Disney+ a Year Later — Is It Worth It?

We all waited in anticipation on Nov 11, 2019. As the next day would be the launch of the highly anticipated new streaming service from Hollywood’s biggest studio — Disney+.

I remember vibrating with excitement as I typed in my information to create my account. It reminded me of the excitement of buying tickets to see “Avengers: Endgame,” without the anxiety of seats selling out. To commemorate the event, I made Iron Man my profile picture. But now, it’s been over a year. The excitement has worn off, the hype has gone down, so it’s time to reflect and ask ourselves. Was it worth it?

In short, yes. However, it did take a while for audiences to reap the benefits.

Disney’s pride and joy is their catalog, and it’s the main force driving audiences to their app. All the Pixar classics, throwbacks to Disney Channel favorites and Earth’s mightiest heroes. It’s safe to say you can never run out of things to watch.

That is, if you’re not looking for a new original series. In that department, it’s safe to say that Disney is lacking.

Now we all know about their crown jewel, “The Mandalorian,” the western inspired Star Wars series has been the top dog of Disney+ since it’s premiere last year. There’s also “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” and “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.” That’s about it in terms of their major new original series.

“Star Wars: The Clone Wars” barely counts considering it was originally made by Cartoon Network, but was canceled when Disney bought Lucasfilms. Unreleased episodes were put onto Netflix as a new season. Then Disney finally decided to revive the show for its final season to draw fans to the app.

Two new series and a new season isn’t too bad. When Netflix first started they only had a few original series, “House of Cards” being the most notable. Amazon Prime Video has a few gems too, “Fleabag,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” and “The Boys.”

Is Disney only having three new series really that bad? No, but only one of them has expanded to general audiences – “The Mandalorian.” The other two are for more niche audiences or teenagers and young adults. 

In this day and age, new original series are they key to getting audiences to subscribe to a streaming service. One would think Disney would have plans to roll out more original series to compete with  Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

But, Disney could afford to not launch without a vast collection of new content.

They say nostalgia sells, and Disney has nostalgia on lock. 

Many signed up so they could rewatch shows like “Kim Possible,” “That’s So Raven,” and “Hannah Montana.” (Enormous joy ran through me when I heard the “Wizards of Waverly Place” theme song after all these years.)

This was a chance to return to the shows that made our childhood, to be a kid again. For so long we’ve searched for websites that had the entire series or begged Netflix to add the show, but now we have it all in one place. Although I’m still waiting for “American Dragon: Jake Long” to be added.

Millennials aren’t the only ones who benefit. Parents now have a plethora of Disney & Pixar classics to distract the little ones for a few hours.

With the acquisition of 20th Century, audiences can watch icons such as “The Simpsons,” and holiday favorites like “Home Alone.”

The list goes on and on, and not to mention the celebrity collaborations with Beyoncé and Taylor Swift on their projects “Black is King,” and “Folklore: the Long Pond Studio Sessions,” respectively.

Clearly, Disney should not worry that they don’t have enough for audiences to watch. 

If audiences are craving for new content, they do not have to wait much longer.

When President of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige, announced the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s phase four lineup, there were several limited series planned for Disney+.

After delays due to COVID-19, the first one up is “WandaVision” premiering on January 15 2021. Coming afterwards will be “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Loki,” “She-Hulk”, and “Ms. Marvel,” all of which are scheduled to complete or begin filming in 2021. 

Image courtesy of Marvel

The MCU shows will be a game changer for Disney+, attracting general audiences who love the films and Marvel fans who don’t want to miss a thing.

Signing up for Disney+ on Nov 12 2019 meant waiting a while before we got to the good stuff, but now it’s all about to pay off.

Featured image courtesy of Star Wars: The Clone Wars