If you had any doubt that we are truly living in the age of Peak TV, look no further than a new study, which concluded that there were 455 original scripted series on the air in 2016.
The research comes courtesy of FX, the network responsible for coining the term Peak TV in the first place. (Network president John Landgraf used those words to describe the 2015 TV season, when an estimated 400 scripted series were set to make it on the air; the actual number was 421.) Variety interviewed the folks behind the FX Networks Research report, and determined that between 2006 and 2016, the number of scripted shows increased by a whopping 137 percent, from 192 series in 2006 to 455 this year.
Much of that staggering increase is thanks to the continued rise of original programming offered by streaming platforms such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. Since 2011, streaming services have increased original offerings from a total of 6 series across all platforms to this year's count of 93, mostly thanks to those outlets' seemingly endless wads of cash (especially Netflix, which is continuing in its quest to double its original offerings every year).
At the rate things are going, Variety estimates that 2017 could see as many as 500 original scripted series on the air, though a spokesperson for FX said that it was premature to speculate just yet.
"While it's a reasonable bet that 2017 will hover around the 500 mark, I'm going to go with Yogi Berra: 'It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future,'" said Julie Piepenkotter, executive vice president of research for FX, in an interview with Variety.
This is both good and bad news for viewers: You'll have endless options to choose from, but you'll also probably spend more time deciding what to watch than you do actually watching.
For a closer look at FX's research, check out Variety's story here.