Saturday, August 6, 2016

Streaming Video Power Rankings: Week 19

1) Hulu: Stays on top by a narrow margin on the strength of adding past seasons of shows like "Homeland" and other Showtime efforts, releasing trailers for upcoming new series, adding WGN America series "Underground" and "Outsiders," hyping more Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, and announcing a promising slate of documentaries about subjects like the co-creator of Batman, George Lazenby, and "The Dana Carvey Show." Plus I finally got around to seeing more of "11/22/63." Hulu is #1 on potential this week, but it might well stay there after the Triumph special premieres Thursday.

2) Netflix: Things are going well for Netflix, too, even though I've finally come to accept that the old "first of the month" catalog drop is going to disappoint me every time now. It debuted a n eclectic assortment of originals/acquisitons like the animated "The Little Prince," a David Cross comedy special, a cartoon inspired by Beatles music, and more. But it gets docked a spot for encouraging and debuting a sequel to "SLC Punk."

3) Watch TCM: Now that I know this shows almost everything in the last given week that was on TCM, I like it even more. It might become my #1 most watched streamer if it ever got a Roku channel. As it is, it contains more 1930s-1950s Hollywood content than Netflix each week even though it turns over its content every day.

4) YouTube: I continue to marvel at the idea of anyone paying for the content from "social media superstars" on YouTube Red, but YouTube Colorless is a daily destination.

5) Shout! Factory TV: Didn't add much this month--some more MST3K and an Olympic-themed collection of Cavett episodes--but it's good stuff, and it's not dropping titles.

6) Pub-D-Hub: Still cranking out updates almost every week. I enjoyed another episode of "Coke Time with Eddie Fisher" and an old 'Today Show" recently. Well, not so much the Eddie Fisher deal, but I was glad to see it.

7) Nowhereman's Internet Archive: I want to mention this fine effort by developer Nowhereman, a channel that pulls the public domain content posted to the IA. This is a great source for old movies and especially old TV shows, and the IA is the source for much of what Pub-D-Hub posts.

8) Crackle: The good news is Crackle is still adding content, and licensed content, no less--this month it has all the Police Academy films (I love calling the Police Academy "films" and not "movies" for some reason), which are controlled not by Sony, but by Warner Brothers. The bad news there doesn't seem to be a consistent strategy for adding TV, and when I watched the first "PA," I had to endure something like 10 numbing commercial breaks.

9) Dumont Days: When this launched on Roku a while ago, I assumed this modest but cool effort was a one-time blast of content, but I just discovered the owner is updating it! So check back for "new" installments of the likes of "The Morey Amsterdam Show" and "Follow that Man."

10) TuneIn: As I mentioned last week, it's not perfect, but it offers some great radio streams with limited commercial interruption and zero technical problems.

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