Wednesday 29 April 2015

Quick Hit: Plotting the Reception of a TV Show Across Seasons

I'm sure that a lot of us have wondered whether the Simpsons has declined in quality over its 26 seasons. A new resource, developed by Kevin Wu, called GraphTV plots viewer ratings of episodes from IMDb and then calculates a regression line to explore linear trends. You can click on individual data-points (i.e., episodes) to explore shows that were particularly highly rated, or panned. It's a really fun way to explore the arc of an entire series and a clever use of crowd-sourced data that's been visualized to be more accessible. And yes, it appears that most agree that the Simpsons just isn't as good as it used to be. In contrast, The Wire appears to have gotten better each season. What would be really interesting would be to use different curve-fitting models to explore nonlinear associations (e.g., shows that get better, peak, then decline).   

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