‘Cobra Kai’ Jumps From YouTube to Netflix
In addition to being the official home of unboxing videos and fan theories about how actually the Empire was the good guys of Star Wars, YouTube recently attempted to expand their audience by launching its own line of original programming available by subscription. Their service was called “YouTube Red,” whose flagship show was Cobra Kai, an update and sequel series to the classic ’80s franchise The Karate Kid. Cobra Kai has been about as well-received as any legacyquel revival of recent years, earning very solid reviews from critics and fans. But the show has never quite broken out beyond that, perhaps because to most people YouTube remains a place to watch unboxing videos and fan theories, not splashy television shows you have to pay for.
It seems, amidst increasing competition in the streaming space, that that YouTube now agrees with that assessment. They’re basically abandoning their scripted originals, which are all now looking for other homes. The biggest show of the bunch, Cobra Kai, has landed at Netflix. More, via The Hollywood Reporter:
The first two seasons, which aired on YouTube in 2018 and 2019, will make their debut on Netflix later this year. A premiere date for the third season of the drama from Sony Pictures Television will move to Netflix at a date to be determined. YouTube had previously picked up the comedy for a third season before changing its business model from a subscription to an ad-supported platform.
Cobra Kai makes a lot of sense on Netflix, and it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if the show took off in a huge way with Netflix’s algorithm and massive audience behind it. As for YouTube, it’s just tough to convince people to pay for something — even something really good — once you’ve conditioned them to expect things for free. If you need something new to binge over there, well, there’s always this.
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