John Goodman’s Alpha House will return for a second season alongside two new original comedy series on Amazon Prime, which seeks to compete with Netflix and Hulu Plus. The streaming service repeated their development process from last year, wherein multiple pilots were offered on their site for viewers to leave reviews on and rate. Based on the customer feedback, shows would be greenlighted for a full series. Last year saw Amazon Prime debuted Alpha House, starring John Goodman, and nerd-comedy Betas receiving episode orders. This year’s new recruits include a comedic look behind the scenes of classical music and a dramedy about a Los Angeles family who may be a little bit too close.
This year, Amazon Prime signed up Mozart in the Jungle is a half-hour comedy about sex, drugs and classical music. The Roman Coppola series shows that what happens behind the curtains can be just as captivating as what happens on stage. Transparent follows a family headed by Jeffrey Tambor that has a problem with boundaries. The show explores sex, gender and family after a dramatic admission causes everyone’s secrets to spill out. Also in the cast are Judith Light, Gaby Hoffmann (pictured), Amy Landecker and Jay Duplass.
In addition to its comedies, Amazon Prime will produce a couple of dramas, an action adventure show, and a handful of children’s summer programming. Amazon Studios has been faced with the task of developing and creating high-caliber shows to attract customers to its online streaming service, which recently raised its annual fee to $99. Alpha House has been its first critical success, with John Goodman leading a cast that features celebrity cameos like Bill Murray and Stephen Colbert. Other streaming services like Netflix have created Emmy-nominated series and Hulu Plus is not far behind in the competition. As a current third place, healthy competition will hopefully yield quality programming that does not yield to the worries of sensitive advertisers.