As part of Netflix’s insidious plan to put the poor television networks out of business, it plans to put an even greater emphasis on original (and semi-original) programming like House of Cards and Arrested Development (in these original programming press clips, nobody ever mentions that big pile of garbage called Hemlock Grove languishing in your instant queue). So, what does this mean for you, the Netflix viewer of above-average intelligence and discerning tastes? Maybe more seasons of Arrested Development.
The word “season” is something of an anachronism here, but you get the idea — Netflix knows what the people want, and what the people want is more Arrested Development (Firefly fans, you’re shit out of luck — nobody mentioned honoring your fevered devotion to Joss Whedon’s single-season space Western). Netflix CEO Reed Hastings appeared on CNBC earlier this week to report that, yes, the new episodes of Arrested Development were “huge, just as we had hoped,” and then suggested, contrary to his earlier corporate musings, that there could be even more episodes, because nobody in the entertainment business is willing to leave even a little bit of money on the table.
Three months ago, Hastings called the fourth season of Arrested Development (which critics have described, by way of insinuating that there’s no new ground for the sitcom to tread, as “cinematic”) “a fantastic one-off,” mostly because he didn’t anticipate being able to round up the talent for another go-round. That has apparently changed because Hastings mentioned that before the Season 4 premiere, Netflix didn’t “anticipate being able to do seasons five, six [and] seven.”
Does that mean we could be looking at not one, but three more seasons of Bluth family madness? It very well could, because the Bluths, unlike other television families, had been able not only to intensify their fan base in their absence, but to expand it, something that the crew of Serenity hasn’t been able to manage. Arrested Development is unique in that regard, and may therefore be the only cancelled cult series that Netflix revives. Right now, it’s also the only (semi) original show that Netflix has thus far renewed, since House of Cards already had a two-season order as part of its original production deal.
Image via AP, Katy Winn