It's a strange thing in recent years that following the behind-the-scenes craziness and
mixed-disastrous results of modern franchises is far more interesting and entertaining than anything in the movies and shows themselves.
Now that the fandoms, including those who enjoy the new chapters of beloved franchises, hate them, or are somewhere in between, have seen the process play out several times in the past five or six years, I believe most of the process can be easily understood, with a few points that are a complete mystery (at least to me).
So whether it's Star Wars, Ghostbusters, Star Trek, Marvel, DC, He-Man, Terminator, or whatever else it may be, here is the way it plays out from what I've seen:
And a quick but sincere caveat here - if you like any of these properties' new iterations or more modern chapters, more power to you. I have no issue with anyone liking what they like. Life is short! Enjoy! - and feel free to skip this Newspost if you don't want the cynicism.
So, the process:
1. A studio or some kind of corporate entity wants to make money.
2. They realize they own - or could purchase - a beloved entertainment product that
has a dedicated fanbase and was very successful.
3. To minimize the risk and maximize the likely profit, resurrecting, updating, or
sequel-izing this recognizable brand. The thinking is that the old fans
will be thrilled and come to see it, and a whole new group of other fans could be
introduced to it as well.
4. Announce the return of the beloved thing, say it's “for the fans”, and get to work
5. Somehow, at this point, something goes wrong. This is the big question mark. What
happens in these executives' offices and writer's rooms? Somehow, it goes off track.
6. Produce and release the new thing, but not before early leaks and interviews have
revealed to the most interested audiences that the thing is
DIFFERENT now. The announcement from #4, that this is “for the fans” is now
7. Battle with fans via the Internet and media. The outrage and backlash from fans who
feel betrayed are met with accusations of ‘sexist, racist and toxic’ fandoms. This
is egged on by media who are either in the pocket of the studios, or want to curry
favor, and also by fan pundits who are making careers channeling the anger of fans
into videos. Because of the nature of the Internet and modern online culture, the
arguments are extreme and possibly blown out of proportion in one way or another.
8. The Thing, the thing that was supposed to be a sure thing, is disappointing in
This basic process has been repeated multiple times now, and there have been many guesses as to
how and why this is happening. I'm not totally sure myself, though I follow it all with great interest.
For at least some of these big, formerly glorious franchises, things are beginning to change, I believe. We'll
I do think, and have been thinking for awhile now, that this time is a HUGE opportunity for independent creators to make their own Things and find an audience. The big properties are being picked clean - and the welllspring of NEW Things….is us!
Have a Good one,
Banes at 12:00AM, Aug. 19, 2021
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