Popular Chinese Drama, ‘The Untamed’ has took the internet by storm ever since its first release last summer. Though it has been officially more than a year since the drama has aired, it continues to fetch home many awards. It has also pioneered a new age of pay-on-demand subscription model for drama viewers, where they can now unlock episodes of the dramas in advance with additional membership fees.
The Untamed is a highly popular Chinese drama (pictured above)
In recent years, high-quality web dramas have become more and more acclaimed. From the cast, to the plot setting, and production level, the popularity index of web dramas continues to rise.
In a new research report on China’s Internet Audiovisual Development, ‘The Untamed’ was listed to have topped the list of ‘most streamed web dramas’ from the period of 2019 to the first half of 2020.
The report shows that in 2019, a total of 275 online dramas were launched on major video platforms. The industry’s focus then began to shift to the continuous improvement of content quality and continuous innovation of genres and themes of the dramas. There has also been a continuous exploration of business models for dramas, and in the first half of 2020, a total of 356 web dramas were launched, of which Youku’s short drama series accounted for more than half.
Judging from the popularity index rankings of 631 online dramas launched from 2019 to the first half of 2020, genres including suspense/criminal dramas, martial arts/xianxia/fantasy dramas, and campus youth idol dramas have enjoyed relatively hot reception from the audiences. Among them, the Xianxia drama “The Untamed” has a popularity index of 90.27, ranking first among online dramas, and it is a number that far surpasses any other online dramas.
Other dramas that made it up the list include the criminal investigation drama “The Thunder” , the campus youth idol drama “Master” followed by “Joy of Life” and “The Longest Day In Chang’an” which ranked 2nd to 4th place respectively with the popularity index of 82.95, 81.83, 81.24, and 80.94.
Among the top 20 online dramas in the popularity index, with the exception of “Love Apartment 5”, “Cat’s Cradle”, and “Three Lives, Three Worlds, The Pillow Book” which were launched in the first half of 2020, the remaining 17 were all launched in 2019. In the first half of the year, the suspense drama “Cat’s Cradle” was ranked 16th with a popularity index of 71.67.
“The Untamed” also heralded a new business model for drama streaming platforms, as it introduced the membership advanced payment to unlock episodes of the drama in advanced. Many dramas have since also adopted this business model.
According to the report, since March this year, the number of online dramas with pay-on-demand members has increased significantly, and the form of such offerings, along with its prices have gradually become fixed. It has slowly became the norm for video websites to broadcast dramas with the paid viewing option. This has become a popular business model widely accepted by users.
If you haven’t yet watched The Untamed, these are even more reasons for why you should start!