All the New Genre Shows Coming to Quibi (So Far)

Steven Spielberg is just one of the heavy hitters bringing his talents to Quibi.
Steven Spielberg is just one of the heavy hitters bringing his talents to Quibi.
Photo: Mike Coppola (Getty Images)

There’s been tons of news about “Quibi.” But, uh, what is Quibi? It’s a streaming service (yes, another one) launching in April that will be filled with content in “Quick Bites”—long-form stories released in chapters that run under 10 minutes, basically optimized for mobile viewing. And it’s got some very big names on board.

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The list of people and projects coming to Quibi so far is incredible. But, we’re a sci-fi site, so below we’ve gone ahead and compiled a list of all the sci-fi, horror, and fantasy projects coming to the streaming service.

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  • An anthology show from Sam Raimi called 50 States of Fear, which will focus on a scary story from all 50 states. The cast is star-studded.
  • A modern zombie story from Guillermo del Toro.
  • A Steven Spielberg-produced horror show that you can only watch when it’s dark out.
  • CURS_R, produced by Ridley Scott, about a gamer who realizes the game they’re playing isn’t just a game.
  • Don’t Look Deeper, starring Don Cheadle and Emily Mortimer, about a teenager who feels that something isn’t right about her. And she’s correct. She’s an alien.
  • Crazy Talented, from Edge of Tomorrow director Doug Liman, about a group of psychiatric patients who are led to believe they are superheroes fighting an evil villain.
  • A Liam Hemsworth-Christoph Waltz action series where Hemsworth plays a man hunted for money.
  • Slugfest, a documentary series produced by the Russo Brothers, about the Marvel vs. DC rivalry.
  • Wolves and Villagers, a twist on Fatal Attraction starring Naomi Watts and produced by Jason Blum.
  • Cousins Robbie Amell and Stephen Amell co-starring in Code 8, a sci-fi drama about a world where superheroes are persecuted. It’s a movie and this is a spin-off.
  • Wireless, conceived by Steven Soderbergh and starring Tye Sheridan, about a man trapped in his car who has to use his phone to get out. Andie McDowell co-stars.
  • Transmissions, a show about a scientist who starts getting mysterious radio signals from space.
  • Last American Vampire, which follows a female FBI agent who is paired with a 500-year-old vampire.
  • Survive, which stars Sophie Turner and Corey Hawkins as plane passengers who must survive after a crash.
  • One Night Forever, about a college student who falls in love with an alien on the night she’s supposed to be writing her thesis.
  • An adaptation of the James Patterson novel Toys, set in a world where genetic modifications further increase the gap between haves and have-nots.
  • The Monarchy is Going to Shit, a modern fantasy comedy, set in a kingdom where twin princesses find out they have a brother who is the rightful heir to the throne.
  • Life-Size Toys, a stunt show in which a group called Nitro Circus will take classic toys and make them lifesize in order to do stunts with them.
  • Emma, a horror series starring AnnaSophia Robb, about a girl who mysteriously becomes pregnant. Mira Sorvino and Rory Culkin co-star.
  • Unmatched, a dystopian comedy about a world where everyone is matched to their soulmate via a dating app, but a few people choose not to use it.
  • Yet another adaptation of Henry James’ supernatural thriller Turn of the Screw, this one from Under the Dome producer Alexandra McNally.
  • Tomie, a live-action adaptation of the Japanese manga series directed by Alexandre Aja, about a missing high school girl that spawns a larger mystery.

And that’s just the genre stuff. There’s so, so, so much more. Here’s a not-so-quick run down of everything else...so far:

Punk’d and Singled Out remakes; a Reno 911 reboot; Anna Kendrick and a sex doll in Dummy; an Idris Elba car stunt series; a Kevin Hart action comedy series called Action Scene; a Tyra Banks beauty series; Mapleworth Murders, which is a murder mystery series from SNL EP Lorne Michaels; a star-studded remake of The Fugitive; The Now, a comedy series from the Farrelly Brothers starring Bill Murray and Dave Franco; a musical comedy series starring Darren Criss and directed by Amy Heckerling; a reality show staring WWE women superstars; a workplace comedy from Thomas Lennon; and an Uber-driver thriller called The Stranger from the creator of The Killing.

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Want more? There’s also a drama from the creator of Vikings called Charlemagne; a Titus Burgess-hosted cooking show; a home improvement spoof starring Will Forte and Kaitlin Olson; When the Street Lights Go On, which is a murder mystery starring Queen Latifah; a Ron Funches-hosted game show; a reboot of How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days; an all-women prank show hosted by Cara Delevingne; a new Eric Andre show called Rapper Warrior Ninja that mixes rap battles and American Ninja Warrior; a comedy series about Nicole Richie’s rapping alter-ego; a remake of the football movie Varsity Blues; Killing Zac Efron, which will see the star doing his best Bear Grylls impression; a remake of the show biz comedy Swimming with Sharks; a travel show starring Joe Jonas; an Andy Samberg-hosted cooking show; a Gabrielle Union-produced comedy show called Black Coffee; a Trevor Noah show; a comedy produced by Paul Feig and Dwayne Johnson; a gritty crime drama from director Antoine Fuqua...and a whole lot of news shows catering to all kinds of tastes.

That’s, undoubtedly, a lot of original content. The question with all of it though is whether or not younger audiences, who are obviously the target audience here considering the format, will embrace it. We’ll find out on April 6, 2020, when Quibi launches. It’ll cost $4.99 per month with ads, $7.99 per month without.

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Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo

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DISCUSSION

First off, “quibi” sounds like something Gwyneth Paltrow would call your vagina right before she suggests you stick a rock in it.

Second, while I understand that the advent of mobile devices has changed the face of entertainment, I have trouble believing that people will want to watch longform entertainment in bitesized chunks. Now, I am an Old, and maybe this format will take off and be the future, but I can’t imagine myself - or for that matter - anybody else -putting up with the inevitable shit of ads and buffering and other things to watch one coherent story in 10 minute bits. I really can’t. For one thing, how do you talk about it? Like, for instance, you watch a show that comes out in ten minute chunks. Nobody in their right mind will wait for a week for the next installment, so they won’t drop it like that. But if it’s a story that takes 3 hours to tell, how the shit do you avoid spoilers? How do you discuss it with your coworkers? “Sorry, I’m only at bit 14?” In the social media mediated world, word of mouth is everything, as is the avoidance of spoilers. How do you manage that with an idea like this?

All this content sounds fantastic, and I guess that there *is* a market for a streaming service like this, but I fear that there are too many streaming services already. 

What’s more, watching TV is the quintessential leisure activity of the 20th and 21st centuries. The TV set has taken the place of the fireplace as the hearth of the household. People watch stuff on their phones because they *have to*. It’s dumb an inconvenient and it hurts your eyes. I expect that this will turn into another regular streaming service like three months after it launches.