Hulu Resurrects ABC's TGIF Block With Massive SVOD Deal

Full House_1_embed - Photofest - EMBED 2016
Courtesy of Photofest

Hulu is reviving a '90s staple.

The streamer has nabbed the exclusive SVOD rights to former ABC TGIF sitcoms Full House, Family Matters, Perfect Strangers, Step by Step and Hangin' With Mr. Cooper, it was announced Thursday at the Television Critics Association's summer press tour.

The deal totals more than 800 episodes of the five series and marks the streaming debut of the beloved family friendly lineup that ran on ABC from 1989-2000 (and again from 2003-2005). 

The entire libraries for all five series will launch on Hulu on Friday, Sept. 29, just a week after the 30th anniversary of the premiere of Full House on Sept. 22. (Netflix is already using that date to launch the third season of the sequel series Fuller House.) The kickoff also coincides with the 25th anniversary of Hangin' With Mr. Cooper.

"These shows are more than just beloved hits, they were part of a cultural tradition to tune in every Friday night," said Hulu senior vp content Craig Erwich. "Now, it can be Friday any day of the week on Hulu."

All five series were produced by the now-defunct production company Lorimar, with four of the five hailing from prolific TV comedy producers Thomas L. Miller and Robert L. Boyett. Lorimar was a subsidiary of Warner Bros., which handles distribution rights for the quintet.

"With this acquisition, Hulu is making available to their subscribers one of the most popular comedy blocks of programming ever," said Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution president Ken Werner. "These hit family comedies have entertained viewers for decades and will now be available on SVOD."

In addition to recent original breakout series The Handmaid's Tale, which nabbed 13 Emmy nominations, Hulu has continued to find success with the acquisition deals for beloved former series like Seinfeld and more recently The Golden Girls.

The deal is also an important win for Hulu considering Netflix's success with Fuller House. Kicking off its third season in September, the multicamera effort has been a big player for the streamer and marked one of its first revivals, preceding Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life and Wet Hot American Summer (and succeeding Arrested Development).