The Last Of Us Has Been Defeated By A Teenage Drama

The Last of Us managed an impressive 1.19 billion minutes watched last month, but Netflix's Outer Banks' third season debuted with 3.15 billion, more than doubling the HBO hit.

By Lyndon Nicholas | Published

Outer Banks

HBO’s Pedro Pascal-led science fiction thriller The Last of Us has been the most talked about series of the new year and is one of the most popular new series on television. It may come as a surprise that another series has proven itself to be more popular. According to a release from the Hollywood Reporter, Netflix’s teenage drama Outer Banks racked up more views than any other series during the week of the release of its third season.

Despite the success of The Last of Us, Outer Banks came out firing on all cylinders, with over 3 billion minutes of viewing for the week of its season three premiere on February 23rd. Numbering 3.15 billion minutes, it landed the top spot in terms of viewing for an original series and, even more impressively, the top spot for overall viewing minutes.

Meanwhile, The Last of Us totaled 1.19 billion total minutes. Although this is significantly lower than what Outer Banks pulled in, this equated to The Last of Us hitting number one in the acquired series category. It led number two, Disney+’s Bluey, by a healthy margin.

The Last of Us debuted on HBO to critical and commercial success earlier this year, surpassing HBO’s 2022 summer hit and prequel to the Game of Thrones series House of the Dragon. It is the platform’s most successful original series since the fantasy series Game of Thrones. Still, the success of Outer Banks, when compared to The Last of Us, shows that the Netflix brand still holds a ton of weight and garners a significant amount of viewership.

last of us
Pedro Pascal in The Last of Us

The Last of Us is an adaptation of the 2013 PlayStation video game of the same name led by previous Game of Thrones actors Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey. The series is a post-apocalyptic sci-fi thriller about a group of survivors trying to navigate a deadly infection that causes those infected to turn into violent zombie-like creatures. The series could not be more different than competitor Outer Banks, yet both have found commercial success.

Unlike The Last of Us, Outer Banks is an original Netflix teen drama about a group of teens living in the Outer Banks of North Carolina on the hunt for a lost treasure that may be the key to finding one teen’s missing father. Premiering its first season on April 15th, 2020, the series was created and executive produced by Josh Pate, Jonas Pate, and Shannon Burke. It features a young cast comprised of Chase Stokes, Madelyn Cline, Madison Bailey, Jonathan Daviss, Rudy Pankow, Charles Esten, Austin North, and Drew Starkey.

The Last of Us has been HBO’s powerhouse series this season and has made a strong showing in terms of viewership as well. It was in the top three shows in viewership and was the only non-Netflix series in the top ten most-watched series, except for Disney+’s Bluey at number ten. The success of both The Last of Us and Outer Banks shows the diversity of the television-watching experience and how two shows from very disparate genres can both have commercial success.