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The Carroll News

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Head-to-Head: Disney Plus has the best original content

Dominic Smith
Netflix and Disney Plus are two juggernauts of the modern streaming industry, but which one provides better original content?

This article is part of a Head-to-Head series. Read the counterargument by Brian Keim.

While I was rewatching “The Mandalorian” this week, I realized that Disney Plus has a lot of wonderful original content on its streaming platform. The platform has made shows such as “WandaVision,” “Percy Jackson and the Olympians” and “Loki” that have become extremely popular with the public following their respective releases. Oftentimes, Disney Plus is overshadowed by other large competitors such as Netflix and Hulu.

In comparison, Netflix supports 260 million memberships whereas Disney Plus has around 150 million subscriptions. However, Disney Plus rose in the ranks more quickly than its other competitors, Peacock and Max. Arguably, even though Netflix is currently more popular, Disney Plus has better original content than Netflix overall.

To begin, their original content does not include extensive amounts of mature content like other streaming services, including Netflix, tend to do. Some famous Netflix originals such as “Bridgerton,” “You” and “13 Reasons Why” are all rated TV-MA, which means that none of these shows appeal to younger audiences. Disney Plus originals are much more accessible to a number of different generations. “Percy Jackson and the Olympians,” for example, appeals to an older audience that read the books by Rick Riordan and missed out on a better adaptation earlier in life, and a younger audience that was recently introduced to the books or that has never heard of this story until Disney Plus released the show.

Also, there are very intriguing “shorts” on Disney Plus that stem from different animated movies and shows. Some of my favorites are “Dug Days,” with Dug the dog from the famous movie, “Up,” and “Olaf Presents,” with Olaf the snowman from the animated, recent classic, “Frozen.” In “Olaf Presents,” Olaf explains the plot of many Disney movies in a haphazard, Olaf-like fashion. Once again, these shorts are not only fun for younger viewers who love the animations, but also for older audiences who want a light-hearted short series of clips to watch throughout their stressful days.

Additionally, Disney Plus has created a name for itself through all of the shows I mentioned above and many others. All of those shows have become extremely successful in a short amount of time. According to Forbes, “WandaVision” was streamed 6.5 million times in America after its first two episodes were released in 2021. That is quite extraordinary considering that Disney Plus was only created in 2019, whereas Netflix was initially launched in 1998, giving the site a longer period of time to become popular. Disney Plus, however, has made quite a name for itself after only being accessible to audiences for less than five years.

Now, I am aware that all of these shows listed above stemmed from famous franchises, such as “Marvel Studios” and “Star Wars.” Some fans of these shows were already invested in these worlds and came straight to Disney Plus simply to continue their already instilled love for these characters and their stories. However, no other streaming service appeals as well to generations of consumers quite like Disney Plus. The different range that the streaming service has is unmatched by any other and will always be nostalgic as well.

Personally, when watching any of these original shows, I am reminded of my childhood in a way that Netflix will never be able to accomplish. So although Disney Plus has used this preexisting love to its advantage, on its own it has fostered and grown a fanbase that is now cemented through some of these spin-offs.

Overall, even though at first glance it seems that Netflix is superior when it comes to its original content, Disney Plus is the winning underdog. Even if it doesn’t seem like it now, I expect that Disney Plus will continue to expand its original content and surpass Netflix in a way that can no longer be ignored.

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About the Contributor
Anna Maxwell, Arts and Life Editor
Anna Maxwell is the Arts and Life Editor for the Carroll News from Ashtabula, Ohio. She is a Freshman at John Carroll University who is an Undecided major. Anna has been writing for the Carroll News since the fall of 2023! In addition to writing for the Carroll News, she is also an Honors student here at John Carroll, and she is excited to continue writing in the years to come! When not writing, Anna can be found reading a new book, or binge-watching her favorite Netflix shows! She can also be found spending time with her friends and participating in events around campus! In the future, Anna aspires to become a writer of fiction novels, and also an editor for a well-known publishing company! To contact Anna, email her at [email protected].

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