Google reveals the world’s most-searched movies and shows of 2021


It’s been real, 2021…real awful. We can’t wait to get you out of our sights and to move onto whatever 2022 brings—but until then, Google Trends has handily chronicled the year’s most-searched terms in handful of categories.

The most widely searched food of 2021, for instance, was birria tacos. Alec Baldwin, Kyle Rittenhouse, and Armie Hammer topped the most searched “actors” and “people” lists for various, cursed reasons. Let’s focus on Google’s film and TV findings to figure out what titles the global, Google-using population actually yearned to know more about.

The world’s top ten most searched movies of 2021 were:

1. Eternals
2. Black Widow
3. Dune
4. Shang-Chi and the Legend of The Ten Rings
5. Red Notice
6. Mortal Kombat
7. Cruella
8. Halloween Kills
9. Godzilla vs Kong
10. Army of The Dead

That’s four Disney productions, three big-budget Marvel superhero movies, two Netflix originals, and a Michael Myers in a pear tree. Only Red Notice is a fully original story, not based on any existing franchise or source material, and to be honest it’s the only movie on the list that I’ve never heard another human being express any organic interest in.

The top 10 movies are all English-language Hollywood productions, but you’ll notice a bit more diversity moving onto Google’s list of the top ten most-search TV series of 2021:

1. Squid Game
2. Bridgerton
3. WandaVision
4. Cobra Kai
5. Loki
6. Sweet Tooth
7. Lupin
8. Ginny and Georgia
9. True Beauty
10. BBB21

Netflix has clearly achieved near-total world domination, perhaps since other streaming services still offer different libraries based on one’s location. Six of the top ten titles are Netflix originals, two are Disney+ MCU series based on hugely popular comic book heroes, and four shows are in languages other than English (the bottom two titles respectively are a South Korean makeover drama and Big Brother Brazil, FYI).

Nobody will be surprised that the viral success of Squid Game plonks it atop the search result findings, but perhaps both of Google’s media lists taken together will signal something for 2022. Audiences have clearly taken an interest in ensemble stories, about diverse groups of people coming together to face life-or-death odds.

Throw in some sexy aristocracy, big monkeys and lizards, and a little R-rated, throat-ripping action, and you’re sure to make something that’ll dominate 2022’s list.

Squid Game: Season 1

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