I might’ve been the only person on the planet that was excited for the cheaper, ad-supported plan of Netflix. With all of these streaming services stacking up to make my monthly entertainment bill larger than paying for cable television ever was, trading $6.99/month Netflix for some ads felt like an amazing deal. I already watch commercials on other streaming services, such as Hulu, Peacock, and ESPN+ anyway. The only problem? Netflix doesn’t seem like it actually wants anyone to switch to this new tier.
As Variety first reported after the ad-supported plan went live Thursday night, anywhere from 5 to 10% of the streamer’s original titles, depending on your country, would be completely unavailable due to licensing restrictions. Huh? I thought my punishment for paying less would be watching five-ish minutes of ads every hour, but now I’m not allowed to watch entire series? Netflix’s long rollout reminded me of HBO gutting dozens of shows and films last month, only to then come around and tell subscribers that they’ll likely be paying more for a service with less content soon. Even the Disney/Hulu/ESPN+ bundle is getting a $1 price hike in December. Are these streaming services, you know, doing alright?
“Nothing about the way you watch Netflix is going to change,” an ad for the new plan reads on Twitter. Nothing? What about how many of the shows I would watch being put under lockdown, like a set of parental controls? If the reason you signed up for the cheaper Netflix plan is to binge Peaky Blinders and House of Cards, sorry, you’re out of luck. You’ll now find these titles restricted to at least the $9.99/month Basic Plan. Though Netflix has yet to reveal all of the shows currently unavailable to the new ad-supported plan, Variety noted that Arrested Development, House of Cards, Peaky Blinders, New Girl, The Magicians, The Last Kingdom, The Sinner, Good Girls, The Good Place, Knight Rider, Queen of the South, Marlon, Friday Night Lights, and Uncoupled, make up some of the restricted content. Many of the streamer’s films, including Skyfall, Oblivion, The Imitation Game, Morbius, Phantom Thread, Vice, The Bad Guys, Sing 2, and The Hateful Eight, also remain locked. (What ever will we do without Morbius?!)
“We’re going to be working on reducing [the number of restricted shows] over time,” Netflix chief operating officer Greg Peters said in a press briefing, but for now, a “limited number of movies and TV shows won’t be available.” The ad-supported tier is also currently unavailable for anyone who watches Netflix on an Apple TV. Strange! Turns out, half off Netflix is simply more like half of Netflix.
Josh Rosenberg is an entertainment writer living in Brooklyn, keeping a steady diet of one movie a day; his work can be found at Spin, Insider, Vibe, and on his personal blog at Roseandblog.com.
This content is imported from twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.