‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Continues Climbing The Streaming Top 10 Chart

For the third week in a row, the fifth season of Star Trek: Discovery has ranked on Nielsen’s top streaming chart, moving up again in the rankings.

Disco at #8

The Nielsen Top 10 original streaming program chart for the week of April 22 – 28 in the USA was just released, which covers the first full week after the release of episode 4 (“Face the Strange”) as well as a few days following the April 25 release of episode 5 (“Mirrors”). Discovery ranked at number 8 on the original programs Top 10 with 285 million minutes viewed. This was another rank up on the chart since debuting at number 10 two weeks ago and up to ninth place last week. The minutes viewed are the highest level yet for Discovery. This week, Discovery isn’t the only Paramount+ series on the chart, with the Sonic The Hedgehog miniseries Knuckles arriving at number 6 after all six episodes were dropped on April 26.

This may be the first time there were two Paramount+ shows on the Nielsen original Top 10 streaming chart. With a significantly smaller subscriber base than Netflix and other streamers, it is harder for Paramount+ shows to break into the top 10. Since Nielsen started tracking Paramount+ shows in 2023, all three live-action Star Trek shows have made the list (Picard, Strange New Worlds, and Discovery). Some other Paramount+ offerings have also ranked on the chart, mostly Taylor Sheridan-produced shows and Halo. 

Sonequa Martin-Green as Burnham Elias Toufexis as L’ak in “Mirrors” (John Medland/Paramount+)

The fifth and final season of Discovery debuted with two episodes on Thursday, April 4 exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., the UK, Switzerland, South Korea, Latin America, Germany, France, Italy, Australia, and Austria. Discovery also premiered on April 4 on Paramount+ in Canada and will be broadcast on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel in Canada. The rest of the 10-episode final season will be available to stream weekly on Thursdays. Season 5 debuted on SkyShowtime in select European countries on April 5.

Find more stories on the Star Trek Universe.

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Good god, that many people watch The Circle?

I’ve never even heard of it.

Wow I have to admit that is very impressive. I was really convinced much less people was watching this season.

Off topic just finished Fallout and loved it. That show is getting tons of hype and I understand why it’s still #1 a month later.

Fallout is fantastic. Highly, highly recommended.

Yeah I knew nothing about it before. And this is going to sound really really sad but I only watched it because I found out one of the lead characters is also on Prodigy. 😂

I kid you not. But I really expected to watch the first episode to see her in it and then move on after that. Instead I was instantly hooked after that episode and kept watching it

I met Ella Purnell a coupe years ago, and I kind of fell in love with her. What a nice person. So friendly, sweet, and down to Earth. I found it hard not to keep staring at those beautiful eyes of hers, but I’m not a creeper so I resisted the urge. :)

LOL nice!

I’ve only seen her in interviews but yes comes off very sweet and nice.

She really is. There’s nothing fake or conceited about her at all. I’d marry her, except I’m already married to a wonderful person.

Tonight was the first time I watched Discovery in about a month (was more focused on the first two rounds of the NHL playoffs). I have to admit, the first half of the series finale was pretty good, not great, but certainly good enough to keep watching next week for the final episode.

The good news for Discovery is that it appears they have developed a new audience for Star Trek, one not made up of legacy grey beards like me. Congrats to the cast and crew of Star Trek Discovery. Bring on the finale and Starfleet Academy!

There is no indication on the makeup of the audience that watches Discovery, or for that matter any Trek streaming series. Nielsen does measures stickiness. Which measure the amount of repeat viewers for each show. They don’t and haven’t ever tracked stickiness of shows between series. Or at the least its never been published for networks or studios.

And since with streaming no information is released to the public about the age of the audience, we have no measure to judge in a general sense the average age of the viewers (ie if they are young enough that they weren’t alive during a previous series). On broadcast for when new Trek aired we never got weekly data (outside of ENT and part of VOY in adults 18-49), But you can find some old random reports if your willing to search about 35 years of issues of Hollywood reporter, Variety, and a few other trades. That pretty much have shown the average age of the Trek audience has continued to increase as time has progressed. Not surprising when the franchise is as old as it is.

There are people looking at this cross eyed, veins buldging, screaming THATS!! NOT!! POSSIBLE!!

It is, snowflake. It is.

Not really. These numbers are lower than the raw numbers for Picard and SNW, which were in the 300 range. Anyway, Star Trek as a whole gets very low viewership, so none of them can brag, especially because of their very costly budgets.

And Picard closed strong with a fraction of the budget for season 3 so Paramount got a lot of bang for the buck on that one.

Discovery will likely see it’s biggest number with the finale. Whether it will hit Picard’s 400 is anyone’s guess.

Why would this be shocking. Discovery is doing about what I would rationally expect it to do. Meaning with what data we have being the least viewed of the live action Trek shows. That matches what press release information we got from quarter reports, when Discovery started as CBS ALL Access strongest show, to getting beat when Picard showed up, and that Picard got beat when Strange New World showed up.

Nothing in these numbers are surprising to anyone who pays even a little attention to ratings.

Hell we already knew thanks to preliminary numbers (of which Paramount’s are never included) that the threshold to make the top ten was going to be much lower then Picard’s period or SNW’s period. So that at least gave us the good possibility of actually getting to see more data/.

Good job DSC cast/crew/creatives!!!

I wonder if Paramount are looking at those numbers and regretting canning the show.

Doubtful. Because A. They have other shows that gets higher numbers (and probably cheaper ones too).

B. It probably still doesn’t pull in enough to justify the costs.

C. We don’t know how well it’s doing outside of America. It could be doing great or worse. But these are solely American ratings.

People may be watching to binge out the season. One can buy a month and watch the season or the complete series…

While we don’t have previous numbers for Discovery. You do realize that Paramount does. They have always had streaming information from the shows. Nielsen provides a service that better helps companies (studios networks, ect) monetize ad revenue. It’s considered impartial, versus internal numbers. Now for example from day one of CBS All Access, they can track every stream, they have. What was less known was the demographic details of the each stream. So once they did pay for the full set of Nielsen data that can be used to find correlations between their original data. And the demographic detail is jut based on HH data. In much the same way ratings were compiled back in the 50-70’s. They use Nielsen HH data based on their universal estimates.

They also see data on a weekly basis on how all of their programming does. Seeing if a show has longevity on a weekly basis or if it’s a made rush to stream, when new episodes arrive and then a dessert of no viewership in-between those periods. Some shows do really well between seasons (example Hulu’s the Bear has managed a nice audience level even without originals.

Congratulations to everyone involved! We are living in the Discovery era of Star Trek and I’m happy about it.

ive always followed trek ratings… one thing i noticed is how paramount has always used star trek to launch new endeavors… TMP was initially phase one intended to launch the paramount network… TNG spearheaded their first run syndication arm then Voy started UPN which turned into CW then Discovery for CBSAA/P+

tng was the only series to grow over it’s run… i think they regularly got 12-14 million viewers at it’s peak. was great for syndication but top shows at the time for networks was like 30 million. these numbers would have ranked them 30-40th on the nielsen list.

D9 started around 8-9 million and by the final season they had dropped to 4 million. at the time it was divisive and often people said gene roddenberry was spinning in his grave as well as it’s not really star trek.

Then producers went back to the tng type show with Voyager on UPN. did well at first 10-11 million first season avg then dipped. they added 7/9 to help but still dipped until also settling at 4-5 by the end.

Enterprise started ok around 5-6 million but by season 4 was at 3 million and done.

So in comparison this seems pretty good. In the top 10. It’s hard to do apples to apples comparisons. This seems like it’s their highest rated season? And of course these are just US numbers not ww.

A couple important notes:

This particular rating system hasn’t been around long so it can’t be used for comparison to previous seasons of Discovery. My guess is the number of minutes viewed was significantly higher during the first couple seasons of Discovery. Season 1 was probably the highest simply due to morbid curiosity on behalf of the fanbase and people curious after the new Star Trek movie series. But P+’s subscriber base was also a lot smaller, so I can’t say for sure. All I know is that, in my house, we viewed Discovery at least twice a week in the beginning. Now, I’m the only one watching.

Since the metric is “minutes viewed” it really can’t be compared in any significant way with ratings from all the former televised series. Nielsen ratings have always been flawed, but EVEN MORE SO back before the mid 2000’s. Nielsen was based on diaries in almost all markets during Star Trek’s broadcast TV run, so there’s no truly accurate way to really know what people actually watched. Couple that with the fact that Nielsen TV ratings are based on “households” and it gets even more screwy. The “minutes viewed” stat is based on hard numbers that can be quantified by servers. There’s no making those numbers up. But there’s also no breakdown of how many unique viewers are watching those minutes, so you can’t really compare that to “households”.

the audience levels are gibbly blick… but you can only take what you get. i never even relied heavily on the rating system back in the day. diaries?

so like i said there’s no apples to apples comparison…but you can compare what the shows are doing in their respective areas… tng as a first run syndicated show did great compared to others but compared to network did poorly. ds9 did good but compared to tng did poorly. you want to be doing well in your own pool. so disco going out in the top 10 seems pretty good.

i just saw a recent interview with wilson cruz and he mentioned how it’s doing well with viewers… so they seem to be aware of it.

and if you look at international fans… when it was on netflix it definitely had an impact. then it was yanked and paramount paid off netflix to get the rights back. then slowly added p+ around the world. how that affected the audience i dont know but it must be smaller. i was sending people in other countries torrents of it because they were cut off.

based on just my personal experience when it started no one i knew was watching but now i know at least 7 people on board… one recently… so dont know how that fits in either. i do know one who gave up after season 4… was too weepy for him which i understood. not sure if he picked it back up.

Some points. TNG and DS9 only had HH numbers released. Though Nielsen did in fact have full data on syndicated programs just like network programming of the day. So you would have never seen total viewers on any weekly basis for either of those two series.

Voyager (except for the pilot as Viacom had yet to sign their contract with Nielsen for weekly reporting). Would get weekly published reporting which would include (until season 6 I think). Total viewers, and Household rating and share. With season 6 they started (as a whole) reporting adults 18-49 data for weekly shows. And of course ENT was reported in the same manner.

Now you might have seen a press release with Voyager’s pilot Ratings in viewers but that was done by Viacom and not Nielsen (though it is their information).

So basically you are comparing HH # to viewers in later series. HH numbers are always going to be lower, in some cases dramatically so.

Just to give you an idea of the difference.
Highest HH rating for the 4 Berman era shows.
TNG 17.4 (All Good Things)
DS9 18.8 (Emissary)
VOY 13.0 (Caretaker)
ENT 7.0 (Broken Bow)

Total Viewers for
VOY 21.27 Million (Caretaker)
ENT 12.54 Million (Broken Bow)

Adults 18-49
VOY 11.5 (Caretaker)
ENT 6.3 (Broken Bow)

Additional Demo data of ENT Broken Bow
Adults 18-34 5.2
M 18-49 7.2
M 25-54 8.3
W 18-49 5.4

To Put TNG’s HH numbers into a guesstimate for Viewers the show at its lowest point was probably getting 15 million viewers, its average would get it close to 20 million views, and its peak would likely get it to over 30 million. DS9 pilot would have also likely hit in the 30 million range.

You mention DS9 (and yes DS9 declined through its run like all later broadcast Trek shows, minus a peak episode here or there). But again you are using HH numbers versus Voyager’s Total Viewers. A rough estimate for Total Viewers would have it starting 1st season average) with around 17 million, and ending with an 7th season average right near 7 million viewers. Again HH numbers give you a range for viewers but it is less precise.

When Voyager Started (including its heavy inflated pilot its HH average for that season was 7.7. That same year DS9 (its third season) averaged a 7.4. Meaning at the same period they likely got very similar total viewers, but Voyager likely was higher.

Voyager Year 2
5.7 HH ratings
DS9 Year 4
6.6 HH rating. Meaning On this year DS9 would have very likely had about a 15% larger total audience.

You can use this and you will find on year to year basis (like how year to year TNG beat DS9), DS9 beat VOY (minus DS9 season 3 versus Voyager season 1).

Always compare like to like. With TNG and DS9 as almost no additional other details are released to the public (outside of a rare press release or two). That means you should only compare HH numbers.

And it’s always best when possible to compare year for year. For example. there are years when TNG and DS9 aired the same year. And then we had years that DS9 and VOY aired together. Those male excellent points to directly compare.

As TV viewerships has been declining for decades, thus the normal pattern is for each year for show to be doing worse. Now when a show goes against that trend thats a very positive thing.

And with Streaming yeah no real way to make a valid comparison. Completely different system.

Congratulations, Discovery Team!

It’s good, I wonder if the finale will get close to Picards number.

What surprises me is that the actual top 10 seems to be full of repeats, like NCIS and Bluey.

Streaming ratings count all views of a show during the week. It doesn’t track a specific episode. So shows with large library of episodes, and that are on a large streamer are generally going to do better then most shows on smaller services.

And of course due to some streamers using a full season dump, as their typical release pattern. It’s also going to favor shows where this happens (Netflix does this a lot).

Now if you see a show like Grey’s Anatomy or NCIS (just two examples) both of those have over 400 hours of programming. It makes it much easier for those style of shows to get signifiant play through a week.

At least now Netflix is releasing quarterly reports of their streams. And this at least breaks it down by season of a show. And the total number of hours.

My wife and I enjoyed both seasons of THEM, on Prime. Very good stuff, if you’re into creepy shows.

This is great news and goes to show how sustainable Star Trek is.

The fact that Paramount do very little to push the Star Trek brand name out there, making it easier for people to become fans makes this even more impressive.

What I would like to see next is for Paramount to work on their marketing and branding campaigns for Star Trek worldwide, expanding its reach among new audiences with pop up events, tie ins and crossovers, including deals with licensed brands that connect to the spirit of optimism, exploration, innovation and education. Plus an extensive toy range from Playmates Toys readily available and accessible to fans and kids alike, collectibles and memorabilia from the likes of Exo-6, Factory Entertainment, Iron Studios and mid-range collectibles from Super7, Diamond Select and other smaller companies specialising in the adult collector. Let’s see some fun being had with Star Trek too! unique one-off items such as crossover products Transformers x Star Trek, TMNT x Star Trek, MOTU x Star Trek, big brands like Kelloggs, Heinz, Adidas, Apple, Google, Tesla, NASA, to really bring the Star Trek brand to a whole new generation of fan.

With the right strategy, there is no reason why that with the success, and it is success, of ALL Star Trek on TV today and over the past 60 years, that Star Trek can’t enjoy some of that brand excitement that DC, Marvel, Star Wars, Doctor Who, James Bond, Pokémon, TMNT and many more, enjoy and capitalise on.

This is fantastic for the Trek franchise. SNW, Picard and Discovery have all landed in the top 10. This is saying a lot since the charts are dominated by the big boys of Netflix. Prime and Hulu where most people are subscribers. Think about that for a minute. Trek is still able to pull in decent numbers on Paramount+ in a sea of numerous streaming services.

But this season has been one of the best in terms of pulling everything together. The adding of Keith-Rennie really added to the dynamics. The tight story, better pacing, fantastic writing and superb acting really has Discovery knocking it out of the park for its final season.

To be fair, for me this has been the strongest season of Discovery so fitting its getting views. Is it perfect? No. Is it Berman era good? No, however it has found its footing much more the season. Plus Rayner has been a Q-send for this final outing. I hope he pops up in the Academy show.

How does this compare with SNW and Picard season 3?

It is lower in raw numbers.

A couple of Picards were in the 400’s and I think one week broke into the absolute top 10. Not sure on that last point though…

Tracking wasn’t started (for release purposes until the 3rd episode of season 3 of Picard. Picard only tracked 3 times out of 8 weeks. Numbers 279, 310, and 400. With 6 weeks of its season not making the top ten. The threshold to make the top ten in the 5 weeks we have no data ranged between 409 and 334 million minutes. Because its missing so much more weeks then what will happen with Discovery and SNW, Picard will always be an enigma. It looks likely that it would have done better, but techinically we won’t ever know for sure. We can say at the numbers we do have it did better, and it (with the threshold to make the top 10, makes its very possible that it did.

SNW had Nine weeks (2 episodes aired in one week, just as DISC did this season). And we have data for 7 of those 9 weeks. With a range of 304 to 395 (338,393,351,324,395,362,304). The two weeks where it didn’t track the top ten threshold was 381 million minutes and 346 million minutes. Its very likely that SNW had all of its episodes over 300 million minutes.

Data with DISC Didn’t track for its first week (episodes 1 and 2) where it needed to at least get to 274 million minutes). Next week 256, 241, and finally 280. This last episode is the only episode that would have managed to track into the top ten during the Period Picard season 3 aired. And none of Discovery’s numbers would have tracked during the weeks that SNW aired. At least so far.