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The Netflix One Piece show was so good it boosted the anime's viewership on the platform

Make a good show and people will want more. Who knew?

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The One Piece live-action series on Netflix was surprising not just because it did such good numbers for the streamer, but because fans and critics alike really enjoyed it. It captured the joy and spirit of adventure from the show while only slightly scarring us with Luffy’s body horror stretching powers. Even the English cast was impressed with their live-action counterparts, but the series had the unexpected effect of getting more people into the One Piece anime.

Normally, we’d expect it to be existing fans who watch the live-action adaptation of an anime, but Netflix’s streaming numbers from the last half of 2023 show that the anime saw a significant boost in viewership around the time the live-action crew set sail. Viewership of the One Piece anime doubled in the second half of 2023 compared to the first half of the year, a remarkable jump that helped it become the most viewed anime on the platform, beating out titles like Pokemon and Naruto.

This boost also helped grow anime in general on Netflix. Anime viewership accounted for 3.5 billion hours on Netflix in the last six months of 2023, which is 14% more than the first half of the year. What is significant about that rise is that Netflix viewership actually decreased slightly in the second half of 2023. Fans watched 90 billion hours of Netflix in the last half of the year compared to 93 billion in the first half, which makes anime one of the areas of growth for the platform.

What does it all mean? The lesson that we hope Netflix takes from this is that a quality adaptation doesn’t just pull in viewers for that show – it can drive engagement for the franchise as a whole. The Netflix One Piece show gave the anime a huge boost because it was so well received and made people want more of Luffy and the other Straw Hats while they endure the long wait for the second season.

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