Top 10 most popular Turkish series of 2020

2020 turned out to be quite difficult for Turkish show business. The forced break, that the producers and TV channels took last spring, affected the consumption of entertainment content. So what were the most popular TV shows among the Turkish viewers in the past year?

Television channels were the most affected. The spectators went to the digital platforms and have no plans to return. A particularly noticeable drop occurred in the AB ratings, that is, the educated and wealthy audience, which no longer wants to watch two-hour episodes and boring stories every week.

At the same time, TV shows viewing, which averaged 2.7 hours a day in 2019, increased to 3 hours in 2020. However, this increase is primarily due to digital platforms. Turkish TV series production is on the verge of big changes.

According to a study of Marketing Turkiye, Turkish viewers prefer psychological dramas and non-standard plots. Interestingly, the study was based not on the results of ratings, but on the preferences of viewers, which they expressed during the survey. As a result, such a rating giant as The Ottoman was omitted from the final list of Turkey’s favorite series of 2020. Therefore, the published result must be treated with some skepticism.

So, what are the most favorite TV shows this year according to the research results?

  1. The Apartment of the innocents / Masumlar Apartmanı is one of the highest-rated TV series in Turkey, which attracts the most enthusiastic viewers and enjoys well-deserved love of the audience. First place, which is unobjectionable.
  2. The Unfaithful / Sadakatsiz is another success of Cansu Dere, who is one of the most beloved Turkish stars and one of the most respected producers in Turkey, Fatih Aksoy. The story of female revenge is always interesting to the audience.
  3. Red Room / Kırmızı Oda – a project of producer Onur Guvenatam fits perfectly into the complex epidemiological situation, which contributes to the exacerbation of various phobias.
  4. Miraculous Doctor / Mucize Doktor – the leader of the last season and the record holder of ratings is gradually losing audience, but still remains in quite decent positions.
  5. The Ambassador’s Daughter / Sefirin Kızı is a long-suffering project that is scolded by all for misogyny, but the Turkish viewers continue to watch the project. It seems that they still recognize themselves in the heroes of this story.
  6. Bitter Lands / Bir Zamanlar Çukurova is one of the highest-rated TV series in Turkey in recent years, which continues to conquer the Turkish viewer, despite the departure of the two main characters.
  7. Heart Mountain / Gönül Dağı – an unexpected success of the state TV channel TRT1. A simple but touching story about ordinary people, that resonates in the hearts of the same audience.
  8. Call my agent / Menajerimi Ara – the story of the acting agency does not arouse much interest in the ordinary Turkish viewer, but it enjoys the attention and love of the AB category, that is, educated and wealthy viewers. It seems that their opinion is very important.
  9. The Pit / Çukur – Turkey’s best crime drama has entered its final phase. Although the series has recently lost some of its ratings, it remains one of Turkey’s favorite TV shows.
  10. My home My destiny / Doğduğun Ev Kaderindir – the story of a woman who is trying to solve her psychological problems and become independent has aroused a natural interest primarily of a female audience.

TV series shown on digital platforms have been placed in a special category. As digital platforms have now become a full-fledged player in the Turkish television market, this attention to them does not seem unexpected. Curiously, three of the most favorite digital series of 2020 were released on Netflix.

  1. The Gift / Atiye – the novelty of the season with one of the most beloved Turkish stars naturally aroused great interest in Turkey and was well accepted abroad. The non-standard plot and new format spurred the interest of Turkish viewers.
  2. The Protector / Hakan Muhafız – despite the fact that the series starring Çağatay Ulusoy,  was released two years ago, it continues to be among the most loved digital projects in Turkey and beyond: this year it was included in the list of the most popular international TV series in the United States.
  3. Love 101 / Aşk 101 is another novelty of the past year that has caught the attention of a young audience eagerly waiting for the continuation of this story. The second season is scheduled to premiere in the spring-summer of 2021.

It is not difficult to predict that in 2021 the main attention of Turkish and foreign audiences will be focused on the new digital platforms, and the usual television projects will have to work hard to keep the viewers. Who knows, perhaps, eventually, the TV channels will change the usual two-hour episode format and non-stop mode, when the series are filmed simultaneously with the broadcast.

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