Remember last year when the Disney+ streaming release was first announced and the whole internet went crazy? People saying that this would be the service that would “kill Netflix” or would be the start of the streaming wars. I miss those times. They were so much more simple. Moving on, it’s been almost a year after the release of Disney Plus and a whole bunch has changed within the world of the streaming networks. Since the initial launch of Disney+, we’ve gotten new services such as HBO Max and coming this week, Peacock. However, so far none of these new services have not really had the big driving force that Disney+ had upon launch. Why? Well because those services are not Disney. Looking back on the hype, I remember it was relatively high and myself included was excited for the service. I mean who wouldn’t? Disney had Star Wars + National Geographic + Pixar + Marvel + Disney. To add onto the hype there were the high profiled originals such as The Mandalorian and other newfound content on the service upon launch, only for a monthly price of $6.99. Pretty sweet deal but was it really all the hype? How has Disney+ done since the launch back in November?
The Overall Network Itself
As a network, Disney+ wins in the family department with hours worth of programming for kids and anyone who loves Star Wars or Marvel. There’s even some 20th Century Fox content on the service as well that allows there to be a wider range of content that is not specifically Disney. However, I will add one of the biggest problems with the service is there’s not enough diverse content for older viewers but that we’ll break down later. Overall, the interface on Disney+ is pretty easy to follow with there being hubs for each well known property such as Marvel, Pixar, Star Wars and several profiles are also allowed to be created on the streaming network. I think I slightly like the interface of Disney+ a little bit better than Netflix as it’s a little easier to follow. I think with a price of only $6.99 a month, it’s a pretty good deal with all the content that you get and is significantly cheaper than networks like HBO Max and Netflix. Another thing I want to point out is the service has been working pretty well since launch, with the exception of launch day. On the launch day, the service kept crashing and I assume that’s because it was so high in demand, it became too much on the severs. Thankfully, that doesn’t seem to be a problem anymore so I assume they’ve gotten that worked out. Maybe that’s just on my end but as a whole, the service works pretty smoothly.
The Content Is Not Diverse Enough For Older Audiences
Revisiting what I mentioned earlier, Disney+ has a problem that Netflix and other streaming services do not have. That is lack of diverse content for older audiences. I understand that Disney is known for being “family friendly” but when it comes to streaming services, it’s very crucial to have content that appeals to adults because at the end of the day, they’re the ones paying for the service. Several of Disney Plus original content such as Love Victor, High Fidelity, and a few others were pushed to Hulu due to mature content which is understandable but still shows Disney’s concern about what goes on the service. I guess this makes sense and there is a bundle deal where you can get Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu for $12.99 a month so there is that factor. Still, I think this aspect alone made it pretty obvious to me that Disney+ would not kill Netflix because at the end of the day, not everyone wants to just watch Disney movies all day. I think upon launch, there was extreme hype for nostalgic reasons and once that cooled down, the interest started to dwindle. I tried to rewatch some Disney Channel Original Movies and wow some of them were rough. I mean they can all have a special place in our hearts but let’s not deny those movies are extremely corny and have questionable dialogue. Still with content like The Mandalorian and the quarantine lock down going on, Disney+ has been enough to keep people subscribed. I know during quarantine, I did watch Disney Plus but I watched more of Netflix than anything else. I do like Disney+ but there’s just a wider range of content on Netflix and it feels like Disney relies on franchises like Star Wars, Marvel, and their well known IPs, to help keep their service afloat.
Disney+ Really Needs To Increase Their Original Content
Moving onto our next point which is the small amount of original content that Disney+ has. So far the most high profiled original we’ve gotten has been The Mandalorian, which is hands down the best original series they have on their platform. Season 2 is set to hit our screens again this fall, having finished filming prior to COVID. Other content that we got at launch was the High School Musical series (Surprisingly a good show, would recommend), the Jeff Goldbum show, and a few others. Since then we haven’t gotten much but to fill the gaps we have gotten movies like Artemis Fowl (terrible movie) and just recently, Hamilton, which helped bring in new subscribers so congrats on that I guess. Either way, I pretty much subscribed to Disney+ for the originals and it’s been a pretty dry slate for 2020. Now this is probably because of the pandemic, but still original content is crucial for a streaming network and several people also subscribed for the originals. So far for original content this year we’ve gotten Diary Of A Future President, a few original movies, and several documentaries. None so far has captured my interest but that’s my personal preference. Once their originals get back to filming, we’ll probably see an increase in content but still their original plan from the get go seemed weaker compared to Netflix. I’m pretty sure they planned to space out their originals probably to keep the hype going but when you compare to Netflix (Which has new content all the time) their slate of originals is very weak. I’m still holding out hope we get Wandavision in December at least because out of all the Marvel shows, that one looks the most interesting in my opinion. I think there’s a solid chance we might still get it. That might just be my optimistic thinking though, we’ll see.
Overall Was It Worth The Hype?
So overall to answer the question, was Disney+ worth the hype? I would say it’s a double edged sword. I think originals like The Mandalorian along with nostalgic favorites did fulfill the hype. Everyone was excited to binge their Disney favorites but after a month, I think the overall excitement of it all started to decline. However, I think that because Disney+ lacks more broader range of content for adults, the service seems smaller as a result. If you have kids and they love Disney then it’s great to have, especially during quarantine. However, I will say that Disney+ desperately needs to work on getting their high profiled content up. I know that several Marvel projects have been delayed due to the pandemic but they should at least try to get one of their Marvel shows out this year if they can. I would vote Wandavision because I think they could ideally have it ready by December. Either way, the drought of original content concerns me because I believe the anticipation of the Star Wars and Marvel shows is what added to the hype. Either way, with The Mandalorian Season 2 coming out this year, it’s very likely that Disney+ will be in the clear. Overall, I think Disney+ is a fine service, it has most of your favorites all in one place, the monthly subscription of $6.99 is pretty cheap, but it’s not a service that would’ve ever killed Netflix. Still a fun subscription to have if your craving a good old fashioned “cheesy” Disney Channel Movie from your childhood because “nostalgia” is a trend apparently.
Do you think Disney+ lived up to the hype? Tell is in the comments below!