Paramount Global will rebrand the linear Showtime cable network as Paramount+ With Showtime early next year. Confused? We are too.
We learned about the shake-up yesterday via Variety. Apparently, the change means the premium cable network will add select Paramount+ original series in what we can only guess is a push to to make more off the shows it pays for on Paramount+ - remember, both Showtime and Paramount+ are owned by the same company.
The odd Paramount+/Showtime situation has been confusing one for the past two years or so, and unless the marketing is concise and crystal-clear, consumers might not respond as well to the news as expected.
To make matters worse, "some subscribers of the linear Showtime channel will not have access to the Paramount+ With Showtime streaming plan." The alternative is accessing the programming online via the authenticated streaming apps of pay-TV partners; Paramount Global has agreements with several pay-TV providers that allow this, but there are many variables.
Paramount, however, is trying to sell this move as a positive one for the brand: "The move aligns the brand with the Paramount+ With Showtime plan, a cornerstone integration for the streaming service, making this the first of its kind multiplatform brand that integrates streaming and linear content." Long story short: streaming services keep advancing towards re-inventing the packages of premium cable TV that used to do fine. You can watch the launch video for the marketing campaign here.
The rebrand will allow Showtime subscribers (as of January 8) to access the Paramount+ original series Sexy Beast, the two seasons of Halo (the second one premieres on February 8), Taylor Sheridan's Mayor of Kingstown seasons 1 and 2, Star Trek: Discovery seasons 1 through 4, and Wolf Pack season 1. Expect more news and updates soon.
But who really cares about what we think? This year, we had you vote for your best movies, best comics, and best TV shows of the year too. Check the lists and mix and see if you agree with our (and your) top choices of the year!