How to rank the latests slate of Amazon pilots?

2/27 stars, votes, and imdb rating of Amazon's 2014 pilots
2/27 stars, votes, and imdb rating of Amazon’s 2014 pilots
It’s nearing the end of the first month of Amazon’s 2014 pilot season. Amazon, being a company of the digital age, posts all the pilot episodes of their new slate of shows online (here’s a link to view all of them for free) and then tracks how well they’re received by the public. Presumably, the shows that get the most interest and the highest ratings are the ones that Amazon will decide to run for a full season, though I wonder how much or whether the expected production budget of each show figures into the calculation. I worked as assistant editor on The Rebels, so I’m likely a bit more curious than the average person as to how the various pilots are doing. I’ve checked in on the pilots roughly once a week to record their metrics.

There are a few ratings for each pilot that are publicly available. These include the star rating (out of five, rounded to the nearest half-star), number of votes, and imdb rating, listed at the top of each pilot’s page. Further down the page, in the ‘Customer Reviews’ section, is a more precise star rating rounded to the nearest decimal point (i.e. 4.7 rather than 4&1/2).

At right is a table of the current standings of Amazon’s non-kid-oriented pilots as of yesterday, and below are a few graphs showing the trend in those metrics over the past few weeks:

Amazon pilots 2014 trend graphs
Amazon pilots 2014 trend graphs

It looks to me as though all the pilots have been well received by the very non-random-sampling of Amazon members who choose to both watch and review them, with the minimum star rating hitting 4 out of 5. Only Amazon knows how many viewers each episode has accrued. Bosch appears to be the runaway hit, though I can’t say for certain that this means it’ll be picked up as there are a lot of factors to which I’m not privy –such as the budget for the show and its viewer breakdown. It interests me that The After and Transparent started strong but have seen an fall in their star (and for Transparent, also its imdb) ratings over time. Until I get around to watching all the pilots I keep in mind that it’s possible that this just means the people who are most likely to enjoy those shows are the ones who were first in line to watch them, and the downward trend has nothing to do with how much I will like them. The Rebels seems to have had a pretty consistent reception, with a center of the pack star rating and a steadily rising IMDB rating. The number of votes for The Rebels and Mozart In the Jungle have been almost identical at every moment I’ve sampled, so that’s why they obscure each other in the “number of votes” chart below.


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