I would cancel Disney Plus this month — here's why

Disney Plus app on a television
(Image credit: Disney Plus)

December 2023 is peak holiday shopping time, which means you're probably looking to stretch every dollar to buy all the gifts on your list. Maybe that means cutting back on a streaming service this month.

It's easy to save money on streaming by getting rid of one service for a short time. You can just re-subscribe later when your favorite show returns or you want to see a hot new movie. 

For December 2023, I would cancel Disney Plus. It's one of our picks for best streaming services and a lot of families depend on it. But if your household can get by without it, cancellation could be worth it. The December lineup is kind of a desert. While a few titles are interesting, just catch up on them later. Here's why I think you should consider canceling Disney this month.

No Marvel or Star Wars projects in sight – just Doctor Who

Catherine Tate and David Tennant in the poster for Doctor Who: Star Beast

(Image credit: Disney Plus)

Adult subscribers of Disney Plus may understandably be disappointed by Disney Plus' December lineup, as it's notably missing major releases from the service's two biggest franchises: Marvel and Star Wars.

Loki season 2 went out on a high note in mid-November, but didn't pave the way for another MCU show. The last live-action Star Wars series was Ahsoka in early fall.

December 2023 features season 2 of Marvel Studios' What If ...?, the animated anthology that explores alternate timelines in the multiverse. While it's generated positive reviews from critics and fans, interest in What If ...? isn't at the level of Hawkeye, which aired last December.

There's nothing Star Wars-related, not even an animated holiday special. 

As far as programming geared toward adults, two more Doctor Who 60th anniversary specials arrive this month: "Wild Blue Yonder” on Dec. 2 and "The Giggle” on Dec. 9.  They'll be followed by the annual Doctor Who Holiday Special: The Church on Ruby Road on Dec. 25.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians is the only big draw

The most high-profile title on the December 2023 Disney Plus schedule is Percy Jackson and the Olympians, a series adaptation of Rick Riordan’s bestselling books series (which were previously turned into two movies). 

The protagonist is Percy Jackson (Walker Scobell), a 12-year-old boy who discovers he’s the son of Poseidon and, thus, a modern demigod. As he’s coming to terms with his newly awakened divine power, Zeus (the late Lance Reddick) accuses Percy of stealing the master lightning bolt. Percy and his friends — Athena’s daughter Annabeth (Leah Sava Jeffries) and the satyr Grover (Aryan Simhadri) — embark on a quest to find it and restore order to Olympus.

Some adults may enjoy Percy Jackson and the Olympians, but it's clearly geared toward a YA audience. Personally, I could skip it altogether or check it out when I re-subscribe to Disney Plus down the road. 

Disney Plus is not the top holiday movie destination

Macaulay Culkin as Kevin, is hung up on a door while the Wet Bandits (played by Daniel Stern and Joe Pesci) stare at him, in Home Alone

(Image credit: TCD/Prod.DB / Alamy Stock Photo)

December is prime viewing time for holiday movies. However, if you want to cozy with one, Disney Plus is surprisingly not the best place to look. 

Sure, it's the exclusive home to the Home Alone franchise, Mickey's Christmas Carol, Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas and The Santa Clause movies. But the best Christmas movies are mostly found elsewhere.

Miracle on 34th Street is also on Hulu and Prime Video. A Christmas Story is on Max, while It's a Wonderful Life is on Prime Video. Elf can be found on Max or Hulu. Love Actually is on Netflix. Meanwhile, the beloved holiday special A Charlie Brown Christmas is streaming on Apple TV Plus. And if you think Die Hard is a Christmas movie, you can find it on Hulu.

Look, if you have kids who will scream their heads off if they can't watch Frozen or Encanto for the billionth time, getting rid of Disney Plus is not an option. Think of it as a gift of peace and quiet to yourself. But if you can get away with it, cancel Disney Plus this month and save a little money for a holiday treat.

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Kelly Woo
Streaming Editor

Kelly is the streaming channel editor for Tom’s Guide, so basically, she watches TV for a living. Previously, she was a freelance entertainment writer for Yahoo, Vulture, TV Guide and other outlets. When she’s not watching TV and movies for work, she’s watching them for fun, seeing live music, writing songs, knitting and gardening.

  • DrPlanarian
    It seems to me it would be an odd choice to cancel Disney+ at this time given that Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny debuts on it today (and Christmas Time is the time for children, programming for whom Disney truly excels).