More choice is coming to a screen near you, but is Paramount Plus worth the money? Streaming columnist NICK OVERALL is asking the same question...
YET another streaming service is throwing its hat in the ring to butt heads with Netflix, Stan, Binge, Amazon, Disney Plus and so on it goes, but is it worth the money?
In a blinding flash of originality, the new platform is called “Paramount Plus” and it’s set to hit Australian shores from August 11 for $8.99 a month.
It’s not the cheapest service available in Australia, (that title still belongs to Amazon Prime Video for $6.99 a month), but it makes it a close second.
The market is already overflowing with services and stuff to watch, so what does Paramount Plus bring to the table?
Well it’s biggest drawcard is likely to be the continuation of “Dexter”, which is being sparked back to life nearly a decade after the show’s original conclusion.
A noughties hit, “Dexter” gave television one of its most iconic and controversial anti-heroes – a psychopath who takes his homicidal tendencies out on criminals, rather than the innocent.
“Dexter” wrapped up its eight-season run in 2013 with an ending many fans thought was dodgy to say the least, but the highs of the series have allowed it to cling on to a legacy nonetheless, one that’s being keenly capitalised on by Paramount Plus with the show’s renewal.
It’ll be a blow for Stan, which currently boasts the eight-season collection of “Dexter” but will lose the series once Paramount Plus hits the market.
For any Stan subscribers out there who have “Dexter” on their watch list, now’s a good time to watch it before it goes.
The release of Paramount Plus will also see a reshuffle of content that’s closer to home.
10 All Access is a streaming site that lets users watch on demand everything that airs on the 10 Network for $9.99 a month.
That’s stuff such as “Survivor”, “NCIS”, “MasterChef”. If you watch any of these shows online, from August you’ll have to do it through Paramount Plus.
That’s because Network 10 and Paramount are assets of mass media conglomerate ViacomCBS.
Company this, ownership that, yadda yadda. The short of it is that the current 10 All Access subscribers are the real winners.
If they choose to subscribe to Paramount Plus they’ll get all the content from 10 All Access, plus all the new content from Paramount, all for a dollar less a month.
And although details on what more of that content may look like are still vague, it’s reported the service will feature around 20,000 films and TV episodes.
Despite this extensive offering, what Paramount Plus is going to need to really pull in new subscribers is a “wow-factor” series.
For Netflix that’s “Stranger Things”, for Disney Plus its “The Mandalorian”, for Binge its “Game of Thrones”. Amazon Prime Video doesn’t quite have one yet, but it has promised a “Lord of the Rings” spinoff is on its way.
“Dexter” indeed has some pull, but not quite on the levels of the shows above. At this stage it's not yet clear if Paramount Plus has one of these blockbusters they’ll really be able to hook subscribers with.
For mega fans of “Dexter” the new platform might be a must have. For current 10 All Access subscribers it's a guaranteed winner.
For everyone else it may be a matter of keeping an eye on it for a little while longer before getting excited.
At this point, the idea of a sole streaming subscription to watch everything in one place is as truly dead as one of Dexter’s victims.
Who can be trusted?
In a world of spin and confusion, there’s never been a more important time to support independent journalism in Canberra.
If you trust our work online and want to enforce the power of independent voices, I invite you to make a small contribution.
Every dollar of support is invested back into our journalism to help keep citynews.com.au strong and free.
Ian Meikle, editor