From Mouse To Monster

A Disney+ Review

Ken K. Apana-Korley, Head of Editorials

Where the Sun Never Sets…

With the launch of Disney’s new streaming service, cleverly named Disney+, cable TV and the streaming industry will never be the same. Disney is now the only network available on both cable television and online as its own streaming service. This makes me especially wonder about the future of TV. Disney owns Marvel, Fox, ABC, Lucasfilm, 80% ESPN, and 60% of Hulu, and much, much more, making it one of the most powerful television companies in the world. It’s unfathomable how much power Disney really has now.

A list of the companies encompassed in Disney+ / The Walt Disney Company

You wanted to watch The Simpsons? Guess what? Disney owns it. MasterChef? The Orville? American Idol?

Literally anything on FX? All owned by Walt Disney Company. Everything on ABC? It’s all owned by Disney. The power that Disney has at its fingertips is so vast that if they told some small film company to jump, the only reasonable answer is “how high?” Disney is Great Britain and the sun never sets on its empire.

Service Review:

In terms of the service launch itself, Disney+ encountered many problems within just the first 2 days of activation. Hundreds of reports of users being hacked, the launch day crashes, and overall slow streaming. I personally waited 2 weeks before getting the service just so that I could see how Disney would respond to all of the reports and service problems. As much as there is a wide variety of content, the user interface leaves much to be desired. The interface was not as user-friendly as I would have hoped from a Disney property. The amount of new content online at the moment was also lacking, in my opinion. The Mandalorian, which is a great show by the way, and High School Musical: The Musical: The Series were really the only original shows that were advertised when the service launched. A lot of the other original content consisted of documentaries into the lives of Disney employees, for the most part. I personally feel like the service was a bit rushed in the delivery. There are a lot of things that could have been improved if Disney decided to hold the launch back by a few weeks.

D23 Expo, announcing the launch of Disney+ / Walt Disney Company

Disney+ is also lacking in quite a few shows and movies.

There has been a lack of Marvel movies and shows since the service started, more specifically, the 20th Century Fox content like X-Men and Deadpool.

Of course, understanding that this is supposed to be a family platform, but it wouldn’t be too difficult to create a better parental locking system for those movies. Additionally, movies like Alvin and the Chipmunks aren’t on the platform, even though Disney owns the rights to them now.

In regards to Disney shows that aren’t on the platform: Corey in the House, The Proud Family, and American Dragon: Jake Long are all not on the service at the moment, just to name a few. There are quite a few shows from Toon Disney and Jetix that aren’t on the website, which is quite bothersome because as much as the base channel version of Disney was a crucial part of my childhood, the spin-off channels were what I really remember. In the hours that I wasn’t watching Cartoon Network, I was watching cartoons on Disney. As Disney re-branded, I remember sneaking downstairs in the middle of the night to watch all of the shows that Disney was starting to transition into their archives and away from their initial time slots. The spin-off series for movies like The Legend of Tarzan and Aladdin, as well as shows like Jackie Chan Adventures that were not really advertised, but just existed.

Disney+’s 5-year goal / Walt Disney Company

All that being said, Disney+ is still a well thought out move in the game of chess that is entertainment.

I’m personally a big fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which means that I’ll probably end up watching all of the series that have been announced in Phase 4, located exclusively on the streaming service.

Disney knew exactly how to reel me in. The prospect of watching shows like WandaVision and What If…? and then they trap me by taking me on a nostalgia trip by showing me shows like Lizzie McGuire and Kim Possible was enough to make me pay for the first year.

 Is Disney+ better than streaming services like Hulu, Netflix, DC Universe, or HBO NOW? Probably not. Does it have the potential to be? Definitely so! With time, the service has the potential to be better than all of the services just from the sheer amount of content that Disney owns. With all of the potential options and variety for the future, Disney+ could replace every other streaming service as a cheaper alternative with a wider variety of shows and movies. Just as Netflix marked the beginning of the streaming era, Disney+ is marking the end of the cable era.



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