How Hulu’s ‘The Kardashians’ fit into the ‘Survival of the Fittest’ media landscape

Spread out the red carpet. “The Kardashians” is coming.

The new series airing on Hulu (DIS) is set to make its long-awaited debut on Thursday. Disney first released its exclusive, multi-year contract with the family in December 2020.

The five sisters – Courtney, Kim, Chloe, Kendall and Kylie – will return to the small screen with mother Chris, with the exception of some new faces, such as Courtney’s fiance (and sort of husband) Travis Parker.

As Kim says in the viral trailer, “We’ve got a lot of time and we’ve gone to our own worlds.” I’m excited for this new episode. I’m been in the game knowing you have to be. “

If you want to keep in touch with the Kardashians, do not do it on cable …Robert Thompson, Syracuse University Professor of TV and Pop Culture

E! The upcoming premiere of “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”, the long-running reality series, aired its final episode in June 2021 after 14 years and 20 headline-grabbing seasons.

Various reports say that the actors want a pay rise (which led to the decision to leave E!).

According to Variety, the family will receive a 9-digit salary in Hulu. That’s the last deal! Announced to be $ 100 million in 2017.

Hulu’s ‘The Kardashians’ premieres on April 14th

The celebrity family has doubled to be an appropriate force in today’s media landscape.

Currently, each of the ‘Gorgenner’ sisters has amassed more than 100 million followers on Instagram alone (FB) – providing fans with continuous, up-to-the-minute updates, and the long process of waiting weekly for new ones. Episodes airing on E!

In fact, that long lead time was part of what made the Hulu deal so attractive that streaming often allowed for a tight turn.

“We wanted it to be as current as possible,” Kim told Variety. “We hated how long we had to wait. It’s like our death, because if we’ve finished something, we had to do it again.”

“KUWTK” ratings also began to decline, with fans embracing social media and updating about the play in real time. According to Nielsen, estimates rose to 4.8 million during the Season 4 final in February 2010. The final seasons are not even close.

“If you want to keep in touch with the Kardashians, do not do it on cable,” Robert Thompson, a professor of television and pop culture at Syracuse University, told Yahoo Finance.

“Streaming is now the test kitchen for all the awesome new programs,” he continued.

Anthony Palomba, a professor of business management at UVA’s Dorton School of Business, acknowledged, “Kardashians are so highly regarded. How do you stay on top? They have nowhere to go.”

However, Hulu offers a mutually beneficial arrangement: the family must be present and accessible on a significant streaming service, while Hulu – one of Hollywood’s biggest brands – but the most coveted reality TV show.

“In streaming wars, people are looking for live content,” Palomba said, referring to the divisions in cable television as networks lean on live games and news programs.

“Why? Because people watch them when they are broadcast. It’s very rare for people to delay watching a TV news show or sports show … Reality TV is similar to its demise,” the professor continued.

He added, “These women live in the moment, you have to see them at the right time or you will be left behind … it demands meeting the time.”

Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala - Med Gala - Camp: Notes on Fashion - Visits - New York City, US - May 6, 2019 - Corey Gamble, Chris Jenner, Connie West, Kim Kardashian, Kendall Jenner and Guy.  REUTERS / Andrew Kelly

Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala – Med Gala – Camp: Notes on Fashion – Visits – New York City, USA – May 6, 2019 – Corey Gamble, Chris Jenner, Connie West, Kim Kardashian, Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner. REUTERS / Andrew Kelly

Disney recently revealed that ABC’s long-running reality show “Dancing with the Stars” will switch to Disney + after 15 years – another example of streamers’ goal of connecting more with subscribers and drawing live content to sites.

In addition, Netflix (NFLX) has seen great success in its own reality series, from “The Circle” and “Selling Sunset” to the latest “Love is Blind” and “The Ultimatum”.

“We are in a very good survival period,” Palomba revealed. “We find premium content in streaming wars, especially content that is immediately identifiable with the parent streaming company.”

Hulu, best known for its critically acclaimed “The Handsmaid’s Tale”, lacks much significant, proprietary content compared to its rivals.

“This is a great opportunity for Hulu to integrate itself as part of the pop culture,” said the UVA professor, adding that at this stage of the streaming wars, it’s more about personal shows than service as a whole.

“There’s a lot going on in the market, so people need to feel like they are To Subscribe to something, “Palomba said.

Overall, “the Kardashians are proving very quickly that they continue to influence cultural logic beyond what most people can conceive or feel,” Palomba said of the multi-billion dollar brands and development deals the family has created. Time, in addition to their reality TV dominance.

The demise of supreme television?

“Keeping Up With the Kardashians” premiered in 2007 – a tough time in the history of television.

The CW’s “Gossip Girl” and AMC’s “Mad Men” had their grand opening years, with “The Sopranos” and “The OC” airing their final episodes.

At the time, Disney’s “High School Musical 2” became the most-watched cable film in history with over 17 million viewers, while 7.4 million people turned out to watch the now-canceled Victoria’s Secret fashion show on CBS.

For an extra dose of nostalgia, Donald Trump went head-to-head with WWE’s “The Battle of the Billionaires” (Spoiler Warning: Trump Wins) on Vince McMahon’s reality launch year (and future US president).

Cable TV was once a cherished form of home entertainment – and “Keeping up with the Kardashians” was one of the many programs that helped promote broadcast networks.

But a decade and a half later, the media landscape is very different – and now consumers have a lot of choices to handle streaming at the forefront.

According to a recent Pew Research Center survey, the share of American adults who claim to watch cable or satellite television has dropped from 76% in 2015 to 56% in 2021.

All this says that the Kardashians do not need a fly! To win. They need to meet fans where they are – these days it’s mostly on social media and streaming services – and networks are starting to struggle with the same reality.

With the removal of “Keeping Up the Kardashians” and “Dancing with the Stars”, Cable will soon face another blow with the end of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show”.

DeGeneres announced the end of its two-decade-long daytime talk show last year. The final episode is set for May 26, 2022.

“The end of these programs is significant because they have long been different types of programming in different ways and in different degrees,” Elana Levine, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, previously told Yahoo Finance.

Santa Monica, California - December 07: 2021 People's Awards - Picture: Ellen DeGeneres' The Ellen DeGeneres Show's Day Speech Accepted On The Stage During The 2021 People's Choice Awards In The Hanger

Santa Monica, California – December 07: 2021 People’s Choice Awards – Picture: Ellen DeGeneres receives the ‘The Ellen DeGeneres Show’ award on stage at the 2021 Parker’s Honker Awards.

“But in terms of the sheer size and volume of TV, I’m not sure if we’re going down. If anything, I think we’re expanding as more and more streaming sites are coming in,” he added.

Levine argues that although the size has not diminished, there has been a “change” in programming, especially in traditional cable television.

“Over the last 5 years we have seen some changes from traditional broadcast TV and cable TV, streaming is becoming more important,” Levine explained. He added that the change has given more access to streamers.

“Currently there are audiences for the regular type of cable, but more and more people are approaching programming in other ways. That is what is changing so dramatically,” he said.

Palomba said he did not know what else Cable could do to divert consumer attention or combat it, suggesting that some concessions should re-evaluate their future in space.

“Some of these cable channels will have to consider whether or not to add value to something else, such as joining a streaming service as part of the library,” he suggested.

“They’re small fish – and it looks like all the little fish are being eaten.”

Alexandra is a Senior Entertainment and Food Correspondent at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @ alliecanal8193

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