That's not to suggest there weren't benefits to having Barnabas Collins streaming on Netflix. The relatively small number of DARK SHADOWS episodes that had been available provided an easy hook for new viewers that might otherwise have been intimidated by the show's mammoth archive. It's presence on Netflix created one of the biggest and best avenues for attracting new viewers. There's been buzz around the web during the last few months about DARK SHADOWS re-runs surfacing on a boutique TV network that specializes in nostalgia programming, but that would be a huge step backwards in maintaining the show's cultural relevance. At least, in my opinion.
In the meantime, the first 200 episodes of DARK SHADOWS are still available on Hulu.
Pay careful attention to the details in Netflix's listing for DARK SHADOWS and you'll see the show is slated to drop out of rotation come Jan. 1, 2014.
What does this mean? Netflix will lose the four collection of episodes presently streaming online. While it's possible these collections, which contain 160 episodes lifted from the first four DVD sets, are being scuttled to make room for an expansion (or, heaven forbid, the complete box set), that's a pretty unlikely scenario. News stories are circulating about Netflix's changing roster in 2014, but none of them mention adding episodes.
Nobody involved with the negotiation has said a word about the program's status on Netflix, nor do I expect them to. There's probably not much to say: If Netflix loses DARK SHADOWS for the duration of 2014 or longer, it will be because the invested parties couldn't come to a mutually beneficial arrangement.
In the meantime, Hulu still has 200 episodes of DARK SHADOWS streaming online. There's been no word whether THAT will change in 2014.
(Thanks to Will McKinley for the tip.)