With SVoD services more popular than ever, it only made sense that PlayStation would decide to get in on the action and stream some of their own content. Their first original series is Powers, the Sci-Fi/Drama co-created by Brian Michael Bendis (the writer behind the source comic of the same name) that follows homicide detectives Christian Walker (Sharlto Copley)—a former super who had his powers taken from him—and Deena Pilgrim (Susan Hayward) as they investigate superhuman-related crimes.
The series – originally developed at FX prior to it finding a home at PlayStation – aired on PSN in March, and although the critical response was not stellar (read our review of the first three episodes), the show has quickly earned itself a season 2 order.
THR reports that Powers, which ranks as PSN’s most-watched series premiere on the platform, will return for a second season in 2016. Sony Computer Entertainment America VP of Platforms Marketing John Koller, discussed Powers in the press release:
“The reception to Powers has been incredible, and we are thrilled to have successfully launched a platform for original content with the PlayStation gamer in mind. We believe original content will continue to be a key pillar as we broaden the value proposition of PlayStation Plus, and we’re excited for what’s to come with season two of Powers.”
Jamie Erlicht, President of Programming and Development at Sony Pictures Television, also teased fans on what to expect in season 2:
“There is a lot to look forward to in season two for both new and existing fans of the series, as we broaden the Powers universe and bring even more of the fan-favorite characters and storylines to life.”
For those who have yet to see Powers, the show delves into some of the dark parts of humanity (as made clear by the season 1 trailer) and tackles relevant social subjects like the search for fame. The entire first season is available to PSN and is free to PlayStation Plus subscribers.
Battling to exist as a super-hero based show has never been more difficult considering programs like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., The Flash, Daredevil and Gotham are your main competition (not to mention Power’s complicated past already put it at a disadvantage). But it isn’t impossible; Powers has supposedly found a way to reach a target audience successfully, without feeling like an unneeded addition to a market already saturated with superheroes. But how?
One reason is because the comic already has a pre-existing fan base to build upon—but that is only enough to draw people in. Keeping their attention is the challenge, and Powers is unique in the sense that it caters to convenience; Playstation Plus has millions of paid subscribers which allows the show to be free to watch. And superhuman-adventures have never been in higher demand, so it seems the more the better. Of course like Netflix it’s hard to confirm what the ratings response to the show was; all we know is that Playstation is willing to double-down on it.
A big challenge Powers will face moving forward is how well the storylines can be crafted. Since the show’s universe will continue to broaden, each plot point and character progression will be viewed with a bigger microscope, and thus require more attention. Season 2 will be a true test to whether or not the show can retain the same level of success and how Playstation will handle its continuation of original content—not only for Powers, but for future shows as well.
Powers season 2 will air in 2016.