It’s the age of change, and it’s enough to make your head spin. Streaming platforms and network television have been at odds since their inception. By and large, streaming is now a part of most people’s everyday lives, but despite rumors of its demise, network and cable TV continues to hang in there. But that doesn’t mean everything stays just the same, as we saw on Deadline. In a mind-bending move, the Paramount+ streaming channel and the Showtime network channel will merge together to create two platforms named Paramount+ with Showtime. And this merge has officially happened in the US as of June 27.
Of course, this will impact the content available from both platforms as the trend of removing series and movies continues… And it will impact the subscription price consumers will have to pay. Confused yet? Let’s break it down.
Jump To: What Is Paramount+ with Showtime? // Subscription Costs for the Streamer // Content Removals and Changes
Paramount+ with Showtime to Replace Separate Streamers and Showtime Channel
On the streaming side, there was once the Showtime streaming service and the Paramount+ streaming service. But now these products are going to come together to create Paramount+ with Showtime (the streamer). The premium tiers of Paramount+ with Showtime have Showtime content available alongside Paramount+ content. And, officially, the standalone Showtime app will cease to exist by the end of this year.
Meanwhile, Showtime is also currently a cable network. Over time, that network will no longer be Showtime and will instead eventually become Paramount+ with Showtime (the TV channel). On that end, the TV network’s profile will receive a boost by also airing “Paramount+ originals in addition to the SHOWTIME originals, as well as Paramount Pictures movies that come to the services.” This change is still in the works.
Subscription Price Increases for Paramount+ with Showtime
Paramount+ with Showtime will see a price increase from Paramount+’s current cost. The premium tier, which previously cost $9.99 on Paramount+ has risen to $11.99 for Paramount+ with Showtime’s ad-free offering. Of course, this will contain both Paramount+ and Showtime content. And, it is important to note, the price of Paramount+ with Showtime remains lower than the previous cost of purchasing both platforms.
Meanwhile, the essential Parmount+ plan, which contains ads and will not include Showtime content, will see its subscription cost increase from $4.99 a month to $5.99.
Paramount+ with Showtime subscribers should note that another price increase for the platform is on the horizon. Per Variety, Paramount CEO Bob Bakish recently shared, “Our plan is to raise price again, this isn’t our only price increase. Whether we do that in ’25, or we do that in ’24, we’ll see… Again, early days, as we evaluate the cost impact of the price increase, but we believe there’s a lot of room to run there.”
Bakish further noted of Paramount+ with Showtime’s initial increase. “We just effectuated our first price increase. It is very much performing according to plan… There was some question out there, if it would adversely affect churn in a significant way and if we’re bringing down subscriber acquisition. And the fact matter is, we’re not seeing that. So that proves that we have pricing power in the marketplace, given the content we’re bringing to bear on the platform.”
Just how far that pricing power will go remains to be seen.
Content Changes for Paramount+ with Showtime
Content-wise, cancellations at Showtime have begun to occur, according to Deadline. The shows Three Women, Let the Right One In, and American Gigolo are reportedly canceled or heading for cancellation. According to Deadline, Showtime has also officially scrapped the anticipated Gattaca series that was in the works. The series would have been based on the ’90s hit movie taking place a generation later. Showtime will also pass on the Mandy Patinkin comedy Seasoned and several other shows.
Additionally, it was reported that Dexter: New Blood received a cancellation at Showtime. However, this may no longer be the case. Regardless of the fate that awaits New Blood, it sounds like a Dexter prequel series is coming. This Dexter outing will focus on a younger version of the character. Executive Chris McCarthy notes, “The origin story will be set in Dexter’s hometown of Miami, and will touch on stories of real-life serial killers of the time period.” Additional Dexter spinoff series could also hit the new streamer. These could focus on “the back stories of compelling Dexter characters,” including one featuring the Trinity Killer.
Meanwhile, Paramount+ is also removing content from its platform. Per Deadline, among other things, Jordan Peele’s The Twilight Zone, which ran for two seasons, is no longer available on the platform. Also missing are The Real World: Homecoming, Coyote, No Activity, Guilty Party, and The Harper House. And the content purges are continuing. By far one of the most shocking decisions made by Paramount+ was to cancel and remove Star Trek: Prodigy from its platform. The series hopes to find life elsewhere, but the decision came with loud fan outcry. The Game, Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies, and Queen of the Universe also met a similar fate.
For the moment, our personal favorite Showtime offering, Yellowjackets, seems thankfully safe. According to executive Chris McCarthy, it exemplifies one of Showtime’s strengths (complex characters) alongside shows like Billions.
Now that we’ve mostly wrapped our heads around this change, we’ll have to wait and see what these latest landscape shenanigans bring to all of us. We’ll cross our fingers for only good things.
Originally published on January 30, 2023.