The Mandalorian In Trouble As Ratings Plummet, Ending Near?

The Mandalorian has seen a nearly 40% drop in viewership since the season 2 finale.

By Phillip Moyer | Updated

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Superhero fatigue might not be the only trouble that Disney is facing going forward — Star Wars fatigue seems to also be setting in. Despite maintaining high praise from critics in its third season, The Mandalorian is starting to struggle in the Nielsen ratings. The once-dominant force in the streaming wars has slipped down to #5 in the overall ratings, falling below Netflix’s Outer Banks and Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal, HBO Max’s The Last of Us, and Paramount+’s NCIS.

This comes as The Mandalorian suffered roughly a 20% drop from the average number of minutes viewed during Season 2, with a nearly 40% drop from the season 2 finale. This comes despite the fact that the season 1 finale of The Book of Boba Fett, which aired in early 2022, had 36% more minutes viewed than The Mandalorian‘s Season 2 finale.

However, The Book of Boba Fett‘s numbers only outperformed The Mandalorian Season 2 in the finale, and as a whole, it seems like The Mandalorian’s disappointing numbers follow a trend among both the Marvel and Star Wars Disney+ series. 

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Of course, The Book of Boba Fett was far from the only Star Wars series to be released in 2022. Both Obi-Wan Kenobi and Andor were released that same year, and despite positive reactions to both shows (and Obi-Wan Kenobi performing even better than The Book of Boba Fett), not a single Star Wars show made it onto Nielsen’s list of top streaming programs in 2022. 

Nielsen’s list of the top 15 2022 originals was almost completely dominated by Netflix, claiming 13 of the spots — with Amazon Prime’s The Boys and Rings of Power claiming the other two. Disney+ did get two spots in the top 15 acquired streaming programs, with the children’s animated show Bluey being the fifth-most streamed show, and The Simpsons reaching spot #10. With Obi-Wan Kenobi not appearing in the top 15, there doesn’t seem to be much hope that The Mandalorian will make the list this year.

Of course, the current numbers only cover The Mandalorian’s first season 3 episode, which was released on March 1 of this year. There will be a total of eight episodes this season, with five episodes having been released so far. So, not only is it still possible for The Mandalorian to make a comeback — it’s possible that it already has made a comeback, and we just don’t know it yet.

Either way, news of The Mandalorian’s disappointing ratings comes at a time when Disney has chosen to slash the budgets of the “extraordinarily expensive” Star Wars and Marvel series. Disney seems to have already delayed the release of its Marvel films, though it’s tougher to get a read on what Disney is planning to do with its Star Wars properties.

It seems that Ahsoka and Skeleton Crew are still scheduled to be released this year, and Star Wars: Rogue Squadron might still be happening despite rumors of cancellation. It’s possible that the future of the Star Wars franchise might be determined by the success (or failure) of these titles — along with The Mandalorian.