Both Netflix and the CW have been in talks about bringing the latter network’s shows to Netflix, doing so less than two weeks after the season wraps up on traditional television. The talks come as the CW’s deal with Hulu reaches its end; under that deal, Hulu provided access to a limited number of episodes shortly after they aired. Hulu reportedly wanted the CW to give it increased rights to stream its content in order to renew the deal, with the talks reportedly having dragged on for months before being abandoned altogether.
According to Variety, both the CW and Netflix are “close to finalizing” this deal, which is described as being “megabucks” in nature. The deal would cover the CW’s scripted shows, such as Arrow, and make the full seasons for each available to stream once the entire season wraps up broadcasting. The time frame for this will be some degree less than two weeks, according to the report.
If the sources are correct, we’ll be hearing an official announcement about this deal by the end of this week; the companies, however, have not commented on nor confirmed the rumor.
Assuming the deal does go through, it will mark a change in how CW fans can access their favorite content — on Hulu, they could get it fairly quickly after the show aired, but had a limited amount of time to watch it before it disappeared and was replaced with a newer episode. This is okay for those who like to stay on top of shows, but is problematic when it comes to getting caught up after a long vacation or streaming a show from the beginning.
Under the Netflix deal, CW fans would get binge-watching access in the same way original Netflix shows are made available — entire seasons dropping all at once, only without the long wait between broadcasting and streaming. Past episodes would then remain available rather than disappearing as new episodes become available.