When Disney+ launched back in 2019, the service offered hundreds of great TV shows from National Geographic and Disney Channels, as well as the majority of episodes in “The Simpsons” series. However, one problem Disney+ has had is the wait between new episodes of Disney distributed series being broadcast on cable channels before coming to Disney+ is a concern for many subscribers, so let’s look at why Disney+ needs to add the episodes the day after they air.
Disney Owns A Lot Of TV Channels:
Lets, first of all, take a crack at the fact Disney+, especially in the US, own a large number of TV channels, including ABC, Freeform, National Geographic (and its sister channels), Disney XD, Disney Junior, Disney Channel, FX, ESPN (and its sister channels) and BabyTV.
Now besides FX, which is a brand on Hulu in the US, there is no reason new episodes of TV series or movies or television specials that air on any of the other channels listed above can’t appear on Disney+ the day after they air on traditional television.
It Offers More Content To Cord Cutters:
With more and more people cutting the cord every year, Disney needs to find a way to offer more of its cable shows to Disney+ subscribers. Think about this, you don’t have a cable subscription, but you want to watch shows like “The Ghost and Molly Mcgee”, “The Owl House”, and “The Wonder Years” as new episodes air, but besides “The Wonder Years” which has new episodes added to Hulu the only other way to watch the other series legally is through DisneyNow which requires a cable subscription.
Four Different Episode Release Methods…Please Pick One :
Let’s look at a big problem with Disney+ adding episodes. In the UK, we get episodes of shows like “The Walking Dead” once a week, but in the past, Disney has added new episodes of Disney Channel series in batches, including series like “Amphibia” and “The Owl House”. While shows like “Life & Beth” and “How I Met Your Father” were delayed for months.
In the past, Disney has waited for the entire season to air before adding a series to Disney+. Disney also released all of the second season of “Secrets Of Sulphur Springs” on Disney+ before they aired on Disney Channel.
With next day episodes, Disney+ could have a constant flow of new content, with many established shows taking months to be released, filling in the gaps when the Originals aren’t released.
This is a primary reason why next day episodes are needed if you or someone within your household wants to watch the newest episode of “The Owl House”, but you don’t have a cable subscription, you’ll have to wait, which leads to not being able to be apart of the conversation on social media, which could lead to having the episode spoiled for you.
With next day episodes or even the same day after premieres, this would lead to more people being able to check out a series that they may not have seen on traditional television due to missing the premiere or not even knowing what the show is about.
They Already Do It:
Okay, let’s discuss a major factor on why Disney+ needs next-day episodes and it’s really simple, Disney already does next-day episodes for select series in select countries. “The Walking Dead” is an example where the series airs on Sunday evenings in the US but is available to stream on Disney+ in the UK from 8 o’clock in the morning. While in Australia, Disney has been releasing shows like series “Single Drunk Female” much closer to the US release date, but even there things aren’t that simple.
Bringing New Content To A Wider Audience:
Let’s take a look at the final reason why I feel as Disney would be stupid to ignore this idea, the reason? Making content available to a new audience. As more consumers migrate from cable to streaming the demand for fresh content is increasing, and Disney clearly wants a piece of that pie.
One obvious form of content that would greatly benefit from this business decision would be Disney Channel Original Movies (DCOMs). In 2021 Disney Channel released three original movies, those being “Spin”, a remake of the Halloween film “Under Wraps”, and the Christmas film “Christmas Again”, all three of which got less than 600,000 total viewers on their premieres. For comparison, “Zombies 2” in 2020 reached over 2 MILLION households during its premiere, which is only a fraction of what DCOM ratings used to be a decade ago.
Times are changing, and whilst “Under Wraps” and “Christmas Again” were quickly rushed to Disney+ with a short time span (Under Wraps took one week, Christmas Again was released on Disney+ the same day it premiered), that was due to being centred around holidays. “Spin”, however, is a great movie (arguably Disney Channel’s best), and it was quickly forgotten because of how long Disney took to add “Spin” to the Disney+ catalogue.
Obviously, some countries have a few contractual issues for specific channels’ content before it premieres on Disney+ like the pre-existing between National Geographic and Sky in the UK and Ireland. But if Disney can do next-day premieres for the content, they might as well, as it could increase time spent on Disney+ by many consumers globally. As a species, humans are incredibly impatient, and we want new content now, so imagine a world where Disney+ offers next day or even same-day episodes of all their series and TV specials.
Obviously, the channels that could benefit the most from this new release model would mainly be the Disney Channels and the National Geographic channels. However, with a handful of ABC and Freeform shows being made available on Disney+ in the US, there could be more coming. Obviously, in other countries like the UK and Australia, they could benefit from new episodes of shows from the Disney Channels, National Geographic Channels, ABC, Freeform and FX, plus new ESPN 30 for 30 Documentaries when they air.
It’s quite clear that Disney+ worldwide would benefit from adding next-day episodes of currently airing shows to its catalogue. This would also lead to Disney having more time to focus on uploading legacy content and greenlighting new original IPs.
What Do You Think? Should Disney+ Add Next Day Episodes?