The Warner Bros. merger. Discovery has so far been a slow-motion train wreck. Earlier in the week, a variety of shows, including anime series like infinite train and summer camp island, were suddenly snatch from HBO Max, and the reaction so far has been overwhelmingly negative. Although shows like Island and Victor and Valentino will have their new seasons airing on Cartoon Network, the abruptness with which these shows were axed left a bad taste in the mouths of creators and fans look alike.
Saturday, infinite train designer Owen Dennis took to Sub-stack to discuss his feelings about it and how things were going supposed shake. According to him and those he contacted, the plan was to remove the affected shows next week, to give the powers that be time to notify the show’s creators and employees of the change. Dennis further states that Discovery simply ignored Cartoon Network’s insistence on being transparent. “Cartoon Network warned them not to do this because it would hurt creator and talent relationships, but they clearly don’t care what it looks like publicly, let alone what we think of it,” said he wrote.
Like everyone else, Dennis presumes the reasons for this boil down to money and non-payment of residuals from artists and animators. Paying for the show isn’t complete without ongoing residuals, he added, that go to the animation union to pay for health care, which can no longer happen because those residuals have ceased. Also, the residual music and vocals will soon stop, and if it all comes down to to save moneyDennis speculated that the money Discovery is trying to save isn’t enough to justify the current PR crisis.
Later in his blog, Dennis admits that he just doesn’t know why all the traces of infinite train or other shows have been deleted from social media or YouTube accounts. (Those who could potentially hold the answers may have just been blunt fired following the merger.) He’s also unsure of the metrics used to justify why the various HBO Max shows and movies were removed. The only thing he’s sure of is that it’s all pretty shitty.
“I think the way Discovery has gone about this is incredibly unprofessional, rude and just plain slimy. I think most everyone who does anything feels like that… What’s the point to do something, to spend years working on it, to spend nights and weekends doing their terrible grades, losing sleep and not seeing our families, if it’s just going to be taken away and shot in the court? It’s incredibly disheartening and they certainly won’t get their best work from whoever decides to stay. We work at the intersection of art and commerce, but those in charge have clearly forgotten that there is no will be no commerce without art.
Dennis is confident the show will eventually return to HBO Max, and added that it’s still available on services like iTunes and Amazon Prime. Talking about the show will ensure its chances of ending up on another platform, he said, and indicated that watching it wherever it ends will draw more attention to the series as it continues. is working to make sure that happens on his side. At the same time, he also acknowledged that hacking can be a valid course of action in times like these.
If someone chose to hack, Dennis expressed hope that it would be done for the right reasons, i.e. for the sake of preservation which clearly is not of interest to corporations. justify it a posteriori,” he advised. His other thoughts are below.
“The best known art is, for the most part, owned by about five gigantic multinational corporations. This means that they also own our culture. If you own our culture, then you also own our history and our access to it. Should a handful of corporations own it, let alone have the monopoly they currently have? to have access to my own culture, can I watch a copy that doesn’t send them money, create art scarcity, and don’t score metrics for certain algorithms?
Only you can answer that for yourself.
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