Showtime Cable Network Is No More

By Chris Snellgrove | Published

Showtime is one of the most well-known names in the entire entertainment industry…at least, it was.

While the cable company has been a standalone brand since it was first introduced back in 1976, it will now be moving forward with a different name that better reflects the unique brand proposition offered by the network.

According to Variety, “Paramount Global will rebrand the linear Showtime cable network as Paramount+ With Showtime — the same name as the company’s top-tier streaming package.”

Showtime To Paramount+

Paramount criminal minds showtime with paramount+

On paper, transforming Showtime into Paramount+ With Showtime is a good example of brand synergy: it has the same name as the streaming service, meaning that the streaming service can advertise the network and vice versa.

However, the rebranding has already led to confusion because many network subscribers understandably thought their subscription would give them access to the streaming plan of the same name.

In reality, this will only apply to some subscribers, whereas others will have to access their desired online programming “via the authenticated streaming apps of pay-TV partners.”

Subscriber Issues

showtime the man who fell to earth showtime with paramount+

For longtime Showtime subscribers, this move shouldn’t come as a surprise.

Back in the summer, the name of the network’s ad-free streaming package was changed to Paramount+ With Showtime and the network made it clear that the standalone Showtime app would disappear by the end of 2023 as part of an overall rebranding strategy.

Still, some see this decision as one that will dilute the unique Showtime brand the network has spent nearly half a century cultivating.

Star Trek: Discovery And Other Series

star trek: Discovery

Fortunately, subscribers are the big winners regarding the Paramount+ With Showtime rebranding.

Starting on January 8, Showtime streaming subscribers will have access to a limited selection of buzzworthy Paramount+ shows, including Halo, Star Trek: Discovery, and Sexy Beast. They will also be able to watch the genre drama Wolf Pack as well as the first two seasons of Taylor Sheridan’s hit show Mayor of Kingstown

Yellowjackets Coming?

yellowjackets season 3

As for Showtime cable subscribers, they have plenty to look forward to thanks to the Paramount+ With Showtime rebranding.

In January, the new Showtime-exclusive series The Woman In the Wall premieres, and later in 2024, subscribers can look forward to watching the show A Gentleman in Moscow as well as The Department, which is notably executive produced by George Clooney.

Only time will tell if any or all of these new shows end up being the breakout cultural phenomenon that the Showtime-exclusive Yellowjacks has become.

Clearing Up Confusion

star trek

Because the rebranding of Showtime into Paramount+ With Showtime is so confusing, the company is launching a video campaign for both cable subscribers and streamers to make them aware of the upcoming changes.

Critics might say that a rebranding so confusing that it needs a primer video is doomed to failure.

However, Paramount remains very confident about the rebranding plans, noting that “The move aligns the brand with the Paramount+ With Showtime plan, a cornerstone integration for the streaming service, making this the first of its kind multiplatform brand that integrates streaming and linear content.”

Other Rebranding Moves?

ray donovan showtime with paramount+

In the next few years, we are likely to see more rebranding moves like this as executives realize that there are only so many channels and streaming services the average consumer is willing to subscribe to.

Customers at home just don’t want to subscribe to a dozen different services, and this rebranding may be a positive step towards streamlining everything for consumers.

That’s a good thing: otherwise, Showtime as a brand might become just one more dead body that Ray Donovan would need to dispose of.