The CW has signed a new deal with Netflix that will kill their current deal with Hulu, and it’s all bad news for viewers.
Update (January 22, 2018): Hulu and The CW might become close friends again. The latter became a part of Hulu’s live streaming library in late 2017, and The CW’s on demand library is reportedly returning to the streamer “soon.” But an exact return date is still unknown.
Losing The CW was a major hit for Hulu, and fans of the network’s various shows, including the expansive Arrowverse, were not pleased.
Original story (July 2016): In the summer of 2016 The CW had parted ways with Hulu and instead moved to Netflix. But as of 2018, things may be poised to get better for Hulu customers.
The CW is a part of Hulu’s live streaming service (an extra fee), but it is still not a part of their on demand library. However,
Update (July 5): This deal has been formally announced by The CW and Netflix. This year’s upcoming seasons will not appear on Hulu, and will instead be released on Netflix 8 days after each show’s season finale. You’ll have to watch live, use your DVR / OnDemand, or load up CW’s official site/apps to watch sooner.
“Netflix members in the US love the great lineup of series from The CW, and we are thrilled to extend the relationship and bring those shows to our members exclusively now, just eight days after their season finales,” said Ted Sarandos, Chief Content Officer at Netflix. “This is a great step forward with a valued network partner to give fans exactly what they want, when and how they want it.”
Read latest Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow news now!
“Since the initial landmark deal in 2011, The CW’s programming has enjoyed tremendous success and increased exposure through Netflix, and our new agreement not only continues but enhances this valuable relationship,” said Mark Pedowitz, President, The CW. “The CW has positioned itself for the future by transforming into a true hybrid network, rooted in broadcast while fully embracing the digital and streaming habits of the viewers.”
Original story (June 20): Variety reports that The CW and Netflix will soon announce a deal in which the streaming behemoth will release the latest seasons of CW shows two weeks after their season finales air. For example, the next season of The 100 will be on Netflix in its entirety two weeks after the season 4 finale.
But the deal is bad news for cord-cutters, because the Netflix agreement means the Hulu pact is over. The current deal, which puts the latest five episodes of all CW shows on Hulu, will be coming to an end in October. The only way to watch new episodes the day after they air will now be through CWTV.com, CW apps, OnDemand, or your DVR. Otherwise, you’ll have to wait until two weeks after the season ends to binge it all on Netflix.
The CW’s 2011 deal with Hulu is widely credited with bringing much needed attention to the network’s slate, so it’s a shame to see it come to an end. Many people will turn to Hulu this fall to catch the latest CW episodes, only to be surprised to find that they’re not there.
According to Variety, Hulu and The CW butted heads over the lack of offering full seasons. “From Hulu’s perspective […] the CW in-season rights were not worth the pricetag to renew unless it came with stacking rights to all episodes — something that surely would have been a non-starter for CW and Netflix. From Hulu’s perspective, sources said, the vast majority of viewing was delivered by CW’s two highest-rated shows: The Flash and Arrow. Moreover, fans of those two shows frequently lodge complaints with Hulu about the limited five-episode selection.”
Are you upset about CW leaving Hulu?
Even though CW’s shows will no longer be on Hulu, they have recently just released their own app through a multitude of mobile devices and platforms. You can now download the CW app for your iOS and Android devices, Roku, Apple TV, X-Box or Amazon Fire TV.
The CW app will have the last 5 episodes of each of their shows available, which is a great way to stay current on all your favorite shows. Just don’t get too behind because if you miss over 5 then you’ll have to wait until the CW’s content appears on Netflix after the season ends.