Virgin River smashes streaming record as Netflix drama deals blow to NBC’s Manifest
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Ever since Manifest was cancelled by NBC earlier this year, the hit mystery drama rocketed to the top of Netflix’s top 10 in the USA as fans binged and rallied to get the series saved. As it stands, the future of Manifest remains uncertain, with creator Jeff Rake continuing his campaign to have the series saved. However, the show’s resurgence in popularity has suffered somewhat of a blow as it’s been knocked off the top of Nielsen’s US streaming rankings [via TVLine] by the hugely popular Netflix drama, Virgin River.
Virgin River follows the love story of Mel Monroe (played by Alexandra Breckenridge) and Jack Sheridan (Martin Henderson) in a sleepy, picturesque town in northern California.
However, the quaint location has plenty of twists and turns for viewers to watch unfold, with Mel and Jack’s tumultuous romance facing obstacle after obstacle and a number of other gripping storylines from its supporting characters.
Now, for the week of July 12, the week after season three’s premiere, it’s been revealed the drama amassed a staggering 2.1 billion minutes streamed on Netflix.
This meant Manifest’s long-running position in the number one spot was snatched away, with the NBC drama slipping to second with 1.3 billion minutes viewed.
Disney+ hit series Loki came in third in the US streaming rankings, while ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix and CocoMelon rounded off the top five.
The monumental achievement by the Netflix drama didn’t go unnoticed by fans and even some members of the series’ cast.
Ricky star Grayson Gurnsey took to Instagram after the news broke to share an article stating the figures, captioning: “Not bad, not bad at all.”
While series stalwart Benjamin Hollingsworth took to the social media platform to joke: “2.1 billion dollars… Oh wait, no, I mean 2.1 billion minutes viewed.”
Season three newcomer Zibby Allen – who plays Brie – echoed Hollingsworth’s words by sharing his post to her Instagram stories.
Given the success of Virgin River’s third season and the series as a whole, it looks likely Netflix will give the green light for a fourth run.
And there are plenty of loose ends to tie up given the plethora of cliffhangers teed up in the season three finale.
Starting with Jack and Mel, the pair face their biggest roadblock ever as Mel revealed she was pregnant in the show’s final moments – only to announce it may not be Jack’s.
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Desperate for a baby, Mel had visited a fertility clinic back in LA and her late ex-husband Mark (Daniel Gillies) may well be the father.
But the show’s leading couple are not the only ones who face an anxious wait as resident medical professional Doc (Tim Matheson) faces an agonising wait over wife Hope’s (Annette O’Toole) wellbeing.
Hope was absent for much of season three and when she tried to return home, she was hospitalised following a car crash, requiring urgent surgery.
Plus, there’s the future of Brady who was last seen in handcuffs for the shooting of Jack in season two.
However, he insisted he was innocent and that he was being framed for the attempted murder – so the mystery surrounding Jack’s shooting looks set to continue.
Meanwhile, Manifest showrunner Jeff Rake is still pulling out all the stops to try and keep the series alive.
In one of his most recent updates on Twitter., Rake insisted he was “not giving up” on the show, imploring fans to “keep the faith”.
However, Manifest season four or a feature-length swan song is still yet to be announced.
Virgin River seasons 1-3 are available to stream on Netflix now.
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