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Bridgerton Was the Biggest Thing on Netflix Last Week, Followed by More Bridgerton

Bridgerton's second season was the No. 1 most streamed title on Netflix, and Bridgerton's first season was No. 2. But it's still no Squid Game.

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Joan E. Solsman Former Senior Reporter
Joan E. Solsman was CNET's senior media reporter, covering the intersection of entertainment and technology. She's reported from locations spanning from Disneyland to Serbian refugee camps, and she previously wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. She bikes to get almost everywhere and has been doored only once.
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Joan E. Solsman
3 min read
A still from Bridgerton

Bridgerton's second season hit Netflix March 25. 

Netflix

Bridgerton's second season was Netflix's No. 1 most streamed title last week, with subscribers watching more hours of it cumulatively in a single week than any show on Netflix since Squid Game. And catch-up viewing of Bridgerton's first season revived it as Netflix's No. 2 most watched programming. 

In the week ended Sunday, Netflix customers globally streamed 251.7 million hours of Bridgerton's second season, which was released March 25. That's the most viewing of a show in a single week since the Squid Game phenomenon reached its peak at 571.8 million hours in one week straddling September and October last year. Catch-up viewing of Bridgerton's first season was 53 million hours, making it the second most popular thing to watch on the service. 

But Bridgerton's second season hasn't quite generated enough viewing to break into Netflix's all-time popularity ranking. As of Sunday, it was just below the level of streaming hours it needs to make it onto the service's Top 10 list for English-language TV series. That ranking, which lists shows with the most streaming hours in their first 28 days of release, requires that the second season reach 457.4 million viewing hours before it can knock the second season of You out from the No. 10 spot. 

Since Bridgerton's second season premiered, it has racked up 444.8 million hours, just shy of that bar. 

Bridgerton's first season remain's Netflix's No. 1 English-language TV show, with 625.5 million hours streamed in its first 28 days of release. (But nothing comes close to Squid Game, at 1.65 billion.) 

Netflix launched a website in mid-November posting weekly charts of its most popular shows and movies, as well as a global ranking of all-time most watched titles. The charts are updated every week and ranked by the total number of hours that subscribers spent watching them. 

The rankings represent an unprecedented trove of data about what's popular on Netflix, detailing the most popular titles in the last week not only globally but also for more than 90 individual countries. It is, by far, the most transparency that Netflix has ever adopted for its viewership. It will also help subscribers like you have a better grip on what's most popular on the world's biggest subscription streaming service. 

For years, Netflix was notoriously tight-lipped about its viewership. Beau Willimon -- creator of House of Cards, which put Netflix's original programming on the map -- once said the company wouldn't even share viewership metrics with him. 

But within the last two years, Netflix has become much more open about the popularity of its shows and movies to help it recruit talent and stoke buzz. First, Netflix added a top-trending ranking to its service, so people can see the most popular titles streaming on Netflix in their country on any given day. Then it also started publicly sharing popularity stats for certain titles, publicizing the number of accounts that watched two minutes of a particular title in its first month of release.

The company updates its weekly "Top 10 on Netflix" every Tuesday, based on hours viewed from Monday to Sunday the previous week for both original and licensed titles. The rankings are broken down into top-10 charts for films in English, TV in English, films in non-English languages and TV in non-English languages. A ranking of all-time most watched titles also lives on the site, detailing shows that have the most viewing hours in their first 28 days of release.

Correction, April 15: This story initially misstated the number of hours that Netflix customers globally streamed Bridgerton's second season for the week ending April 3. The number of viewing hours for its first season that week was also incorrect. The correct figures are 251.7 million hours and 53 million hours, respectively.