Let’s consider this the ultimate name-dropping.
HBO has just sent a reminder that it’s super-streamer, HBO Max (shown here with “Game of Thromes,” will arrive May 27. That brought my knee-jerk reaction:
What terrible timing, I figured. Disney+ has grabbed more than 50 million subscribers during this stay-at-home phase. Max will arrive just as we’re finally leaving home and strolling into the sunshine.
Will yet another super-streamer succeed? As the HBO name-droppers put it: “Ross, Rachel, Penny, Sheldon, Rick, Morty, Princess Bubblegum, Big Pussy, Mr. Big, Chandler Bing, Elmer Fudd, Diana Prince, Jon Snow, Dorothy … Bruce Wayne and (more) certainly think so.”
For $15 a month, they’ve assembled lots of pieces, most of them now owned by Warner Brothers.
There are the HBO shows – “Game of Thrones,” “Sopranos,” “Sex and the City,” etc. And the shows Ted Turner collected, from classic movies (“Casablanca,” “Wizard of Oz”) to Hanna-Barbera and Loony Tune cartoons. There are the DC comics characters, from movies (“Joker,” “Wonder Woman”) to TV series (“Doom Patrol,” “Batwoman”).
There are shows clearly aimed at kids (“Sesame Street”), plus animation aimed at grown-ups, from “Rick and Morty” to anime films.
Much of that involves dealmaking. Until recently, any show on the CW network went to Netflix. That changed with shows debuting this season (led by “Batwoman” and “Katy Keene”); they go to the Max.
One deal involves a Japanese animation studio. Another involves BBC shows past (“Doctor Who,” “Luther”) and future. Also, Max grabbed my all-tiime non-Seinfeld favorites, “Friends” and “The Big Bang Theory.”
There will also be new shows, ranging from sci-fi to a musical series, “Grease: Rydell High.”
It’s an impressive collection that could grab us … unless, of course, we’re too busy re-emerging into the near-summer sunshine.