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Back to the Future

December 15th, 2007 by Eugene Wei SVP, Audience

As with many companies that have a staff heavy on techies, we have a particular fondness for science fiction. So we hope you’re as excited as we are to see some acclaimed sci-fi series joining our content line- up.

Last week we released all three parts of the miniseries Tin Man, a re-imagining of L. Frank Baum’s classic The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and the most watched series in SCI FI history. Today we’ve added a few beloved sci-fi blasts from the past. First is Firefly, writer/director Joss Whedon’s sci-fi drama filled with Western motifs. Captain Malcolm Reynolds and his diverse crew travel through space on the transport ship “Serenity” doing jobs, legal and otherwise, to earn a living. We have all fourteen episodes of this cult series, and we highly recommend working your way through all of them sequentially before watching Serenity on DVD as that movie serves as an epilogue of sorts to the television series. To get you started, here’s the pilot of Firefly:

Next is Roswell, a series that blended aliens and star-crossed teenage love in a seamless mix that drew a loyal fanbase. The entire first season, which leaned more heavily to teen romance and drama, is now available at Hulu. Katherine Heigl fans can catch her in one of her early feature roles as alien-human hybrid Isabel Evans.

We have also added select episodes from across the first six seasons of The Outer Limits, the Emmy-winning series based on the classic series of the same name from the 1960’s. Each episode of this anthology series explored the moral and philosophical implications of advances in technology, in the grand tradition of the best in sci-fi.

Last, but not least, we’ve added a collection of clips from Matt Groening’s Futurama, a show which reassured us that the future would be just as absurd as the present (but thankfully just as funny).

All these series had devoted and outspoken fans, and we hope those of you who count yourselves among them will enjoy this opportunity to reconnect with these shows. Those of you who’ve never seen these series can jump in at your convenience and see what you missed. Even if you’re not a sci-fi fan, it’s worth checking in regularly to see what new shows we’ve added. Our content acquisition team is busy adding new shows to our lineup all the time.

Meanwhile, we have to get back to work. We also have a science fiction story to write, about a future where every one can enjoy their favorite shows anytime, anywhere, through the web.

Eugene Wei ( )
Aspiring Film Director (but instead a Director…of Product Management)

Last comment: Feb 21st 2014 71 Comments
  • […] Firefly available for viewing and for embedding in your own web pages and blogs. And they’re offering the pilot episode for free to everyone right now. Which would be […]

  • hey! do u wanna know my oppinion? well… hmmm… great job! i really like what you are doing! i wish you continue like this. i feel i’m becoming a number 1 fan of Hulu!

  • Cordrone says:

    I see I’m late to the show here but… um… Firefly! Awesome! It’s a show that’s not for everyone but everyone should at least check out to 3 or 4 episodes to see if it is for them. Obviously, the show is for me but a lot of folks are missing out on one of the roughest but wonderful gems in the TV dustbin.

  • Jim Amos says:

    Firefly totally rocks, as does the hulu service overrall. Great job guys, this kicks Joomla in the balls showing no mercy haha. Question though: any plans to add Torchwood? Also, what about more episodes of Outer Limits. One more question: seems like all content so far is PG-13 or less – is this a legal requirement, like can this ever change?

  • Clemm says:

    Where is Tin Man..I can’t find it.If I search for it I get a logo that if I click it takes me to the front page of the site with no Tin Man to be found. was it a limited run or something?
    Aside from that I think adding all these Sci Fi series is a good idea. I agree with a poster up above that Star Gate would be a great addition.

  • Lee says:

    Hi great site..first show i watched was Roswell and got hooked, i was wondering if the second and 3rd season will be uploaded anytime soon.

  • Roswell is one of my favorite shows ever. It’s right there with Alias and Airwolf. I’ve got them all on DVD box sets but that won’t stop me from watching them once I get into the beta.

    Oh, and I see from the comments above you have Miami Vice?!? Excellent. I guess I’m an 80’s TV chick.

  • g-man says:

    Yo, where’s the first half of Battlestar Galactica Season 3?

  • A yahoo user says:

    I can now view some (or possibly all?) of your content on the Yahoo website, where the clips sputter and hiccup instead of streaming smoothly like the ones I’ve seen embedded into your blog. I look forward to being invited soon so I don’t have to put up with choppy streaming.

  • greentwist says:

    I have looked on the site for the Tin Man episodes you mention in this post, but can’t find them. Help!

  • Mike says:

    What happened to Tin Man?!

  • Josh Jasper says:

    Nice, except Tim Man isn’t there anymore, and either my response explaining why it’s bad policy to take stuff down and not tell customers that it was removed never made it through, or it was deleted.

    If the later is true, this is an bad sign for hulu customer service.

  • gary says:

    I was all set to finally watch season 3 of Battlestar Galactica only to find out you only have the second half of the season available. What gives?

  • Josh Jasper says:

    Nice, except, as of this morning, Tin Man is no longer there.

    Some advice from someone who’s worked in online content delivery in customer service – if you pull something, saying nothing about it, and making it look like it was never there causes annoyance. Customers don’t need to know the exact legal reasons why something was pulled, nor should they, but letting us know that something has been removed, and some sort of “we apologize for the inconvenience” page helps it look like you care about people who noticed something is missing.

    Not many companies I’ve worked with actually take that route. the usual course is to want a site where it looks like nothing is ever removed from because it’s cleaner, and execs think (wrongly) that it gives a sense of confidence. When I was working for eMusic, this happened frequently. I understand well that there can’t be an announcement when there’s a take down of content. That’s fine. But not acknowledging a take down with a simple “we’re sorry” after the fact is actually a bad idea in that it generates customer animosity.

    That’s all the beta user feedback I have for now.

  • Deon says:

    What happened to Tin Man? I can’t find it on the site anymore (or Sci-Fi either for that matter).

  • Jonny says:

    That is nice but… as long as I can’t use Hulu from my home in Switzerland it’s adding insult to injury.


  • Chris says:

    Where are the down loads?????????

  • Mary says:

    Why were “The Riches” episodes all pulled from Hulu?

  • Nuwan says:

    HULU has some amazing content. Its a pity that it will take some time for people outside US to have access. On the other hand Joost already has a lot of content offered for viewers outside the US.

  • Lois says:

    Having fun so far. Thanks for the invite! My two top wishlist items:

    1. Always-on-top viewer so that I can watch in a corner of my screen instead of shrinking my other apps.
    2. Get full seasons that stick around (I tend to run way, way, behind on the shows I follow).

  • l2afa says:

    in mexico we can´t see any video.. :(whats hulu think about it?

  • Shawn says:

    I know this isn’t supposed to be here, but since you haven’t made a post yet, thank you guys for distributing thousands of invites to various IT sites! That’s how I got mine!

  • Thanks Hulu!

    I have never seen the Firefly episodes, although I become a browncoat after watching Serenity.

    I think you guys are the best thing to come since…well..TV I guess.

    I can now view my favorite shows after they play on TV, which means I get to FINALLY catch up and find out what all my friends are talking about.


    Hulu, I declare thee Joost slayer!

  • Sarah says:

    Oh great, can’t wait to see Roswell. I used to watch every episode of that show.

  • Jason says:

    I am glad to see new scifi content. I am also a fan of both Stargate series among others so I look forward to seeing more from scifi. Good job Hulu team, what you are doing with this site is awesome.

  • Seth Asa says:

    Hardcopi: We may both be saying the same thing but just in case…

    “The Train Job” was a hastily-assembled replacement for the actual two-hour pilot, “Serenity”, which FOX didn’t air until after the series had been cancelled. “Serenity” (parts 1+2) are actually the first episodes (not to be confused with the Universal Pictures film, also called “Serenity”).

    Rock on, Browncoats!

  • Dark Enigma says:

    I am so happy about the web site here, I have just sat and watched the first season of Roswell and am HUNGRY for more. I hope you are going to add the other 2 seasons soon. I never watched it when it came out on tv so I got to see it here from the first eppisode till the end of season one and I need more please…….. Thank you for all the wonderful shows.

  • BlownawayToo says:

    I am new to Hulu and am greatly enjoying the variety and quality of your archive. “Tin Man” was an amazing film and if I was still teaching my film classes (at a NY public school) I would be using it, along with “Little Miss Sunshine,” for that too is a new version of “Oz.”

    I am thrilled you are including some films into the mix of offerings and will be sending you folks a detailed email in the next day or so, about stocking the archive with films that teachers would use in school, with their classroom computers hooked into a LCD projector and speaker system. The potential is huge for creating a “national curriculum” of teachable films, available to every teacher, anytime……

    I run a website for the Newsday In Education department, on Long Island, outside of NY. The Multimedia Program delivers lesson plans to teachers, much in the same manner Hulu works…..but more about that in my email…..

    Thank you for allowing me into the beta test and I will be contacting you soon…..and I am very impressed with all that I have seen so far…. in quality, variety and potential….


  • Silv says:

    Much as I’d love to watch free streaming video, I can’t in all good conscience watch an episode for which the writers will receive no residuals. I’m aware that, like you have done with all the other comments of this nature, you won’t approve this, but I still feel it’s worth pointing out.

  • Dylan says:

    Eugene – if you’re an aspiring director, you must have aspirations of working with writers…if you do, and you sympathize with their plight of not getting paid for their work, then you’ll understand why I won’t be using hulu until after the current troubles are resolved.

  • samm says:

    Interesting that my comment was approved, apparently, but the one I made later under a different username hasn’t been. Might that have something to do with the fact that it referred to the WGA strike and my unwillingness to view streaming video content that the writers arent’t paid for?

    Weak! I’m outta here, and I won’t be back even when the strike is over!

  • Rebecca says:

    Thank you for putting up Roswell! I loved that show. Will Hulu be putting up season 2 or 3?

  • jaydot says:

    This looks like it has the potential to be a great service, but seeing as the writers that put so much effort into these shows currently don’t get payed anything for re-runs on the Internet, I’m going to avoid it until the strike is resolved.

  • daedreams says:

    Thanks for Firefly, Futurama, and Roswell. I’ll be back to watch when the writers’ strike is over.

  • FollowMal says:

    This is wonderful and I’m all for my beloved show Firefly to be on here, but in light of the ongoing writer’s strike and the writer’s not making a dime off of this streaming content… I’m waiting til it’s settled to enjoy this. But I’ll be back when it’s fair. :)

  • Ruka says:

    While you picked a very shiny show to put up (and I won’t go into the order deal – it has already been covered by others) I’m sad to say that I’m not interested in this service until the writers are fairly paid for internet streaming video. I’m sure this will be an impressive service one day, it just doesn’t turn my crank knowing that the writers are currently shut out. After all, the writers are the reason you have these wonderful shows to post in the first place. I hope to return to Hulu one day with a warm fuzzy feeling about my favorite shows. Today is not that day. Best of luck in the future.

  • MelissaAnne says:

    Thank you, but I would rather wait until the writers can be fairly compensated for their work.

  • Eugene says:

    The episodes came in and were ordered by broadcast date which is our default, but we’ve updated the Firefly carousel to prefer the chronological ordering of events in the series. I agree, it’s easier to understand the series when viewed that way.

    Thanks for keeping us honest!

  • Tim says:

    You should pay the writers fairly.

  • ben says:

    So it appears that no videos are available to people who live in North Carolina. or am I not doing this right?

  • Lioness says:

    I look forward to using this once the writers strike is over and the writers get compensated fairly for showings like yours.
    Good idea to start with S-F too, although it might be a good idea to show the episodes in order!

  • Sunfire says:

    I am really happy to see Season 1 of Buffy and all of Firefly (albeit, out of order) on the web in a place where I can legally view them. I don’t mind a few ads. I see some early episodes of other shows I’ve heard good things about but didn’t catch when they were on the air. I tried the first few seconds of one of the clips– the video quality is nice.

    I really look forward to exploring the content here after a deal has been negotiated to pay the writers and other guilds fair residuals for internet content.

  • RhaegarTargaryen says:

    Online revenue for the originators (writers) of these works doesn’t compensate the writers at all. None. Zilch.

    2.5% is what the writers are asking for regarding this “new” medium, the fandangled internet. If the internet can’t really turn a profit…let me do the math here…2.5% of zero is…carry the zero…Zero.

    I’m supporting the writers (obviously). I’m not a writer, I’m a fan. I cannot enjoy this site until the writers get a fair deal.

  • QuoterGal says:

    I look forward to a time when writers are paid something more reasonable than a Big Nothing for their creations being streamed online. I believe that eventually sites such as Hulu and others will be the way we watch TV – hence Hulu underlines the timeliness of the Writers’ strike for this and other reasons at this time.

    Glad to see the beloved and prematurely cancelled Firefly on here, though, though the other posters are correct – this is not the pilot in the out-of-order Fox order, neither in the correct Joss Whedon order. A fantastic episode, to be sure – one of my favorites – just not a pilot in any sense of the word.

    Real fans support the writers.

  • Dee says:

    Are the writer’s getting paid for these? If not, I’m not interested.

  • Shannon says:

    Although I’m a huge Firefly fan, I won’t be watching the episodes on Hulu, as nice as it would be to do so when I’m not home with access to my DVDs. I believe in paying writers for their work, being one myself, and support the writers’ strike for a share of online-derived revenue.

    No doubt you won’t be publishing this comment, since you haven’t published anything else of a remotely critical nature, but know that the fans realize what you’re up to, and we support the writers’ right to be paid for their work.

    Stace (comment 18 Dec, 1:27 a.m.) — Joss Whedon would want the episodes published in the right order, yes, but not here, and not until the writers are fairly compensated. He is also a supporter of the strike.

  • Greg says:

    While any expose of Firefly to the masses is a good thing, the writers (aka Joss and friends) are getting no residuals from these showings and that’s the main point of the current writers strike.

  • Chris Dreyer says:

    This is great, but I wonder, will the writers receive anything for the broadcasting of the episodes here as they would if broadcast on cable or antenna? If not, why?

  • Kaele says:

    While I love that Firefly is so accessible to people on the internet now because of your service, this poses a dilemma. The WGA’s strike is all about issues like this and the writers of Firefly aren’t getting paid for their work being used this way.

    Many fans of Firefly won’t be viewing this for the time being as evidenced here: http://www.serenitystuff.com/2007/12/17/hulu-has-firefly-and-you-shouldnt-watch-it/

    At least until the writers’ strike has been resolved.

  • Andrew says:

    Hulu seems like a really great idea- free, full-length video content with reasonable ads sprinkled in. But, there is one problem I keep coming back to- payment for the content creators. We, the viewers, sit through ads, which bring in money for the networks (who wouldn’t be making content available otherwise), but not one penny of that goes to the directors, actors, or writers. I love the idea of Hulu, in fact, I think on-demand content is the future of distribution, but I can’t, in good conscience, use this service until this issue is worked out.

  • Tim says:

    This is truely sad. So many firefly fans gleefully watching this. I urge true firefly/serenity fans to not participate in this until the writers fairly get paid. You all are just supporting them stealing work from writers and not giving them their dues. I personally will not be watching anything on this site till they are given payments, cause without writers, we wouldn’t have these wonderful shows! I please ask any true fans to join in this protest, cause without the writers we’re all going to be watching reality shows, and that’s just…. sad….

  • Znachki says:

    Nice to see Firefly being given more suppoert. Of course as others have pointed out you don’t have the pilot episode (either if them) up for downloading. And speaking of downloading. As much as I’d like to, I won’t be downloading this until the writers get some compensation for online media. Zero for them, means zero for me!

  • Peach says:

    I’m excited that you guys are already correcting things. I’ll be happy to enjoy Hulu once the strike is over. :)

  • Joyce says:

    Since the writers don’t get residuals for viewings here, a key issue in the ongoing writers’ strike, isn’t watching (or posting, for that matter) episodes here the moral equivalent of crossing a picket line?
    I loves me my Firefly, but not that much.

  • Indrejue says:

    good job with the sci-fi now you just need to get Paramount pictures on board to release the most definitive original sci-fi series of all Star Trek.

  • Aside from the fact that this is not the pilot episode or even the first episode aired, I do respect the fact that “Firefly” is recognized as an attention-getting series.

    And once the writers’ strike is over and writers are fairly compensated for episodes placed online, I’ll be happy to come back and enjoy all the benefits of Hulu. Until then, I’m afraid I’ll have to pass. Thanks, though.

  • Kimmy says:

    Like the above commenters said, that is not the pilot. Get it right. And also, I will not be downloading ANYTHING from this website until the writers who created the work actually get paid for it.

  • sorcha says:

    Why are you advertising “Our Mrs Reynolds” as the Firefly pilot? Not even close. And as others have said, please put the episodes in the correct order, i.e. the order Joss Whedon wanted and the order on the DVDs, not the Fox order (which makes no sense).

    However, I will not be looking at this site again until the writers’ strike is satisfactorily concluded and a reasonable and fair deal reached. I do not buy goods made in sweatshops, I buy ethical and Fair Trade products wherever possible, and this method of broadcasting shows without payment to the writers seems to me both unethical and unfair.

  • Brown Coat says:

    As has already been mentioned, I should tell you that this is neither the pilot or the first episode aired. THe pilot is titled “Serenity” (not the movie) and is actually two parts (based on Tv times). THe first episode that Fox ever aired was “The Train Job”. I personally wont be watching these on here since I have the DVDs, but I suggest you air them in the order that they were meant to be viewed which is the order of the DVDs. THis particular episode is the 3rd episode on the 2nd disc!!!

  • samm says:

    In what universe is “Our Mrs Reynolds” the Firefly pilot? You’ve lost my interest immediately if you can’t even get that right!

    And as others have said, if you are going to put the Firefly eps up, please put them in the right order (not the aired order). Starting with the ACTUAL pilot.

  • HM says:

    Hey, what’s with saying “here’s the pilot of Firefly” and putting ‘Our Mrs Reynolds’. You off or something? You’d think with highly recommending something you’d know that the little fact of this NOT being the pilot, wouldn’t you? Might want to review your DVD, mate.

  • Chuck says:

    I just got my invitation today and must say great job! I’ve got an older 36″ CRT that I output to and it was fantastic. I’m excited about the new content and hope to see some old favs like Northern Exposure. Cheers!

  • Tor says:

    I’m very excited about this site. Crazed sequential viewing = bliss. I mean, Bender! I’m also psyched to see the Bionic Woman on here. TiVo is grand, Netflix is lovely, Amazon UnBoxed useful but pricey; iTunes great for its portability… but the convenience of this service when plugged in is hard to match. Keep up the great work.

    ps OMG you have the original Miami Vice, and Battlestars old and new. Hold me back or I’ll run a marathon down memory lane. What a joyous holiday season is coming up!

  • Stace says:

    For the love of all things right in the world, please publish the Firefly episodes in the “correct” order and not the airdate order. The series will make much more sense and it was the way that creator Joss Whedon intended it to be watched.

    I am stoked that they are being broadcast here, though.

  • Lee says:

    I heard about HULU over two months ago and signed up… missed am episode of Heroes when the power went out… I didn’t watch the rest of the season… The wait is horrible… Just want a tiny invite.

  • FireRosTicaH says:

    Thanks for Firefly and Roswell! I’m also looking forward to watching Tin Man and BattleStar Gallactica!

    Keep up the great work!

  • Hardcopi says:

    I am so glad you posted Firefly, but… that isn’t the pilot. Not even the first episode aired. The first episode aired was The Train Job, but they were aired out of order anyway. :) Not that any of this is stopping me from watching them gleefully. :)

  • honkerdown says:

    Awesome! I am huge Firefly fan, but I notice the episodes are in “Fox” order and not Whedon order. The series makes much more sense when aired in Whedon order. Keep up the great work!.


  • John says:

    I am really excited about this. Now if you all would just go ahead and allow me in the beta, I would be a whole lot more excited.

  • Robbace says:

    Wow I’m real glad futurama is making an appearance! Just to let you know I was a Netflix subscriber mainly for their “Watch Now” service. I found my self mainly watching the TV shows available being I never have time for movies any more. When I got the invite to Hulu a while ago and saw all that was on here I canceled Netflix. I really enjoy your site. Thanks.

  • vikster says:

    I was very excited about hulu when they opened up for beta testing. NOW, I’m utterly disappointed..why? because you’ve restricted the access to videos with USA. The fight between TV networks and download sites will always be won by downloaders unless shows are internationally available. e.g. I watch Heroes, Prison Break, Scrubs etc but I can’t wait for 1 year to get my hands on legal stuff.. SO what do I do…yea u gessed it..hundreds of vidoe sharing sites and the good ol’ bit torrent..so networks..suck it