How the Netflix revolution triggered subscription overload – Los Angeles Times

House of Cards
This story is part of a Times series on the great streaming wars of 2019. Click here to read the rest of our coverage of Disney +, Apple TV +, HBOMax and more. Time flies when you’re upending an industry, destroying a business model and drowning an unsuspecting populace in content. It may feel as if streaming has been with us forever, but it was just seven years ago that Netflix test-ballooned its first “exclusive” series, the Norwegian-produced “Lilyhammer” and only six years since it threw “House of Cards” down like a gauntlet. For its first original scripted series, Netflix recruited director David Fincher (“The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, ” “The Social Network”) and A-list stars Robin Wright and then-still-much-beloved Kevin Spacey. Netflix made Spacey its unofficial spokesman, taking him on a prelaunch grand tour to declare that streaming was the future of television. That same year, Amazon countered with the gimmick of posting 14 pilots, allowing viewers to vote on which ones should be ordered to series. Two years after that, HBO launched a stand-alone streaming service, HBO Now, after swearing it would never do such a thing. Hulu had gotten into the original content game in 2012, ....

We’re all too busy chasing down the new full-series dumps on streaming services or waiting for some broadcast show to move to a streaming service and trying to figure out what streaming service that will be. Those services, meanwhile, are multiplying faster than Dick Wolf’s “Chicago” franchise, recruiting writers with a rigor that makes the NBA look like a bunch of half-interested stoners, while continuing to spit out new 10-episode series practically every three minutes. Ten episodes you are expected to gulp down in a few days. It takes only two of these to add up to almost the same amount of time a person used to spend watching a show over the better part of a year. A year! If someone said, “Hey, here’s the entire season of ‘ER’ and you’d better watch it in four days because 20 episodes of ‘Friends’ and ’30 Rock’ are also available soon, ” would George Clooney even be a movie star? Think about it. Advertisement And original content is no longer enough, oh no. .

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