Our long national nightmare is over: HBO Max and Roku have finally reached an agreement which will allow one of the biggest streaming services onto one of the biggest streaming platforms. The HBO Max Roku app will launch December 17. Of course, this news breaks days after lukewarm reviews for Wonder Woman 1984 hit the internet and a few weeks after Warner Bros. announced that its entire 2021 film slate will get day-of releases in both theaters and on HBO Max at no extra cost. Basically, WB put so much into its streaming strategy (led by its Christmas release of Wonder Woman 1984) that it had to strike a deal.
The absence of Roku support at HBO Max’s launch was just one of its many flaws (seriously, 46M people couldn’t watch a new service because of…why exactly?), but now that this particular issue is solved (after more than six months), perhaps audiences at large can appreciate the sheer amount of good stuff on offer from WarnerMedia. When the back catalogs of TCM and Hayao Miyazaki collide, you know you’re in for a good time.
And we can thank the gods of clarity for one final thing: Those that already subscribe to HBO through Roku will see the channel automatically update to HBO Max. No naming confusion, no deleting or reinstalling of apps. Just the kind of easy watching that should’ve been available when HBO Max first came out. Now it’s just time to count down until our Dune watch party.