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It comes off something like a student fantasy of playful politics. Hayden expends more energy trying to look suave and knowing than funny.

For Hulu and Netflix, the shows don’t need to be masterpieces, just conversation-starters _ drops of newness to freshen up their extensive libraries and garner media coverage in articles like this one. Neither “Lilyhammer” nor “Battleground” is good enough to send anyone rushing to sign up for a subscription. (Netflix’s streaming service is $7.99 a month, as is Hulu Plus.)

But in the gathering convergence of TV and Internet viewing, these shows represent an early salvo.

Netflix’s most anticipated shows _ a David Fincher-produced adaptation of the British series “House of Cards” and new episodes of the cult comedy “Arrested Development” _ are due later this year and in 2013. Hulu has plans for more original programming, including a documentary series from Richard Linklater (“Dazed and Confused”).

Google Inc.’s YouTube is in the midst of rolling out more than 100 niche-oriented “channels” on its video platform. Yahoo will later this year release a sci-fi, animated series produced by Tom Hanks.

And for the first time ever, even the Super Bowl was streamed online. More than 2.1 million viewers watched the game on either or

“Lilyhammer” and “Battleground” are, surely enough, just a beginning.


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