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Frightening Netflix series ‘Squid Game’ tops list of favorite shows among U.S. adults from this year.

NEW YORK — “Spider-Man” might’ve set a box office record in its first weekend in theaters, but 2021 is still the year of “Shang-Chi.” That’s the takeaway from a recent OnePoll survey looking at the best TV shows, movies, and other entertainment releases of 2021.

Conducted between Dec. 13 and 17, the poll asked 2,000 respondents to report on the movies they saw this year – or planned to see in the case of recent premieres like “The Matrix: Resurrections” – from a cross-section of the top-grossing films for each month of 2021.

Disney’s “Jungle Cruise” proved to be the most ubiquitous film; with one out of every four movie fans (23%) seeing the theme park ride-inspired blockbuster since its theatrical release in late July.

Marvel still reigns supreme

When asked which movies were “Best of the Year” material, more people picked Marvel’s “Shang-Chi: The Legend of the Ten Rings” than any other film on the list. In fact, four of the top 20 movies of the year featured superhero characters from the same cinematic universe — “Shang-Chi” and “Black Widow,” which were produced by Marvel Studios, and “Spider-Man” and “Venom,” produced by Sony Pictures in association with Marvel.

Respondents also wrote in their own picks for best movie, citing recent critically acclaimed titles like “House of Gucci,” “The Power of The Dog,” “Belfast,” and “Licorice Pizza.”

“Netflix has been releasing quite a lot of great films in the last year and I know will continue to [do] so,” one fan says.

Speaking of Netflix, the streaming service also dominated the “Best TV Shows of 2021” category. Not surprisingly, given its status as an overnight sensation, the Korean dystopian drama “Squid Game” took the No. 1 spot. “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” from Disney+ and NBC’s “Law and Order: Organized Crime” rounded out the top three.

Meanwhile, the final season of “Money Heist,” which Netflix first began distributing in 2017, stood out as the series with the most write-in votes. Despite its five Emmy nominations, “WandaVision” proved to be the least popular Marvel series on the list, trailing “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Loki,” and “Hawkeye.”


  1. “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’
  2. “Jungle Cruise”
  3. “Spider-Man No Way Home”
  4. [Tie] “The Suicide Squad”
  5. [Tie] “Venom: Let There Be Carnage”
  6. “The Matrix: Resurrections”
  7. “Godzilla vs. Kong”
  8. “Black Widow”
  9. [Tie] “A Quiet Place Part II”
  10. [Tie] “No Time to Die”
  11. “Cruella”
  12. [Tie] “Mortal Kombat”
  13. [Tie] “Zack Snyder’s Justice League”
  14. [Tie] “Halloween Kills”
  15. [Tie] “West Side Story”
  16. “Free Guy”
  17. “Dune”
  18. “Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It”
  19. “Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard”
  20. [Tie] “Ghostbusters: Afterlife”
  21. [Tie] “Space Jam: A New Legacy”


  1. “Squid Game” – Netflix
  2. “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” – Disney+
  3. “Law and Order: Organized Crime” – NBC
  4. “Yellowstone” Season 2 – Paramount Network
  5. “The Sex Lives of College Girls” – HBO Max
  6. “The Underground Railroad” – Amazon Prime
  7. “American Horror Story: Double Feature” – FX
  8. “Masters of the Universe: Revelation” – Netflix
  9. “Impeachment: An American Crime Story” – FX
  10. [Tie] “Loki” – Disney+
  11. [Tie] “The Walking Dead” Season 11 – AMC
  12. “Equalizer” – CBS
  13. “Tiger King” Season 2 – Netflix
  14. [Tie] “The Morning Show” Season 2 – Apple TV+
  15. [Tie] “The Wheel of Time” – Amazon Prime
  16. “I Think You Should Leave” Season 2 – Netflix
  17. “Hawkeye” – Disney+
  18. [Tie] “Cobra Kai” Season 4 – Netflix
  19. [Tie] “What We Do In The Shadows” Season 3 – FX
  20. “Only Murders in the Building” – Hulu
  21. [Tie] “Maid” – Netflix
  22. [Tie] “WandaVision” – Disney+

About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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