Cordkillers 214 – BBC, Plant That Tree! (w/ Jason Howell)

BBC eyeing a revamp, ESPN+ has a date, and more Queer Eye on the way. All this and more on Cordkillers! With special guest Jason Howell ( )

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CordKillers: Ep. 214 – BBC, Plant That Tree!
Recorded: April 2 2018
Guest: Jason Howell

Intro Video

  • None

Primary Target

  • The BBC says it’s being squeezed out by Netflix and Amazon
    – The BBC released its second annual report since establishing its new charter, which states that the industry is “more and more dominated by a small number of US-based media giants with extraordinary creative and financial firepower” and that “Their business models and huge budgets mean we are increasingly being squeezed out of an ever more competitive environment. British creativity and British content are now under real threat.” The BBC laid out goals for its iPlayer platform to help keep younger audiences. The broadcaster says that for the first time, 15- to 34-year-olds in the UK are listening to streaming music services like Spotify and Apple Music more than they are BBC Radio.

How to Watch

  • Tablo launches more affordable over-the-air DVR with cloud storage
    Tablo Dual Lite is a new version of the latest Tablo dual-tuner DVR that’s $140 instead of $220 because it doesn’t come with the 64GB of built-in storage, returning to Tablo’s roots as a bring your own storage device. However Tablo also introduced a Cloud DVR service with 40 GB of online storage in beta. It’s free during testing but will eventually be a paid service.
  • The CW goes live on Hulu with Live TV
    – Hulu added the CW to its Live TV service in Philadelphia, San Francisco, Atlanta, Tampa, Detroit, Seattle, Sacramento, Pittsburgh with more markets to follow.
    – CBS’s strategy with the CW has been interesting. It’s shows are available on YouTube TV but not on a live stream. It’s available in *some* markets on DirecTV Now. But mostly it’s digital strategy has been to drive people to its app that generally only keeps the last 5 episodes.

What to Watch

What We’re Watching

Front Lines

Dispatches from the Front

Hello all,
I started watching The Expanse last week and was thinking: “I wonder what Brian and Tom thought of it?” and then wondered how the Patreon reward level to break up the spoilering time shows for individual shows was going? I didn’t see anything on your Patreon page but maybe I missed it.

Any update?




Hey killers!

Boss Brian here and I just wanted to let you in on an informative site I’ve come across recently for cord cutters (or the cord cutting curious). It’s and it compares the main (and a few secondary) streaming services with each other, including: Channel line up, devices available, and local channel availability by market. (This is the reason I found this site). They update almost daily with the help of comments/community.

So for those still thinking about making the jump this could be a helpful updated resource to see if it works with their set up or even what they will need to make the jump. Hope this helps.

Keep up the good work fellas.






Hey Brian, Tom, and Bryce:
Enjoying the AfterTalk audio extra very much! Keep them coming. Love the extra commentary about the Movie Draft and movies in general.






I have an odd cable story that I want to share with you and hopefully get some advice on.

So I live with my mother in an apartment complex in central New York (yes I’m 20 years old and live with my mother, it’s not weird!) and we currently are getting our cable and internet through Verizon. It’s working pretty well for us so far and we have no reason to switch.

However, we recently found a flyer taped to our door announcing that Spectrum would become the official cable and internet service provider for the entire complex effective in April upon request or in the next lease renewal (which for us is in August). This left us a bit confused and we’ve also had bad experiences with Spectrum when it was Time Warner, so we called the office to see if it was possible to opt out and the answer is… we technically don’t have to have it installed, but we’re still gonna have to pay for it either way via our rent which will be increased to reflect the inclusion of Spectrum!

For some extra context, we currently have a 2 year contract with Verizon that we can get out of if we move to an area without Verizon, but Verizon is still available here so we’re stuck with it! This means we would essentially be paying for TWO CABLE SERVICES! We tried to see if we can be grandfathered in to a Spectrum-less rent package given that we’ve lived her since I started high school (about six or seven years ago) and we do plan on moving next year when my mother retires from her current teaching position, but management has not yet responded as I’m writing this. Seems like a bit of a shady forced switch to me!

My question to you guys is… Is this in any way normal and how should me and my mother proceed?

Sorry for the long email, I honestly tried to cut it down as much as possible without leaving out essential information. Love the show, continues to be one of my favorite podcasts!





At the beginning of April I am going back to my hometown and my grandpa has asked me to help him setup and install a streaming box and get an OTT service. We have already gone to and figured out that for the channels that he wants Youtube T is going to be the best option for him. My question is should I get him the a Roku Ultra (I have 2) or is Apple TV easy enough for a beginner (most likely I will have to do some support and have never had one)?

Your Boss,




Movie passes 9 month cancellation won’t stop people from signing up just for the summer or award season. Summer blockbusters focus mostly on May, June and July leaving you 9 months until next season. Also awards season can be enjoyed in late February. I love the show.



2018 Summer Movie Draft

It’s Spoilerin’ Time 213 – Counterpart (109), Deadwood (201)

Smelly dogs, Deadwood, and Tom finally watched Atlanta! Plus, our first Movie Draft update for the season.

00:39 – The Summer Movie Draft happened! Watch the draft as it happened over at Night Attack’s feed ( ). Visit for up-to-the-minute stats.
06:28 – Atlanta season 1 look-back
09:47 – Isle of Dogs
20:01 – Deadwood (202)

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Cordkillers 213 – No One Expects the Fiber Inquisition (w/ Scott Johnson)

Cable monopolies, French cinema crackdown, and the Netflix that says “ni!” All this and more on Cordkillers! With special guest Scott Johnson ( )

The Summer Movie Draft happened! Watch the draft as it happened over at Night Attack’s feed ( ). Visit for up-to-the-minute stats.

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It’s Spoilerin’ Time 212 – Counterpart (109), Deadwood (201)

The definition of an border conflict, a new season of Deadwood, and preemptive draft reactions!

00:30 – The Summer Movie Draft is coming up! We’re looking at drafting on March 20th on Night Attack ( ). Visit for up-to-the-minute stats and join the game at
03:35 – Counterpart (108)
24:25 – Triage – A Deadwood revival?
27:17 – Deadwood (112)

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Cordkillers 212 – This Week In Whoops

Infinity War final trailer, news on Netflix, and a Channel Master review. All this and more on Cordkillers!

The Summer Movie Draft is coming up! We’re looking at drafting on March 20th on Night Attack ( ). Visit for up-to-the-minute stats and join the game at

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CordKillers: Ep. 212 – This Week In Whoops
Recorded: March 19 2018
Guest: None

Intro Video

Primary Target

  • Exclusive: Amazon’s internal numbers on Prime Video, revealed
    – Reuters reports Amazon company documents indicate more than 5 million people worldwide joined Amazon Prime by early 2017 in order to watch TV shows. The internal documents indicate Amazon’s US audience for TV is about 26 million about half of Netflix’s Q1 2017 US subscriber number. The Man in the High Castle had 8 million US viewers by early 2017 and attracted 1.15 million new Prime subscribers worldwide. Amazon estimated that show’s cost meant each new subscriber it acquired cost $63.

How to Watch

  • Tom got the Channelmaster Stream+ and set it up
    – Channel Master Stream+ $149
    – Requires an SD card for DVR functions, uses the Android Live TV app for live TV and DVR.
    – DVR is free but a little clunky to use. Not immediately intuitive but will get the job done.
    – Google Play store means it has a wide variety of apps, but no Netflix yet.
    – Super easy setup and decent streaming

What to Watch

What We’re Watching

Front Lines

  • Now MoviePass’ CEO says the app never tracked customers
    – MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe is walking back comments he made last week that “we watch how you drive home” In an interview with Variety, Lowe said “I said something completely inaccurate as far as what we are doing…We only locate customers when they use the app.” Lowe also posted an apoology to MoviePass customers on the company’s website, along with an updated privacy FAQ.
  • Netflix won’t reward kids with ‘patches’ for watching TV
    – Remember when we told you Netflix was testing using virtual patches to reward kids for watching kids stuff on Netflix? Netflix now says, “We’ve concluded the test for patches and have decided not to move forward with the feature for kids.”
  • Movies Anywhere includes your FandangoNOW flicks
    – FandangoNow, the store that used to be called M-Go has joined Movies Anywhere. It becomes the second service after Vudu that was in Ultraviolet to join the Movies Anywhere service. Paramount and Lionsgate are the two big studios that have not yet joined.
  • Disney creates streaming video unit for digital future
    – Disney created a new division for streaming video which will be headed by Kevin Mayer, the company’s Chief Strategy Officer. The division will oversee ESPN+ and the family-oriented streaming service coming from Disney in 2019. Media networks and the movie studios will remain separate units.
  • NBC News plans online streaming service to attract younger viewers
    – NBC News plans to launch a streaming service this year in order to reach younger viewers. The company has not decided if it will be subscription-based. CBS News and ABC News have free streaming news apps and Fox News announced a paid streaming service is coming.
  • Ava DuVernay will direct DC’s film adaptation of ‘New Gods’
    – Ava DuVernay (Selma, Wrrinkle in Time) will direct the film adaptation of DC’s New Gods series. The series follows an eternal war between twin planets: the New Genesis, ruled by the Highfather, and Apokolips, ruled by Darkseid.

Dispatches from the Front
Hey Tom, Brian, & Bryce!

Love the show but have never written in before, but, as one of your bosses, I figured I would show you something I found interesting. I am an on-again-off-again cord-cutter, but for the last year and a half, we have been making use of DirecTV Satellite service (previously, we had a Tivo Romio OTA and Sling TV). We ended up switching to DirecTV because we we already had Uverse Internet as the fastest option in our area and AT&T was our wireless provider as well. Switching to DirecTV allowed us to have free HBO “for life” and unlimited data on our phones “for life” with very little increase in overall price.

We have been happy, even though we often forget to DVR stuff and watch it on our Roku authenticated through whatever network app we need with our DirecTV credentials. I say all this because we only recently got a second TV and needed service there. I called and basically said, “I need another receiver for a new TV and don’t want to pay more.”

DirecTV rep was like, “Yeah. You have an old receiver. Take our new Genie 2 and Genie 2 Mini for free. Is your TV 4K?”

“Uhh… yeah…”

“Okay great. 4K is included.”

A tech came out the very next day installed both new receivers for $0. No monthly increase in cost. No fees of any kind. But add another 2 years onto the contract (I am okay with that).

But here is the kicker! Less than a week later I get THIS email (screen shot) offering to downgrade my package for me and save me $12/mo. After looking at it, it looks likes the differential is actually just ESPN channels. Since we only care about college football, and that’s not on for the next 5 months, I said, “OKAY” and now I am paying even LESS!

It seems like they are REALLY desperate to keep customers happy… and I am surprised to say, it is totally working for me.

Thanks again for the show!



Hey Killers,

I’ve been comparing the TV quality of our upstairs 40″ (or so) Insignia Roku TV and our 55″ Sharp Stupid Smart TV, which we have hooked up to a Roku Express +. Turns out, the Roku TV’s quality is really good, and sometimes I can’t tell the difference between Sling TV and OTA if it’s streaming at the highest quality. It’s a different story for the 55″, however. I blame the Express +, because I’ve noticed that even with apps like Amazon Prime Video, when compared with our PS3, which is also connected to the 55″, the PS3 seems to have the better quality.

Love your show! Keep up the good work.




Hi Tom & Brian,

On last week’s show, while discussing the perennially dropping cable subscribers, Tom asked about what Spectrum might be doing in regards to streaming. I’m a Spectrum internet-only customer, and I just got the attached mailer in my mailbox for a $22/month streaming service! The service appears to allow users to pick 10 channels they want from a list of around 50, which interestingly enough includes most of the sports networks.

This looks really compelling on the surface, but the fine print is worrying. It mentions credits on your monthly bill, as well as “taxes, fees, and surcharges.” And knowing Spectrum, I doubt this will be as easy to change or cancel online as something like Sling TV.

What do you think? A bold new entry to streaming, or another boring me-too service?


P.S. if you’ve got questions and want me to call Spectrum on a fact finding mission, send them my way!




Hi Tom and Brian!

Love the show, been listening since the Framerate days. I was giving some thought to the many iterations of Amazon’s video service, and realized that no one has done a proper write-up of its many brand changes. So I wrote an article: The Forgotten History of Amazon Video, posted on Medium and my personal site, Thought you might enjoy it.

– Mike



Tom said Fox was targeting reducing their ad load BY two miinutes an hour by 2020 but the story he was quoting says that Fox will reduce their ad load TO two minutes an hour by 2020. Thanks for catching that Steve!

From the Motherboard and WSJ articles we linked to in last week’s show notes:
“The two minutes per hour is a real target for Fox, and also our challenge for the industry,” Fox executive Ed Davis told the Wall Street Journal. “Creating a sustainable model for ad-supported storytelling will require us all to move.”

– Steven


Cordkillers 210 – Brian’s Fence Fort (w/ Daniel O’Brien)

MoviePass flexes its muscles, Apple buys potential, and War Games is back in a new way. With special guest Daniel O’Brien.

The Summer Movie Draft is coming up! We’re looking at drafting on March 20th on Night Attack. More info soon!

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CordKillers: Ep. 210 – Brian’s Fence Fort
Recorded: March 5 2018
Guest: Daniel O’Brien

Intro Video

Primary Target

  • Apple scores another TV thriller, this time produced by M. Night Shyamalan
    – M. Night Shyamalan will executive produce a new psychological thriller series for Apple to be written by Tony Basgallop of 24 fame.
    – Apple lineup so far:
    – TV series from Damien Chazelle (La La Land director)
    – Amazing Stories Anthology series from Steven Spielberg
    – Space Drama from Ronald D. Moore (BSG)
    – Drama about a network morning show with Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon
    – Futuristic Drama from Francis Lawrence (Director of last 3 Hunger Games movies)
    – Apple just hired Angelica Guerra, Sony Pictures Television’s production leader for Latin American and US Hispanic content
    – Apple already has former Sony presidents Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg and former Sony vice presidents Max Aronson, Kim Rozenfeld and Ali Woodruff

How to Watch

  • MoviePass won’t let its customers buy tickets to Red Sparrow in some markets 
    – Some MoviePass users could not use the service to buy tickets to Red Sparrow
    – Statement to SlashFilm: “We occasionally remove some films from our ticketing inventory in some markets for a limited time, similar to how we organically promote films in certain markets to better understand member behavior.”
    – Maybe trying to demonstrate not only the benefit of pluggin movies like I, Tonya or Death Wish but how it can negatively impact ticket sales as well.
    – Mitch Lowe, CEO of MoviePass was speaking to the Entertainment Finance Forum about how MoviePass monetizes data
    – “We watch how you drive from home to the movies. We watch where you go afterwards.”
    – The ToS say location is only used when selecting a theater and “only be used as a means to develop, improve, and personalize the service.”

What to Watch

What We’re Watching

Front Lines

Dispatches from the Front

Hello Cordkillers
After the recent news of movie pass not allowing certain movies in certain areas to be used with there service I cancelled it. No matter how much I disliked people using there service without seeing movies I found this far worse.
Now with happier news for the first time since I canceled Directv I didn’t have to sit in the kitchen to watch the Oscars. I used YouTube tv. I really enjoyed the interface.

– Kevin



Dear Tom & Brian,

First, I want to say that I support Brian’s right to be completely, totally, 100% WRONG about Black Panther. (That movie was awesome!)

The question of whether or not people actually save money by cutting the cord or just gain freedom & flexibility seems to come up rather frequently. I recently crunched the numbers and I thought I’d share.

Before cutting the cord, I had Dish Network for both internet & “cable.” It started out as a pretty good deal, but after they’d jacked the rates up several times, well, let me put it this way: I decided to cancel my Dish when they started running commercials about how DirecTV customers average $77/month, and I was paying $115/month!

My internet bill went from $60/month to $35/month for the exact same service
I added Sling @ $25/month
I added PBS Passport @ $7/month because I wanted to support them, even though I could get PBS OTA

So, I’m paying $25/month less for internet, and the two services I added to replace cable/satellite total $32/month. I’m saving $108/month! And, I can easily pause or cancel services whenever I want. I’ve actually cancelled Sling for now (between seasons of the shows I really want to watch), and I plan to switch to Philo as it offers all of the channels I want ($16/month).

Yes, I did buy a Roku, and I already had Netflix & Amazon Prime subscriptions, which I didn’t count in my totals, but they add up to a lot less than $108/month.

Thanks, guys! I couldn’t have done it without you!

Uli Dig

P.S. I used some of the money I saved to support some of my favorite podcasts. I’m the boss of you now!



Hey Guys…
Thanks for all the entertainment.
Just dropping a note on how I budget some of my TV Viewing
I use the Gift Cards for Hulu, Netflix, iTunes and prepay an year ahead.
That way I can budget for all my streaming viewing and never have to
Worry about how much I am spending on my Cord Cutting fees.

Hopefully this might help others to budget as well.

One of your many bosses





Hi. I thought this worth sharing that I am now a paying customer of YouTube TV.I relied on the DVR feature to record the 90th Oscar’s apparently not many bothered to watch.Picture quality was good and I was happy YouTube was smart enough to extend the recording time without any input from me that allowed me to see the whole event.I thought for sure it would stop at the 3hr mark and I’d have to Google the best picture winner.But it worked great.

I was happy to see Shape of Water win best picture.And I’m glad I drove over 45 miles one way to see it in a theater before the Oscar’s to know it is a great film.

Have a great episode tonight.




The Expanse is now in UHD on Amazon Prime Video. Might be better to wait than watch on syfy.

– Jommel