Dragon Ball Z, the beloved 1990s Japanese animated series, has reclaimed the top spot as the most sought-after and eagerly-watched older show in the world.
According to data analysis company Parrot Analytics, Dragon Ball Z won this year’s Global Demand Awards for being the Most In-Demand Legacy Series of 2023, beating out other legendary shows across all genres and formats like classic British comedy Mr. Bean, vintage British sitcom On The Buses, iconic American sitcom Seinfeld, and the original 1960s Star Trek series.
Parrot defines a legacy series as any show that finished airing new episodes more than 20 years ago. So for a decades-old anime like Dragon Ball Z to still generate sky-high viewership demonstrates its unmatched, cross-generational appeal.
This represents a return to number one for Dragon Ball Z, which also won this same award back in 2021 for retaining such a strong worldwide fanbase so long after initially airing.
Parrot Analytics uses a proprietary data algorithm tracking online engagement across search, streaming, downloads, social media, video clips, and more to determine and rank “demand” for shows. So Dragon Ball Z‘s win speaks to its consistent popularity over the years versus other prominent classic series
Jujutsu Kaisen and Dragon Ball’s Global Dominance Reflect the Ever-Expanding Appeal of Japanese Animation
Dragon Ball Z was not the only Japanese anime series to find major success at this year’s Global Demand Awards. The popular current series Jujutsu Kaisen won the coveted most in-demand TV show in the world, beating out even mega-hit live-action shows like The Last of Us.
This further demonstrates the massive and growing global appeal of anime.
In addition, the enduring popularity of Dragon Ball is a testament to the franchise’s creators’ understanding and catering to worldwide fandoms.
Akio Iyoku, a key partner of Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama, recalled visiting South America years ago when Dragon Ball viewership was waning there.
Understanding South America as one of their biggest markets, prompted major new investments and content to reinvigorate interest across regions.
This strategy has paid dividends, as Dragon Ball now sees its popularity and availability expanding even further.
Streaming platform Crunchyroll recently announced over 800 episodes from the broader Dragon Ball franchise will launch in the UK and France this very month.
So from legacy series like Dragon Ball Z to new shows like Jujutsu Kaisen, Japanese anime continues to surge in demand globally. And savvy creators like Toriyama are finding ways to sustain and spread this enthusiasm worldwide across generations.
Anime Dominates TV, Bollywood Shines in Film
The anime series Jujutsu Kaisen was awarded the top honor of Most In-Demand TV Show Worldwide for 2023, demonstrating the far-reaching global popularity and longevity of Japanese anime franchises.
In the film world, two of last year’s biggest movie releases – the war drama Oppenheimer and the comedy Barbie – earned distinctions as the Most In-Demand Drama Movie and Most In-Demand Comedy Movie respectively.
There was also notable interest in nostalgic 1990s properties. The classic anime Dragon Ball Z took home the Most In-Demand Legacy Series award, while James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster Titanic was voted the Most In-Demand Classic Movie.
Moreover, Indian cinema had a standout year penetrating the worldwide market. The action thriller Pathaan was 2023’s outright Most In-Demand Movie overall.
- World’s Choice, TV: Most In-Demand TV Show in the World 2023: Jujutsu Kaisen
- Most In-Demand Anime Series of 2023: Jujutsu Kaisen
- Most In-Demand European Original of 2023: Black Mirror
- Most In-Demand Horror Series of 2023: American Horror Story
- Most In-Demand Latin American Original of 2023: La Rosa de Guadalupe
- Most In-Demand Legacy Series* of 2023: Dragon Ball Z
- Most In-Demand Reality Series of 2023: The Voice (US)
- Most In-Demand Series Debut* of 2023: Secret Invasion
- Most In-Demand Superhero Series of 2023: Loki
- Most In-Demand Book Adaptation of 2023: The Witcher
- Most In-Demand Children’s Series of 2023: Masha and the Bear
- Most In-Demand Comedy Series of 2023: Ted Lasso
- Most In-Demand Documentary Series of 2023: Prehistoric Planet
- Most In-Demand Drama Series of 2023: The Last of Us
It also took additional honors for Most In-Demand Action Movie and Most In-Demand Asian Export, complementing its box office achievements.
The Indian thriller Mission Majnu earned Most In-Demand SVOD Exclusive Film, demonstrating the momentum of India’s film industry finding global audiences through streaming platforms.
So while both anime and Hollywood studio films clearly continue strongly resonating across various world markets, regional media industries like India’s Bollywood are also increasingly building international fanbases as on-demand streaming makes more diverse stories accessible to wider viewerships globally.