When NBCUniversal planned its ad-supported streaming service Peacock to compete with Netflix and Disney+, it had no idea what 2020 would look like. By the time the year came to a close, Peacock was approaching 30 million users. Their success wasn’t just because of the free-to-watch option. Peacock enjoys a content library with more than 15,000 hours of on-demand content from the NBCUniversal archives along with dozens of new, original programs in development. Here’s everything we know so far about Peacock’s original content.
What You Need to Know About Peacock
Peacock offers a mix of on-demand and traditional linear programming. The linear programming is adapted from NBC’s various TV channels and consists of live programming from NBC’s news operations as well as channels dedicated to popular NBC content like Saturday Night Live. If you want to see what’s showing on Peacock’s linear channels, check out Flixed’s channel guide to Peacock. It’s free to access from any browser. As sports return to normal, expect to see coverage from the Olympics and other major sports events.
Peacock’s on-demand content includes shows like The Office, 30 Rock and Friday Night Lights as well as hit films like Trolls World Tour from NBCUniversal’s various movie studios.
What makes Peacock a little different from other streamers is the ability to watch content for free. Thanks to an ad-supported business model, you can watch many of the Peacock linear channels without paying a subscription. Unlocking all of the on-demand content requires a subscription to Peacock Premium. You can pay a little more and remove the advertising.
Peacock Original Content
But it’s the original content that will define people’s opinions of the new streaming service. Many of Peacock’s originals will not be totally original, relying heavily on reboots and sequels to classic NBC programming.
Original Dramas on Peacock
Sam Esmail and his wife, actress Emma Rossum (Shameless), are teaming up to produce this limited-run series about the LA billboard “diva” Angelyne.
Armas de Mujer
From the producers of La Reina del Sur, this 10-episode dramedy is among the Spanish-language originals Peacock is producing.
If you weren’t satisfied with the way the last BSG reboot ended in 2009, then you may be interested in this new take on Battlestar Galactica. Sam Esmail, the executive producer of Mr. Robot, will head up a new spin on human-Cylon relations.
Esmail told The Hollywood Reporter that he cringed when NBCUniversal first used the word “reboot”. “The world of Battlestar Galactica is so rich, the mythology is so interesting,” Esmail said in the interview, “that I think there is a lot to pick from and explore.”
Brave New World
Originally slated for NBCUniversal’s Syfy channel and then USA Network, this adaptation of Aldous Huxley’s dystopian novel will now be a Peacock exclusive. The show will star Demi Moore (Ghost) and Alden Ehrenreich (Solo: A Star Wars Story).
This mystery-thriller follows a team of investigators trying to uncover the reasons behind an airliner’s mid-air disappearance. Archie Panjabi (The Good Wife) and Christopher Plummer (Sound of Music, Knives Out) lead the cast.
Alec Baldwin, Christian Slater and Jamie Dornan will star in this based-on-a-true-story crime thriller. The show is based on journalist Laura Biel’s Dr. Death podcast, which uncovered the malpractice of Dallas neurosurgeon Dr. Christopher Duntsch and a medical system incapable of doing anything about it.
Noughts + Crosses
Masali Baduza and Jack Rowan star in this love story set in a society divided between a black ruling class and a white underclass.
One of Us Is Lying
Karen McManus’ bestselling young adult novel gets a small screen adaptation on Peacock. When five teens spend a Monday afternoon in detention, one doesn’t walk out alive. Jennifer Morrison (Euphoria) will direct the young ensemble cast.
SAVE ME TOO
A continuation of the award-winning British crime drama SAVE ME, follows Lennie James’ character Nelly Rowe on-going search for the missing daughter he barely knew.
Original Comedies on Peacock
NBC canceled this series after a two-season run, but greenlit a third season for Peacock. A philosophy professor turned AP Biology teacher (Glenn Howerton) employs his students as minions to restore his career.
Grammy-award-winning performer Sara Bareilles will lead this series about a 90’s-era girl band reuniting while balancing their adult lives. Tina Fey will co-produce the show.
This action-comedy is based on Will Forte’s popular Saturday Night Live sketch character and subsequent feature film. A parody of the hit TV series MacGyver, this new eight-episode show will continue ultra-patriot MacGruber’s fight against evil.
Soleil Moon Frye returns as Punky who is now a single mother whose daughter Izzy is a Punky for Gen-Z. Freddie Prinze Jr. And other original cast members will be part of the new show.
The Real Housewives
As if there aren’t enough shows from the reality franchise, Peacock will get its own spin-off.
The Good Place creator Mike Schur worked on several NBC comedy hits including The Office and Parks and Recreation. He teams up with The Office’s Ed Helms to produce this comedy about a man fighting the community in small-town New York.
Saved By the Bell
Elizabeth Berkley and Mario Lopez will bring their Saved by the Bell characters back to the screen. In this sequel, A.C. Slater and Jessie Spano are the parents of kids at Bayside High.
Not much is known about this comedy produced by Rashida Jones (Parks and Recreation) and Jada Pinkett Smith (Kingdom Come).
Who Wrote That
This documentary series looks at the people who made Saturday Night Live such a hit over the decades.
Original Films on Peacock
Universal Pictures and Dreamworks Animation are producing original films for Peacock. NBCUniversal hasn’t released details, but one will be a movie spin-off of the long-running comedy series Psych.
Original Talk Shows on Peacock
On-demand streaming services don’t have a strong track record with talk shows, but Peacock is hoping people are used to late-night shows on NBC. Late Night’s Amber Ruffin debuted her weekly news show, The Amber Ruffin Show, in late 2020. Also debuting in 2020, was Wilmore, an interview-format news show hosted by Larry Wilmore (The Daily Show, The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore). Jimmy Fallon (SNL) and Seth Meyers (SNL) are also developing shows for the streaming service.
Original Sports Shows on Peacock
NBCUniversal has the US rights to televise a wide range of professional sports from PGA Golf to Major League Baseball to the Olympic Games. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, NBC Universal executive Bonnie Hammer said, “We will definitely have enough sports content on Peacock that will excite and interest sports fans.”
However, given the importance of sports to the cable industry’s business model, other executives have stated that Peacock wouldn’t be the home for live sports events. NBC Olympics president Gary Zendler told the Philadelphia Inquirer “we of course will not change the dynamic of the Olympics’ relationship with the cable ecosystem.”
Chris Casper is a former tech industry product manager who escaped from California for New Mexico. Now he writes about science and tech while searching for the perfect green chile sauce.