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The most watched streaming series of the summer is … well, Stranger Things, which has set records for Netflix. But there’s a surprise contender for a top spot on the charts — CBS’ long-running reality show Big Brother.
According to CBS, the 24th season of the competition series has drawn about 8.3 billion minutes of viewing time across all platforms, inclusive of the live feeds from the Big Brother house that stream on Paramount+. The network also notes that from July 6 — the date of Big Brother’s premiere — to Aug. 28, it has outdrawn every streaming series in terms of viewing time, including season four of Stranger Things (8.05 billion minutes in that period, per Nielsen).
“Big Brother is the original cross-platform reality series, and 24 seasons later it’s still generating large audiences and engagement numbers across our CBS and Paramount platforms,” said CBS Entertainment president Kelly Kahl. “This data speaks loudly to the passion for the franchise, and how the power of broadcast television with strong streaming partners can aggregate an audience.”
It’s worth noting that the final episodes of Stranger Things’ fourth season debuted on July 1, so its viewing has waned somewhat in subsequent weeks. The 8.05 billion minutes CBS cites also applies only to season four; Nielsen’s weekly top 10 streaming charts include time spent on all episodes of a series, so the aggregate total for all of Stranger Things is higher than that.
The 8.3 billion minutes for Big Brother includes the three weekly airings on CBS, along with streaming of those episodes and the live feeds on Paramount+. The CBS airings make up the bulk of that time — through Aug. 28, the network had run 22 episodes of the season, and they have averaged 4.76 million viewers over seven days. That works out to about 6.28 billion minutes, with the remaining 2 billion or so minutes coming via Paramount+ streams.
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