HBO Max launched not long ago, and the world suddenly had a new streaming platform to explore and binge to their heart's desire. HBO Max is the home to some of the most acclaimed programming of the past couple decades, so it isn't surprising the shows got some streaming love. What is surprising is that the top-streamed show is not Game of Thrones, The Sopranos, or even Friends, but rather a show aimed at children.
According to Parrot Analytics (an organization that gauges the popularity of shows based on social media, fan ratings, and piracy) the most popular show on HBO Max at launch was Looney Tunes Cartoons. Specifically, this is the latest iteration of Looney Tunes, with the characters and plot lines updated to reflect a more modern era. The drawing style is new as well, and it appears the show got some real attention from HBO Max subscribers.
That's interesting, but what's even crazier is that Bloomberg reported the second most popular program on HBO Max was also a children's show. The Not-Too-Late Show With Elmo is the second most popular show, which features Elmo interviewing celebrities in a late-night style format, but as the title implies, the taping occurs shortly before his bedtime.
The news (provided the analytics are representative of actual streaming numbers) is both good and bad for HBO potentially. The good news is that HBO, a network that one wouldn't immediately associate with children, had two kids shows drawing a lot of interest at launch. Of course the opposite side of that coin is that interest in those two outweighed two of HBO's originals geared towards adults, Legendary and Anna Kendrick's Love Life.
Interest in Love Life has grown, according to Parrot Analytics, with it passing up Elmo's late night show in more recent days. The good news is that HBO is planning on adding original content at a pretty steady rate, so if Anna Kendrick isn't what the people want right now there could be an original coming down the pipeline that will deliver.
Finding engaging originals for all audiences could be a struggle for HBO Max at the start, though it would seem like getting audiences on board for kids shows would be the hardest part. HBO has captivated adults with shows like True Detective, True Blood, and so many other shows that it's hard to think the network will completely flop at bringing a show that won't engage audiences eventually. The streaming wars are seemingly at their peak now, so it's important to evaluate each and every pro and con of a streamer to see which ones will survive down the stretch.
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