Entertainment

America Loves Comedy, South Korea Prefers Drama: Favorite Streaming Genres by Country

Consumers globally are generally less interested in sports, horror films

Action movies and comedies were deemed the two most important types of content on streaming services by consumers surveyed in 12 countries, according to new Morning Consult data. (Getty Images / Morning Consult artwork by Anna Davis)

Global Streaming: By the Numbers

As streaming services look to combat slowing U.S. subscriber growth and churn in an increasingly competitive landscape, many have made major investments in international markets in hopes of keeping the revenue flowing. In Morning Consult’s latest entertainment series, reporter Sarah Shevenock takes a close look at the streaming habits of consumers from around the world, including China, Mexico, India and more.

Other stories in the series: How Much Consumers in Each Country Pay for Streaming | How Gen Z Streams TV Around the World | Consumers in Every Country Prefer Streaming With Ads if It Means a Cheaper Bill Weekly vs. Binge Watching: Where the World Stands | Global Streaming Users Say Pricing Options, User-Friendly Interface Are Even More Important Than Content

Entertainment is sometimes called the universal language, as viewers all over the world can enjoy the same film or TV series no matter where it was produced. According to new Morning Consult data, that’s doubly true if the content in question is an action movie or a comedy. The two genres stood out when respondents in several countries were asked what types of content matter most when selecting a streaming service.

Many Consumers Across the Globe Want Action Movies, Comedies on Streaming Services

Respondents were asked how important the following programming categories are when considering subscribing to a streaming service:

Surveys conducted March 3-8, 2022, among a representative sample of 999-2,211 adults in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Korea, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, with an unweighted margin of error of +/- 2-3 percentage points. Figures may not add up to 100% due to rounding.
Consumers’ favorite film and TV streaming genres
  • Action movies and comedies were deemed the two most important types of content on streaming services by consumers in 12 countries, including India, China, Brazil and the United States. Adults in Australia, Japan, South Korea and the United Kingdom said dramas were most important.
  • Consumers in India, the United States and Brazil most favored comedy, while French, South Korean and Japanese respondents were least into the genre.
  • Consumers in China are not the biggest fan of dramas, as only 26% of respondents in the country said the genre was important.  
  • Respondents across the globe were largely in agreement when it came to the programming that was least important to include on a streaming service: horror movies. Only consumers in Canada and Mexico ranked a different genre (sports) below horror films. 
  • Adults in every country included in the survey prioritized the inclusion of new, original content over older programming. But there was still interest in classic, older library content. Consumers in India (76%), Brazil (65%), Canada (58%) and Australia (57%) said it was important for services to include these older movies and TV shows. 
The impact

While Morning Consult data shows consumers prioritize pricing options and a user-friendly experience when selecting a streaming service, they’re also looking for a large content library filled with comedies and action movies. 

As streaming services build out their original offerings, they’ve keyed in on this, as many of the most popular series and films on streaming, including Netflix Inc.’s “Red Notice,” “Hawkeye” and “Ted Lasso,” involve either comedy or action (and often both simultaneously). Dramas might elicit the most internet think pieces, but ultimately, consumers want big stunts or big laughs above all else. 

Surveys conducted March 3-8, 2022, among a representative sample of 999-2,211 adults in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Korea, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, with an unweighted margin of error of plus or minus 2-3 percentage points.

Morning Consult