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Game of Thrones rules On-Demand, Marvel dominates Google as year-end trends snap into focus

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May 11, 2020, 9:39 PM EDT (Updated)

Say what you will about 2018, but the past year delivered some insanely good genre movies and TV shows, like Avengers: Infinity War and The Haunting of Hill House. Speaking of the former, this was a very good year for Marvel, and not just Disney, either. 

Based on the top movie searches released by Google, four out of the five biggest searches in 2018 were for Marvel films released by three different studios. From highest to lowest, they are Black Panther, Deadpool 2, Venom, and Avengers: Infinity War. Yes, Sony's somewhat lackluster Venom movie got more searches than the Marvel Studios crossover project that took 10 years and 18 features to create. 

Black Panther also made the Top 5 list of most general searches made in the last year, falling just behind Marvel legend Stan Lee, who passed away last month at the age of 95. Lee was well known for appearing as himself in nearly every Marvel movie to date.

Over at Netflix, only one genre series made the "most-streamed" list of 2018, Mike Flanagan's The Haunting of Hill House. Had news of all the Marvel cancellations come a little earlier in the year, perhaps Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist may have made the cut as well. However, Kiernan Shipka, lead of Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, was mentioned as one of the new Netflix talents whose Instagram following ballooned since January. 

Credit: Netflix

Even HBO's Game of Thrones had a powerful presence this year, despite not airing a single new episode. As USA Today reports, the high fantasy series was "the top video-on-demand pick" for 2018.

With the eighth and final season set to premiere in April, we suspect that the massive amount of viewership could be due to fans wanting to refresh themselves before the new episodes in 2019, or new fans wanting to catch up before the series finale arrives. 

"The fact that that show is still ranked No. 1 across the board when it wasn't even current is pretty incredible. It shows just  how large of a following that show has (and) how new people are still discovering it," Brynn Lev, VP of editorial and programming at Comcast Cable, told USA Today

Westworld, Outlander, and The Simpsons were among some of the other most popular on-demand genre TV titles from the last year.