Oh Boy... Disney Buys Most Of 21st Century Fox: Here’s The Breakdown.
Mickey’s greedy gloved claws have snatched most of 21st Century Fox’s entertainment assets, and even for the most fanatic of geeks, this isn’t a good thing.
Who cut the cheese?
Something has run afoul in Walt Disney World, and I don’t mean the Floridian theme parks.
This “world”, full of cotton-candy content, mass-produced plastic crowns, desaturated news, and the promise of family magic with a hefty price-tag, is ruled by an enormous, animatronic, robocop Mickey Mouse, who eerily watches over all in the comfort of their homes (and, most of the time, they remain blissfully unaware).
Within the enclaves of this shiny metal behemoth overlord, with thousands of offices dedicated to software techs, stations, and screens, sits the throne of Sir CEO Bob Iger, smugly swallowing more and more production companies into the Mouse Machine until he dominates them all.
And, by extension, dominates us all.
the year is 2025. disney has just released alien vs predator vs marvel vs star wars. disneyland is an open air maximum security prison. there is only one channel where propagandized news is read by the disembodied voice of goofy. pic.twitter.com/ePGldUpoJj
— Peтer Ɓ. Pαrĸer (@Spider_Man_616) December 14, 2017
Oh Boy! I guess Tinkerbell, Jiminy Cricket, and The Fairy Godmother pulled out their pocket change, a humble sum of $52.4The r billion, and let their dear friend Mickey pick up Fox Studios and devour it whole.
Or, at least it’s on the menu. The potential buyout was confirmed Thursday, December 14th, but they still need to go through the nitty-gritty of the deal. Because of Disney’s established overarching power over the entertainment industry, it is likely to pass through.
The acquisition of 21st Century Fox means that Disney will own: all of Fox’s film studios, Fox’s television studio, FX Networks, National Geographic, Sky television studio (founded by Rupert Murdoch), and even Hulu (which Fox has a sizeable stake in).
Here’s some of what Disney already owns that doesn’t explicitly have its name (e.g. Walt Disney Pictures, Disneynature, DisneyToon Studios, etc), and in case you weren’t aware, it’s a lot and most of what you’ve been watching on your couch potato days: Lucasfilm, Marvel Studios, Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Records, Buena Vista Theatrical, The Muppets Studio, ABC, ESPN, A&E Networks, Lifetime Entertainment Services, Pixar Animation Studios.
That list doesn’t even begin to include all of what Mickey’s greedy gloved claws contain on a global-scale, which juggles tourist destinations, resorts, stores, and an airline, among other ventures.
Currently, Disney is the second in-command in worldwide content monopolization. Comcast is still the leader in terms of revenue, but now that Disney will be owning 21st Century Fox, the Queen Elizabeth of media conglomerates may be beheaded by a squeaky and adorable rodent.
“I hope we never lose sight of one thing- that it was all started by a mouse.” - Walt Disney
Some insular geeks are amped about this merger. Choosing to ignore the detrimental implications, they’ve replaced their hearts with their heads for…
THE FANTASTIC FOUR!
Geeks: We want all our Marvel toys in one place!
Disney: Okay. We'll buy them from Fox.
Disney: In fact, we'll just buy all their movie and TV assets.
Disney: We'll charge theaters more to show all the movies, raising ticket prices.
Geeks: oh no
— Nash - Anbay ethay Azisnay (@Nash076) December 14, 2017
Let’s keep journalism transparent: you should know that the writer of this article is actually a massive Disney freak. It legitimately pains me to look at this company, which has shaped my childhood and my adulthood in transformative and beautiful ways, through an objective lens.
The ownership of all of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including its edgier heroes, is a logical move, and one that will only strengthen the chart-topping franchise. Up until the 2017 release of Logan film, Fox’s MCU was practically yelling mayday for the wildly popular Disney MCU’s salvation.
And, you know, Anastasia finally becoming a Disney princess (after being mistaken for one since 1997), is an absolute delight for all of us ‘90s Babies.
Me: The Disney buyout of 21st Century Fox is a chilling image of giant media corporations slowly fusing together into an omnipotent hydra of capitalism.
Also me: Anastasia is a Disney Princess now!!! pic.twitter.com/ZJSDn8qtMU
— Matt Kersey (@katmersey) December 14, 2017
But, no matter how you frame it, media consolidation is downright terrifying.
21st Century Fox clamped in this death trap will have adverse political, economic, artistic, and social effects.
Not only will this certainly put pressure on producers, writers, and animators to make their content more palatable for family-friendly viewing (can you imagine a PG version of Archer or It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia?), this also means less checks on Disney, and less opportunity for original, fringe substance matter, which often broke barriers in terms of providing satire and sharp commentary on current states of affairs through fiction, comedy, drama, and sci-fi.
Although The Justice Department under President Trump’s command sued the mega-fusion between AT&T and Time Warner (a whopping $103.5 billion dollar amalgamation) to try to block it, pundits have speculated that Trump’s special relationship with Rupert Murdoch will make this combination plausible, even though antitrust regulators should block a horizontal merger of this magnitude, or at least inspect it with caution.
The process is expected to take eighteen months. Only time will tell what else Bob Iger hopes to seize in the name of making Disney’s entertainment “world” the happiest (and only) place on Earth.
[The year 2030, Aliens arrive]
Humans: Welcome to planet Disney.
— Shayne Topp (@supershayne) December 14, 2017