The long awaited finale to Breaking Bad is almost upon us, and while U.S. fans will be able to watch on regular TV, UK and Ireland fans are going to need to resort to Netflix. The video streaming service has snagged exclusive rights to the final half of season five of the smash hit show, which means you're going to need to either watch it on your Mac or PC, your iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, or better still, your Apple TV.
On the one hand, it's a kick in the face to folks who are eagerly awaiting these episodes that may not be Netflix subscribers, because they're going to have to pay up for at least two months worth of subscription to watch it to the end. At the other end of the scale, it's a pretty monumental moment for online TV services. Breaking Bad is big TV, and for Netflix to secure an exclusive broadcasting deal is perhaps a pre-cursor to more of this kind of thing in the future. Importantly, the traditional Netflix model of dumping all the episodes at once won't happen here; one per week will be posted so we don't have to worry about spoilers.
There's an ever increasing market out there for the Netflix type subscription model; ie free of the cable companies. Online content has seen a big push in recent months and years, and the Apple TV in-particular remains a perfect conduit to that content. Maybe, just maybe there's a future in this yet. Let me know what you guys think, though. Is this a step forward, or just a big old snub to folks who haven't yet decided they want to take their TV online?
Breaking Bad will be available on Netflix UK and Ireland from August 12. New subscriptions are available for £5.99 per month.