I won’t say that things couldn’t be worse for the American entertainment industry. They could. Civilization hasn’t genuinely fallen apart. There is a very faint light at the end of the tunnel. Their services can be sold again once the great lock-down is over. But it’s very rough going for now.
When this first broke, the comic book shops were pathetically silly enough to beg Disney and AT&T for a bailout. That was never going to happen because those guys ultimately view comics publishing as little more than a hobby.
Some of the shop owners, particularly the ones in California, became very salty pork chops when they were informed that DC comics was shipping even if they weren’t open. These shop owners were incensed that they would be left behind. And while I do have some strong sympathy for blue-collar businesses that are going under because of this crisis. I can’t work up much sympathy for the guys that were saying, that the people who buy Arkhaven, Alterna and Cyber-Frog are NOT OUR CUSTOMERS.
They absolutely were your customers and you pissed them away, while making no effort at all to future proof yourselves.
DC has no choice but to try and move forward. Their corporate overlord, AT&T lost $2 BILLION this quarter despite being up to their eyes in internet, streaming, and (duh) telecommunications. What cost them that two large was their idled entertainment subsidiary. Unlike Disney they can see the big picture, they can see the forest for the trees and which trees need to be cut. They are very unapologetically talking about ending the theatrical distribution of their movies. So you can imagine just how much they care about comics publishing. DC wouldn’t be riding roughshod over the shops unless they knew they were under the threat of the ax.
Marvel for its part hasn’t been doing any of that, they’ve just been ordering pencils down on various projects. Apparently, Mickey the Great and Terrible is so chaotic at the moment that he just can’t concentrate on the small stuff.
A couple of days ago I posted a few comments about this groaner of a new Star Wars series that had just been announced and at the time I thought it had been done a little oddly. But I figured, well, the marketing guys have all been furloughed, so it makes sense that they wouldn’t be following their usual practices.
I had said that “Nobody at the top is in a position to clean house at Lucasfilm and Kennedy knows it. So she is doing what she has done before. Make an announcement that is likely to have popular support with the press and then try to run with it, if it gets any traction at all. Remember the Boba Fett movie? Or the Lando movie?”
Possibly, I was wrong about nobody at the top being in “a position to clean house.”
Yesterday the WDWMagic forums were blowing up. For those who don’t know, WDWM is a forum dedicated to Disney World where actual cast members are known to hang out and talk about things. And what they wanted to know yesterday was “why are the Bobs so pissed off at Lucasfilm today?”
Allegedly both Bob Iger and Bob Chapek were on a tear about Lucasfilm and nobody was sure why. A number of high-level meetings were suddenly being scheduled. The answer, allegedly, was the very, very unauthorized leak of a Star Wars project being headed by Lesley Headland.
My suspicion is that this story idea was getting kicked around in happier times, back in February but was now being axed. If there is one thing the SJWs have learned, is that it’s easy to use the Woke tail, to wag the rest of a Liberal dog. Get the press on your side and a Lefty boss is bound to cave and let you have your project. And hey, if you have a hit, you are a hero and all is forgiven. If it fails you are still a hero for having pushed hard Left.
The problem is that this time, survival is on the line. Even if Disney opens back up in July, they will probably be a decade recovering from this. It’s possible that the only thing that will be open at Disney World for a while is the Magic Kingdom. Most of the employees have been furloughed and who knows how many are coming back? A lot of guaranteed moneymakers are going to have to be canceled. And this ditz at Lucasfilm decides to ramrod a pet project of hers when the company is about to fall down and go boom?
Next week might be a very interesting one at Lucasfilm.