Analog Trip: A YouTube Original

A new travel documentary featuring K-pop boy bands Super Junior and TVXQ! is coming to YouTube Originals.

The travel doc will debut on October 9th with twelve episodes of the boys. Analog Trip in Indonesia will feature at least two members of TVXQ! and four members of Super Junior. The six members will backpack across Indonesia for wild experiences.

U-Know Yunho, Max Changmin, Leeteuk, Shindong, Eunhyuk, and Donghae star in the series.

The guys will spend the series traveling and reflecting on their careers together. Both groups were huge in the K-pop scene in the early 2000s and had multiple hits.

The first episode will premiere on the SMTOWN YouTube channel. It will be available for free to everyone with ads. New episodes will drop each week on Wednesday after the premiere for non-subscribers. YouTube Premium subscribers can see all twelve episodes immediately after the series premiere.

YouTube Premium is currently available in 63 countries. The streaming giant is working tirelessly to make itself relevant, with original content. But so many changes to the program have made the strategy muddled. YouTube worked on minimizing scripted shows and seems to be trying to take on Netflix with original programming.

In classic Google/YouTube fashion, the direction is all zigzags and false starts.  It’s anyone’s guess how this fits into a bigger strategic picture — or if a cohesive strategy exists.

The travel doc isn’t the first music-inspired YouTube Original, either. Several other music specials include a Justin Bieber project, Lollapalooza coverage, and Maluma’s ‘Lo Que Era, Lo Que Soy, Lo Que Seré.’

YouTube’s attempts to make itself a paid destination for content have mostly failed so far.

A study from the IFPI found that most people went to YouTube to avoid paying for content. 35% of respondents said they preferred YouTube to a paid audio subscription. That’s probably true for Netflix and other video streaming services, too. It doesn’t help that YouTube Premium’s content strategy has been all over the place. The confusing tiers, competing services, and weird Originals just aren’t that enticing to the average user.