Streaming content is on an all-time high as the world is fighting COVID-19. There’s lockdown all around the world, and as a result, people have to resort to streaming as their ultimate entertainment option. Even if things weren’t as they are today, it’s highly likely that you would still spend a good chunk of your time streaming movies and TV shows across various streaming services. While Netflix and Prime Video hold the lion’s share in the streaming market around the world, there’s one network that has taken the niche by storm, and that’s HBO.
HBO, with its combination of new, classics, and compelling original shows, has been successful in capturing the audience’s imagination. HBO has not one but two premium services. One is an exclusive on-demand offering known as HBO Now, and the other is HBO GO. Both these services are pricier and are at the top of the premium streaming service subscription pyramid. The reason why it’s not a close competitor to market leaders such as Netflix and Prime Video is that it lacks HDR, 4K content, and offline downloads. Nonetheless, there’s no denying that the service is extremely compatible.
You can stream the service from a wide range of devices, including PCs, laptops, mobile phones, tablets, and even gaming consoles, along with other media players. We’ve already reviewed HBO’s streaming services; today, we are reviewing one of the biggest HBO communities – r/HBO.
My recent experience on r/HBO
I visited this sub-three days ago. There was this post that I upvoted, and it was among the top upvoted posts this month. User JonesinJames posted that the IMDBs top 100 TVs show finale episode list has been updated, and thankfully Game of Thrones is not the worst; it’s in 98th place. I really liked this post, and in that process, I ended up discovering a few shows that I want to watch.
‘Breaking Bad,’ ‘Chernobyl,’ ‘The Office,’ ‘Avatar: The Last Airbender,’ and ‘Person of Interest’ were the top five shows with the best ending, and I couldn’t agree more. There were shows like ‘Friends,’ ‘The Big Bang Theory,’ and ‘ Sons of Anarchy’ at respectable positions, whereas ‘Two and a Half Men’ and ‘House of Cards’ begged the last two places.
This post attracted 99 upvotes until I upvoted it to make it 100. It even racked up over 30 comments, which were good to see.
About r/HBO – Community & Members
r/HBO is the official subreddit for HBO. On this sub, you’ll find the full episodes of original movies, series, schedule information, exclusive video content, episode guides, gossip, rumors, and much more. The community has 29,100 members, out of which 70-100 members are online at any given time. This subreddit was created on June 29, 2009, and it doesn’t seem to be growing at a steady rate. Most of the growth, however, has occurred in the past couple of years, which is definitely motivating for the mods and the community as a whole.
How to access r/HBO?
If you’re already a Reddit member, you can simply type ‘r/HBO’ in your search bar and join the subreddit. However, if you aren’t well-versed with Reddit and are not present on the platform. You’ll need to create an account and confirm your email address. Once you do so, you’ll be able to follow subreddits, comment on posts, and even post anything on any of the subreddits
Moderators of r/HBO
r/HBO is not the biggest sub on Reddit even with regard to channels and brands. Thus, I wasn’t expecting much from it. It has less than 30,000 members, and for a community this size, you don’t expect half a dozen mods to manage the proceedings. However, it did have three mods – ‘BauerUK,’ ‘NoblePancake,’ and ‘Vullein070’. In my opinion, that’s the perfect number of moderator allocation. As they say, ‘too many cooks spoil the broth.’ On the contrary, you don’t expect just a single mod handling everything because it can get overwhelming pretty quickly.
Why should you follow r/HBO?
I browsed r/HBO for a good thirty minutes before writing this review. Before that, I would check the sub once a month to see what’s new on it. As far as the content is concerned, you’ll find news, updates, gossip, stats, and interesting facts being posted by the members of this community. From original movies and series to schedule information and exclusive video content, you’ll find everything on this sub. Most of the news that’s posted on this sub is sourced by reputed media outlets such as ‘Variety’ and ‘HollywoodReporter.’
The frequency of posts on this subreddit is quite limited. Unlike other subreddits where hundreds of posts are uploaded each day, only quality content gets through the mod filter. This, in my opinion, is great since the community is an official one and so there’s no room for spamming or personal promotion. On average, each post attracts about 20-30 upvotes, and there are between 6-12 comments on every single post.
Browsing & Navigation
As I mentioned earlier, only a handful of posts are updated each day. Also, only 70-100 members are active at any given time. Due to this low traffic, the browsing experience on this sub is seamless. At any point during my session, I didn’t face any discrepancies. It was a smooth sail right from the start until the end. Using the standard Reddit sorting features was cool, and apart from non-intrusive ads in the sidebar, I don’t think any specific element brings down the user experience.
The only yellow icon I could find alongside the post was that of ‘Archived.’ There were no golds on any of the posts, and I expected that. Why? Because most of these official channels have civilized discussions where people don’t try to be humorous. They come for information, they get it, and they leave. Unlike askme, pro revenge, and nosleep, where there are human-interest stories being shared by the OP, this sub has more of a corporate feel to it.
Filter by flair
One of the features that disappointed me the most was the ‘Filter by Flair’ option. I mean, based on that, you can understand that’s there’s not much scope of discussion on this sub. There’s a single flair option ‘HBO Max,’ which apparently, is the network’s third streaming service, which is due to launch on May 27, 2020. I mean, I get the buzz, but there’s so much potential in this community that hasn’t even been tested from a user experience standpoint.
Important rules you must know before joining r/HBO?
After filter by flair, the second most disappointing aspect of this sub was the rules and regulations segment. There was just a single point, ‘Off-Topic Posts’ – off-topic posts will be removed. I kind of found it overwhelming given that most communities with the same number of followers were doing much more to protect the interest of their members. What’s funnier? They aren’t even official subreddits.
It’s important to give credit where credits’ due. I like the simple design – logo and the gray banner. It resonates with HBO’s brand guidelines and thus looks cool. Neither fancy, over the top artwork nor bland Saturn logo suggesting the lack of care for the community and its members. Under the logo and title, you have the ‘Create Post’ section, which is followed by the standard Reddit sorting features ‘Hot,’ ‘New,’ ‘Top,’ and ‘Rising.’ Towards the right, you have ‘Community Details,’ followed by ‘Filter by Flair,’ ‘r/hborules,’ ‘Moderators’, and a ‘responsive banner ad.’
Though I generally go ahead and discuss the content straight away. I have to say that most of this platform in recent times is flooded with Chernobyl related posts. And thus, every top post that I found on this sub was related to that particular show.
Most Upvoted Content on this subreddit
1. Chernobyl was truly incredible – 299 upvotes
2. Chernobyl 2 Atomic Boogaloo – 214 upvotes
3. This series is legit. Well done, HBO! – 192 upvotes
4. Watching this awesome show Chernobyl for the first time, very different than what I expected – 176 upvotes
5. Chernobyl: I heard about the heroes of Chernobyl on Reddit. I am so happy they finally got some worldwide recognition of their sacrifice through this show – 169 upvotes
Most Upvoted Content 2020
1. The streaming wars have begun… – 164 upvotes
2. ‘The Last of Us’ Series in the Works at HBO from ‘Chernobyl,’ Creator Craig Mazin, Neil Druckmann – 161 upvotes
3. Six years ago… – 159 upvotes
4. Jamie fookin Lannister – 133 upvotes
5. Comrade Dyatlov – 125 upvotes
r/HBO is an official subreddit for the network, and so it’s like a mouthpiece. Don’t expect crazy content, outburst, and tough love on this sub. It’s largely pro-service, and thus most of the content on the page will be praising the service or the content in one way or the other. Nonetheless, if you love HBO’s content, you should definitely be a part of this community.