Around and around we go. Netflix, of course, began life only hosting content from other networks. However, since that time, streaming platforms have begun an arms race for the best original content. But now things are once again changing. Warner Bros. Discovery is negotiating licensing rights to HBO originals with Netflix. HBO, notoriously protective of its properties, created HBO Max as a streaming platform to house its work as a direct Netflix competitor. But now HBO Max has lost the HBO, and now we can turn to Netflix to stream at least one HBO original series, with more to come. What a wild world we live in.
First up, Issa Rae’s comedy Insecure has officially arrived on Netflix. Per Deadline, other HBO properties Band of Brothers, The Pacific, Six Feet Under and Ballers will also soon arrive on the Netflix platform as part of the co-exclusive agreement between Max and Netflix. Additionally, outside of the United States, True Blood will begin to stream on Netflix. It remains to be seen if other properties will follow as well, or if Max will look to other streamers for similar deals.
Things in the streaming world have been taking turns of late. Recently, Max removed some HBO originals from its platform and housed them on FAST (Free Ad-Supported Streaming TV) channels such as Roku and Tubi. At the time that seemed like a shocking play, but FAST channels are an entity different to Max. Netflix and Max, however, are both SVOD (Subscription Video on Demand) platforms. And that makes this Netflix deal for HBO’s content a horse of a different color.
Netflix also recently collaborated with Paramount+ on a bundle offering for Verizon subscribers. It looks like streamers are more open to working together than they were just recently. But does this mark good or bad news for the consumer? We and, most importantly, our wallets will have to simply wait and see.
Originally published on June 21, 2023.