit. Nielsen also said that 361,000 subscribers streamed the entire nine-episode season within 24 hours of its release. "Our approach is using the exact same framework and methodology that we do for all of television," Brian Fuhrer, senior vp product leadership at Nielsen, recently told THR. "You can put these Netflix and broadcast numbers right next to one another and understand the relationship."

Other compelling data includes the fact that at least 4 million U.S. viewers have already watched every episode of Stranger Things 2. See below for a full breakdown of episodic tallies, all of which fall into the three-day window.

"Chapter Two" — 13.7 million viewers; 9.6 million people 18-49
"Chapter Three" — 11.6 million viewers; 8.1 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Four" — 9.3 million viewers; 6.6 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Five" — 8 million viewers; 5.6 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Six" — 6.4 million viewers; 4.5 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Seven" — 5.3 million viewers; 3.7 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Eight" — 4.9 million viewers; 3.4 million viewers 18-49
"Chapter Nine" — 4.6 million viewers; 3.2 million viewers 18-49

Note that TV's key demo, adults 18-49, means nothing to the advertiser-free Netflix. It's just an interesting comparison to what else is out there.