Pluto TV Adding Star Trek Channel, Free Streaming Of ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ Begins Next Week

ViacomCBS continues to take advantage of the opportunities created from its recent re-merger, this time by adding a number of CBS shows to the  Pluto TV free streaming service.

Today ViacomCBS announced 40 CBS-produced shows will be added to Pluto TV, the popular ad-supported streaming service Viacom purchased in 2019. One of those shows will be Star Trek: The Next Generation. A spokesperson for Pluto TV tells TrekMovie that TNG is the first series for a new Star Trek channel being added to the live streaming service, with more Star Trek series being added later.

In addition to Star Trek: The Next Generation, starting on July 14 and continuing through the summer, the new slate of CBS programming on Pluto TV in the USA also includes Survivor, CSI: Miami, The Amazing Race, Beverly Hills 90210, Everybody Hates Chris, JAG, MacGyver, Scorpion, and Numbers. Pluto TV will also begin streaming select episodes from the first 10 seasons of South Park.

“Pluto TV is the leading free streaming television service in America and is distinguished by both the quantity and quality of its content,” said Tom Ryan, CEO and Co-Founder of Pluto TV. “With over 100,000 hours of unique content in the US alone, now supplemented by these iconic ViacomCBS franchises, Pluto TV is one of the broadest and deepest streaming services in the world, and guaranteed to offer something for everyone, on any device, for free.”

In addition to the new TV shows, a number of new films are being added to Pluto TV in July, including Star Trek Beyond and Galaxy Quest.

Star Trek: The Next Generation as well as all the other Star Trek television series are still available on the CBS All Access subscription service, including the new originals Star Trek: Discovery and Star Trek: Picard. ViacomCBS also licenses TNG and other non-All Access original Star Trek shows to the Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon Prime subscription services.

ViacomCBS has plans to update and expand All Access into a new “super streamer” to take on other studio-owned streamers like HBO Max, Peacock, and Disney+. In May CBS All Access added 100 films from the Paramount library and it was just announced that the upcoming SpongeBob movie Sponge on the Run will skip theaters to launch on All Access in 2021. More ViacomCBS content and an update to the user interface are due this summer with a full rebrand and relaunch of the service coming in early 2021.

Pluto TV is expected to continue to run in parallel to the new subscription service, but ViacomCBS will use Pluto TV to funnel users of the free ad-supported streamer to their subscription service.

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i was wondering when they were going to start a star trek channel… i kinda like the idea of having it on live…

Yeah, I know what you mean. I feel like I’ll rewatch pretty much any Star Trek episode, so it’s kinda nice when it’s already decided!

It’s great to see the Star Trek love being spread far and wide! And a chance to get new fans who has never seen TNG and the others and can’t afford other streaming sites. It was definitely smart to start with TNG first but hopefully more will come soon.

And that will mean there will be FIVE Star Trek streaming channels to choose from in America. Wow!

Defeats the purpose of CBS All Access since that’s not the exclusive home of Star Trek.

At least I can watch every Star Wars movie only on Disney+. Pluto TV is not my thing. Not a fan of ads.

How about GoofyTV? 😉

Try hard

Hehe…i couldnt resist! … I was going to adress the remastering of DS9 and VOY but Ian was faster. I cant iMagine they dont wanna change it and broadcast both shows forever in SD.

Perhaps a reason for CBS to invest in remastering DS9 and Voyager, making them exclusive to Blu Ray and All Access. But the attitude with Trek has always seemed to be: sell it to everyone everywhere all the time. It’s still all over BBC America and every streamer and the other day I came across the H&I free channel with its weekday evening block of TOS-Enterprise running from 7 PM to 1 AM.

At least CBS All Access is getting new Star Trek shows like Discovery, Picard, or Lower Decks.

I can watch The Next Generation on Netflix if I want to.

Star Trek is CBS most important franchise at this point. They need Star Trek to be profitable. It makes sense business wise.

Agreed. I was going to point this out as well before I saw your comment. I think Star Trek is just too lucrative for CBS to keep in one place. But its obviously great for the franchise because I think so many new fans who watch it now is because its in places like Netflix or Amazon which they most likely already have. That’s the problem with a site like All Access because very few new fans will sign up just to watch Star Trek on it. But when you have so many other options to find it its much easier to find an audience that way.

But there is probably way more people watching Star Trek today than ever because you can binge watch it all in multiple places worldwide. The days of just watching an episode in syndication every day doesn’t have the same pull like it use to. But channels like BBC and H&I as you mentioned must still get a good audience for it because its been on these channels for years now.

Matter of fact I just turned on BBCA and DS9 is actually on right now! :) Both it and TNG are playing through the rest of the night into tomorrow afternoon. So I guess that’s a great channel to have if you don’t binge it off a streaming site.

H&I is my nightly tradition.

All Access isn’t the exclusive home of Trek. Hasn’t been. All of Trek save for the All Access exclusives stream on Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, and more. All Access is simply the home of Exclusive New Trek shows…

And you can watch several Star Wars movies on Netflix at this point as well…

During the 70’s, Paramount referred to the 79 episodes of TOS as “the 79 jewels” because they made SO MUCH MONEY for Paramount in syndication. They made so much money because everybody wanted them.

Here’s hoping that somebody at the studio still remembers that…

Kurtzman gets credit from me for reminding CBS executives of this, and pitching the franchise as a resource that needed new investment to keep it earning with future generations.

The Paramount side of the house making the cinematic features seemed less committed and had less understanding of what made Trek successful.

With the remerger into ViacomCBS, we keep hearing messages from the top and seeing action (like this new Trek Pluto channel) that demonstrate they are serious in making the franchise a centrepiece of the corporate strategy.

But that doesn’t mean that TOS is still the 79 jewels on its own.

We need to accept that different series appeal to different age groups, generations and do better cross culturally. TOS once dominated the syndicated rerun market niche for pre-TOS and teens, but that’s not the case today.

As much as TOS riveted me as a primary grader and as a teen when UHF syndication started, it took a long time to earn the interest of our kids.

Since CTV Sci-fi channel has all the older series running Monday to Friday, 5 hours a day, and have a PVR recording them all, the kids have pretty much free access to all except the occasional 14+ episode.

For our kids, I observed that the progression was:
– TAS in primary grades (DVDs)
– TNG intermittently starting about 4th grade
– Voyager on repeat from 4th to 6th grade, with TNG filling in.
– More frequent viewing of TNG in 6th grade
– Enterprise and TOS starting 7th grade, but Voyager remains the most watched
– DS9 remains something they can’t really get into, although the oldest tries an episode from time to time.

That’s interesting about your kids! I don’t have kids, but from talking to people, I find that among older folks, whichever Star Trek was on when they were 10-12 years old is the one they think of as THEIR Star Trek. They might watch and enjoy and appreciate the others, but the show they watched when they were around 11 is first in their hearts. I find that an interesting aspect of human nature.

Goodness, I didn’t mean that TOS was still everything to everybody; that’s why I said that they were the 79 jewels IN THE 70’S. :-) I meant that the experience with TOS earning a ton of money for Paramount in the 70’s showed that Star Trek could be a big earner if they did it right.

That’s an interesting observation. When I was 10-12, TNG was ending and DS9 was starting. That must be why I can’t make up my mind which I like more!

Sounds like you were 10-12 at a good time!

I was 10 in 1968, so there weren’t any choices, and we didn’t even have to call it “TOS” because there was only ONE Star Trek. :-)

You raise your children well! lol

Why would they not remember that? In the last decade we got three $150 million big budget films based on TOS. It has been remastered several times and there is still new merchandise, books, comics, etc coming out for it today. Maybe not at the level 30 years ago but clearly a big seller. Discovery was a prequel to the show. Now Strange New Worlds is. So it’s clearly not forgotten, even for all the new shows and films out there.

But Star Trek has been a much bigger universe for a long time now and why we had 18 years of mostly successful spin offs from TNG to ENT. And why today there are now six new shows in production. There is just TONS of Star Trek today. No one has forgotten about TOS, its just no longer the driving force of the franchise anymore in terms of it being the main priority and hasn’t been for a long time. But clearly it’s still very important, especially if you’re older who was around when it aired.

My understanding from people in the business is that studios have short memories, and the things they really care about are 1) Last quarter’s earnings, and 2) Next quarter’s earnings. I was suggesting that taking a somewhat longer view than that could be helpful. :-)

You keep trying to put words in my mouth and say that I’m saying things I’m NOT saying, so I’m gonna stop talking now.

Well I wasn’t trying to put words in your mouth. I was only responding to this sentence:

“Here’s hoping that somebody at the studio still remembers that…”

I was only saying based on everything we seen the last few years, yeah they do. What else could they do for a 54 year old show at this point they haven’t done already? TM literally just reviewed the last in a 12 part comic series they had with Year Five. Another TOS novel was just released back in June. New merchandise still pops up monthly. So wasn’t trying to be rude I just didn’t really understand what you were saying? Most TV shows are pretty much forgotten after 20-30 years no matter how popular they were at the time. Good luck finding a Gunsmoke comic book today, toy line or distributed everywhere worldwide. I think TOS is still given PLENTY of love given everything .

But no worries or hard feelings I hope.

It seems moronic not to just fold this channel into CBS All Access?

TNG on CBS-AA is commercial free; on Pluto there will likely be commercials. And if Pluto’s other content is any indication, those commercial breaks will not fall where commercial breaks are put into the programs, but during the scenes themselves.

apples and oranges.. you dont need one on cbsaa because it’s a streaming service…it’s already there to pick and choose from… Pluto is different, it’s a live tv system… no pauses or backing up… hundreds of live channels… free… and brings classic trek to millions more people

Nah. IMO the only thing ViacomCBS needs to think about is if the All Access tiers should be rebranded as Pluto+ and Pluto Max or the like. It’s more popular than All Access, after all.

CBS should focus more on All Access. It has some potential in the streaming space.

The streaming wars won’t be easy but at least they are the underdogs.

Pluto Max is like HBO Max
Pluto+ is Disney+ you get it.

So are there commercials? If there are, can we DVR the stream?

Why are they not starting with TOS?, maybe they are considering that show a little too problematic for the modern audience. Still, it would have been nice to see the first adventures before going to the Next Generation.

Doing Next Gen first also works.

TNG is just probably much easier show for people to get into. And it’s probably just a more popular show viewer wise. Yes I know HERE TOS is more popular overall, I’m speaking for the general audience out there.

But that could be next.

All I am saying is that just because it might be a bit problematic shouldn’t be a reason to dismiss TOS, people seem to forget that is where all of Star Trek started and it needs to get the respect it deserves warts and all. Besides I always thought TOS was the more “known” show in terms of general people out there. I mean ask any person about Kirk or Spock and they will have some idea but not so much for Picard. I feel like there is a trend nowadays everywhere of dismissing history and lets not have this for Star Trek as well.

As I just said it could be next. I don’t think it’s problematic at all, just TNG is more popular. TOS is probably more known, sure, that’s doesn’t mean it’s more watched. Even on Netflix Voyager gets rewatched more than those two shows. At least the top episodes. And they obviously went with TNG for a reason. It also has more than twice the episodes TOS has so can suck people in longer. It’s not a contest, Trek is Trek, it sounds like most will show up eventually.

These shows are pretty accessible everywhere these days. You can binge watch 728 episodes for $10 these days anywhere. TOS is not going anywhere. And I don’t think a tiny streaming site is going to make a new generation of Trek fans but it’s nice there are more options.

Frankly, Voyager seems to be outperforming all of the other series as an entry point.

Perhaps it’s because Voyager has a stronger first season than most.

I suspect though that if the idea is to sell subscriptions on CBSAA, they want to show TNG to lay a foundation for Picard.

More, there appears to be an effort to target Trek market expansion in Latin America where Picard on Amazon Prime has been successful in building a new following. (The high proportion of Latinx actors and characters is not an accident.)

TOS is very retro, so despite a great first season, it’s a tough entryway for a younger generation or audiences in countries where Trek is not well known, which is after all the point.

Not sure why folks are seeing this as a loyalty test rather than a pragmatic effort to build the base audience.

Actually it is kind of different in my country. Here in Turkey TOS has always been and still is the more popular and more well known version of Star Trek because of the classic episodes and because we did the first ever Trek parody film Turkish Star Trek back in 1973 which was part of a very successful Turkish film franchise. But I can actually see why they would want to push TNG to the forefront more. Don’t get me wrong, I like all Trek, I just don’t want TPTB to forget where the show originated from.

But man I don’t remotely get where is the hyperbole over this is coming from? A. They ALREADY made it clear more Trek shows are coming, TNG was simply the first. I don’t know why they wouldn’t have TOS since in literally every distribution package where all the shows are sold it’s always there like the rest of them.

B. This has been done in America for decades already. Depending on where you lived determined which Star Trek reruns you would even watch. I lived in a few places over the years. I lived in one area where I only got TNG reruns for years and nothing else. This was back in the early 2000s. Other places you might see TOS and DS9. Others maybe just Voyager. Honestly until streaming became a thing you NEVER had every show you can watch in one place. That was never a thing until the last ten years or so. But before you were lucky if you got more than one show on at any given time. And when you did, it usually was just TOS or TNG. TOS was syndicated the most easily but it still wasn’t always shown everywhere either. As more Star Trek showed up, everyone’s options got bigger and wanted to attract different demographics.

So I have no idea why you are suddenly freaking out that one tiny streaming site I doubt most people has even heard of (I didn’t until 6 months ago) doesn’t have this one show on yet when for America TOS and EVERY Trek show can be found in multiple places now with ease? As I said in my OP Star Trek which obviously includes TOS is way more accessible now than it’s ever been in it’s entire history. None of it is going anywhere, so it makes no difference if one site decides not to play a certain show. We are beyond spoiled today lol.

And didn’t I read somewhere Voyager was actually the first Star Trek show you watched?? Please correct me if I’m wrong on that but if so, it kind goes to my point that most of the time if you get into one Trek show, and you become a big enough fan will eventually give the others a chance as you did. That’s why I don’t remotely care what Star Trek show someone watches first, most of the time they will try out the others. And of course if they only like one show like TOS or TNG, that’s OK too. None of it really matters. All that matters is Star Trek is still pulling in an audience today in multiple variations.

Actually you are right, the hyperbole probably comes from the fact that streaming and TV systems don’t work the same way here in my country. Usually if a show disappears from one service it will be ages before it returns or never. Maybe I just thought the same way with the systems you guys have over there. Luckily of course the internet and DVDS are still life savers for these kinds of situations.

OK, I gotcha! Yeah true, depending where you live the situation will be very different. I once lived in a country where GASP no Star Trek ever came on TV lol. That was Korea. You would never know the show even existed there at the time. The ONE saving grace I had was that I lived near an U.S. military base (I wasn’t in the military though) and I was able to get their military channel on my TV and they show American TV shows and would show reruns of TNG, DS9 and/or VOY, like once a week. Literally one episode a week. Then I moved to a different part of the country and couldn’t get the channel anymore lol. The only Star Trek DVDs I could find was maybe a few of the movies in a store somewhere and certainly not all of them or even most. And this was all before streaming obviously, so trust me I been there. ;)

In America though, it’s just not a problem anymore. It’s still nuts to know I carry every episode of Star Trek ever made in my pocket lol. And from multiple sources, so there are tons of options. It’s weird how we all just take it for granted now but this is still a fairly new thing. Maybe the amount of options will change one day but I doubt anytime soon.

If I’m being honest, I think TNG and VOY probably are the easiest for new fans to get into. And certainly on Reddit I would say TNG seems to be the first show people try out the most but VOY does seem to be the second. Again ONLY anecdotal obviously, but TOS does seem to be on the lower side as far as what new fans watch first. And again there is plenty of evidence of that just seeing what gets watched or voted for the most as their most favorite shows online. It’s actually surprising Voyager is usually in the top 3 now in terms of what people watch or consider their favorite. But yes it’s also one of the ‘newer’ shows (and the Borg are in 100 episodes ;)) so I guess not too surprising.

And I imagine if you are in your 20s TOS would feel the most antiquated at least. Again it doesn’t mean they are NOT watching it, it’s just probably not the top show that’s all. That’s why I like going to sites like Reddit, it’s just more diverse in terms age, race, fan level, etc. There’s a large tingent of fans there who grew up with Voyager and Enterprise just like some grew up with TOS, others TNG, etc. That’s why I shake my head when I hear other fans say those shows should just ‘disappear’ because A. they are clearly older (over 40 or 50) and B. don’t seem to understand that these shows have different audiences for decades now.

But here it seems like most of us are 40 and over and if you are you probably remember a world when it was just TOS and nothing else. If you weren’t around when it originally aired then you probably remember watching it in syndication before TNG started. But what a lot of people forget here is that for most people under 30, they were born into a large universe of Star Trek from the beginning so they don’t look at it so linearly just like younger Star Wars fans don’t who grew up on the prequels. I still personally think those movies suck but for people who watched them as kids or even watching Star Wars for the first time today it’s a different story. Same for Star Trek.

But its not a loyalty test either and I wish people can just accept different demographics may simply be drawn to a different shows. Ironically that’s what Kurtzman is trying to do with his Star Trek today. Before we assumed every Star Trek show was seen by every Star Trek fan. Obviously that wasn’t always true but the assumption was if you like one show then you should like the other. But now they are purposely trying to target Trek for different groups and ages. It’s why we have shows like Section 31 and Lower Decks coming. Nothing about those shows will have anything in common other than having Star Trek in the title. We don’t know how well it will work yet but I think its a good thing in the long term.

I love TOS because I grew up with it, but I can definitely understand why it wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea today. That said it’s still the most iconic Star Trek show by simply being the first so there is no danger of it ever disappearing.

CBS should dump everything on All Access. I’m already overwhelmed by having too much streaming services such as Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu etc.

Oh well, that’s a win win.

Pluto is the streaming substitute for free basic broadcast TV.

Not the same product at all.

Pluto TV is a free streaming service. That was my point. I don’t need it to watch Star Trek.

That’s what Netflix is for. If I want basic TV, Hulu has live TV.

I’m not sure you have Hulu in Canada.

So now I have to choose whether to watch Doctor Who 24/7 or TNG 24/7.
&;>} |||===

DW on BritBox? I kinda would rather have BritBox than All Access, it’s barely pulling its weight.

Doctor Who is on HBO Max in the US

It’s on BellMedia’s OTT service crave in Canada as well as everything Star Trek.

One of my in-laws was very happy to find out that signing up for crave gave them all their old favourites in one place, and is happily bingeing through DW episodes that haven’t been seen in Canada since the 70s. (They gave up Netflix and haven’t looked back.)

Crave only has the new Doctor Who, how is your in-laws watching old episodes on Crave?

I don’t have crave, but I thought they said they had the backlist (such that actually exists) too.

The classic Doctor Who channel on Pluto TV is what I was referring to. I had not seen any Hartnell, Troughton, or Pertwee episodes before I started watching it, plus the Baker, Davison, Colin Baker, and McCoy episodes I had not seen in a long time, or ever. Pretty cool (except for maybe some of the later ones).
&:>p |||===

Oh I see! I forgot they had the rights to it. Oh man, the commercial breaks must be torture though.

I thought it was on BBCA. Perhaps it’s on both…

Just flicking through PlutoTV in the UK and the What We Left Behind documentary is on one of the Documentary channels.

Was surprised to see it there.

wow! lucky

I wish all streaming platforms had a “livestream” of favorite shows so that we can jump into a channel in progress like regular TV. I am terrrrrible at picking content to watch; I literally just want someone or something to put content in front of me for my consumption. When I’m faced with the burden of choice, guess what – I end up watching the same familiar things!

I have found that if I have something available at nearly any time to watch I often end up not watching it. Shows I record on the DVR I will watch within a reasonable time frame because I do not want the space to fill up. (Although my DVR has never been more than 20% filled). And when I get a disc in the mail from Netflix I feel compelled to look at it as quickly as possible so I can get it in the mail the next day and get the next disc as quick as I can to maximize the value of the monthly fee. Yet apart from the the nu-Trek I just don’t feel compelled to watch streaming shows.

It’s rather the reverse for me.

Streaming has got me to try several series that I would have otherwise missed, and some that I did miss in first run. In the past couple of years, I’ve been going through the backlist and trying out shows I missed or never got into, as well as some streaming originals and documentaries. As well, I’ve been using streaming to find shows and movies to watch with the kids, and in many cases preview them, while when they were younger we mainly bought DVDs or borrowed from the library.

Having a young family really changed my watching habits. I’d expected to continue to record shows and watch them as convenient, as I had for years, but then found that the only thing I was really getting to was recorded sports while I was doing my own workout. Instead, I saw a lot of preschool educational DVDs and Canadian public television with the kids until they hit late primary.

That said, I would say that the most profound disruption of my viewing habits was the way that American television pivoted after 9/11 to condone torture and brutality from lead characters.

As someone who’d lived in the United States while attending grad school, I understood the dynamic, but I had no personal interest in spending my time in the American great descent into violent grimdark. For a long while it has seemed like American entertainment was trying to justify human rights abuses, and pandering to viciousness.

So, to all of you on the board who are offended by new Trek offerings that are promoting equality, please take a step back and recognize that for many of us outside the United States, the last 20 years of American television and film has seemed to be promoting a different and darker kind of political agenda.

More, when Trek has tried to adjust to be more “relevant” whether Archer torturing a prisoner in Enterprise, the sawing surgery in Discovery S1 or the Icheb eyeball scene in Picard, not to mention the abusive interpersonal behaviour and language, it loses me every time.

The only thing I will comment on here is that I tried to record sports but it just doesn’t work for me. Sports are pretty much the only thing I will watch live anymore. And even then the commercials are irritating as hell. The end result has been a game will be on but unless friends are over specifically for the event it’s mainly just background while I am working around the house. If something happens I can pay a bit of attention but otherwise I’m only following on the periphery for the most part. Less so for things like the Stanley Cup Finals or World Series (depending on the matchup) however…

I understand how you feel. On Netflix I can’t watch anything other than the same old stuff. I get that

Ahhh that cast image of TNG season 1 – fond memories! How I miss the time of late Gene’s pure product that had a clear point of view against drug and alcohol abuse, interventionist weapons profileration, anarchy &c. Makes Picard now smiling away Raffi’s egregious drug abuse and Seven’s vigilant justice like a senile retirement home dweller look like a truly different era…

Has PlutoTV gotten any better in the last year or two? It used to have absolutely atrocious commercial breaks. Right in the middle of dialogue they’d cut to a commercial, then come back two minutes later and finish that line of dialogue. This even though there would be a natural pause or scene change 15 seconds later where a commercial could have easily gone. “Toto, I don’t think we’re…” ( CUT TO COMMERCIALS ) “…in Kansas anymore.”

PlutoTV was free, but it would have to be. No one would pay for service that terrible.

“No, I am your”..bad commercial and/or floating plastic elves – Pluto TV will be right back – …”father.”

Oddly enough, it’s not that bad since it’s free. Now, if I paid for a streaming service, say 5.99 a month, and had to put up with commercials, that would be bad.


when will it be launched?

I just wish they’d air seasons 5-7. I have yet to see any of the movies on the channel.