Some of you may know about the new show that is airing on Playstation Network, while others may not. Powers is based on a comic by Brian Michael Bendis. It is essentially a world where there are people who are called powers because they have powers. Then there are people on the police force dedicated to bringing in rogue powers. Christian is a former power, the first power to lose his powers.
What I really wanted to talk about was the matter of release of Powers. Unlike the Netflix model which drops all of the episodes, Powers has been released in a small batch and then weekly. Thus we’ve had five episodes released over the past three weeks. Every Tuesday, a new episode drops and adds to the list. In the internet age on an internet platform it’s strange to hear that things aren’t being openly released but following a more TV like schedule.
The other curious thing about Powers is it’s release platform and subscription plan. When Netflix started releasing content it was a big deal, but it had a massive user base. That user base could access the shows on any device. Amazon quickly followed suit. After those two it was a slow progression to seeing more shows released in this fashion. Other than Community, this is the biggest release coming to it’s viewers in this way. However, with Powers, it is limited to those who have Playstation Plus.
I’ve talked about Playstation Plus previously. For a gamer it is a great deal. Until you realize that to watch it doesn’t just require a Playstation Plus subscription, but also a PS4. Just by that the potential audience for the show is now limited. From a business stand poiint it’s both foolish (people can’t get to it) and smart (they are adding more content for their current subscribers). The average person with mild interest in the show or even moderate interest isn’t going to dig into the show when you consider all the additional costs that go into it. Someone who was already thinking of investing in a PS4 will be a completely different story. It may be the thing that gives the audience just that extra push that they wanted.
I’m lucky and I’ve been able to watch these episodes slowly when I have the time. I’m actually one episode behind, but what I’ve found is that maybe the pay/device wall this show is hidden behind isn’t the ruin of this show. Those who are interested will find away. And those who don’t simply won’t watch it. The real problem is whether it will draw enough people in and hold them. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the show. It is interesting and I haven’t dropped off. However, I’m watching mainly because for me it has the illusion of free and I can.
Do you enjoy Powers so far? Does the delivery of the show bother you?