Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Hulu goes live

After several months of beta testing, Hulu, NBC and Fox's answer to YouTube, went live today. The site, as you probably know, has authorized clips and many full episodes of several hundred TV shows, from the great ("The Office," "The Simpsons," "Battlestar Galactica," "Hill Street Blues") to the completely awful ("Tequila & Bonetti").

I played around with Hulu a lot during the beta run, and, if you can deal with all the ads (they've now started putting in banner ads during the shows, which is annoying), it's a tremendous time-waster. Whenever work was going bad, I'd pop on an "Arrested Development" episode, for instance, to cheer myself up.

One of the especially nice features of the site is the ability to embed only portions of a clip, so over at the NJ.com blog (to avoid complaints from people who can't access this site when it features embedded clips), I included one of the funniest "Arrested" scenes of all time, which is part of a longer (but equally funny) clip. Enjoy.

21 comments:

SJ said...

Not only that but it has a lot of movies too. This is awesome.

Bobman said...

Well strike one for Hulu, it crashes Firefox every time I try it. At least, the embedded video on your NJ.com blog.

Frustrating.

Anonymous said...

This is likely your only shot to see The Dana Carvey Show, an early showcase for Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell, and Charlie Kaufman.

James said...

o man whatta godsend - i've been telling my sister as we've both been going thru wire withdrawal that she really needs to go back and watch some hill st. blues and st. elsewhere and see where tv drama took its great leap forward. youtube doesn't need to be too worried (the only thing here that seems like usual youtube faves are snl, family guy, and simpsons clips), what it really replaces for me was the old tvlinks site which was great for people like me who get their tv from the internet. watching full episodes seems to work better for me (i'm on firefox) than it did on the nbc site.

Carlos said...

Unfortunately, it still blocks you if you're trying to access it from Canada. Whenever I try to play a clip, all I get is a black screen that says "Unfortunately, this video is not currently available in your country or region. We apologize for the inconvenience." Oh well, at least thedailyshow.com still works.d

Mo Ryan said...

Thank you, Alan. This week's been crazy but hearing Will Arnett shout, "Oh come on!" made it all better.

Worked fine for me via firefox, btw.

David said...

Hulu has a "pop out" option, opening a new window for the episode playing. This gets rid of the banner ad, which is annoying, and is also pretty convenient for when you say, want to read about TV on the Internet while watching TV on the Internet - my favorite non-activity of all time.

Nicole said...

Carlos, how are you getting the videos to work on dailyshow.com? I can access the site but the videos aren't available.

Of course I can't access Hulu either and this irritates me to no end. I hate that North American rights aren't negotiated at one time, especially when NBC and FOX are accessible to those with antennas without simulcast.

Or at least have the technology available until the equivalent feature shows up on the Canadian networks. grrr. copyright law is dumb.

I'm still peeved that the Comedy Network database of old Daily Shows and Colbert Reports isn't accessible to Canadians and that the crappy Comedy Network doesn't have them either.

Rich C said...

Mo, you're right. A little GOB makes it all better! Come ON!("What, the guy in the Four Thousand Dollar Suit is gonna...")

Alan, I knew I was going to regret it, but just had to see what "Tequila and Bonetti" was...

WOW!

Who knew a mashup of "Turner and Hooch" crossed with "Look Who's Talking" (most likely 'Too', not the original) would honor the memory of neither?

Elwood said...

Like my work productivity needs MORE excuses to suffer. Sheesh.

But those "Welcome Back, Kotter" episodes are just singing out to me...Hi, There.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Like my work productivity needs MORE excuses to suffer. Sheesh.

But those "Welcome Back, Kotter" episodes are just singing out to me...Hi, There.


For the last two hours, I keep meaning to get started (and, preferably, finished) with my "John Adams" review and instead keep pulling up Hulu clips. Thanks for the "Kotter" references, as it gives me two options when my editor comes by to ask for the story:

1)A note signed by Epstein's mother

2)"Oh, I wrote the story. I just don't happen to have it handy.

LA said...

I forgot all about Tequila and Bonetti. They filmed that mess right down the street from me (the outdoor scenes).

Elwood said...

Thanks for the "Kotter" references, as it gives me two options when my editor comes by to ask for the story:

You could always tell him to stick the deadline up his nose with a rubber hose.

Mo Ryan said...

Instead of writing my John Adams review, I was watching Battlestar Galactica's season finale again. Damn you, demon web site!!

Mrglass said...

This is just awesome. Quality is not that great (the now defunct Stage6 was much better), but all Arrested Development episodes, and movies too? This is why writers had to strike, websites like that are the future of TV and movies business

Undercover Black Man said...

Don't sleep on "Johnny Sokko and His Flying Robot"!

rukrusher said...

I watched the first two episodes of Friday Night Lights last night, thought the quality was pretty good, no commercials, kept it in the popup mode while I surfed the net. I will go back.

Sleepyhead said...

That is a classic AD clip - "Has anyone in this family ever even seen a chicken?"

BUT - A 15-second dog food commercial before, a pepper-burgers ad blocking the screen during the clip, AND one of those horrific DirecTV ads with Kathy Bates selling you satellite while hobbling James Caan??!! There's a limit to how much advertising I'm willing to put up with, and this is way, way beyond that limit. No thanks, Hulu.

Tina said...

This is great. I'm watching the first season of Murder One, which I loved when it first aired. Highly recommended for those who missed it (meaning, most of America) the first time around. And yes, even though I do have all the DVDs, Arrested Development on demand is a lovely thought.

Productivity? Eh, highly overrated.

I'm not getting any banner ads. Should I just count myself lucky?

legion said...

Unless you're in Canada, in which case you're Hulu hates you... Well I hate Hulu, for the same reason. "illegal" video sources remain a Canadian's best option.

I'd really like to legally buy MP3s from Amazon too, but their legal departments are similarly myopic. *sigh*

Anonymous said...

Apparently WKRP is on Hulu somewhere, though sadly with the generic music used in syndication.

For the Canucks in the crowd, just download a proxy server and you can see all of this content "legally."