Good news for TV musical fans: Netflix (s NFLX) is expanding its on-demand streaming service to include the first season of Glee, as well as other TV shows from 20th Century Fox. (s NWS)
Even for the most casual of TV viewers, the addition of Glee is a big win for Netflix. But the deal isn’t just about high schoolers singing and dancing; in addition to the first season of Glee, Netflix is adding the first two seasons of FX’s Sons of Anarchy (which is now on Season 3), as well as older shows like The Wonder Years and Ally McBeal as well as some film titles once they fall out of the pay TV window. The agreement is an extension of a previous deal for streaming rights to Lie to Me, 24, Prison Break, Arrested Development, Buffy The Vampire Slayer and X-Files, which will all continue to stream on Netflix.
Netflix has been pushing aggressively to build its on-demand TV library, striking a deal with Disney (s DIS) for ABC and Disney Channel content, as well as bringing older shows like Star Trek online through a licensing deal with CBS (s CBS). The company also took its first step toward original scripted programming by licensing two seasons of the Kevin Spacey-David Fincher project House of Cards, which will be produced by Media Rights Capital.
But it hasn’t been all good news for Netflix on the TV front: Premium cable network Showtime is pulling back some content it licenses to Netflix, removing past seasons of Dexter and Californication from Netflix’s library. And Starz, which put Netflix on the map with a streaming deal that originally gave it access to more than 2,500 film and TV show titles, is adding a 90-day window between the date that its shows air on cable and when they become available as part of Netflix’s on-demand library.