When we were looking for the best medical dramas on Netflix, ER was notably missing from the Netflix library. Don’t get me wrong, Scrubs, Nurse Jackie, Grey’s Anatomy and House are all good alternatives but most don’t have the legacy that ER left behind. So it’s time to dig out our detective hat and magnifying glass to figure out why ER isn’t streaming on Netflix.
For those wondering what all the fuss is about, let me fill you in. Produced by Warner Bros Television for NBC, the show ran from 1994 and ran all the way up until 2009. Throughout its many years on television it scooped numerous awards and most importantly, gained a global audience that year after year, kept coming back. The show ultimately became the longest-running primetime medical drama in history with 15 seasons and well over 331 episodes under its belt. So what puts this show above everything else in the category? Well to many fans it’s just the sense of urgency that the show has given that it’s set inside an emergency room. The staffs lives were opened up and gave us a deeper and probably more realistic view of how hospitals run. It’s safe to say that this show is probably still the best in the league.
Now we come to the bit you’re actually after, why isn’t it streaming on Netflix. Netflixers all around the world are unable to stream the show as the contract hasn’t been sold to Netflix full stop. How contracts usually work is that they’re bought in bulk but every so often, such as with Friends a few years back, individual contracts for shows are bought out in exchange for a hefty lump of cash. Friends is considered to be one of the best comedies in the business so wasn’t bought cheaply and I imagine the same can be said for ER too. Given the show is highly renowned we took a look at other streaming providers to see if they hold the answer and we were met with a brick wall.
ER is one of the few shows that doesn’t have an appearance yet when it comes to online streaming and that’s bizarre given that both NBC and Warner Brothers Television both have titles streaming across the big three streaming networks. One theory that I often go back to is that the DVD sales must be good enough, even 7 years after the show has finished, to not need them streaming on Netflix for the extra cash.
We reached out to a Netflix representative who said the following about ER’s possibility of joining Netflix first reiterating what I’ve mentioned above saying “we do have to acquire licenses for ER in order to have it available” but currently he said that “there is no information about ER on my data base”.