'Black Cleopatra' flops on Netflix, becomes lowest-rated premiere in TV history

'Queen Cleopatra' is rated 2% on Rotten Tomatoes. The critics gave it a 10%.

Queen Cleopatra flopped during its premiere on Netflix. Despite the fact that the documentary is in the top 6 most watched on the platform since it premiered this May 10, audience ratings are leaving the product at rock bottom.
Rotten Tomatoes
the specialized film and television review website, has given the lowest scores in the history of television to this documentary. Specifically, the audience rates this Queen Cleopatra with 2% while the critics are somewhat more benevolent with her, although not much, and give her 10%.

Screenshot showing the ratings the Netflix documentary, 'Queen Cleopatra' received as of May 16, 2023.
(Screenshot / Rotten Tomatoes)

The results are disastrous. More so if you measure both the critics and the audience. This is when it obtains the lowest results in history. It is true that there are series and movies that obtained up to 0% in the so-called critical tomatometer but they always had the support of the audience and with more than 20%. Thus, Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever (2002) has a 0% in the tomatometer but a 20% audience rating; One Missed Call (2008) also garnered 0% from critics and 20% from the audience; and, Left Behindthe 2014 Nicholas Cage film, received 0% from critics but 22% acceptance among audiences.

Other specialized websites do not give it a better score. Metacritic gives it a 45 / 100 average score among its critics but the audience again gives it a 0.1 percent. In the case of IMDb it doesn't get any better. Of the 36,000 people who voted, 94.2% gave it the lowest score on the website. This left Queen Cleopatra with an average of 1.1 on this website.

Critics sink 'Queen Cleopatra'.

The documentary has already arrived on the platform on the wrong foot. Chosen to play the Queen of Egypt was black actress Adele James. The documentary is part of the African Queens series and the reviews were not long in coming. They all agreed on the same fact:
Cleopatra was not black
. He was of Macedonian Greek descent. A decision that, to this day, is still defended by Tina Gharvi, creator of the fiction:

Why shouldn't Cleopatra be a melanized sister? And why do some people need Cleopatra to be white? Its proximity to whiteness seems to give it value, and for some Egyptians it seems to really matter. After many discussions and countless auditions, we found in Adele James an actress who could convey not only Cleopatra's beauty, but also her strength. What historians can confirm is that Cleopatra is more likely to have looked like Adele than Elizabeth Taylor.

The color of her skin was not, in the end, the cause of the bad ratings, but the documentary itself. Joe Kellerof Decidedefined the documentary as "a puzzle" difficult to understand where dramatic sequences are not "given enough narrative momentum to draw the audience into the story". He received a worse review from Paul Tassi of
who said that people could save themselves "the time and read the Cleopatra entry on Wikipedia, which will probably have more accurate information and be less painful to look at.