We were informed today by a reader that in his attempt to binge-watch the recently concluded series, Just Roll With It, he could not find the Live Halloween special. After doing some research we can confirm that the silly and exciting live special from 2019 titled “Just Roll With It: You Decide LIVE!” is not streamable anywhere and did not get added with season 1.
In other words, Disney left it in the vault. Forever. Why? The likely reason is the same as always (and BOY, is it getting tiring). There is a musical performance. Okay, we’re gonna say it.
STOP putting musical performances in your TV specials. Just stop.
And if you insist, then license them properly so that the songs can be featured in perpetuity!
And if that’s too much to ask then please use Vegas Pro or Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere and cut the 3-minute musical performance out of the episode. Upload the rest. For the past decade, SNL has been removing musical performances from the streams of their episodes on Hulu or NBC.com or Peacock to get around the musical rights issues associated with streaming things in perpetuity. This allows a proper library archive to exist instead of a series disappearing forever after airing.
Disney+, which was promoted as “all your favorites in one place,” forgot to mention that people looking to relive holiday specials would be out of luck. It’s super lame. Since launch nearly every special has been removed globally within 1 year. The Disney Channel holiday specials are important parts of history as they capture the “stars of the moment.”
For example, the aforementioned Just Roll With It special featured the following guest stars – all of whom are still on Disney Channel to this day: Raven-Symone, Kylie Cantrall, Isaac Ryan Brown, Ruth Righi, and (in Coop & Cami re-runs) Ruby Rose Turner.
There are cheesy comedy sketches contained within these annual specials and energetic hosting by actors like Meg Donnelly in Hall of Villains. Heck, she even does a Benny Hill / Scooby Doo inspired run through a hallway of doors.
Further complicating this situation is that YouTube is actually streaming 2 Disney Channel Halloween specials (we’ll include links to them at the end). Even more maddening? Disney Channel’s 2020 special “Holiday House Party” streamed on Disney+ for a few months last year before getting removed in the USA, but to this day it is streaming internationally. We strongly suspect it will be removed at the “1 year” mark like most specials. Yet it begs the question, why did it get pulled in the USA? It feels to many like a mistake that just never got fixed.
We ask again – why? Why are these titles not being properly licensed or edited to circumvent issues? Of course the preference is to upload them in full, but most people would rather a brief notice that the special has been edited to flash at the beginning and then for the rest of the special to air with the few offending minutes removed.
We don’t get it. Hallowstream is coming and subscribers continue to be disappointed by the considerable amount of “Halloween” films that Disney is apparently unable to license. We covered 8 movies and 1 Mickey Mouse special here and here. It’s rough having so many classics unavailable year-to-year. So it’s super depressing when even the “new” or “recent” specials aren’t streaming or can’t stick around.
How You Can Help
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- Submit feedback
Today, we’re asking all Disney+ subscribers or people who read this and are seeking any “missing” content to join us in solidarity and submit feedback requests for these missing titles. Send a message that you want a complete Disney+ library, not bits and pieces from series. Send a message that when Halloween rolls around you want to relive the specials each year instead of watching them on Disney Channel and then never seeing them again or having to view them on… YouTube.
We close this article with OFFICIAL links to 2 of the missing specials which have been streaming on YouTube. Apparently licensing to YouTube (with ads) is permitted.
ZOMBIES Halloween Cast Party (Halloween 2018 Special)
Hall of Villains (Halloween 2019 Special)
Are you disappointed about the missing specials? Are there any we didn’t mention that you would like to see? It feels like this couldn’t have just started recently, there must be older ones too, right? Let us know in the comments or a tweet!
Drew Ryan is a film, TV, and Disney geek. He has degrees in English, Student Personnel Administration, and Library & Information Science from Lawrence University, Concordia University-Wisconsin, and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Interested in the minutia and licensing of streaming service content, he is always publishing lists, suggestions, and advocating for Disney’s missing library to be added to Disney+. Drew subscribes to Disney+, Hulu, Netflix, HBO Max, and Paramount+. You can find him waxing nostalgic over classic Disney Channel or geeking out over Marvel, CW shows, & Disney on Twitter.