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‘The Glory’ dominated Netflix in 2023

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Actor Song Hye-kyo as Moon Dong-eun in ″The Glory″ Part 2 [NETFLIX]
Actor Song Hye-kyo as Moon Dong-eun in ″The Glory″ Part 2 [NETFLIX]

Korean Netflix original series “The Glory” was the third-most watched content on Netflix during the first half of 2023.

Netflix released a list of the most watched content from January to June of this year in a document titled “What We Watched: A Netflix Engagement Report,” marking the first time that the U.S.-based streaming giant has released a six-month analysis rather than a monthly or weekly one.

The first season of “The Glory” was the No. 3 most watched content on Netflix, with a total of 622.8 million hours viewed worldwide, according to the report.

The drama premiered on Dec. 30, 2022, making it eligible for this tally.

“The Glory” is a revenge and psychological thriller starring actors Song Hye-kyo, Lee Do-hyun, Lim Ji-yeon, Yeom Hye-ran, Park Sung-hoon and Jung Sung-il with a script written by Kim Eun-sook. Its second season was released on March 10, 2023.

The series was nominated in eight categories at April’s 59th Baeksang Arts Awards and won three honors: Best Drama, Best Actress for Song Hye-kyo and Best Supporting Actress for Lim Ji-yeon.

Other Korean series were included in the ranking. “Physical: 100,” released in January, took No. 15 with 235 million hours of viewership; “Crash Course in Romance,” also released in January, ranked No. 16 with 238.4 million hours of viewership; and “Doctor Cha,” released in April, ranked No. 25 with 194.7 million hours of viewership.

The first season of “Alchemy of Souls” (2022) with 155.3 million hours, “Mr. Queen” (2020-2021) with 151.5 million hours, the second season of “Alchemy of Souls” (2022-2023) with 150.2 million hours and “The Good Bad Mother” with 146.7 million hours of viewership also made the top 50.

Prior to Wednesday’s report, Netflix had only compiled average viewing time over 28 days, dividing total viewing time by the running time of each work, when it announced weekly popularity rankings.

Netflix also aggregated the average viewing time during the first 91 days after content’s release in order to rank the all-time most popular works in both English speaking and non-English speaking TV and movie categories.

The inaugural half-year viewership report came as the tech company is pushing to strengthen its business amid steep competition in the global streaming market, according to Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos.

“Lack of transparency over viewership data caused mistrust over time with writers and other creatives, and people have asked for more details on what audiences are watching over the last 16 years of streaming,” Sarandos said in an online conference on Wednesday.

“This is probably more information than you need, but I think it creates a better environment for the guilds, for us, for the producers, for creators and for the press.”

BY LEE CHAE-MIN [lee.chaemin1@joongang.co.kr]

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