2013 was a great year for Netflix. “House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black” and “Arrested Development” all brought real TV cred to the online network. And now everyone wants to binge-watch television, just like Netflix wants.
Although Netflix got into the original content game before 2013 — most notably with 2012’s “Lilyhammer” — this was the first year that the Internet company was seen as a major player. Why? Just look at what has come out from Netflix in the past year.
Any network would be excited to get an Oscar winner like Kevin Spacey on a show. When that show is a prestige-filled political drama cast mainly with movie actors, you’d expect the program to air on cable. But it was Netflix that got “House of Cards.”
When the Emmy nominations came out for 2013, “House of Cards” got nine of Netflix’s 14 total nods. This was the first time a web-only series had even been nominated. The show ended up winning three of its Emmys. Multiple nominations and a few wins followed throughout the year.
It was never supposed to happen. “Arrested Development” long dead and gone years before Netflix even thought about producing original television content. Yet somehow the long-awaited Season 4 of “Arrested Development” landed on Netflix.
Interestingly, the return of the show put to the test the much-lauded Netflix notion of binge-watching. With all of the season available at once, fans had to decide between watching and sleeping.
Not just one of the best series to debut online, “Orange Is the New Black” may be one of the best “serious” comedies to hit television in recent years. The odd story of a young, yuppie-like woman stuck in a woman’s prison for a year has turned out to be both hilarious and tragic.
Too late to get notice during Emmy nomination time, the 2014 Golden Globes have already nominated star Taylor Schilling for an award.
Every network needs a cult series, right? If that’s the case, then “Hemlock Grove” may be the best thing to ever happen to Netflix. The weird, supernatural show is dark, moody and utterly disgusting at times. You will never be able to watch a werewolf transformation the same way again, if nothing else.
Can Netflix match its 2013 success in 2014? While it might be tough, the signs are all pointing to that being a distinct possibility. Who knew online programming could work so very well?