As we enter a new decade, I believe the twenties will be known as the decade of streaming. Sure it started with Netflix several years ago, the plethora of new services combined with the decline of traditional cable/satellite/broadcast television will have more people than ever cutting the cord.
There have been some that have come out of the gate swinging (Disney+) and some that are still trying to find an audience (Crackle anyone?). Even Plex, the server that’s let’s you have your own streaming library, is now offering free to watch movies with ads.
One service that many of you have probably forgotten is DC Online. And that’s a shame. If you are a comics/superhero aficionado–and if you’re on this site you probably are–then you should give this one another look.
One point is the pretty hefty library of DC Comics-based shows. The DCAU, Superfriends, 1990’s The Flash, Lois and Clark, Max Fleisher Superman shorts, and so much more are all here. I have to admit watching a hugely nostalgic trip of the 3rd season of Superfriends which introduced the Legion of Doom. More enjoyable than I would’ve thought.
But add to it the massive DC comic collection. Read newer storylines (though still several months behind the newsstands,) classic modern age, silver age, and golden age books, some graphic novels and little known gems you might not have known DC produced. It’s not complete but there’s more than enough here to keep you entertained.
The real shock has been the quality of its original content. While I have yet to watch Titans, Doom Patrol was amazing and I love every minute of it. Well cast and it’s good to see Brendan Fraser working again who brings a really interesting take on Robotman. Basically it’s his brain in a robot. He’s not traumatized as you might see in other shows but he’s not exactly coping. He’s also very funny.
Recently they have come out with a new animated series for Harley Quinn and it is HILARIOUS. Part faithful DC superhero show, part R-rated comedy, part horrifically violent action series and part Seinfeld. They even cast Jason Alexander as a kvetching wheelchair-bound Jewish landlord who is part cyborg, part (very painful) Transformer (into a shitty station wagon no less) and all Jewish.
This show has F-Bombs, explosions of gore, and very funny situation comedy style moments. They pull from the backlog of DC villains and either re-imagine them in a very funny way or keep faithful to them but put them in absurd situations. I can’t stop watching this weird, wonderful show. At its core, it’s about friendship and loyalty and even through all the weirdness, it’s kind of optimistic.
There’s a lot of behind the scenes shows and documentaries. The History of Shazam that was released to coincide with the movie was pretty informative. The service also has discussion boards, something you don’t normally see on most streaming services.
The service isn’t batting 1000. While I really enjoyed Young Justice when it was out on Cartoon Network, I was very disappointed with the long-awaited 3rd season released exclusively online. Much too woke and not very engaging. Swamp Thing has only one season and it didn’t really grab me.
It’s unclear whether or not this service will be able to continue. If you have been looking for something different and this fell off your radar, I encourage you to give DC Online another shot. You might be surprised how much of a time vampire it becomes.