Both Nielsen and Samba TV have released viewership data for Lucasfilm’s The Book of Boba Fett’s premiere episode.
Back in the beginning of January it was rumored that the streaming numbers for the first episode of The Book of Boba Fett were not looking very good.
WDW Pro at That Park Place claimed his sources informed him “that The Book of Boba Fett as not doing as well in streaming numbers as The Walt Disney Company would like.””
It’s unclear how true that rumor is based on the metrics that have been released as the data isn’t very straightforward.
First, Nielsen reports that The Book of Boba Fett’s premiere episode, which debuted on December 29th, only had 389 million minutes viewed. That was good for 8th on Nielsen’s weekly top 10 chart for original programming for the week of December 27th to January 2nd.
As you can see in the chart above, The Book of Boba Fett was blown out of the water by Netflix’s Cobra Kai, The Witcher, Emily in Paris, Queer Eye, and Lost in Space. It was also defeated by Prime Video’s The Wheel of Time and Marvel Studios’ Hawkeye.
Now, it is not fair to compare any of these offerings to The Book of Boba Fett given all of the other shows on the list have all of their episodes available to watch while The Book of Boba Fett only has the one episode.
Even shows like Hawkeye and The Wheel of Time, which debuted their final episodes of their respective first season’s in the same time period wouldn’t make a good comparison because it’s possible a significant portion of people were watching the previous episodes as well.
On that note, even if you went back and looked at Hawkeye’s premiere on Disney+, which saw the show debut its first two episodes, the data is still muddled because there are so many factors at play including playbacks, rewinds, episode length, episode completion, etc…
It’s very difficult to make sense of whether or not 389 total minutes viewed is actually a respectable number. It’s possible that it could be a very good number. If you simply divide 389 million minutes by 39 minutes, which is the episode’s length, it would come out to 9.9 million.
Needless to say, if that was the total number of viewers that would be phenomenal and crushes every single ABC scripted show for the 2021-2022 season. The highest rated show according to TV Series Finale is Grey’s Anatomy and it averages 4.195 million viewers per episode.
However, if you look at Hawkeye, which dropped multiple episodes when they first debuted, and compare the average minutes per episode, The Book of Boba Fett numbers don’t look very good.
According to Nielsen, in its first week on Disney+, Hawkeye had 853 million minutes viewed. Divide that number by two and the average episode had 426.5 million views. Again that’s assuming all of those minutes are for both episode one and episode two and there wasn’t a drop off between one and two among a number of other assumptions.
Clearly, the data surrounding total minutes viewed is muddled and does not give us as clear as a picture as traditional data tracking that provides number of viewers and the rating in the 18-49 demographic.
On top of this Nielsen data, Samba TV claims the first episode was watched by 1.7 million households in its first five days of streaming. They also note that the show “over-indexed the most with Portland (+71%) and Seattle (+59%) watching at a higher than the US overall.”
That’s 200,000 more than the Hawkeye premiere. Samba TV reported that 1.5 million people watched the first episode of Hawkeye and only 1.3 million watched the second.
Maybe even more perplexing is the fact that Samba TV claims that The Book of Boba Fett premiere had more viewers than the season finale of The Mandalorian Season 2.
Back in December 2020, Samba TV claimed that 1.1 million U.S. households watch The Mandalorian Season 2 finale with “Portland (+56%) and Seattle (+44) over indexed the most.”
So, we’ve got viewership data for the first episode of The Book of Boba Fett. It’s hard to make any sense of it at this point, but it will be interesting to see what the data looks like moving forward and whether those total minutes per week will fall or increase.
What do you make of this viewership data for The Book of Boba Fett?