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Streaming services have been struggling with keeping up the momentum of their most popular shows, which often get a week or so in the spotlight before the internet moves on to another weekly Netflix drop or Hulu debut. Remember when Inventing Anna was all anyone would talk about for six days, and then it disappeared and now nobody can even remember what it was about? Like that!
With weekly shows like Euphoria getting massive amounts of viewers every week during its season and always trending on Twitter, it would make sense for Netflix to want to cash in on that. If everything is released at once, it’s hard to keep up with the memes, which is especially evident with Stranger Things. Netflix might agree…but they probably won’t do it.
Peter Freelander, Netflix’s head of scripted series for U.S. and Canada, recently told Variety that the weekly model wasn’t going to work for the final season of their hit series Stranger Things, or any of their shows for that matter.”For the fans of Stranger Things, this is how they’ve been watching that show, and I think to change that on them would be disappointing,” Freelander explained, saying the “binge it all in one go” model is what works best for them, and what the fans are used to. “To not give them exactly what they’ve been expecting — which is Stranger Things is a seasonal experience, they go through that with them — I think that it would be an abrupt change for the member.”
Their compromise seems to be releasing their shows in “volumes” with one releasing just months before the other. “That’s what you see [with Stranger Things] and that’s what you see with Ozark. So we have had some experimentation in that space. But it’s also, you’re giving multiple-episodic-viewing experiences, it isn’t a standalone,” Freelander added. “So it really does, what we think, honors our relationship with our members and what their expectations are. There have been other types of launch cadences, but that’s connected to an unscripted approach or a competition approach.”
For a company that spent $30 million per episode of the sci-fi hit, and lost 200,000 subscribers this year alone, maybe switching up the approach wouldn’t be a bad thing? It’s a thought.