Hulu doesn’t think simultaneously releasing all episodes of its upcoming original comedy and drama shows — ala Netflix — is a good strategy. Instead, the streaming video company will continue with its weekly release schedule, according to Variety. Hulu exec Craig Erwich believes the traditional release schedule is still preferable as it gives each episode of a show the recognition it deserves for viewers and critics alike.
“We want to give viewers an opportunity to discover their favorite shows every week,” said Erwich during the Television Critics Assn. conference. “Like you, we value the shared experience and the joy of the water cooler experience that is television.”
But the weekly release schedule doesn’t promote the binge-watching that has helped drive Netflix original series like Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, and others to success. As Variety notes, the pluses and minuses of simultaneous releases have recently been a hot button topic in the industry. It’s still up for debate which strategy generates more social media buzz, but both Netflix and Amazon have stuck to the simultaneous release strategy.
The announcement comes on the heels of Hulu expanding its original content, which includes upcoming series like The Mindy Project, Casual, The Way, and J.J. Abrams’ 11/22/63. Commenting on Hulu’s decision, Casual‘s exec producer Liz Tigelaar agreed with the company. “[Binging]’s almost like over-eating,” said Tigelaar according to The Hollywood Reporter. “I think there’s something great about really being able to digest something.” That said, viewers will still be able to binge-watch past episodes of shows after they’ve been released.
While Hulu won’t be changing this aspect of its service, it is testing other ways to improve its product, including a pricier, ad-free subscription tier and acquiring high-profile shows like Seinfeld, South Park, and Fox’s Empire.
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