Streaming stimulation for our binging nation

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Bill Pullman as Detective Harry Ambrose in season three of “The Sinner”… some of his most sophisticated acting.

“CityNews” streamer-in-chief NICK OVERALL reports that Australia has 15 million Netflix subscribers – little wonder its been a month of big releases. 

NETFLIX continues to reign supreme with an action-packed month of new seasons of some of its biggest shows released. 

Nick Overall.

“Thirteen Reasons Why”, a wildly controversial teen drama based on a mystery surrounding the suicide of a high school girl brought out its fourth and final season. 

It’s based on a 2007 best-selling novel by Jay Asher, well, at least the first season was. It was initially promising when still staying mostly faithful to its source material. 

Unfortunately the show now only wallows in its own misery and pushes excessive controversies that don’t contain any substance past their shock value in an attempt to stay relevant.

This will always pull in viewers, but it won’t be a show that will necessarily be remembered.

In comparison to where we’ve seen the brilliant Bill Pullman before – think “Independence Day” and “Spaceballs” – he offers some of his most sophisticated acting in his return as Detective Harry Ambrose in season three of “The Sinner”. 

This one is an anthology crime drama that features the detective investigating a new case with each season, but there’s always a twist. The first sees star Jessica Biel playing a troubled mother at the centre of a grizzly incident where she, seemingly out of nowhere, murders a young man on a beach. Talk about an eventful family holiday. 

Captivating, psychological and a twist I put my money on you won’t see coming, this one is definitely worth the watch.

“Dark” also just came out with its third and final season. This is a kaleidoscopic science-fiction tale about the illusion of time and a family caught in the middle of it. 

To say any more would be to spoil, but think of this one as a more adult and complex version of “Stranger Things”.

“Dark” is a completely German production meaning you can either watch it with an English dub or subtitles (I highly recommend the latter). Or, of course, if you can speak German, that’s pretty cool, too. 

It is a testament to the brilliance of the show that it remains highly popular on Netflix considering that, unfortunately, a foreign language is often enough to turn too many viewers away. This one requires a hefty amount of concentration, but the reward is certainly worth it.

All this speaks to Netflix retaining its place as streaming king. New figures show that it’s now reached 15 million Australian subscribers. This puts our country in the top five for the platform in the world and makes us quite the population of bingers.

These numbers, of course, have skyrocketed because of the COVID-19 lockdown, and it only looks to continue that way for the duration of 2020. Last year, the streaming mega machine generated a whopping $20 billion internationally. This is what allows it to pump out endless original series, such as the ones mentioned above, faster than any other platform. 

Others such as Stan (and now Binge) have to find other ways to attempt to catch up to their rival. This is often through investing in iconic pieces of popular culture, which although still coming with a hefty price tag, is certainly cheaper than churning out self-funded productions. Take stuff such as “Doctor Who” on the former, or “Game of Thrones” on the latter.

In fact, you might have caught Foxtel Binge’s ads on commercial TV in the last few weeks touting it as “unturnoffable”. That is, of course, if you’re still watching commercial TV. 

Seems from the conversations I have, so many people say they no longer watch much of it in favour of what they’ve got to stream on their preferred platform. 

Some I know don’t even have a TV aerial, but instead a simple connection to the internet that does them just fine. If that doesn’t speak volumes about our times, I don’t know what does.

 

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