Finally, the reign of reality series topping Netflix’s Top 10 list has ended, at least temporarily. After Squid Game: The Challenge sat on number one for a week, that was replaced by Bad Surgeon: Love Under the Knife, a three episode exploration of a doctor who killed patients with bad stem cell windpipe transplants.
Now, we have a scripted series, Obliterated, taking the #1 spot instead. Is it good? Not according to critics, who have scored it a 47%, but audiences have been much more forgiving with an 83% score, a not-unusual divide between the two parties.
Obliterated is an odd case though, an action comedy starring Legends of Tomorrow’s Nick Zano and a bunch of other people I don’t think most viewers would have heard of. It reads like a TV version of Smokin’ Aces about an eccentric team meant to save Las Vegas over the course of eight 45-60 minute episodes. My guess is that hitting number one and having a not-expensive cast would mean that Obliterated may be well on its way to a second season. Though action shows are more expensive than most, depending on how CG and practical effects are used.
The rest of the list has few surprises. A new comedy special from Stavros Halkias is doing well at #4. Licensed shows Young Sheldon and First Wives Club are at #5 and #8 respectively. Old stalwart Virgin River is at #7, but with a batch of new episodes, I do think it’s noteworthy it hasn’t gone up a bit higher, as we’ve seen that hit #1 many times in the past. But in season 5 now, things may be waning. Season 6, however, is already on the way.
One interesting addition to the list is School Spirits, which follows the ghost of a teenage girl haunting her high school, and it stars Cobra Kai breakout actress Peyton List in the central role. Eight 45 minute episodes for that one, and we’ll see if it can break out of the “Netflix cancels almost all supernatural/YA shows starring young women” curse that has affected a dozen plus other series in the past.
What’s coming up next? At this point, it’s probably the case that 2 out of 3 shows that hit #1 on Netflix these days are reality series. The Crown’s final half-season will be here December 14, so that should do well. Then, perhaps the highest profile release of the month will be Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon right before Christmas, albeit that’s a movie not a series. Extremely curious to see how that goes. Until then, it’s going to be a weird list for a while, I think.
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