Netflix may have tested the waters with its original, streaming-only content, but Amazon is taking things to the next level. Amazon Studios already has a number of different shows in production, and the studio is even planning on releasing full theatrical features in the near future. It's something that no one would have predicted even just a few years ago, and Amazon certainly isn't wasting any time jumping in.
If there's anything more impressive than Amazon's enthusiasm, it's that so much of the original content is not only worth watching, but it's actually great. Transparent was enough of a draw to base an entire free trial on, and Man in a High Castle quickly became the most-watched Amazon Original to date.
It looks like Amazon is taking this success seriously: not only did the studio just order a full season of Man in a High Castle, but it also ordered full seasons of four other shows as well.
For those that haven't seen it, Man in a High Castle tells the story of a world in which Japan and the Nazis won World War II and have subsequently divided the globe amongst themselves. There's a lot of mystery and intrigue surrounding the alternate timeline of the show, but Man in a High Castle ultimately boils down to a story of survival. For more on the series, check out our review right here.
The other shows aren't quite as popular just yet, but there's no lacking in variety, that's for sure. For example, The New Yorker Presents is the studio's first original documentary about the titular magazine. The pilot was essentially a short film about The New Yorker, and the rest of the season will play out in half-hour episodes.
Amazon has also ordered a children's series titled Just Add Magic, based on the series of novels by Cindy Callaghan. The series follows Kelly Quinn and her friends as they discover her grandmother's mysterious old cookbook - obviously, it's not what it seems. Just Add Magic isn't the only kids' show Amazon is producing, either: The Stinky & Dirty Show (based on the book series I Stink!) is specifically aimed at the preschool crowd.
Finally, Mad Dogs is a black comedy/drama based on the original UK series. When a group of forty-year-old buddies make a trip to Belize, things don't exactly go as planned: there's bickering, lying to one another, people get murdered - not exactly your average vacation.
Comparatively speaking, Netflix seems to be playing it safe: Amazon has jumped into the streaming-only original content pool head-first. It's pretty amazing that Amazon Studios already has a library of shows under its belt, and it's even more impressive that all of its shows are of such high quality.
If Amazon Studios individual series keep doing this well, maybe there's nothing to worry about when the studio starts making feature films after all...and, if you're looking for more Amazon Originals to watch right now, here's our list of the top five.