It’s not as though broadcast and cable aren’t providing big hits these days, as many of the most popular shows in the world are released that way — at least initially. “Yellowstone” is the biggest show on cable and airs on Paramount Network. But it streams on Peacock and all of its spin-off shows are on Paramount+. Then there are shows like “Suits,” which originally aired on USA Network and has been off the air for several years, but recently became a monster hit on Netflix. It’s not even always about new shows, it’s just about giving new audiences a way to discover them.
To that end, the fall season could be challenging for broadcast and cable as there will be fewer new shows on the air due to the ongoing writer’s and actor’s strikes that have effectively shut down Hollywood. Nielsen did address that in the recent report, suggesting that acquired programming and the quality of shows could help tip the scales a bit.
“The potential for less new original primetime content this fall presents a unique situation for broadcast and cable, but the recent success of acquired programming on streaming channels highlights the outsized strength of quality content, regardless of when it was created.”
Another thing to consider is that NFL Football is returning in September, with major sports accounting for a huge among of traditional TV viewing. But even there, things are changing, as YouTube now has the NFL Sunday Ticket rights after DirecTV lost them earlier this year. So even with sports, the future is streaming. The paradigm shift is upon us, and it’s going to be fascinating to see what becomes of traditional TV as viewership continues to dwindle. The transition could be messy.