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Netflix Reveals ‘Jessica Jones’ is its Most Popular Marvel Show [UPDATED]

[UPDATE: After further investigation and having our facts checked, we’ve discovered that Jessica Jones is the most popular show, but that it’s the show viewers most often discover first through recommendations based on shows they like. Not necessarily that it’s the show that viewers watch before anything else.]

After two years of buildup and the development of four solo shows, with five 10+ episode seasons between them, Marvel’s ensemble series The Defenders has finally premiered. The latest addition to the television branch of the cinematic universe follows Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Matt Murdock and Danny Rand as they finally come to embrace their superhero identities and form the titular superhero team that shaped their corner of comic book history. With an overall positive reception, it looks like Marvel’s streaming experiment has culminated into one of the most successful superhero team-ups this side of The Avengers.

The Defenders

Source: Netflix and Marvel Studios

But which out of Marvel’s four foundational properties has been the most successful? It’s a valid question, considering the intense criticism that has been levied at some of the shows in this lineup. In particular, Netflix had to defend the popularity of Iron Fist earlier this year following incredibly poor reviews and accusations of cultural appropriation.

Now, despite usually being rather secretive about their rating system, Netflix has revealed a sort of “final” say on the popularity order of Marvel’s shows. And before you ask, no – Iron Fist is not the most popular one.

It is actually Jessica Jones that leads the pack, and it is the first superhero show that Netflix subscribers watch before further delving into Marvel’s other properties. Following this show, the order of viewership becomes a bit random.

Essentially, if you watch Jessica Jones you are most likely to watch Daredevil, meaning that it is the second most watched show in the lineup. Following the pack is Luke Cage as the third most watched in this series. However, if Luke Cage was the first Netflix superhero show you watched, then it is more likely that you would then watch Iron Fist afterwards.

When asked about the non-chronological order of popularity for these shows, Netflix VP of product innovation Todd Yellin had this to say:

“When it comes to an individual story, they’ll watch it in order. But when it comes to these related kind of series, they’re very different kinds of stories. They watch them in order of how they’re interested in them and how they learn about them.”

This seems to make sense in terms of professional marketing and word-of-mouth recommendations. Jessica Jones almost immediately took the internet by storm due to its refreshingly frank portrayal of trauma, sexism and sexual violence, meaning that along with its normal marketing strategies the plethora of thinkpieces on the show further got it on people’s radars.

Otherwise, while Netflix’s marketing for the other three Marvel shows has been an innovative mix of viral teasers, social media campaigns and on-the-ground ads, in hindsight it definitely seems like they never reached the fever pitch of long-lasting excitement that Jessica Jones achieved.

Are you surprised by the popularity order of Marvel’s superhero shows on Netflix? Do you think there are other reasons as to why some shows are more popular than others? Tell us your thoughts in the comments!

News Source: USA Today

Featured Image Source: IGN


  1. Jessica Jones is the most popular because of David Tennant – most people tuned in to see it because of him – that is the only reason I watched it and the only reason I will watch JJ2 is that David will be in it – Kilgrave is the best villain in the Marvel universe

    • Hell no. David is amazing in the show but Krysten Ritter carries the whole thing. She was born to play Jessica and watching her is an experience all on it’s own.

  2. I agree; David Tennant was an amazing villain, but so was Vincent D’Onofrio as Kingpin in Daredevil. It was when they moved on to the Punisher in Daredevil that the show became weak, for me, because Daredevil went from being a hero to kind of a wimp.

  3. Jessica Jones was my favorite, and like other posters, Tennant was the reason. A truly original villain that was handled exceptionally well.
    Daredevil was my next fave.
    Iron Fist was my third favorite. I didn’t mind the traditionally Caucasian character remaining Caucasian and I didn’t have a problem with the Great White Savior trope and felt like they dealt effectively with it via the story. The great gnashing of teeth about the show truly surprised me, I enjoyed it.

    Luke Cage was my least favorite. It started off okay, but quickly turned into a huge snooze fest. I actually didn’t finish the series. Just was too uninterested to keep going.

  4. Dude…my wife & I have debated this quite a few times lately.
    Cotton mouth
    two best MCU villains…Jessica Jones & Luke Cage are tied in my household for tops. Followed by Daredevil…the fight choreography in DD is spectacular, but I related more to JJ & LC.

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