Netflix Swipes Hit Hulu Original

The critically acclaimed Hulu original series Casual is making the jump to Hulu's biggest rival, Netflix. Surprisingly, all four seasons of the underrated sitcom will debut on Netflix on Thursday, March 31. Hulu subscribers can still watch it, though, as it does not on the Disney-owned streamer's "leaving" list for March 2022.

Casual was created by Zander Lehmann and starred Michaela Watkins as Valerie, a therapist divorcing her husband after she discovers he is cheating. Tommy Dewey plays her younger brother Alex, who co-founded a dating site. Tara Lynne Barr plays Valerie's daughter Laura, and Nyasha Hatendi plays Valerie's one-night stand, Leon. Julie Berman plays Valerie's assistant, Leia. There were 44 episodes produced during the show's run, which ended in July 2018.

The show won widespread critical acclaim, but its only major nomination was Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy at the 2015 Golden Globe Awards. Casual's first season has a 93% fresh rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, while Season 2 holds an 87% fresh rating. Jason Reitman (Juno, Ghostbusters: Afterlife) directed several episodes and was an executive producer.

The studio behind Casual was Lionstage Television, which also produced Dear White People and Orange Is the New Black for Netflix, notes What's On Netflix. Since Hulu is not available in every international market, Netflix has become the home of Hulu content in the past outside the U.S. Castle Rock is on Netflix in some territories. The movie Mother/Android is available on Hulu in the U.S. and Netflix internationally. Likely, Hulu's exclusive streaming rights to Casual expired, and Lionsgate signed an international deal with Netflix that did not exclude the U.S. This would explain why Casual will be available on Hulu and Netflix after March 31.

After Casual newcomers make it through the first three seasons, the fourth is slightly different. Lehmann jumped ahead a few years into the future to put the characters in a "heightened" world, he told Variety in 2018.

"The last season does take some swings and is a little different from the other ones, but it does still feel contained, and the characters still feel like our characters, and the scope doesn't feel unwieldy," Lehmann said. "And that's a credit to the network and the studio; obviously, for not saying, 'Hey, it's your last one, you have to go out on this crazy high note.'"