The Smart Way CBS Is Trying To Get Evil And The Unicorn More Viewers

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Any TV aficionado knows that there is simply a ton to watch. Broadcast networks have been steadily joined by premium cable channels, a growing amount of basic cable networks and a dizzying number of streamers when it comes to content. And, while all of the above have some solid shows on their metaphorical hands, it can be very hard for those series to get the kind of views they need to stay afloat. CBS, however, is now trying something smart with two of its freshmen shows, Evil and The Unicorn, which may help them get bigger audiences. Both series are now headed to Netflix.

With the fall television season being pushed back for most shows, it has given those at CBS and CBS TV Studios (which produces both series) some extra time to consider how to get more eyeballs on Evil and The Unicorn, which are both slated to return later this fall. According to Deadline, this new deal will see the first season of each show come to Netflix this October 1, but the agreement is just for one year and does not give the streamer exclusive rights to either show, as both will still also stream on CBS All Access during that time. In addition, just as in their freshmen runs, Season 2 episodes will still be available on CBS All Access after they air on CBS.

While this might seem like an odd move for a network that has its own streamer, it's actually a pretty smart play which could truly see Evil and The Unicorn grow their fanbases right before the new seasons debut, which should happen sometime in November. Not only is Netflix the mack daddy of streaming services, but it's been proven to help shows with middling ratings rise that much closer to the top of a very crowded TV pack.

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Both The CW's moody teen drama Riverdale and NBC's female-focused crime dramedy Good Girls were licensed to Netflix after their first seasons, and got a boost in fans and, as a result, viewers for their subsequent seasons. Riverdale is heading into Season 5 when it returns, while Good Girls will be back for Season 4, so the deals with Netflix made a great impact on their non-streaming viewership. Meanwhile, one of the 10 least-viewed series of the 2018-2019 television season, The CW's All American, managed to (sorta) hit the big time when it became Netflix's most-watched show for a time in late March of this year.

In addition to the hope of good news for Evil (a kinda supernatural drama which focuses on a group of investigators as they look into religious mysteries for the Catholic church) and The Unicorn (a single-camera sitcom about a widowed father of two who's beginning to date again), CBS already has the distinction of having some of the most popular shows available to stream on Netflix, whether licensed or original. Long-running criminal procedurals Criminal Minds (which ended earlier this year after 15 seasons) and NCIS (still going strong and working on Season 18) are some of the most heavily-viewed series on the streamer.

Time will tell if this strategy works for CBS, and, as noted earlier, we won't have long to wait to see if it does, as Evil and The Unicorn are set to hit Netflix on October 1, while each new season should start on CBS sometime in November. For more to watch in the meantime, check out our guide to fall TV!

Adrienne Jones
Senior Content Creator

Covering The Witcher, Outlander, Virgin River, Sweet Magnolias and a slew of other streaming shows, Adrienne Jones is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend, and started in the fall of 2015. In addition to writing and editing stories on a variety of different topics, she also spends her work days trying to find new ways to write about the many romantic entanglements that fictional characters find themselves in on TV shows. She graduated from Mizzou with a degree in Photojournalism.