“Downton Abbey” lovers, if you haven’t signed up for Amazon Prime, you better get to it because PBS just inked a deal that will make Prime Instant Video the only streaming service to carry Season 3 and Season 4 — as well as Season 5, if there is one — of the greatest show ever to air on television.
Not only that, but if you shell out 10 bucks for Amazon’s TV Pass now, you can watch the rest of Season 3 before it airs on PBS in the U.S. (Remember when Lord Grantham thought a telephone in the house was high tech? Just saying …)
Season 3 will begin streaming June 18. Seasons 1 and 2 are currently available on Prime as well as on Netflix and Hulu, but it appears Amazon’s deal will see those episodes yanked from its competitors’ libraries later in 2013, making Prime Instant Video the exclusive “Downton” streaming site.
PBS’ agreement with Prime deals a brutal blow to Hulu and Netflix, as the digital subscription services battles it out with each other for popular content. Amazon’s Director of Digital Video Content Acquisition, Brad Beale, says “Downton Abbey” is consistently on their most watched list, and is officially “the most popular TV series with Prime Instant Video customers, ever.” Fancy that.