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Is Disney + just good for families?

Is Disney + just good for families?

Although first launched in 2019, Disney + quickly became one of the most popular streaming platforms globally. It’s not hard to see why, since it’s home to billionaire brands like Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar, The Simpsons and more. The House of Mouse certainly has its roof over the entertainment industry.

While millions enjoy Disney +, one of the criticisms that is often made on the platform is that it is more suitable for families and young people than it is for the older generations. For example, if you are a single adult in Generation X, is it worth subscribing to Disney +?


We will analyze the assumption that Disney + is only suitable for families by exploring the content of the streaming service and seeing what the competitors are doing.

The user demographics of Disney +

According to a report from Nielsen from August 2021, 44% of those in the US who watch Disney + are between 2 and 17 years old. 23% are 18 to 34, 23% are 35 to 54, and 9% are 55 to 99.

This is far younger than something like Amazon Prime Video, where 70% of the audience is 35 years or older. Free streaming services like The Roku Channel and Tubi see just as much less recording among those younger than 34.

Elsewhere, a February 2021 Morning Consult report found that Disney + has the largest share of millennial subscribers, at 52%, compared to all other major streaming services. 13% of Disney + subscribers are baby boomers and 23% are Generation X, which in total makes up a smaller share than almost any other streaming service.

Finally, Antenna found that those who signed up to watch The Mandalorian season two at Disney + were more likely to be men, 26 to 34 years old, and not have children in the household. Although it still stands for a younger age group, it indicates that Disney + appeals to more groups than just families.

Overall, the data show that the average age of Disney + is far younger than the competition, and is probably full of young families.

The content depends on your region

An incredibly important point to keep in mind is that the content you watch on Disney + depends on your region. This is primarily about the Star brand.

Star is a Disney + brand that features adult-oriented content from studios such as ABC, 20th Century Studios and Searchlight Pictures. This includes programs like The Walking Dead and Family Guy, and movies like The Last Duel and Nightmare Alley.

Star comes standard in a Disney + subscription in regions such as Canada, the UK, Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand. There, Star is just another brand piece like Pixar or Star Wars.

In Latin America, Star + is a separate streaming service for Disney +. In the United States, Hulu is home to most of the content available in other regions via Star. This means that Disney + for these particular regions has far less adult-oriented content.

As such, a homeless adult in the UK can enjoy far more of a Disney + subscription than their counterpart in the US. Of course, it ultimately comes down to personal content preferences.

Original content skewed towards family-friendly brands

Disney + hosts a number of brilliant original series and movies. This includes:

  • Turns redPixar’s film from 2022 about a young girl who turns into a big red panda when she gets excited.
  • Lokia Marvel TV series that follows the adventures of the ultimate trickster.
  • Olaf presentsa series of shorts with Frozen snowman retells classic Disney stories.
  • The Mandaloriana Star Wars TV show about a bounty hunter and his Yoda-like companion.

Many of the original productions at Disney + are excellent, but they are also aimed strongly at young adults and families. There is little or no adult themes or content. Even Moon Knight, an allegedly dark and moody Marvel show, is ranked as TV-14.

The situation is different in countries with the Star brand because they include Star Originals (which in the US are Hulu Originals). This means you can watch adult-oriented exclusive content like Pam & Tommy, Dopesick, The Dropout, American Horror Stories and more at Disney +.

Again, it depends on the region, but much of the exclusive content on Disney + falls well into the family-friendly category because those are the brands that Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic and The Simpsons intend to take into account.

Compare this to Netflix, Apple TV +, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Paramount + and so on. Could you imagine Netflix’s violent Squid Game on Disney +, for example? Or Apple TV +’s scary servant? Right now it’s unlikely.

Disney + is slowly adding mature content

There are indications that the situation is changing. In March 2022, Marvel’s Netflix series came to Disney +. This includes Daredevil, Jessica Jones and The Punisher – all shows that are violent, mature and largely not meant for children.

Although these programs were originally created for Netflix, and Disney only brought them to its platform after not renewing the contract, it is a sign that Disney is willing to stream less family-friendly content. If they perform well, we may see more adult content created for the Disney + brand.

Should you subscribe to Disney +?

Of all the streaming services, Disney + is probably the most family-friendly of them all, especially if you live in a place like the United States where the Star brand is not included. But that does not mean that it is only good for families.

Disney + is packed with content perfect for kids and young adults; the classic Disney animations alone are great not only for adults looking for nostalgia, but for children growing up today. And the exclusive content from family-friendly brands like Pixar will keep the little ones happy.

While other Disney + content from brands such as Marvel and Star Wars can certainly be appreciated by a family, millions of single adults subscribe to Disney + just for these shows and movies.

At the end of the day, it comes down to what kind of content you like. Disney + can often market itself to a family audience, but there’s nothing stopping a generation from enjoying the content – and this is especially true if you have access to what the Star brand offers.

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