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Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
How did that Disney+ launch go? Also: how did the Mad About You relaunch go?
Always Be Watching is by Dan Barrett who says to always go your own way.
The first batch of episodes of Mad About You2019 have been seen by critics, with reviews published today. The general consensus is that it is more of the same - which, I kind of thought was the point of a revival series. Dave Nemetz’s review at TV Line suggests that the show is ‘a bland relic of sitcoms past’.
None of this is great art, by any stretch… but I still found myself feeling a certain affection for it. Episode 4 in particular, which finds Paul and Jamie arguing over him not offering her a toothpick after a meal, is vintage low-stakes situation comedy. Maybe it’s just the ’90s nostalgia talking, but with all the exhausting twists and serialized storylines that TV shows throw at us now, it’s kind of nice to relax with some mild, palatable laughs served at a leisurely pace.
How did that Disney+ launch go? Well, Disney reports that it already has 10 million subscribers. For comparison, Hulu has about 28 million subs, while CBS All Access is hovering at around 8 million. So, for Disney… not bad for the first day.
There were also 3.2 million app downloads across iOS and Android devices. The company has blamed authentication issues for some of the problems customers have had logging in. Other customers have reported buffering issues. Undoubtedly, these will be resolved within the first few days.
While Song of The South may be missing from Disney+, there are still a bunch of movies and TV shows that feature outdated racial stereotypes. The service acknowledges this with some titles, like Dumbo, having a disclaimer:
Own a piece of Aussie soap Neighbours with Dr Karl and Susan’s house. The real-life house is for sale.
Maybe the best story to come out of yesterday’s release of new live action Star Wars show The Mandalorian was this article that takes a deep dive into how financial currencies work in the Star Wars universe. If you haven’t watched the show yet, the article is actually spoiler-free (nothing of consequence is mentioned) and takes a much broader look at Star Wars monies in general.
What we don’t learn is what the average moisture farmer, or Imperial Navy officer, or smuggler, earns per year, which would give some context as to the value of the Imperial credit. To use an example from the expanded universe (may it rest in peace), a New Republic officer might have 10,000 credits in his bank account, while 10 million is enough to buy a few dozen X-Wings. That doesn’t mesh with our experience, in which Luke’s speeder is the equivalent of a high school senior’s first car, but a modern fighter jet can cost as much as $100 million. (We never do learn how much it costs to clean up the results of a gunfight in a Tatooine bar, but I don’t know how much that costs in 2019 U.S. dollars either, and I’m from New Jersey.)
There may well be a Friends reunion on the way. THR reports on talks of a special to be produced for HBO Max. From the sounds of it, maybe expect more the cast coming together to talk about the series rather than a scripted revival/follow-up.