This Week’s MPN Podcast: ‘The Last of Us’ Viewership Jumps 22%; Netflix’s Reed Hastings Steps Down; Netflix to Launch Paid Password Sharing


On this week’s episode of the Media Play News podcast, hosts Charles Parkman and Charlie Showley recap the shows they’ve been watching recently, as well as the newest post-apocalyptic drama on HBO Max, “The Last of Us.: Charlie finished another HBO Max show, “Peacemaker,” something he was lukewarm on after catching its pilot but, having given the show another shot, ended up loving because of its earnest take on superheroes. If you thought “The Boys” was compelling but tried a little too hard to be edgy, then “Peacemaker” may be just what you’re looking for. Charles finished up “The Good Place,” a former NBC show now on Netflix and deserves a recommendation as well.

“The Last of Us” aired its second episode over the weekend and saw a 22% lift in viewership. Charlie, who had next to no expectations going into the first episode and was pleasantly surprised by it, has since gotten fully onboard with the show. The hosts talk about how lots of prestige TV nowadays all seems to suffer from the same oversaturated color palettes, sweeping overhead drone shots, and meticulously (yet lifeless) crafted set backgrounds. He contrasts this with “The Last of Us,” which so far has successfully pulled off making its post-apocalyptic backdrop look depressingly lived in. It had big shoes to fill given its source material, the critically acclaimed game by the same name. In contrast with a slew of video game adaptations that have turned out to be stinkers on the screen, this show will likely have a bright future.

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Lastly is a lot of news this week from Netflix. Reed Hastings, its co-founder and co-CEO, has announced he is stepping down from his position to take up an executive chairman role. Also planned is to crack down on password sharing: Netflix estimates 100 million of its subscribers share passwords and has been testing a paid password sharing upsell in South America. It plans to roll this out to its broader subscription base in an attempt to monetize some of this usage. It is the hosts’ opinion that if anything hurts Netflix, it will be its habit of canceling shows left and right rather than marginally increasing its users’ monthly costs. And did you know Netflix still has a DVD subscription service? Listen to the end for the latest details on that.

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