For the better part of a year, it was looking like a done deal: Disney was buying the majority of 20th Century Fox. But last month, Comcast threw its hat in the ring, their $65 billion offer the Professor X standing between Wolverine and Captain America, preventing the two from locking horns. Now? Not so much.
Variety reports the telecom giant and provider of generally crappy cable and internet services (seriously, does anyone have a positive story about their Comcast subscription?) has withdrawn from the bidding war with Disney over 20th Century Fox, clearing the way for a merger to go through between the two entertainment giants. If finalized, the $71.3 billion deal will see Disney assume control of a majority of Fox holdings, including “the FX and Nat Geo cable networks, the 20th Century Fox film studio, and Fox’s stake in the video-streaming site Hulu.”
Obviously, Comcast isn’t going to go quietly into that good night of continuing a virtual monopoly over cable and internet options in many areas of the country. The company is instead focusing on plotting a takeover of European satellite TV provider Sky for $34 billion—ironically, the same company that was previously being bid on for $32.5 billion by 20th Century Fox. Yes, as detailed in the 1998 Fugazi song “Five Corporations,” most entertainment industry financial news is simply a matter of reshuffling the cards in the same few decks, the life and death of businesses and studios a mere adjustment of a few digits in the ledgers of these interchangeable companies. Still, now the X-Men get to fight the Avengers, and that’s something, right? We’ll take whatever small comforts we can get with the increasing homogenization and Disneyfied stranglehold on American entertainment options.