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Comcast Picks Top 5 New On Demand Shows

Comcast has analyzed past on-demand viewing by subscribers to try to pick which new shows will get big viewing on Xfinity on Demand.

The top five turned out to be:

  • Ash vs Evil Dead on Starz
  • The Bastard Executioner on FX.
  • Blindspot on NBC
  • Quantico on ABC
  • Scream Queens on Fox.

Comcast says the factors that went into its forecast included:

Time Slot: "Sunday is arguably the most jam-packed night of TV in the fall…and don’t forget Sunday Night Football. Similar to the success of The Walking Dead and Homeland, we also expect Quantico to bring in a significant amount of on demand views. Another night to take note of is Saturday, the peak night of on demand viewing. With shows like Power and Outlander chalking up heavy views from people who want to watch when it’s convenient for them. Ash vs. Evil Dead should benefit from the same."

Demo: "Xfinity On Demand viewing skews younger, particularly on X1, where on demand use is 33% higher. It’s for these reasons we picked Scream Queens, whose diverse cast is sure to draw both millennial and gen-x appeal similar to Empire."

Premium: "Comedies have been difficult to launch on broadcast & cable—but on premium networks where there is more latitude to push boundaries, quirky & diverse comedies like HBO’s Veep, Silicon Valley, and Showtime’s Shameless and House of Lies have flourished. We expect the same from Starz's Ash vs. Evil Dead. Track Record: Some shows have a built-in, passionate fan base even before they air; whether it’s a viewer’s favorite showrunner or the network is home to some of their favorite shows.Track record influenced all three of five shows on our list– including Kurt Sutter’s and FX’s The Bastard Executioner, ABC’s "Shonda-like" Quantico, and Ryan Murphy’s Scream Queens (which is already generating significant buzz with nearly 400,000 Facebook likes)."

Genre: "Our on demand viewers have mature tastes, routinely making ABC’s serial dramas like How to Get Away with Murder, Scandal and Revenge and cliffhanger series like Blacklist, Homeland, and 24: Live Another Day some of the most popular time-shifted shows. They also like to escape reality; with zombie shows like The Walking Dead and iZombie, and medieval shows like Vikings and Game of Thrones garnering top views. We predict four of our five shows will be hits on XOD based on their specific genre - Ash vs. Evil Dead, The Bastard Executioner, Blindspot and Quantico."

Female Lead: "There’s no denying a strong female lead is a huge draw for our viewers, as evidenced by the success of Scandal, Outlander, Law & Order: SVU, Orphan Black—and of course, Cookie on Empire. And it’s not just on TV: Lucy has been one of the most-watched movies on Xfinity On Demand this year. Based on this observation, we selected two shows with these types of characters – Quantico and Blindspot."

Early Premiere: "Like Sons of Anarchy last year, The Bastard Executioner premieres early in the season on 9/15. This bodes well for the cable show – as it can get out in front of the big wave of broadcast premieres at the end of the month."

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.