There may come a time when James Spader could be known as the man who saved NBC. Okay, maybe that’s a bit of a stretch, but Jack Donaghy would at least appreciate the incredible deal that Sony TV made with Netflix for NBC’s most important series. The Blacklist returns for its second season on September 22 and come February 5, 2015 it will move into its new spot on Thursday night at 9 PM ET, which is basically the iron throne of NBC’s primetime schedule. To say that the network has a lot riding on the continued success of this popular drama is an understatement, but it should receive a big boost in interest now that Netflix has signed a deal to exclusively stream Season One, starting next weekend.
Not only could Netflix unveil the suspenseful and very entertaining story of Raymond Reddington (Spader) to a lot of new eyes, but the streaming service is paying syndication dollars for the rights. According to Deadline, that number is $2 million per episode, the highest deal of its kind, which would make Sony TV’s haul for Season One somewhere around $44 million. Additionally, Netflix would be able to start screening future seasons shortly after their finales, which will be great for people who would rather binge watch to find out what the hell is going to happen with Peter Stormare’s Keyser Soze-like character or if Megan Boone learned more than one emotion yet.
The Blacklist was reportedly the third-most-watched network drama last season behind two of CBS’s CSI franchises – Poughkeepsie and Butte, I think – and it managed to turn in pretty solid ratings from start to finish, with the exception of a little lull around the midseason mark (“The Alchemist” was the lowest rated episode). And I only mention all of this because I love this show very much and I would like it to stick around for a long time, because Spader is the best.
In case you missed it during all of the other insane Comic-Con coverage, here’s the entire panel for The Blacklist.