Netflix Changes Its Streaming Format For ‘Great British Baking Show’

Paul Hollywood of the Bake Off receives the award for Best Challenge Show at the 21st National Television Awards
Tristan Fewings / Getty Images

A change in the way Netflix is airing the new season of Great British Baking Show is confusing some fans, but never fear, as the new way means that Americans will see the full series earlier than in the past.

According to The New York Times, some GBBS enthusiasts were perplexed when they launched their Netflix account last Friday to find that there was only one episode available to the seventh season of the baking competition, which takes place under a tent in Berkshire, England.

In the past, the streaming giant delivered an entire binge-worthy season after the entire competition had aired in the U.K. on Channel 4, but now each episode will stream days after it airs in Great Britain.

Maya Salam of The New York Times explains that this is not an indication that Netflix is changing its format.

“But those who tuned in on Friday may have been surprised that only one episode of the reality cooking competition was available. But it’s not to torture viewers. Nor is it because Netflix has big plans to rethink how it offers programming,” Salam wrote.

Last year, Netflix struck a deal with Channel 4 to secure first-run rights for the current season, so that American fans can watch the competition almost in real-time.

Previously, PBS owned the U.S. rights, and Netflix was only able to stream the show after the public television stations had already aired them. In the past, the streaming network had done this more in reverse, airing a new episode weekly on British Netflix after they would air in the U.S. This was done in Great Britain with shows like Breaking Bad.

But this hasn’t stopped some Netflix customers from complaining on Twitter that they want their shows delivered a whole season at a time.

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“Say it ain’t so. Don’t change @netflix releasing entire seasons at once is what makes streaming platforms great,” one fan wrote.

Netflix responded that “it ain’t so,” revealing that they are just trying something new, but are committed to their standard format for most shows.

Quartzy shared that in many ways, Netflix is actually doing fans a favor by airing episodes of Great British Baking Show one at a time, as it postpones the gratification in fans that have no willpower, adding that it also allows the U.S. audience to screen the new season earlier than in the past.

While many people want to get their GBBS all in one dose, this way, the fun can last a bit longer.