Netflix is bringing Seinfeld to its streaming platform in 2021. That big announcement was revealed by Netflix today, in a big social media promo drop:
"Jerry & Elaine & George & Kramer & Netflix -All 180 episodes of the Emmy-Award winning Seinfeld are coming to Netflix — worldwide! — starting in 2021."
Jerry &— Netflix US (@netflix) September 16, 2019
All 180 episodes of the Emmy-Award winning Seinfeld are coming to Netflix — worldwide! — starting in 2021 pic.twitter.com/tLvcCKH4vl
If you're wondering why it's taken this long for Seinfeld to make its way onto Netflix, the answer is almost certainly that time has brought together two mutual needs:
- The makers of Seinfeld need that next big way to cash in on the acclaimed series.
- Netflix needs a hit series to replace Friends, which will leave Netflix in 2020, as well The Office, which leaves in 2021.
At the time of writing this, Seinfeld is still streaming the complete series on Hulu. However, with Disney taking a controlling stake in Hulu, and various new streaming services being launched in the next few years, NBC/Universal has some of the only content that still seems free to 'move between worlds' in this way. Seinfeld is certainly one of the top 3 titles in that catalogue of valuable content, right alongside Friends and The Office.
At the same time, one has to wonder if the Seinfeld brand will still be as strong, come 2021. The Netflix launch could easily become a timely revival for the series - or it could end up being an example of a "too little, too late," stopgap for the bingeable and rewatch-friendly series the service is going to be losing. After all, Seinfeld is the type of show that requires more attention for the comedic payoffs, rather than shows like Friends or The Office, both of which are distinguished as programs that viewers can have on as background while they perform other tasks. The closest case study comparison would be when It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (often affectionately referred to as 'Seinfeld on Crack,') was on Netflix, and ended up being one of the most valuable shows the service offered. With Sunny having a similar format and tone as Seinfeld, it seems like Netflix has made a smart (if very expensive) acquisition.
Then again, Seinfeld is significantly older than any those aforementioned shows, which (again), raises question over whether the Netflix crowd (especially the younger ones) treat it as a gem discovery or outdated piece of TV memorabilia. Before we get to any of that, though, the big question is: how much did Netflix pay to make this happen?
Seinfeld will stream on Netflix starting in 2021.