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And the Netflix story turns a new leaf...
Confession time: I don’t have Netflix. I canceled my account years ago, made a few attempts at reconciling with it, and then gave up. I love the company the way you love the little kid in that movie Simon Birch because you know he’s going to die. You can’t get too attached.
Only—uh oh—the dying Netflix kid is making a surprise recovery that totally ruins the whole story arc. Netflix’s surprise recovery: Arrested Development.
Netflix announced Thursday that all 15 episodes of Arrested Development—the short-lived comedy series that has since garnered a cult following—will be available to watch as of 12:01 am PST on Sunday, May 26 (aw, just like how it used to air Sunday nights on Fox). The show will be available in all the territories where Netflix is available, including the U.S., UK, Canada, Ireland, Latin America, and the Nordics.
Netflix followed with a tweet: “We’ve made a huge mistake! There are actually 15 new episodes of @ArrestedDev on May 26.”
The show premiered in 2003 and became an instant hit with critics and fans alike. But when Nielsen ratings didn’t pick up (which some attribute to Fox’s failure to promote the show, as well as the rising popularity of DVRs), Fox dropped the show in 2006. Show creator Mitch Hurwitz has spent the last several years promising to revive the show, possibly as a movie. And then in late 2011, Hurwitz announced that he was getting to work on a new season.
The newly reborn show will feature all (ALL) of the original cast members, including Ron Howard as the narrator.
"Arrested Development is now widely viewed as one of the top TV comedies of all time and Mitch Hurwitz is bringing it to Netflix in a brand new way, crafted for the on-demand generation that has come to discover the show in the years since it last appeared on TV," said Netflix’s Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, in a statement. "The highly anticipated return of this show is sure to make history all over again."
"Ted said that? Wow. Well don't print this obviously, but he's going to be immensely disappointed. In truth we are doing something very ambitious that can only be done with Netflix as partners and on their platform. Finally my simple wish for the show is coming true: that it be broadcast every second around the clock to every television, computer or mobile device in existence," said Mitch Hurwitz.
This will obviously be a game-changer for Netflix, which is looking to draw subscribers with original programming. But there are going to be those (like myself) who don’t feel like one or two original shows (like the much-acclaimed House of Cards) is enough to justify paying an extra $8 a month. But Arrested Development already has a huge following and will be the lynchpin that makes Netflix’s Internet TV dreams come true.
So…long story short, I’m officially pulling the cable plug and reviving my Netflix account. I love you, dying Netflix kid. You’re going to live, damn it!
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