The beloved television series “Gilmore Girls” recently made the move to Netflix, with “Friends” set to follow in Jan. 2015. This can only mean one thing: Netflix wants me to fail out of college. Well, maybe not. What it truly does mean is that Netflix has been paying attention to its demographics––the company knows exactly how to pull new users in while keeping the rest of us suckered on.
Anyone who is currently in college has probably watched “Friends” and “Gilmore Girls” after school or before dinner with their parents. As independent as most people like to say they are, who doesn’t want a little reminder of home or childhood from time to time?
A frequent complaint for many Netflix users has always been that the selection of new releases is relatively limited. Although that is still true, Netflix has consistently been able to bolster its catalog enough to appease its critical and new-content-hungry audience.
With competitors like Hulu and Amazon rolling out near-immediate, next-day streaming, Netflix is fighting back with a little nostalgia in the form of classic TV that is no longer or rarely aired.
Early in Netflix’s history, there was much less pressure on Netflix to be better or stand out from the competition of other streaming platforms. The online streaming site now has to vie for popular programs and films in addition to creating high-quality originals if it hopes to stand a chance against its competitors. The acquisitions of “Friends” and “Gilmore Girls” are just two of the latest attempts to win this competition and improve Netflix ratings.
As long as Amazon, Hulu and Netflix keep this competition up, the users will keep winning. High-quality originals like Amazon’s groundbreaking sitcom “Transparent,” Hulu’s documentary series “Behind the Mask” and Netflix’s prison drama “Orange Is the New Black” will keep coming out. More and more of viewers’ favorite series, old and new alike, will become available.
The coming of “Gilmore Girls” and “Friends” to Netflix doesn’t just usher in the arrival of tingly feelings of nostalgia and new levels of procrastination. It also represents the fruits of an intense business competition—fruits which we can almost hold in our greasy, Cheeto-covered fingers.