Streaming services disregard their appeal with weekly episode uploads

Sophie Shive, Reporter

Streaming services, like Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video pride themselves on their abundance of options without the issues and annoyances of cable. Subscribers can watch whatever they want, whenever they want. However recently streaming services have introduced a weekly drop of episodes. Hulu coins the phenomenon “rolling” availability.

Netflix released the reality shows “Too Hot to Handle” and “Love is Blind”, however a portion of the season couldn’t be accessed until a few weeks after the season drop. Netflix isn’t the only culprit. Hulu originally only released the first two episodes of “The Handmaid’s Tale”, Disney+ uploaded weekly episodes of their hit show “Highschool Musical the Musical”, and Amazon Prime Video sticks to a weekly release for almost all their shows.

Delayed release for shows that aren’t owned by the streaming service make sense. Production companies own the rights to their shows and therefore can dictate release dates. But shows filmed by streaming service don’t have the limitations generated by ownership rights. “Too Hot to Handle”, “Love is Blind”, “The Handmaid’s Tale”, and “Highschool Musical the Musical” are all streaming service originals; therefore, they don’t have an excuse.

Services could be delaying their uploads to prevent people from subscribing, binging a show, and unsubscribing. Streaming services have monthly subscriptions therefore weekly released shows force subscribers to pay for up to three months. However, this wouldn’t stop people from doing that to all the other released content. Services decision to delay release of episodes is selfish and defies the appeal of streaming services. But what do we expect? Streaming services aren’t exactly innocent when it comes to unnecessary economic decisions. From 2014 to 2022 Netflix’s standard subscription price increased from $8.99 to $15.49. Similarly, Disney+ charged $30.00 to watch the live action version of Mulan.

Streaming services have the advantage of binge watching. No one wants to wait weeks to watch the next episode. It’s the 21rst century, we’re past this. If we wanted to wait, we would have cable.