Proving the adage “there’s too much goddamn TV” correct, FX’s research department calculated that there were 455 original scripted series on the air this year across broadcast, cable, and streaming services. That’s an 8 percent increase from last year, when there were 421, and a 71 percent increase from 2011. FX released the results of its study of the vast television landscape today along with a handy chart. While the number of broadcast, pay cable, and basic cable series went down from last year; Streaming companies more than doubled their output.
These findings would prove that, no, 2016 was not the year in which we hit ”Peak TV” as FX Networks CEO John Landgraf previously forecast. In all fairness, at the Television Critics Association press tour back in August, Landgraf had updated his prediction. “It now seems clear that, at a minimum, the peak will be in calendar 2017—and there is enough inertial momentum here that we could well see the growth trend carrying over into the 2018 calendar year,” he said. In a statement accompanying the study, FX’s executive vice president for research, Julie Piepenkotter, said: “Peak TV was once again far from peaky in 2016.” Though the numbers might be daunting, perhaps you can take solace in the fact that it would be really incredibly difficult to keep up with it all.