Saturday, December 4, 2021

New streaming BOTNS-era titles for December

December is a busy month for 1970s and 1980s TV shows on streaming! Here is an overview, with the disclaimer that I may be missing some, and maybe some of these already were there. It's hard to tell with SVOD sometimes!

The biggest surprise is the original Knight Rider appearing on Netflix. This is one of the most random catalog adds I have seen in some time, but I am not complaining. Netflix isn't out of the old-TV game just yet.

Making it even more surprising is that it is non-exclusive. Starz lost the show, but it is now on Peacock, which also added Miami Vice. It's about time NBC started adding more Universal series to its main streaming service! It also added Sanford and Son to its paid tier. Also, there is a small batch of Dick Cavett episodes here, and it seems to be different from the ones on other services.

Roku Channel also added Miami Vice. Personally, I am happy to watch it for free on Peacock, which still has low commercial load, but good for Roku. It'll be interesting to see if the show looks the same on both outlets. Roku also added some old Christmas specials, including Jack Frost, Casper's First Christmas, and the 1979 version of A Christmas Carol with Hank Winkler.  FOr good measure, it also has the 1984 production with George C. Scott.

Another big surprise is Pluto getting all seasons of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, which I thought would end up on Fox-owned Tubi before CBS-owned Pluto.  Fortunately Hulu still has it. Remember when Hulu got a bunch of old TV shows? It isn't a player anymore, but it is keeping the ones it far.

As for Tubi, it often surprises us during the month, but right now it has added Blossom, Who's the Boss, WHat's Happening!!, Sanford, and T and T.  Speaking of Sanford, that two-season follow-up to Sanford and Son is now on Prime as well, though "the mothership" is not.

Prime Video gives us the strangest case this month. The Jeffersons is on the list that circulated, and all seasons are listed, but as of today, only seasons 5 and 6 are available. Presumably the rest is on the way, but it's odd.

Shout! TV added Laugh-In, which WAS on Prime Video before being shunted off to IMDB.  Amazon loves to make its paying Prime customers go to ad-supported and free IMDB-TV to watch older shows. There is nothing new of note on HBO Max, much to my disappointment.

Crackle counted Fish, which was already added a few weeks ago, for December, but maybe it will sprinkle in some more series throughout the month. As usual, Disney Plus doesn't bother much with older content.

The big loser in December? Starz.  The service used to have a big throwback section with series like He-Man, Sanford and Son, Knight Rider, Miami Vice, and more. Now all those are gone, and the Throwback section is gone, indicating that the channel is out of the retro TV business for now.  It still has some Westerns, but it looks like even that is being scaled back.

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