Who Will Keeper Test the Keepers?
Assessing Hollywood leadership in a time of cataclysm (with one surprising standout)
For a doomsayer like myself (or “Disaster Queen” as Bruce Vilanch described my perspective), these should be the best of times. Everywhere you turn you’ve got showers of plummeting valuations, talk of mass cutbacks, studios tail-spinning in confusion, CEOs drowning beneath the tides of the culture war. For a congenital Cassandra, it's an embarrassment of riches.
Even so, I just can't escape the feeling that the industry's bubble of denial and happy talk still hasn't been pierced.
For all the evidence that the sky is falling and that a reckoning is at hand, people seem in a pretty blasé mood about all this, with lots of assurances of, “Don't worry, Netflix will be fine.”
Let's put it another way — for most of the last decade, just about the entire industry threw away its financial model to chase a spending war based on magical thinking. For those who didn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater, their shareholders were certainly plotting to smother the sleeping infant with a pillow, and the entire financial proposition of the industry was pegged to one metric: quarterly subscription numbers, which were expected to go up in perpetuity until every atom of sentient life in the galaxy was a paid subscriber. And then, onto selling subs in the multiverse!
That’s become the entire business, investment-wise, and when that comes crashing to earth, you don't get to just shrug that off and walk away with a simple, oops, my bad! There's a price to be paid.