While it’s too early to know everything that’s leaving Netflix in July of 2017, there’s one title that Netflix wants to make sure you know will be dropping from their streaming service. As of July 1, 2017, the first five seasons of Futurama will disappear from Netflix, leaving fans with only the last two seasons to binge on.
Several media outlets, including Uproxx and Entertainment Weekly, are reporting that when you queue up any of the episodes from the first five seasons, you are met with a message that says that this season is only available until July 1. The message appears in the upper left corner of the viewing area and is easy to miss as it only shows up for a couple of seconds.
That means that classics like “Fry and the Slurm Factory” where Fry, Leela, and Bender visit the planet Wormulon for a tour of the Slurm plant ala Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, complete with Grunka Lunkas and a boat ride, is going away. No more “War is the H-Word” or “Amazon Women in the Mood,” which gave us the epic phrase, “death by snu-snu.” Gone is the tale of “The Late Philip J. Fry.”
If that isn’t enough to depress you, remember that “Jurassic Bark” is also going the way of the dodo bird.
The Internet Reacts
Of course, this revelation did not sit well with fans of the show, and the internet erupted with a brief explosion of protests with many people saying they would cancel their subscription to Netflix. One user said, “Well when Futurama goes so does my subscription @netflix.” Another echoed the sentiment, saying, “so @netflix is removing futurama on July 1st, along w/ my subscription.” Others used simple gifs to express their dismay with Fox’s decision to remove Futurama from Netflix.
Netflix removed Bob's Burgers and is abt to remove Futurama so ima go ahead and remove my subscription pic.twitter.com/PeKzKegoRk— Leagan Wilson (@leagalicious) June 2, 2017
Netflix is removing Futurama at the end of the month and I'm just curious why they don't want my business anymore. pic.twitter.com/Ycgy1irZyq— Brian Anthony Joyce (@ImBrianJoyce) June 5, 2017
On top of these usual 140-character pithy comments and gifs posted to Twitter, a petition cropped up on change.org, saying, “If you cancel Futurama, we’ll cancel you, Netflix!” The petition was started by Bender Rodriguez from Michigan and currently has 2,398 signatures.
Netflix and Fox’s Rocky Relationship
Let’s be clear. It’s not Netflix who is removing Futurama, it’s Fox that is not renewing Netflix’s rights to air the series. The writing for this latest move has been on the wall for quite some time. As the Inquisitr reported earlier, FoxTV has been quietly removing all of its properties from Netflix. In April of 2017, Angel, Arrested Development, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, House, Roswell, and The X-Files were all removed and moved to Netflix’s competitor, Hulu. 21st Century Fox owns a significant share in Hulu, along with NBCUniversal, Disney, and Time Warner. The first few seasons of Bob’s Burgers were also removed this year.
There’s plenty of bad blood between Netflix and Fox, with Fox declaring Netflix as their “Public Enemy Number One” for what Fox saw as executive poaching. When Netflix hired Marcos Waltenberg and Tara Flynn in 2016, the two executives were still under contract with Fox. Fox filed a suit in September of 2016 with allegations of intentional interference with contractual relations. Netflix and Fox are currently undergoing a fierce legal battle over this with Netflix filing a countersuit, saying that Fox was fostering a hostile workplace, immigration status threats, and salary low-balling.
With these two television powerhouses at odds, combined with Fox’s partial stake in Hulu, it seems unlikely that any syndication or broadcast rights to any Fox properties will be renewed. As they expire, they will be removed from Netflix and migrate to Hulu where Fox can retain its rights. The good news for fans is that Futurama will always be available for streaming somewhere, even if it isn’t on Netflix.
[Featured Image by FoxTV]