Instead of releasing the increasingly-elusive “Coming in October” list, Disney’s TARDIS malfunctioned and sent us a month further into the future with a preview of November 12th’s Disney+ Day Celebration. Cool, we’ll take it!
When scanning the press release we had a range of emotions – validation that a few of our bold predictions (Shang-Chi added for all subscribers, premiere of Olaf’s Retellings (now known as Olaf Presents), and The World According to Jeff Goldblum Season 2 premiere) came true! Told ya that 45-day theatrical window on Shang-Chi was not the same thing as saying “it comes to Disney+ Day 46.” Anticipation for that Luca short! Amusement.
There was also disappointment. As usual, that disappointment came from the library, or rather lack thereof. When Mr. Chapek, Disney CEO, first announced the Disney+ Day celebration he described it as an event to encourage “consumers that have not yet signed up for Disney Plus” to lure them in. He said they would use a “real exciting lineup” of titles to gain new subscribers. While the easier to please on Twitter are going gaga for this list, those who look carefully quickly realize that Disney providing a handful of exciting originals and a few library titles is no different than any week.
Once Year Two began, Disney’s original lineup became consistently packed and excellent. Everything has been good, even Turner & Hooch. As a person that majorly dislikes dogs and gross humor (ew drool), I’ve consistently been impressed every week with how much I look forward to that series, its romantic subplots, and the police capers each week! I’m sad the finale airs in an hour.
The November 12th additions could have easily been any Friday. Do you really think Disney wasn’t going to release a series of animated Olaf shorts in November regardless? That the Home Alone reboot wasn’t coming during holiday season? Do you really think people who have held off subscribing for 2 years twill do so now because… an MCU and Boba Fett special are coming? Um…
Enough about the originals. What about the library they announced?
💗Jungle Cruise becomes available to all USA subscribers as its Premier Access run ends. Newsflash: Premier Access has always run 3-months. It was “due” October 29th. When the “available to all” date was announced weeks ago people noted that November 12th was 2 weeks longer than other titles. They intentionally held it back a bit to “spice up” the lineup on November 12th.
💗Shang-Chi had a 45-day exclusive theatrical window. After that, Disney could have added it to Disney+ if they wanted, but they were intentionally vague about when it would show up on Disney+. We suspected that, in spite of some people’s protestations, Jungle Cruise and Shang-Chi arriving to all subscribers on the same day was indeed a reasonable expectation. Score one for us, then.
💗While Spin was not mentioned in their lineup, we scooped weeks ago that it would also stream on Disney+ Day. This is despite joining the service in other countries already and despite the next DCOM, Under Wraps, which premieres October 1st, only taking 1 week to appear on Disney+. That makes 3 titles held back.
💗OIaf Presents is an original, but was leaked by Disney+ Italy as having been planned for end of August release. Our theory that it would arrive November 12th came true! Too bad our wish for earlier Hawkeye and Boba Fett didn’t’ also pan out!
💗The only real “library” content mentioned in the press release (as opposed to the previously mentioned titles that aren’t even 1 year old) are the 12 shorts that were released on the Walt Disney Animation Studios Short Films Collection that Netflix has been streaming since 2015. Over a year ago our Editor in Chief scooped that it would leave Netflix after 6 years on October 25th (now confirmed, thanks Disney). These shorts are already streaming in other countries. They were eligible to add to Disney+ October 29th. Excuse us for feeling underwhelmed, but excellent as these shorts may be, they were coming regardless. Aren’t there hundreds of vintage shorts missing…?
Do you get it? The lineup is underwhelming because it’s no different than any other solid week. Counting the shorts and films, they held back 16 titles just to pile them up.
The lineup isn’t fully complete yet. There is STILL hope for them to announce something truly “groundbreaking.” What creates this underwhelming undercurrent is NOT that the content coming is bad – it’s that Mr. Chapek suggested the lineup would gain attention from people previously uninvested. This is more of the same.
The Disney+ Hold-outs:
💗People who wanted to see the vintage Disney animated shorts (75 percent are missing)
💗People who wanted to watch the Walt Disney Pictures Live-Action canon (Half of the 50s -80s films remain missing)
💗People who comment “More Walt” or “Where’s Walt?” on all of Disney’s social media posts
💗People who were turned away in 2019 by the absence of many cartoon classics featuring major IP such as House of Mouse, Aladdin the Series, Mickey Mouse Works, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, The 7D
💗People clamoring for “more Muppet library” on all campaign social media posts.
💗People who prefer services that provided TV-14 series that aren’t just superheroes.
💗People who expect a major streaming service to provide Rated R and TV-MA titles (all streamers do and even Disney+ does in all countries outside the Americas)
💗People who like Galavant
💗People in USA aware international Disney+ has ~+200 more Fox titles on average per country
None of that is being treated.
Will DejaviewStream love the originals? You bet your britches! But you’ll have to forgive us for being underwhelmed. This isn’t going to cause anyone new to wanna join. Stability is better than loss. But you want GROWTH? Then the gaps and the populations that feel unfulfilled need your attention. See how Pepper Ann trended on Twitter the day it was announced. That’s the ticket. More like that.
Add Titles Like This In Addition To The Originals:
- Brandy and Mr Whiskers
- Muppet Babies
- Dungeons and Dragons
- I’m in the Band
- The Swamp Fox
- The Nine Lives of Elfego Baca
- Dave the Barbarian
- Honey I Shrunk the Kids TV
- Parent Trap 2-4
- Cory in the House
- The Weekenders
- Lloyd in Space
- Angels in the Outfield
- Bear in the Big Blue House
- Muppets Hey Cinderella
- Muppets Frog Prince
Please stop underestimating the draw of your catalog. Surely you had more clamored-for library to announce in the press release than “Frozen Fever” and “Get a Horse.” They’re all fantastic shorts but not going to sway anyone.
Disney+ Day Lineup*:
- The streaming premiere of Marvel Studios’ “Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings”
- The beloved Disney family-friendly adventure film “Jungle Cruise,” available to all subscribers
- The new Disney+ Original movie “Home Sweet Home Alone,” a reimagining of the popular holiday franchise
- An all-new original series of shorts from Walt Disney Animation Studios called “Olaf Presents,” which sees Frozen’s beloved snowman retelling several classic Disney tales as only he can
- The domestic Disney+ streaming debut of fan favorite shorts from Walt Disney Animation Studios including “Frozen Fever,” Oscar®-winning shorts “Feast” and ”Paperman,” Oscar-nominated Mickey Mouse short, “Get A Horse!” and more
- An animated short film “Ciao Alberto” from Pixar, featuring characters from this summer’s animated hit breakout film “Luca”
- A new short from The Simpsons that pays tribute to Disney+’s marquee brands
- The first five episodes from season 2 of “The World According to Jeff Goldblum” from National Geographic
- A special celebrating the origins and legacy of Star Wars’ legendary bounty hunter, Boba Fett
- A special celebrating the Marvel Cinematic Universe on Disney+ with an exciting look towards the future
- “Dopesick,” an original series starring Michael Keaton, which will be released in international markets as part of the Star general entertainment content offering
What part of Disney+ Day are you most excited for? What do you hope they add?
Drew Ryan is a film, TV, and Disney geek. He has degrees in English, Student Personnel Administration, and Library & Information Science from Lawrence University, Concordia University-Wisconsin, and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Interested in the minutia and licensing of streaming service content, he is always publishing lists, suggestions, and advocating for Disney’s missing library to be added to Disney+. Drew subscribes to Disney+, Hulu, Netflix, HBO Max, and Paramount+. You can find him waxing nostalgic over classic Disney Channel or geeking out over Marvel, CW shows, & Disney on Twitter.