On June 5th, 2019 fans around the world rejoiced as Hulu’s award-winning dystopian drama series, “The Handmaid’s Tale” returned for its third season. Similar to other popular premieres, social media was buzzing with live-tweets, reviews, and general comments surrounding the series premiere. Using Nuvi Listen we tracked the mentions, sentiment, and unique authors for the 2018 and 2019 premieres to visualize and compare the discussions and data between the two premieres.
The premiere of season two was highly discussed via social media. Especially with big media influencers such as The New York Times, CNN, and Forbes. Many mentions of the series praised leading actress Elisabeth Moss for her role as June Osborne along with the discussion of the over-arching political feminist movement in accordance to the series. Another interesting data point from the season two premiere was the low negative sentiment score of 7%. Large media influencers shared reviews and generic recaps for the premiere, while celebrities such as Chrissy Teigen, Lance Bass, and Sarah Silverman lauded the series. These two factors resulted in a major spike of social media spread and reach for the series. The conversation and mentions surrounding the series ebbed and flowed over the following two weeks after the premiere with a total of 40,309 mentions.
With the 2019 premiere, there were many distinct differences in sentiment, overall mentions, and discussion. From 2018 to 2019 there was a 43% increase in mentions during the week of the premiere. This increase in mentions resulted from the hot political topic of pro-life/pro-choice currently taking place in the United States. Many mentions and discussions related the series back to the current political climate which sparked an increase in both positive and negative sentiments. With the season three premiere, there was a 10% spike in negative sentiment, this could have resulted in the viral sensation that is Kylie Jenner. To celebrate the return of the series, Jenner hosted a “Handmaids” themed party which included nicknamed cocktails and costumes for her guests. Social media exploded with backlash accusing Jenner of not understanding the point or concept of the show. Two weeks after the premiere social media mentions continued to increase rounding out at 164,399 mentions, a massive 308% increase from the previous season.
With the data from both premieres of “The Handmaid’s Tale” we can see that current political discussion and topics can influence an increase in mentions when the content being distributed is applicable to those topics. As we continue on in a tempestuous political climate will we see June face similar challenges in the world of Gilead? Keep watching the Handmaid’s Tale to find out.