Analytics firm Jumpshot reports Punisher Season 2 viewership is down 40% compared to its first season. The company compared season one and season two’s opening weekend premieres.
Not only is viewership allegedly down, but Rotten Tomatoes scores also indicate a decline in quality from the first to second season. The critics gave the second season a 54% rating with audiences giving it 84%. That is down from the first season which saw critics give the show a 67% and audiences give it a 93%.
A number of fans were specifically disappointed with Billy Russo’s costume design, the series’ main antagonists. After having his face run across glass, Russo’s face only has minor damage and he wears masks. It was a watered down take compared to the comic books and even Punisher: War Zone.
While Netflix doesn’t typically release audience numbers, Business Insider reveals Jumpshot “tracks five billion actions a day across 100 million devices to deliver insights into online consumer behavior.” Jumpshot might give us an idea on viewership numbers, it still isn’t specifically from Netflix, and it’s likely we won’t see hard numbers from them anytime soon.
Punisher Season 2 viewership might be down 40%, but there’s a silver lining. It appears to be retaining its audience better than other Marvel Netflix shows which saw their viewership drop 60% or more since their first seasons.
However, viewership might not actually be an important factor when it comes to whether or not Punisher will get renewed for a third season. Deadline recently reported that data from Parrot Analytics indicated that Daredevil was the fourth most viewed show among all of Netflix’s original shows. Nevertheless, Daredevil was cancelled.
Marvel TV’s Jeph Loeb made it very clear that the cancellations are made by Netflix:
“It’s an unfortunate reality to any relationship between a network and a studio in that the network always has the right at any time to cancel a show. And we’ve been very lucky that our shows have lived on, and that we’ve had the fun, but everyone can name a show that they love that has gotten canceled. But we do, and I think we’ve made it very clear, that this is not our call. This is Netflix’s call.”
The Snap That Got It All Cancelled
Given Daredevil’s alleged high viewership, it’s possible Netflix might be taking an axe to their Marvel licensed properties because of the upcoming Disney+ streaming service that will feature it’s own Marvel television shows. In fact, these Marvel television shows will be part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The Netflix shows were supposed to be attached to the MCU, but the relationship never really flourished with the Netflix shows only barely mentioning the events in the film. The films don’t even discuss the shows at all.
The reason for that could be the frayed relationship between Marvel TV and Marvel Studios. There have been numerous reports regarding Jeph Loeb and Kevin Feige’s creative differences when it came to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. One source described it as “several years of frustration.” Those differences came to a head when Feige arranged a reorganization of the film studio where he would report directly to Disney chief Alan Horn instead of Marvel Entertainment’s Ike Perlmutter.
What do you think these numbers mean for The Punisher? Or do the numbers mean nothing at all, and a cancellation is inevitable as Disney ramps up their spending for their new streaming service? Sound off in the comments below or let’s chat it up on social media!