Many of Erin Napier’s social media followers have noticed an influx of fellow fans pleading with the HGTV star and her husband, Ben, to keep their beloved shows on the network. The requests and questions are showing up in the comment sections of her Instagram and Twitter posts, creating a great deal of confusion about the couple’s future on HGTV.
Here’s what’s behind so many fans expressing their concerns that the Napiers are jumping ship…
Fan Asks “Why Are You Abandoning Us?”
On August 17, 2022, it was announced that the Napiers are about to make their acting debut in a Christmas movie set to debut November 11 on the Discovery+ streaming platform. Variety first reported that four feature films will include cameos from the “Home Town” hosts, their HGTV colleague and “Love It or List It” host Hilary Farr, as well as Food Network stars Bobby Flay and Duff Goldman.
While many fans were excited about the news, others were dismayed to learn they’d only be able to see the films if they pay for a Discovery+ subscription. Upset fans have been especially vocal on the Napiers’ social media, including Erin’s post about the surprise Christmas movie. On that post, many fans said they don’t get the streaming platform and don’t want to pay extra for it.
One fan wrote, “I refuse to pay extra for ANOTHER streaming channel, so it’s Hallmark Christmas movies for me.”
Another commented, “Nope! Can’t afford Discovery plus.”
Others have mistakenly interpreted the news to mean that the “Home Town” hosts are moving all of their shows, not just their Christmas special, to air exclusively on the streaming platform.
For instance, one fan wrote, “I’m disappointed…that the ‘stars’ move on after they’ve made it, leaving behind the people that made them big. They chase the purse. I get it. But its disappointing.”
On an August 22 post by Erin about her college dorm room, a fan wrote, “Why are you abandoning us? I was so sad to see you are going to discovery channel. I can’t afford to subscribe.”
These comments then cause others to worry that they’ve missed crucial information about their favorite HGTV stars leaving the network, so those fans start adding comments and the misinformation can snowball.
Here’s Why HGTV Stars Are Appearing on Discovery+
Discovery has long been the parent company of multiple channels that specialize in unscripted, reality content, including HGTV, Food Network, Magnolia Network, TLC, and Discovery Channel. The company kicked off its Discovery+ streaming network in January 2021, allowing them another venue for sharing exclusive content and generating income from viewer subscriptions instead of ad revenue. Special-edition programming — like the Christmas movies featuring HGTV stars — can introduce new viewers to the platform and trigger new sign-ups, and nearly every major broadcast company has initiated a similar platform.
But Discovery also has some new “family” members. According to USA Today, WarnerMedia announced in 2021 that it would soon merge with Discovery and the two media companies did, indeed, create one big conglomerate in April 2022. Next up, in the summer 2023, Warner Bros. Discovery will combine with HBO Max to create an even larger streaming platform.
Some people who have canceled their cable TV love having Discovery+ as an affordable option for watching HGTV. Most of the network’s shows air both on the channel and on the Discovery+ streaming platform, along with some exclusive content like the Christmas movies.
Despite some fans’ complaints, industry insiders say streaming is here to stay. On August 18, Axios reported that for the first time, new Nielsen data shows streaming services have officially topped cable as the most popular method by which Americans consume television content.
For those interested in trying Discovery+, the platform offers a free 7-day trial with two payment options. For $4.99 a month, viewers can watch programs with limited ads, and for $6.99 a month, they can watch ad-free.