You might be able to guess some 20 of the most popular shows world wide without data. But you’d be wrong if you thought you could guess them all. Globally, some shows — like Preacher — are way bigger than you might think.
Data from Parrot Analytics has previously been used to determine what the 20 most popular shows in the world are, and they’ve released their information for July and August, which features a few surprises. Parrot measures popularity through average demand expressions per capita, which is described as “the total audience demand being expressed for a title, within a country, on any platform, per 100 capita,” factoring in data for things like social media buzz, not just ratings. Their algorithm gives more importance to certain actions, meaning that actually watching a series has a bigger impact than commenting on one
With that in mind, here are the 20 most popular shows in the world as of the end of August 2017.
1. Game of Thrones
As expected, no other show is even in the same popularity ballpark as Game of Thrones. Right before it aired its seventh season, the series was the third most popular show in the world, with an average demand expression per capita of 10.23. But with the series airing new episodes in July and August, that changed, significantly. It had an average demand expression per capita of 26.72 for that period, putting it way above its closest competitor at the time.
2. The Walking Dead
AMC’s wildly popular zombie series remained at No. 2 for July and August, seeing only a small decrease to 9.18 average demand expressions per capita for that time, compared to 10.61 for May and June. Though The Walking Dead returns toward the end of October with its eighth season, given how popular the show is, it could take the No. 1 spot in Parrot Analytics’ next two-month report.
3. Pretty Little Liars
In the wake of Pretty Little Liars’ final, intense season, the show tapered off in popularity from 8.55 average demand expressions for May and June, to 6.46 in July and August. However, it managed to jump a spot from where it was in the previous report, presumably because it had less competition for this period.
4. Prison Break
Prison Break enjoyed the No. 1 spot during May and June, which made sense because its fifth season ran between April and May. But the series still saw a surprising amount of global popularity in July and August. The show’s average demand expression per capita for this period was 9.18.
Despite the data being taken from a few months after the Season 4 finale of Vikings, and a few months before the show’s Season 5 premiere, the historical drama series had an impressive 5.3 average demand expressions per capita. This is a small, but surprising, increase over 4.39 average demand expressions per capita for the period of May and June. As in the case of Pretty Little Liars, it could be that people were deciding to catch up with the show in the relatively slower summer months.
With Suits starting its seventh season in July, the series saw a nice surge in popularity. The legal drama sat at 5.26 average demand expressions per capita for July and August, compared to 3.44 for May and June.
7. The Big Bang Theory
The Big Bang Theory held onto its No. 7 spot, and much of its popularity, from the previous Parrot Analytics report. CBS’ long-running sitcom had an average demand expressions per capita of 4.94 in July and August, a drop down from 5.81 for May and June. Who knows how much of a positive effect the double threat of The Big Bang Theory’s 11th season and spin-off Young Sheldon airing within a day of each other in late September will have on this number.
8. 13 Reasons Why
Months after its premiere in March, Netflix’s drama-mystery series naturally lost some of its popularity. But it still had an impressive amount of staying power, which could be the result of the conversations and controversy the series created with its handling of teen suicide. It had 4.20 average demand expressions per capita in July and August, down from 6.84 in May and June.
9. The Flash
The CW series starring the fastest man alive dropped four spots from early summer, with a corresponding 2.81 decrease in average demand expressions per capita. It had 4.04 average demand expressions per capita for July and August.
10. American Gods
American Gods, the adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s fantasy novel of the same name airing on Starz, had 5.11 average demand expressions per capita when most of the first season was airing in early summer. After the season finale, that number lowered somewhat, which translated to the series falling two spots compared to May and June, and 3.70 average demand expressions per capita for July and August.
11. Grey’s Anatomy
The popularity of Shonda Rhimes’ medical drama fell with the end of the show’s 13th season in May. In early summer, it was the ninth most popular show in the world, with an average demand expression per capita of 4.65. In late summer, it was the 11th, and had 3.55 average demand expressions per capita.
12. The Vampire Diaries
The Vampire Diaries showed an impressive shelf-life for a show that had its series finale in March. Compared to early summer, when the show sat at the 15th spot and had 3.70 average demand expressions per capita, the series increased in popularity by three ranks and saw only a small decrease in data-determined popularity. It had 3.41 average demand expressions per capita for late summer.
13. Teen Wolf
With the second part of Teen Wolf’s final season beginning to air at the end of July, the show entered the 20 most popular shows in the world list. For July and August, the MTV supernatural drama had 3.29 average demand expressions per capita.
14. Stranger Things
With hype building for the show’s second season, Stranger Things also made it onto the list, when it wasn’t there for May and June. The Netflix sci-fi horror series had 3.28 average demand expressions per capita between July and August.
Like its spin-off series, The Flash, Arrow fell four places from the eleventh spot it had in May and June. This was matched with the series decreasing from 4.29 to 3.23 average demand expressions per capita for late summer.
The adaptation of Michael Crichton’s 1973 film of the same name, and to a lesser degree its 1976 sequel, somehow continues to enjoy an enormous amount of popularity despite the first season airing last year, and the second season coming in 2018. However, it did lower in ranking from 13th place and 3.94 average demand expressions in May and June, to 16th place and 3.15 average demand expressions per capita in July and August.
17. Rick and Morty
The long-awaited third season of Rick and Morty was welcomed with open arms by fans. Though Season 3 premiered on April 1, the season began in earnest at the end of July, resulting in the series making it onto the list for July and August. For those months, its average demand expressions per capita was 3.12.
With the bulk of Season 2 airing between July and August, the adaptation of Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s comic book appeared on the list. The series had 3.12 average demand expressions per capita for that period.
CW’s police procedural starring the Devil continues to be surprisingly popular in the aftermath of its second season. With Season 2 ending in May, the average demand expressions per capita for Lucifer was 4.10 and it was 12th on the list. In July and August, it held onto a large chunk of that popularity with 3.07 average demand expressions per capita, going down seven spots in the process.
20. American Horror Story
In the lead-up to American Horror Story’s seventh season, subtitled “Cult,” the FX horror anthology series entered the list. For July and August, it had 2.92 average demand expressions per capita.