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Netflix Vs. Disney+: Which Streaming Service Is A Better Value?

Welcome to Streamer Smackdown, the unofficial arena where two streaming platforms will compete for subscriber glory, but only one will come out on top. (We’re just streaming experts who watch a worrisome amount of TV on the daily. What do we know?)

We’ll look at everything from content to pricing to how easy it is to find that one obscure ’90s sitcom (that you saw two episodes of when you were a kid) and name a winner. It’s not as fun as cage matches and steel chairs but then again, what is?

Round two sees Netflix face-off against another young rookie, Disney+. Don’t let Baby Yoda’s cuteness fool you, this streamer fights dirty.

Disney+ / Giphy

The Case For Netflix

Netflix is definitely the old-timer in this fight, but when it comes to streaming, that’s a good thing. It means the platform carries a seemingly limitless amount of content, from original series and movies to international offerings, anime, and blockbuster classics.

It’s got a three-tier pricing plan, which means it’s slightly more affordable depending on what you’re looking for. The most you’ll pay is $15.99 a month, and that guarantees you four simultaneous streams, 4K viewing, unlimited downloads of certain shows and films, and the ability to watch from pretty much anywhere on any device.

And because what you’re watching is more important than how you’re watching, we’d be doing a disservice if we didn’t marvel at the quantity and quality of original content the streamer’s given us over the years. There are beloved favorites like Orange Is the New Black and Bloodline. There are newcomers like Bridgerton and The Witcher. There are trippy comedies like Russian Doll and period dramas like The Queen’s Gambit. And then there are the Academy Award-winning movies that have disrupted the awards season circuit over the past few years. It’s enough content to have any competition, even Disney, shaking in their boots.

Pros: A huge library of originals and some old-school favorites, a cheap pricing plan, and easy navigation.

Cons: There’s still so much content people are missing out on, some of the originals are hit and miss, and we’ve already seen a lot of what it has to offer.

The Case For Disney+

In no way should you feel bad for Disney. The company has managed to cement its place atop the peak of pop culture by buying out other studios and grouping some of the biggest franchises and comic book IP under its very large umbrella. It makes sense then that Disney+, its fairly new streaming platform, would rival a behemoth like Netflix within just a year of its launch. Right now, a subscription will set you back $6.99 a month, though that price will inch up to $7.99 per month in March of this year.

But still, compared to what you’re shelling out for other streaming platforms, you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck with Disney+. Nearly every movie in the Marvel catalog is now housed on the streamer — in case you want to relive those pre-snap glory days — and spinoffs like WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki are also finding a home there. So, if you’re an MCU fan, you almost can’t live without Disney+ at this point.

Another draw for the streamer is the nostalgic appeal of the mythic Disney vault — you know, that completely nonexistent content prison Disney shoved its most beloved titles into so you’d give them all your money when they dangled those “remastered” editions of childhood favorites in front of our joyless shells of adulthood. Disney+ guessed that we’d all want to tap into our youth by rewatching Beauty & The Beast or The Emperor’s New Groove, and they were right. Now that the studio is churning out live-action remakes of these classics, there’s even more demand for the originals (truly, a vicious cycle).

But if animated fairytales and superhero team-ups aren’t your thing, Disney+ has a place for you too because they’ve also acquired Lucasfilm and 21st Century Fox (and all of the films that come with both). Yes, that means the entire Star Wars collection, and the X-Men universe, and Deadpool, and all of the Fantastic Fours, and Baby Yoda, and… you get it, right?

Pros: A massive library of animated classics, superhero sagas, and sci-fi space operas.

Cons: As of now, WandaVision and The Mandalorian are the only original series worth your time.

The Verdict: Netflix Wins, But We’re Not Happy About It

Look, if we’re going by stats, Netflix has more original content that’s actually good. When Disney+ got in the game, they banked on The Mandalorian to attract subscribers that maybe wouldn’t care about a digitally restored copy of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. They also couldn’t decide if they wanted to market to kids, parents of kids, or everyone in between. That meant it took a year for fans to see the payoff from its extensive IP library. WandaVision is terrific, and it had us excited for what comes next within the MCU, but once you finish the handful of episodes there and the dozen or so more from Jon Favreau’s Mandalorian adventure, you’re left with a bunch of films you’ve likely seen before.

So yes, Netflix wins, but honestly, we’re more excited to see where Disney+ goes this year, so we’re begrudgingly bestowing this title belt.