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Netflix Announces New Deal With The CW For Exclusive Streaming Rights

R.I.P., Hulu/The CW.

Supergirl Ep 18 - 1

Netflix announced today that it has signed an agreement with The CW Network which will give them exclusive streaming rights “for previous seasons of scripted series broadcast on The CW”, as well as “all future programs produced for the network … which begins with the just-completed 2015-2016 broadcast season.”

What does this mean for viewers? According to the announcement, Netflix customers will be able to stream full seasons eight days after the show’s season finale. The press release also confirmed which shows will be made available on Netflix:

Programming available to Netflix members will include the three new series on The CW’s 2016-2017 primetime schedule: Frequency, No Tomorrow and Riverdale; the hit DC series Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl, which will join Arrow and The Flash; and the network’s critically acclaimed Jane the Virgin and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. … The roster will also continue to include fan favorites such as The Vampire Diaries and series The 100, iZombie, The Originals and Reign.

We already knew that Hulu–which had previously been able to offer CW shows via streaming the day after the episode’s original airdate–can no longer do so, as their agreement had ended with The CW a few weeks prior. Unfortunately, this also means that those who want to be able to watch their CW shows via streaming will either have to watch episodes via the CW’s official video player (where a set of “rolling five” episodes will be made available at one time), purchase a season pass via places like iTunes or Amazon, or simply… wait until the full season is released via Netflix.

Given the fact that The CW is adding a bunch of new shows to their roster, this move is… well, a little confusing. As we’ve discussed previously, cable isn’t something many people have in their homes anymore–especially when there are so many television options available via streaming. Having shows made available next-day for fans made it a lot easier for people to not only watch a show they might have not been able to watch live or TiVo, but discuss with others and get caught up quickly. While it’s unclear if taking away this option will hurt The CW in terms of attracting new fans, it probably won’t be helping them.

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