‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ is back with a brand new release strategy

It’s been more than two years since TV fans enjoyed new episodes of Amazon Studios‘Emmy Award Winning Series’Miraculous Mrs. MaiselAnd when Season 4 begins, audiences will have the chance to see Midge Maisel (Rachel Brosnahan) like they’ve never seen her before: piece by piece.

In releasing the trailer for the show’s new season in November, Amazon Studios announced the comedy series, executive produced by Amy Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino, will return with just two episodes on Friday, the 18th. February 2022, with the remainder of the season – eight episodes in total – being released in pairs in the following weeks. The news is a notable departure for the series, with the release of a series of episodes for each of its first three seasons.

And while the change may surprise some viewers, it’s just the latest adjustment made by broadcasters anxious to keep balance amid the volatile TV landscape. as before.

But in the beginning, only Netflix. And in 2013 when the entertainment segment dropped the first season of “House of Cards” wholesale, it revolutionized the way we watch TV. Suddenly, the audience no longer enjoyed watching television, they wanted to enjoy it. It was a natural progression from the technological advances that preceded it.

“As more serious online competitors have entered the market, release patterns have destabilized,” said Myles McNutt, author, television critic, and associate professor of theater and media arts at Old Dominion University. “Netflix’s large number of TV shows made it possible to release default programming early even as Hulu primarily released shows on a weekly basis, but each new platform emerged. They all see the market changing and say, ‘Hmm, try this instead.’ ”

The past year on TV has seen wins coming from all over the map in regards to the release schedule. Showtime’s “Yellowjackets” got off to a slow start, but word of mouth saw the series grow from week to week, an enthusiasm fueled only by the premium cable network’s choice to allow streaming episodes of each week more than 20 hours before broadcast. At the opposite end of the spectrum, Netflix’s “Squid Game” is an unprecedented global phenomenon, completely untouched by a continuous release, generating months of buzz from episodes with available since it premiered.

While arguments have been made that part of the reason other broadcasters are adopting alternative release models is because no one has been able to match the sheer volume of content Netflix has to offer, but there are plenty of reasons why a big player like Amazon Prime Video might choose to go the other way.

Rachel Brosnahan

Rachel Brosnahan in “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”

Christopher Saunders / Amazon Prime Video

“We really aspire to be a home of talent. Part of that is really listening to our partners and creators, and getting to know their vision, as the people behind the show, and then trying to listen to our audience as well. us and understanding what they care about most, how things turn out, will be well received by them,” said Marc Resteghini, head of US and global development at Amazon Studios, about how the company make the decision to go online.

To wit, “Maisel” executive producers Amy Sherman-Palladino and Daniel Palladino had their own thoughts on how they wanted the show’s fourth season to unfold and incorporate the interviews. conversation has taken place in the service about the changed release models – Amazon Studios’ has opted for a weekly release for the second season of the hit series “The Boys” – Season 4 seems like a natural place to change everything. The streamer has clearly reached a flash point in re-evaluating how he presents his shows, both new and old, to audiences.

“There’s a lot for the audience to digest,” said Resteghini. “It seems like an opportunity to really let people enjoy individual episodes. And two [episodes] feels like the right figure. One feels it would be very cruel.

“And it’s not just dialogue. It’s the production design, it’s the costumes, it’s the attention to detail. We want everyone to be able to really immerse themselves in this and appreciate the amount of hard work that’s been done over the past two years in preparation for this season. ”

As Amazon Studios continues to question the binge-release model, others in the industry are thinking about their own strategies.

Euphoria Season 2 Zendaya

Zendaya in “Euphoria”

Eddy Chen / HBO

“From the very beginning we really felt that there was no one-size-fits-all approach HBO Max, because we’re more flexible on the streaming platform than we are on real estate from a linear perspective,” said Meredith Gertler, executive vice president, content strategy and planning, HBO and HBO Max , said. “And we really wanted to be unique and dynamic with our approach on Max.”

“But given the history of HBO, we’ve seen that there are a lot of advantages to the weekly release format, giving us more runways to raise awareness. It allows multiple entry points to the program during its run. It can help enhance interaction and, of course, create sustainable cultural conversation. That is definitely something that we want to move to the Max strategy. ”

To illustrate his point, Gertler denotes the massive growth HBO has seen with “Euphoria,” where the first episode of the series’ second season is now reaching 17 million viewers across platforms, which is 2.5 times higher than Season 1’s average audience.

“Every Sunday we see social media feeds light up. Viewership is up 167 percent from Season 1, and it’s a real weekly release, but hits younger audiences,” she said. “And so we know that it works and doesn’t necessarily mean that people are booing around.”

In FX Executive session at the Television Critics Council. On the Winter Press Tour on February 17, FX president John Landgraf expressed similar observations about the current television landscape and how things have changed, both in recent years and beyond.

“We’re learning a lot about the crossover between streaming and linear channels and global releases with domestic releases. In other words, for a long time, we only really focus on which day of the week [a show] “You’re now competing with every great movie, every great TV show, every great story ever made, across multiple streaming platforms with 550 new shows coming out every day,” Landgraf said. five. So it becomes even more important to really understand consumer trends, when they want to see things, how they want to see things. “

Lee Jung-jae in "Squid fishing game"

Lee Jung-jae in “Squid Game”

Noh Juhan | Netflix

For all the micro and macro planning going on at other broadcasters and other traditional broadcasters looking for an optimized method to deliver programming, Netflix is ​​still (mostly) resolute in the decision to buy or sell.

And why shouldn’t they? The model they developed nearly a decade ago with “House of Cards” continues to benefit them. “Squid Game” spent 19 weeks, within just 5 months, in the Top 10 self-reported by the streamer. The limited series “The Handmaid” stayed in the Top 10 for 12 weeks, and “You” – a series that aired one season on Lifetime, was renewed, renewed, and saved by Netflix – spent eight weeks in the Top 10 after releasing the third season last year.

But even Netflix isn’t entirely immune to the allure of a longer run, with unscripted reality shows including “The Circle” and “Love Is Blind” receiving mass releases. and other established scripted shows, namely “Ozark” and “Stranger Things” see the seasons split into two separate releases. With that in mind, it should be said that although there may be narrative or audience-driven reasons why “Ozark” and “Stranger Things” (both popular Emmy players) are watching seasons of they are forked, but chances are those calls are being made to maximize the prize eligibility window.

So with all of that, where is the industry going from here?

“Streaming services will need to convince users that one size doesn’t fit all if they combine shareholder needs, content nuances, and user expectations,” McNutt said. “And if anyone is going to win that battle, it’s the shareholders, which means users will need to accept what they’re offered or vote with their subscription money to generate interest. change they want to see.”

Tony Shaloub, Marin Hinkle and Rachel Brosnahan in "Miraculous Mrs. Maisel"

Tony Shaloub, Marin Hinkle and Rachel Brosnahan in “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”

Courtesy of Prime Video

With registrants voting with their pocket notebooks, content providers will have to face their own important issue when it comes to watching the playing field and crafting a winning brand strategy.

“I think people will have to answer for themselves,” Gertler said. “We know what’s right for us and that may or may not be right for other streamers, but we’re just focused on how best to meet the needs of our audience.”

Whether that means players breaking the video game paradigm and starting to roll things out in phases, or someone who determines the best way forward is total chaos, releasing episodes program randomly, the rules of the game seem increasingly immaterial. Suddenly streaming seems less like poker and more like solitaire. You can still lose, you can still win, but at some point you realize that you’re not playing against anyone else at the table, you’re just playing against yourself. In a volatile market, sometimes that’s all you can do.

“If you had asked me eight years ago if we would have launched shows like this, I would have said no,” Resteghini said. “So what’s interesting right now is that things are continuing to evolve and change very quickly. And I hope it really benefits creators and audiences. The world is changing. We have changed so much in the last two years that I think I would be naive to say that I can predict where we will be in two years. But we’re open about it and try to listen as much as we can. “

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https://www.indiewire.com/2022/02/marvelous-mrs-maisel-streaming-landscape-1234700646/ ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ is back with a brand new release strategy

Olly Dawes

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