Nielsen Streaming Ratings: Disney Plus’ ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’ Builds to 855 Million Streaming Minutes and a No. 1 Finish

Sebastian Stan as Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes and Anthony Mackie as Falcon/Sam Wilson in Marvel Studios' 'The Falcon and the Winter Soldier'
(Image credit: Julie Vrabelová/Marvel Studios)

The release of the fifth episode of Disney Plus’ The Falcon and the Winter Soldier captured 855 million minutes in the U.S. during the week of April 12-18, making it the most streamed major SVOD title in the country, according to Nielsen. 

It’s been five months since Disney Plus last took the top spot on Nielsen’s streaming ranker—back in late December, Disney Plus’ Soul finished No. 1. 

Up by 107 million viewing minutes week over week, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier—like Disney Plus’ other Marvel-based series, WandaVision—has steadily built an audience based on weekly episodic releases.  

Falcon debuted on March 19 and focuses on Sam “Falcon” Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Bucky “Winter Soldier” Barnes (Sebastian Stan), who both reprise their Avengers roles. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier took the top spot on both Nielsen’s master ranker and the research company’s sub ranking of originals shows on the major subscription streaming services. 

Netflix streaming of the 353 episodes CBS procedural NCIS drew 779 million viewing minutes, putting the show in the No. 2 spot on overall ranker and No. 1 on the acquired chart. The police drama starring Mark Harmon is currently in its 18th season.

With 742 million minutes of total viewing. Netflix’s Thunder Force fell from the No.1 spot to the No. 3 spot in Nielsen’s weekly rankings. The film, which debuted April 9, stars Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer as two best friends with newly acquired superpowers. 

Despite losing 208 million viewing minute week over week, Thunder Force maintained in the No. 1 spot in Nielsen’s movie sub rankings. No other movie during the week of April 12-18 came close to Thunder Force in terms of viewing minutes. The Netflix thriller What Lies Below, which was released in December, came closes with 253 million U.S. viewing minutes.

Nielsen weekly rankings April 12-18

Nielsen Weekly SVOD Rankings April 12-18 (Image credit: Nielsen)

With 670 million viewing minutes, Amazon Prime Video’s 10- episodes of Them moved from the No. 7 spot overall to the No. 4 spot. The horror series, about a middle-class black family moving into an all-white neighborhood, increased its viewing by more than 50% week over week. Released on April 9, Them maintained its No. 2 spot on the originals chart. Besides Disney Plus’ The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Them was the only other non-Netflix program that made it onto Nielsen’s originals rankings for April 12-18. 

Nielsen weekly rankings - movies April 12-18

(Image credit: Nielsen)

Coming in at No. 5 overall, meanwhile, was Netflix’s off-network run of the ABC medical drama Grey’s Anatomy. The show's 16 seasons and 369 episodes of the series tallied 629 million viewing minutes. Grey’s also took the No. 2 spot on Nielsen’s acquired series sub ranking. 

The release of the first four episodes of the second season of Netflix’s The Circle on April 14 helped the reality show take the No. 9 spot on Nielsen’s overall ranker and No. 3 on the originals chart. Adapted from a British reality game show, The Circle’s 16 episodes drew 443 million viewing minutes. Netflix will stream four new episodes of season two in the coming weeks.

Nielsen weekly rankings - original series April 12-18

Original series (Image credit: Nielsen)

Jamie Foxx’s new Netflix show Dad Stop Embarrassing Me! came in at No. 4 on Nielsen’s originals chart. In its first four days on the streaming service the eight-episode series garnered 330 million viewing minutes in the U.S.

Nielsen weekly rankings - acquired series April 12-18

(Image credit: Nielsen)

Previous Weekly Rankings:

April 5-11: Give Netflix's 'Thunder Force' Five for Winning the Week of April 5-11

March 29 - April 4: Netflix’s ‘The Irregulars’ Tops the Easter Week Charts

March 22-28: - 'Falcon and Winter Soldier' Tops SVOD Originals

March 15-21: - 'Grey's Anatomy' Re-Runs Top SVOD Ranker

March 8-14: - ‘The Crown’ Got Royal Gains from Meghan’s Big Oprah Interview

March 1-7: - Amazon Tops the Charts for the First Time with ‘Coming 2 America’

Feb 22-28: - Netflix’s 'Ginny & Georgia' Leads the SVOD Biz