The Gist: With the recent acquisition of comic book publisher, Millarworld, Netflix made a bold move investing in creating a superhero universe. We look at how this move plays into the viewing preferences of current Netflix users, non-users, and potential users.

I’m a 26-year-old woman, but I have the soul of a geeky teenage boy. So, when I heard that Netflix had acquired Millarworld, I lost my mind. In a good way.

The Origin Story

Millarworld is a comic book publisher run by Mark Millar, the man behind great page-to-screen hits such as Kick-Ass, Old Man Logan, and Kingsman.

I’ll interject my own opinion here and say that I think we’re in for some great content, knowing the quality content both Netflix and Millarworld produce.

The press-release from Netflix reads:

Together, Netflix and Millar will bring Millarworld’s portfolio of critically and fan-acclaimed character franchises to life through films, series and kids’ shows available exclusively to Netflix members globally. Millarworld will also continue to create and publish new stories and character franchises under the Netflix label.

To summarize, the plan is to do like Disney did with Marvel and create a superhero universe of Millarworld-created characters.

With Disney pulling out of Netflix all-together, this may be just what the company needs to bring in those users they haven’t yet managed to capture.

As its first-ever acquisition, we were curious to see how this move fits with Netflix users’, non-users’, and potential/ intended users’ viewing preferences. Because I’m excited, but I’m not everyone.


First, we looked at movie preferences, specifically those who say they like watching action movies.

Recent CivicScience data show that 49% of people who favor action movies are current subscribers to Netflix.

We found that Horror movie fans were majority Netflix users, while only 42% of Action movie fans are current Netflix users.

However, 49% of Action movie fans are non-users, and 8% don’t currently use Netflix, but plan to in the future.

This feels significant. Producing a superhero universe could win Netflix the remaining 57% of action movie fans that are not current Netflix users.

A Move of Comic Proportions

We also found, that, in addition to winning over the action movie fans, this move has the potential to please Netflix’s current users.

Polling data show that 52% of Netflix users like reading sci-fi and fantasy books.

We compared fans of sci-fi and fantasy books with Netflix users, and found that 52% of fans of this genre are already Netflix users.

Meanwhile, there’s an additional 47% of sci-fi and fantasy fans that may begin using Netflix to see some of their favorite stories come to life on the screen.

Netflix Knows Its Super Strengths

According to Ampere Analysis, the 5 most cost-effective shows produced by Netflix, currently are, in this order:

1. Stranger Things
2. 13 Reasons Why
3. Narcos
4. Jessica Jones
5. Daredevil

They created this ranking by comparing the cost of production to the show’s rating on IMDB.

Apart from 13 Reasons Why and Narcos, the majority of Netflix’s most cost-effective shows are either sci-fi (Stranger Things) or superhero, with Luke Cage making the top 10, at number 7.

Clearly, Netflix has a fanbase that already highly rates the very types of shows the company would create with Millarworld. Netflix also has a knack for making these types of shows hits on a lower budget.

From our perspective, this looks like a solid move for Netflix, who also stated in their press-release on the subject that this acquisition “is a natural progression in the company’s effort to work directly with prolific and skilled creators and to acquire intellectual property and ownership of stories featuring compelling characters and timeless, interwoven fictional worlds.”

I, personally, can’t wait to see what they do.

Casting Superstars

We also took some time to dive into our database and look at who Netflix could bank on as casting decisions for their new projects. It turns out, current Netflix users have some opinions on who graces their screens.

Polling data show that Netflix users are more likely to be fans of Mark Wahlberg

Mark Wahlberg came out on top as one of the most highly favored actor by current Netflix users (54% Favorable) and Intended users (49% Favorable).

For actresses, we found that Charlize Theron and Jennifer Lawrence were pretty safe bets for keeping current users happy.

52% of Netflix users have a favorable view of Charlize Theron

52% of Netflix users have a favorable view of Jennifer Lawrence

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go cancel all future plans to make time for binge-watching.