Last week, Warner Bros. Discovery announced that it is shutting down the CNN+ streaming service after only one month, the first major policy move by the newly merged corporation and an apparent foreshadowing of its desire to make its transition into one big company as violent as possible. On that note, Variety is now reporting that Warner Bros. Discovery has decided to completely stop developing new scripted shows for both TNT and TBS, seemingly putting their existing scripted shows in a precarious position. What does it tell you about the future of Snowpiercer, for example, if the network it’s on is getting out of the “original series” business?
For now, Variety says it’s “apparently status quo” for the existing shows at TNT and TBS, which include the aforementioned Snowpiercer and the soon-to-be-ending Animal Kingdom at the former and The Last OG, Miracle Workers, Chad, and American Dad! at the latter (the fact that we’re talking about only six shows, not all of which would’ve survived 2022 anyway, says a lot about how things have been going at these networks even before the merger).
Still, Snowpiercer has been chugging along as a good hit for TNT for several years and American Dad! has gradually become one of the greatest animated comedies of all time, so it would be a shame to lose good existing shows over this new-ish company’s need to immediately start cutting costs. The optimistic angle on all of this is that Variety says WBD leadership is “evaluating the strategy” for these networks going forward, so there is a chance it will eventually go back to treating them as more than just a dumping ground for wrestling, basketball, and decades-old comedy movies.
In other worrying news out of WBD headquarters, the company is forcing employees to return to working in their respective offices with only a week’s notice, which just seems cruel. To recap the past week: WBD has killed a streaming service, suspended production of new original shows at two networks, and needlessly restricted its employees’ ability to do remote work, which has “brought stress and anxiety” according to Deadline. So it seems like the new company isn’t exactly starting on a particularly strong foot.