Peacock Adds Reelz Channel ... and Its 'Cops'-Like Hit Docuseries, 'On Patrol: Live'
Remember when the video business had that post-George Floyd-murder reconning about reality police shows? Neither, apparently, does NBCUniversal
Peacock on Wednesday will launch Reelz Channel on its subscription streaming service, while highlighting the indie cable network's hit reality police show On Patrol: Live.
Reelz will stream its linear channel 24/7 on Peacock, which will also make available on-demand episodes of On Patrol: Live the day after their regular linear airings on Friday and Saturday nights 9 p.m. - 12 a.m.
Debuting last July, On Patrol: Live has averaged nearly 4 million viewers in live-plus-seven-day Nielsen ratings, helping the network boost its primetime audience by 270% among adults 25-54 in 2022, Reelz said.
Reelz is now fully engaged in the "law-enforcement docuseries' genre, also airing spinoff show On Patrol: First Shift, as well as Jail, Autopsy: The Last Hours of…," and the reality series that started it all, Cops.
Less than three years ago, Cops and the whole reality police genre it inspired seemed to be, well, under arrest, with the Paramount Network pulling Cops after 30 seasons amid the aftermath of the brutal murder of George Floyd at the knees of Minneapolis police.
But Peacock and parent NBCUniversal are finally on a roll, doubling paid watchers to 20 million last year. The year 2020, and the social-justice movements and moments inspired therein, are long gone, and they clearly see additional streaming audience here.
As for the Reelz Channel, its pay TV distribution is downright solid for an indie channel, with carriage on Comcast's Xfinity TV, Charter Spectrum TV, the full lineup of DirecTV platforms, Dish Network and Sling TV, Verizon Fios TV and Philo.
Now, Reelz can appeal to cord-cutters, too, via Peacock's $4.99 "Premium" and $9.99 entirely-commercial-free "Premium Plus" tiers.
Peacock notes that it has already built a dedicated fan base for documentaries and true-crime series with shows including Casey Anthony: Where the Truth Lies, which launched as Peacock’s most-watched unscripted series.
Reelz joins an incumbent collection of brands and channels across categories spanning sports (NFL Channel, GolfPass, Premier League), news (NBC News Now, Sky News, Today All Day) and entertainment (Hallmark Channel, WWE and Saturday Night Live Vault).
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Daniel Frankel is the managing editor of Next TV, an internet publishing vertical focused on the business of video streaming. A Los Angeles-based writer and editor who has covered the media and technology industries for more than two decades, Daniel has worked on staff for publications including E! Online, Electronic Media, Mediaweek, Variety, paidContent and GigaOm. You can start living a healthier life with greater wealth and prosperity by following Daniel on Twitter today!