The Old Guard, starring Charlize Theron as an immortal ass-kicking warrior, was Netflix’s most successful movie of the summer. Get the numbers:
The Old Guard came out of nowhere this summer to become an unexpected hit on Netflix. The superhero drama, based on the comic by writer Greg Rucka and artist Leandro Fernandez, follows a troupe of immortal men and women led by Andromache the Scythian, or Andy (Charlize Theron). The movie is good, a comparatively down-to-earth action flick with a really interesting idea at its center, but I guess it didn’t involve Captain America or Batman or anyone so it wasn’t produced for the big screen.
But Hollywood’s loss is Netflix’s gain, since the streamer announced in a new quarterly report that a whopping 78 million households had watched The Old Guard within its first four weeks of availability.
That makes The Old Guard Netflix’s most popular summer title, ahead of stuff like Project Power (75 million) and The Kissing Booth 2 (66 million). On the TV side, the first season of Cobra Kai picked up 50 million households (this after it had already debuted on the little-known YouTube Premium service), Ryan Murphy’s Ratched got 48 million viewers, the second season of The Umbrella Academy nabbed 43 million, and the newest season of Lucifer snagged 38 million.
We should mention that all of these numbers are self-reported by Netflix, which counts something as a “view” so long as the subscriber watched the given thing for at least two minutes. The more honest way to do things is to just tally up how much time altogether people spent watching something, which is how Neilsen does it.
Still, 78 million households is nothing to sneeze at. If Netflix plays its cards right, it could have its own superhero franchise here. Who needs Marvel and DC when you have The Old Guard and The Umbrella Academy?
There is a sequel to The Old Guard in development, although the pandemic can’t be making production easy. I’m just happy to see something succeed that’s outside of a big franchise.