On Friday, Netflix released their much-hyped original TV series House of Cards. Was it worth the wait? Should they make season two or cancel it now?
Based on a novel by Michael Dobbs and a BBC mini-series, House of Cards revolves around a devious congressman (Kevin Spacey) and his wife (Robin Wright) who’ll stop at nothing to execute his plans to reach higher office.
Others in the cast include Kate Mara, Corey Stoll, Michael Kelly, Kristen Connolly, Constance Zimmer, Sebastian Arcelus, Sandrine Holt, Michael Gill, Dan Ziskie, Sakina Jaffrey, Ben Daniels, Mahershala Ali, and Rachel Brosnahan.
Unlike a traditional network, Netflix released all 13 episodes of House of Cards’ first season at once, so customers can stream them on their own schedule. With DVR usage becoming more and more prevalent, people obviously like this option but it remains to be seen if the strategy will pay off for Netflix’s desire to attract and hold onto new subscribers.
Netflix hasn’t said yet if they consider House of Cards to be a success or not. According to Sandvine, a company that tracks the volume of Internet data usage, Netflix is the largest source of Internet traffic. Sandvine also says that there was no significant change in Netflix traffic this past weekend — meaning there was no spike in viewing when House of Cards became available. It’s unclear if the Super Bowl was taken into account.
Meanwhile, Procera Networks measures web traffic for several of the larger Internet providers. They estimate that 11% of Netflix subscribers that visited the site watched at least one episode of the series.
The first few episodes were, not surprisingly, the most-watched but later episodes were viewed as well. It seems that the last episode of the season was watched by about 28% of the people who watched the first episode. Curiously, more people viewed the 13th installment than watched episodes nine, 10, 11, or 12.
Netflix won’t release new subscriber numbers until its next earnings announcement so we may not know how well House of Cards has been received for awhile. However, Netflix reportedly ordered two seasons up front so either way, it looks like we’ll see a second season.
But, what do you think? Have you seen House of Cards? Did you watch the 13 episodes one at a time, all at once, or some variation in between? Do you want to see more? Should the show be cancelled or are you looking forward to season two?
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Feb 5, 2013