Okay, if we’re being honest with ourselves, Hallmark may have cornered the market on wholesome family appropriate rom-coms, but definitely not diverse casts. There may be some casts that reflect Hallmark’s films on Neflix, but for the most part the streamer’s recent films included cast members from various races playing lead roles and not just supporting parts, such as in Always Be My Maybe (above), To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and The Holiday Calendar.
More Holiday Content
Even outside of the rom-com genre, Netflix is expanding its original holiday programming. After the success of A Christmas Prince, the platform has followed suit with the Hallmark standard of follow-up films with A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding. Plus, The Holiday Calendar and The Princess Switch are just a couple titles released this past holiday season alongside the Christmas Prince sequel.
Most Hallmark films feature your typical straight, heterosexual couples, but Netflix opts for more than one type of lead couple. One title in particular that comes to mind is Alex Strangelove which sees a young man torn between his girlfriend and a new guy in his life — something you’d never see on Hallmark.
One staple of Hallmark films is the customary kiss at the end, but Netflix’s films take a more realistic approach, which means the “first kiss” usually happens somewhere between the beginning to the middle of the film. Sometimes it even occurs at the start — no matter the case, it’s far more realistic.
I know all rom-coms turn reach similar outcomes in the end, but there’s something fresh about Netflix’s plots that Hallmark hasn’t had in a while. With any rom-com comes predictability, but when watching a Hallmark film, it’s almost too easy to predict what will happen next. Netflix makes you work for what will happen when it comes to films like When We First Met, which offers a twist that’s been used before but in an unconventional way.
Another aspect of Netflix rom-coms is the diversity in age — romances on the platform feature couples in their teens all the way into their eighties with titles like The Kissing Booth and Our Souls at Night. While Souls isn’t a comedy, its presence on the platform represents a wide range of ages involved in Netflix’s programming.
Hallmark has had their fair share of high-profile stars appear in rom-coms and films over the years, but Netflix’s slate has included A-listers — as well as made them. A couple examples of this are Keanu Reeves’ cameo in Always Be My Maybe, as well as Noah Centineo’s breakout popularity following the release of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before as well as his subsequent features Sierra Burgess Is a Loser and The Perfect Date.
Some of the rom-coms available also provide storylines that are rooted in today’s world, meaning that they’d only be applicable from the time of release moving forward due to their modern situations. Sierra Burgess Is a Loser is the perfect example of this since it involves what most people know as catfishing, or lying about who you are behind the phone or computer.
You’d never hear a swear cross the lips of a Hallmark character, which is something that some viewers appreciate, but if you’re anything like me, you don’t mind a couple of less-upstanding terms thrown into the mix. Take Set It Up as an example — there’s nothing rude about the way the main characters utter swears, but it certainly makes certain statements more interesting. Let’s just say Glen Powell’s dialogue makes us look at pizza in a whole new way.
If you're like me, you enjoy a good rom-com binge or movie night, and while there are plenty of places to find the genre, there's one that's continuing to grow in popularity — Netflix.
The streaming platform is home to a considerable list of original rom-com films, and the slate just continues to grow. Considering that Hallmark has paved the way for an extensive lineup of TV rom-coms, I can't help but compare the two, and right now when it comes down to it, Netflix is winning.
Don't expect an exact replica of the 1994 classic in Hulu's new series.
Want to know why? Well, if the recent reveal that To All the Boys I've Loved Before's sequel arrives February 12, 2020 and will include a third film isn't exciting enough, click through the gallery above for all of the reasons why you should opt for the streaming platform's original rom-coms versus Hallmark.