Netflix’s The Witcher in high demand despite middling reviews


It looks like the first season of The Witcher on Netflix is a win with fantasy fans, even if critics have been largely unimpressed with the adventures of Geralt of Rivia and company. Case in point: while The Witcher scores a mediocre 56% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes, it garners a golden 93% audience score from viewers. That’s a big gap, but whether an audience is watching matters more to studio executives.

And demand for the show is strong. That’s based on data from Parrot Analytics, a  firm that measures demand for global TV content. According to the company, The Witcher was the third-most in-demand streaming show for the week of December 18 to December 24, landing behind only The Mandalorian on Disney+ and Netflix’s ever-popular Stranger Things.

Image: The Witcher/Netflix

Parrot Analytics employs a unit of measure called “demand expressions,” which Business Insider describes as “its globally standardized TV-demand measurement unit that reflects the desire, engagement, and viewership of a series weighted by importance.” Basically, it measures how often people are expressing a desire to watch a thing, and plenty of people are eager to watch The Witcher.

In any case, showrunner Lauren Hissrich is pleased with the response, brushing off critics with a tweet:

Hissrich is probably referring to a review in Entertainment Weekly that called the show “nakedly terrible,” even though the critics involved admitted to not watching the whole thing. And not all the reviews are bad. Ben Travers at Indiewire applauded The Witcher, calling it “absolutely nuts” and saying “[t]he former Superman’s surly, magical monster hunter makes for a solid lead in this extremely strange but oddly enjoyable action-fantasy adaptation.” As for us at WiC, we landed somewhere in the middle.

Netflix has already renewed “The Witcher” for a second season, so the show will have another chance with everyone soon enough.

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