Alison Breen / Gavel Media

Has Netflix Been Dethroned?

‘Twas the day of Nov. 12, when all through the world, not a millennial was stirring, not even myself. This, of course, was because Disney+ had launched worldwide on that Tuesday. Christmas certainly came early for many people. Once you realize the absolutely massive amount of childhood memories now at your fingertips (The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, Wizards of Waverly Place, That’s So Raven, and more), you too will be as quiet as a mouse. Like myself, many people holed up in their beds and binge-watched the long-forgotten masterpieces. But is it all sunshine and rainbows? Is Disney+ the Christmas present we all wanted? Or is there a lump of coal hidden at the bottom?

Well, for starters, the number of shows available is no joke. “Absolutely massive” is an apt description. From Disney Channel’s original shows and movies to the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), there is no shortage of things to watch. Netflix currently holds the most power in this war of streaming services, but Disney+ landed quite the attack with its launch. The movies and shows of Disney+ all came as promised. We were told that they would open the vault and they did. Netflix, on the other hand, has been lacking in its ability to produce new, convincing shows for its subscribers. It seems that while many rave about the newest shows on the platform, Netflix will always go back to milking their cash cow: Stranger Things. Time will tell if Disney+ will have the same problem. For now, Disney+ shows seem to offer more than Netflix ones do. Classics from the past always satisfy viewers while shows like The Mandalorian prove that Disney+ can create convincing new series.

Price-wise, Disney+ comes out on top again. Netflix will run subscribers $12.99/month for its Standard two device plan and $15.99/month for its Premium plan. Disney+, on the other hand, will only cost you $6.99/month. That alone should be convincing enough to go try it out. Limitless good shows and at nearly half the price of Netflix? What more could you ask for? If that was not enough, Disney revealed that paying $12.99/month (the same as Netflix) would net you a Hulu and ESPN+ subscription. Even if the Disney shows could not satisfy you, then Hulu surely will. All in all, Disney+ offers more bang for your buck.

However, in writing this review I wondered: Will it last? Will Disney continue to produce good shows to keep its platform afloat? Will the nostalgia of Disney Channel wear off? First, Disney holds the money and capability to make quality new shows. They made the MCU, which has profited more than any other film franchise in history. In fact, of the top five highest-grossing films in history, Disney has made four of them. If that does not say what they are capable of, nothing will. 

Now comes the hardest part. Nostalgia, the feeling of utter bliss, looking back at a time much simpler than now and reveling in it. This happiness surely comes with Disney+. But is it a blessing, or a curse? Nostalgia comes from remembering what is lost. With Disney+, nothing is lost. All the shows anyone could ever hope for are now online. No more wistfully remembering the classics as they are all available to stream. With such power comes a great cost. With such availability, we run the risk of having the unthinkable happen: making nostalgia obsolete. Will Disney+ make everyone used to Disney shows again? Will nobody care about seeing their favorite childhood memories in show form?

Disney+ offers one of the widest varieties of shows known to mankind. From the Disney vault to Hulu and beyond, nobody can complain about what it offers. At a price too good to argue, very little stands between the consumer and limitless entertainment. But will this entertainment come at a dire cost? Only time will tell, and in that time, I will be continuing to rewatch of Wizards of Waverly Place.  

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