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HBO Saves 'Sesame Street'; Your Move, Netflix

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | August 13, 2015 |

By Dustin Rowles | Industry | August 13, 2015 |

This may not mean that much to you anymore because you don’t watch Sesame Street, but unless you were born before 1969, it’s likely that you spent some time watching the PBS series growing up. Thanks to HBO, children will continue to be able to watch Sesame Street for at least another five years.

In a new arrangement between HBO and the Sesame Street Workshop, HBO will provide Sesame Street with the critical funding it needs to continue, and not only that, your kids will be able to watch Sesame Street first runs on HBO, HBO Go, or the HBO standalone service. Even better, there will be twice as much new content each season now, and PBS will be able to license the series for free after a nine-month window.

Plus, Sesame Street Workshop will produce a Sesame Street Muppet spinoff series, as well as another new educational programs. HBO will have first-run rights to those new series, and new episodes of Sesame Street will premiere on HBO.

That’s outstanding, y’all, and certainly makes HBO more attractive to parents who rely on Netflix to babysit their children while they’re making dinner. And God’s honest, having seen a great number of children’s television programs, there is nothing that truly compares to Sesame Street, even if it’s not your child’s first choice.

Meanwhile, I have no idea if this agreement will alter the announcement that Sesame Street will move to half-hour episodes starting this fall (an arrangement that might actually help with younger children who don’t have the attention span to watch a full hour).

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.