2023 will be another extremely busy year of new and returning Original shows on Netflix. And, thanks to the emphasis placed on weekly top ten data, and hourly viewing statistics, we’ll get to judge who are the best and worst performers of the year. Below, we’ve compiled some bold predictions for shows we think are going to shine, and some that won’t quite live up to expectations.
There’s every chance every prediction below, is incorrect. For at least a few of them, we indeed hope we’re completely wrong. No one can ever accurately predict the size and scale of a series. Sometimes shows that are meant to perform nosedive, and sometimes shows with little to no potential to exceed or rise above all expectations. This was proven in 2021 with the release of Squid Game, and the same again in 2022 with the release of Monster, and Wednesday. So for now it’s some harmless predictions based on our gut feeling about what will be some of the best and worst performing shows on Netflix in 2023.
Predicting the Best of 2023
Avatar: The Last Airbender
Avatar: The Last Airbender could land in either camp as one of the best or the worst-performing shows of 2023. But, we’re choosing to believe that the series will be one of the standout performers of the year. There’s going to be a lot riding on the upcoming adaptation, so we expect to see a strong marketing campaign from Netflix.
Fans of the franchise have history on their side to back up any skepticism. M. Night Shyamalan’s attempt at adapting the series into a live-action film in 2010 was a catastrophic failure. However, the vast majority of what we’ve seen over the course of the show’s development has been nothing but positive. The casting has been exceptional, and we cannot wait to see young Gordon Cormier in action as Aang.
Verdict: A lot of hype and excitement surrounding the series will see an exceptionally strong performance.
Shadow and Bone
Stranger Things, Netflix’s flagship series is coming to an end within the next couple of years. And with the implosion of The Witcher franchise, Netflix will be hoping to find the series that will help carry the streaming service for the next several years. The first season of Shadow and Bone was received incredibly well by audiences, and while it hasn’t hit the same heights as the likes of Squid Game, Monster, or Wednesday, it wasn’t until the second season that we saw Stranger Things become the overwhelmingly beloved show we know today.
Shadow and Bone has already set itself apart as one of the most unique fantasy shows on Netflix, and so long as it remains loyal to its source material, and continues to impress book readers, the popularity of the show can only continue to grow.
Verdict: An even stronger second season will push the popularity of Shadow and Bone to the next level.
Our Planet 2
While it may seem surprising to see a docuseries on this list, let’s not forget how utterly mindblowing the first season of Our Planet was on Netflix. Even without access to a 4k device and a premium subscription, the visuals of Our Planet will absolutely blow you away. 2023 marks four years since the release of the first season, this means there could be even further advancements in the technology that is used to document the awe-inspiring wonders of the natural world. If it isn’t already evident, we’re more than excited for round 2.
Verdict: Silverback films are the gold standard of nature documentary filmmaking, so we’re in for a treat in 2023.
Predicting The Worst of 2023
Never have we ever wanted to be more wrong on a prediction. However, when it comes to the live-action adaptations of beloved anime/manga, history has not been kind, especially for Netflix. One of the worst-performing and poorly received live-action adaptations was the ill-fated release of Cowboy Bebop, and sadly, there’s every chance we could have a Cowboy Bebop 2.0 on our hands with One Piece.
That’s not to say we think the series is going to be terrible. But when you consider just how beloved the anime series has become, naturally fans will be comparing the quality of the live-action series to the anime and manga. From casting to costume, to set design, to any changes in the story, One Piece is going to be hit with more scrutiny like no other adaptation that has come before it.
The one hope we hold onto is how involved Eiichiro Oda, the creator, and author of One Piece, has been with the adaptation. While unable to attend in person, Oda has been ever-present in the background of the show’s development. Some of the major decisions that Oda has reportedly had a hand in is the casting of the Straw Hat crew, which has been a major talking point amongst the fanbase.
Verdict: Impossibly high expectations and a skeptical fanbase could be the show’s downfall.
The Three-Body Problem
Game of Thrones, arguably the biggest television series of the 21st century, came to an extremely controversial end in 2019. Four years later, fans are still trying to wash the sour taste out of their mouths, as they continue to comprehend the self-destruction of one of the greatest television shows ever made.
Responsible for said self-destruction were Dan Weiss and David Benioff, the creators and showrunners of GoT. In the wake of the fan outrage, the pair was dropped by Disney for a proposed Star Wars trilogy, however, it wasn’t long before Netflix decided to sign the pair up to produce content exclusively. So far, Dan and Dave have only produced The Chair for Netflix, which reached a fourth for one week in the global rankings but only amassed 14 million viewing hours. Ultimately, it massively underperformed.
Their upcoming project, The Three-Body Problem, does have the potential to claw back their reputation and create something truly astonishing for Netflix. With a total of three novels in the series, this also leaves Netflix with the option to order more seasons.
It’s extremely hard to call how well The Three-Body Problem will perform on Netflix. On one hand, you have a pair of extremely talented producers who are fantastic at adapting the published source material of a popular body of work, and on the other, they are the same producers who almost single-handedly destroyed the franchise that they helped build.
Verdict: The reputation of the two showrunners is still suffering from the last major project they were involved in. Without a stellar marketing campaign, The Three-Body Problem could be a huge flop.
The Witcher (Season 3)
The final nail in the coffin for the future of The Witcher franchise on Netflix was hammered home when it was announced that after the third season, Henry Cavill would be departing his role as Geralt of Rivia. While there is plenty at fault with the adaptation of The Witcher, the one saving grace the franchise has always had was Cavill’s excellent portrayal of Geralt. For many subscribers, Cavill’s departure will leave them with very little reason to continue watching the series. That’s not a slight on the rest of the cast, however, it speaks volumes when the face of your franchise chooses to leave after previously stating he was more than willing to commit to seven seasons.
It must also be noted that Blood Origin, the prequel series, has had an exceptionally poor performance. Between the reception of the audience and the critics, had it not been a miniseries, there would have been little chance of it returning for a second season.
We’ll also make a bold claim. If filming for the fourth season of The Witcher doesn’t begin until after the release of the third season, we could see the series canceled by the end of the year.
Verdict: With Cavill leaving the series, the appetite for the third season has been reduced dramatically.
What Netflix Originals do you think are going to be the best and worst of 2023? Let us know in the comments below!