File this one under “wait, what? Seriously?” HBO has signed a deal with Amazon making Amazon Prime Instant the exclusive streaming partner for their entire back catalogue of amazing television shows. Ugh.
Variety has the story but basically the terms are as follows:
First, it only covers the US which is a small blessing to those of us in Canada. Presently Netflix is the only streaming VOD offering up here of any worth, really. But since they went with Amazon in the US who knows what will happen anywhere else.
Second, the deal only covers shows which are older than three years, which don’t already have other deals covering them, and shows they don’t want to lose momentum on. Case in point, all of the Sopranos and The Wire will be on Amazon, but Entourage and Curb Your Enthusiasm won’t be because they are syndicated elsewhere, and while older seasons of Girls may be on Amazon HBO has decided to keep Game of Thrones for themselves.
So that’s it really. It’s big news that doesn’t affect us directly north of the border yet. I do tend to wonder what’s keeping HBO from just forming their own streaming service though. I’d pretty much pay as much per month as I pay for Netflix just for HBO version of Netflix. Well, maybe a little less, but still. HBO shows are awesome and I want to be able to watch them easily without being a dirty pirate or buying all the DVDs/iTunes copies.