Currently, much of the collective internet is reacting to the exciting and certainly surprising news that the first two seasons of Outlander are coming to Netflix US on May 27. This is no small feat — it’s rare to see this happen with a premium-cable show still on the air. That’s what makes some of the headlines about Outlander “finally” coming to Netflix US so funny; they act like this is something that they just expected to see at some point when there really was no evidence that was ever going to come to pass regardless of what Netflix has done internationally with the show.
Yet, we do now have all of the verification we need that we’re getting at least some of the show on the streaming service … but don’t expect “some” to equal all anytime soon.
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The main reason why we’re getting Outlander on Netflix is because we’re getting it in moderation. Because there are now four seasons out there, it makes a little bit of sense for Netflix to get a couple of them. They’re not getting so much that they’re trampling on the value that Starz has in the series, but they’re getting enough to get you hooked. Hopefully, this will be enough to satisfy, given that we don’t think any future seasons will be dropping anytime soon.
As a matter of fact, we’d be shocked if season 3 hit the service at any point before the summer of 2020. Why? Well, for starters, we’re not sure that season 5 will be over on Starz until then. Our feeling is that season 5 will premiere on Starz in the first half of next year, and if Starz and Sony are thinking in terms of good business, it makes the most sense for the network to have some exclusivity on the two most-recent seasons. That incentivizes people to subscribe to watch them and not just “wait around ’til it comes on Netflix.” That strategy can at times be damaging to shows trying to make money airing live elsewhere.
Think of the Netflix deal like a carrot — or, something a little more delicious. Think of it as someone hovering a giant chocolate bar over your head. They give you a bite of the chocolate on Netflix, but if you want to take another bite, you gotta pay for Starz in order to get it. Then, you get all of the chocolate until they go out and produce another bar. It’s the model where everyone makes the most money, and this is why we stated yesterday that the Netflix deal may help Starz renew Outlander for a season 7. If it gets new viewers to subscribe to their service, then this is a massive win-win for all parties involved.
Can we just say that the next month and a half is turning out to be pretty darn special for Netflix viewers? You’re getting Outlander plus a new season of Lucifer and then Designated Survivor early in June … There is a lot to look froward to!
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