Is Amazon’s Streaming Service Better Than Netflix? Eh, It’s Just Different

Is Amazon’s streaming service better than Netflix? Well… that’s up for debate. It’s slowly but surely creeping up on Netflix when it comes to original programming and movies, but one of the major turn-offs has been that you have to sign up for a Prime subscription to access their goodies. If you enjoy going on Amazon at 3 A.M. looking for obscure books and Korean skincare items and weird supplements that you can get shipped to your abode in a day or two, chances are good that you’re already enabling Amazon’s evil corporate climate, but whatever! Maybe you have some modicum of self-control, so congrats to you.

If you’ve been holding back on binge-watching Transparent or Catastrophe because an Amazon Prime subscription is a cool $99 per year, there’s good news. You can sign up for a monthly subscription to Amazon’s streaming service for $8.99 a month, which seems much more tolerable for those of us who just want to catch up on Orphan Black and then cancel the subscription again. You can also get a monthly subscription of Amazon Prime for $10.99 a month that will include the whole two-day shipping, video-streaming package.

The hitch is, of course, that if you do get hooked on Amazon Prime and keep your subscription going — what’s the deal with Mozart in the Jungle, anyway? Will those two dudes in Justified ever make out or what? — then you’ll be paying more per year than if you’d just sprung for the original $99 package. Plus, Amazon has deals with different providers than Netflix, so if you’re dying to watch Eastbound and Down at 3 A.M. and you only have Netflix, you’re outta luck. On the other hand, Netflix has that awesome-looking new show with Ashton Kutcher and Danny Masterson, so what are you gonna do? It’s like Sophie’s Choice up in here.

With HBO, Showtime, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Netflix, iTunes, and more specialized services like horror streaming service Shudder, there’s practically no reason to keep your cable around like a gross umbilical cord connecting you to the 20th century. Of course, you probably will anyway. Who can give up NY1?