Flashback: When The Office waved goodbye to Netflix - A nostalgic lookback
Diving deep into the archives, we revisit the buzz of 2019: NBCUniversal's announcement to snatch 'The Office' away from Netflix for their own streaming platform in 2021.
The Office (Source: TMZ)
Back in the day, when Netflix was the reigning champion of streaming, an announcement in 2019 sent shockwaves through the "Dunder Mifflin" fandom. Today, we're taking a stroll down memory lane, reminiscing about when 'The Office' was on the brink of saying its final farewell to Netflix.
The streaming saga begins
NBCUniversal dropped the bombshell that they'd be exclusively hosting the iconic 2000s sitcom on their upcoming streaming service by 2021. “The Office has become a staple of pop-culture and is a rare gem whose relevance continues to grow,” mentioned Bonnie Hammer, chair of NBCUniversal's digital enterprise. All this at a time when viewers were spoilt for choice, making the move even more audacious.
From Netflix's crown jewel to NBCU's ace
Even though 'The Office' concluded its nine-season run in 2013, its second wind on Netflix was nothing short of phenomenal. The fandom, reinvigorated by the platform, led to claims that it was “the No. 1 most-popular acquired show on Netflix.” Numbers whispered that "The Office is the most-watched television show on the streaming service, period," reported sources familiar with Netflix's viewing metrics.
Also Read: 'I'm standing by with open arms': Is NBC gearing up for 'The Office' reboot ten years later?
The ripple effect and what it meant for viewers
The allure of owning classics and boosting new streaming services seemed tempting for media giants. Companies like Disney and Warner Media were eyeing potential heavyweights like ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and ‘Friends’ respectively, to draw crowds. NBCU, not staying behind, naturally banked on 'The Office' as their showstopper. But what about fans who wanted nothing more than a nightly dose of Michael Scott’s quirky quips? A fresh subscription hurdle loomed. NBCU's service, slated for a 2020 launch, promised free access for those with a TV subscription. For others, the price tag hovered around $12/month. And, oh, the catch! Unlike ad-free Netflix, this service came with commercials. Fans were left calculating - whether the joy of reliving “that’s what she said” moments was worth the new costs, especially when DVD and download options beckoned enticingly.
The narrative that ensued saw fans make tough choices, and while the verdict varied, the nostalgia associated with 'The Office's Netflix era remains untainted.
(Several parts of the text in this article, including the title, were generated with the help of an AI tool.)