The landscape in Hollywood is shifting, as major studios respond to declining theater attendance, skyrocketing production costs, and the (seemingly) unstoppable rise of streaming services. The current tactic these days is to launch an exclusive streaming service that captures (and retains) the most eyeballs. Netflix currently holds the belt, but contenders like Amazon and Hulu are punching upward, while newcomers like CBS, Sony, and Disney are poised to jump into the ring. To extend my (lame-o) sports metaphor: there can only be one champ! It’s a dumb metaphor, I know, just play along…
Netflix and Disney are the two most intriguing competitors in this space, which is interesting given their mostly successful relationship to-date. I’m speaking primarily of the Marvel shows on Netflix (Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, The Defenders, and The Punisher). When Disney announced their intentions to launch a stand-alone streaming service they explained that all of their content would be departing Netflix, except for the aforementioned Marvel series… but that too suddenly seems up in the air. However, is this necessarily a bad thing?
Disney and Marvel have learned over the years that farming out or licensing their content doesn’t always yield high-quality results (Fox’s awful Fantastic Four being a keen example of great content turning sour when placed in the wrong hands). Netflix’s Marvel series have been hit and miss; most of these shows started out great, but the back halves of each season seems to fade — Iron Fist and The Defenders were mostly fun, but they were not good. Momentum for these Marvel shows on Netflix is fading fast.
The Wall Street Journal (via ComicBookMovie) reports that Disney’s future TV shows will be produced in-house and will air on their exclusive streaming service. They are vague regarding the existing Netflix shows, but it’s hard to imagine Disney renewing these shows at their main streaming competitor. However, given the quality concerns of the Netflix-Marvel shows, it might be better for fans if they’re all under the big Disney umbrella. Netflix understands this, and their purchase of Mark Millar’s Millarworld suggests that they’re prepared for that day, if and when it occurs.
Will you stick with Netflix if it loses its Marvel shows like Daredevil and The Defenders? Let us know in the comments down below!