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Frowning Down on the Crown

By Grace Heskial

For many years, Netflix was the number one streaming service, providing its subscribers with the ability to watch their favorite shows and movies, along with Netflix exclusives. However, in more recent years, competitors such as Hulu, HBO Max and Disney+ have risen to challenge Netflix for its title as the top streaming service.

Surprising to some, Netflix has stated that Fortnite and YouTube are its biggest competitors.

“I think Netflix competes the most with streaming services like Hulu and Disney+. I don’t think YouTube and Fortnite are similar enough for Netflix to feel threatened by them,” senior Arianna Bianculli said.

Netflix has faced backlash for many fan-favorite shows and movies, such as “Friends” and the “Vampire Diaries,” being removed. Their removal was due to Netflix failing to renew or obtain licenses to keep these shows on their platform.

These dilemmas, along with increased subscription prices, have caused Netflix’s once solid fan base to wane. According to some, changes needed to be made.

“Once Netflix took ‘Friends’ off Netflix and raised their prices on top of that, I felt like they really went downhill. They took off so many staples that Netflix was known for having like ‘Gossip Girl’ and ‘The Office’ and added shows not many people are familiar with,” senior Nicole DiMartino said.

Netflix experienced a series of alterations which varied from having an option to remove a show or movie from the viewer’s “Continue Watching” section to having interactive episodes. Netflix’s most recent production “Kaleidoscope” marks the introduction of these interactive episodes.

Artwork by Ann Aphraim

Some are still hooked on binge-watching Netflix despite other competitive platforms.

“Kaleidoscope” is a new show with a heist spanning over 25 years. There is no set order to watch the show, allowing viewers to watch episodes based on what they feel like watching, with each episode titled a different color. This unique feature allows viewers to experience the show from different perspectives and at different times surrounding the heist. According to Netflix, the purpose of allowing viewers to watch in this distinctive way was to “build intrigue and suspense uniquely, with Netflix members each having a different immersive viewing experience.” This different way of watching sparked curiosity in many.

“Each episode is from a different time frame, like five days or seven years prior to the heist, and you can watch it in any order based on the color scheme, which I like,” physical education teacher Ms. Rizzuti said.

Not everyone has had the chance to watch “Kaleidoscope” yet, but many are looking forward to it with high expectations, intrigued by this never-seen-before feature.

“I haven't watched it yet, and I’m looking forward to it. I like the fact that you can watch it in any order,” junior Alexandra Stec said.

Though many enjoyed watching this show and look forward to doing so, not everyone was impressed with the plot.

“Personally, I found it to be a cliché and overdone heist trope. The writing was subpar at best and was reflected through the unlikeable characters, especially the FBI agent,” junior Guneet Hanjra said.

Whether or not viewers love or hate the show, Netflix’s new nonlinear style of portraying this novel series is gaining attraction.


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