From Daredevil to Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Netflix has quickly become a major powerhouse player in the world of television. Recent critical reception aside, the network, as a whole, has certainly made good on its recent promises to increase the output of its original series. However, while the increase has happened, the extent to which it has is still rather surprising.
Just how much of an increase took place in the last year? Enough to take Netflix passed the production amount of major networks such as FX and HBO.
Vulture is reporting that Netflix has a combined total of 36 original shows in the pipeline, between its new and returning slate. In the same time frame, HBO has 21 and FX has 16. To quote the original Vulture report:
The rapid rise of Netflix as a source of original programming is breathtaking [and] without recent historical precedent. FX and HBO, for example, had been in business for one and two decades, respectively, before they began seriously expanding their scripted offerings — and then did so at a much more measured pace than Netflix.
While partially fueled by the rapid state by which the internet operates, the rise of Netflix may also have to do with its development process. While most shows, including HBO, often take programs through the ringer of the pilot production, Netflix does not. If you go to series at Netflix, you do so with a direct-to-series order and, sometimes, a two season commitment. Ultimately, this means fewer chances for an executive to shoot something down at the development stage because they have hesitations about the idea.
The uptick in television show count (both established and in-development) puts Netflix in a position to take more risks. However, while the pilot process can be maniacal, it does afford creators and networks the ability to work out show kinks before anything makes it to air. In direct-to-series production, staffs are left to discover problems in a trial-by-fire method… and are sometimes left to discovering those problem after a season debuts to the public.
Netflix is making major headway in television, and it seems like the company’s plan to launch a new original series every 3 weeks is closer to becoming a reality than ever before. But, while that is an interesting notion, don’t let the news fool you into thinking Netflix is untouchable.