Movies And Shows Are Getting Pulled From Streaming (Because Streaming Sucks)

It’s the Rapture for Disney and HBO content.
Movies And Shows Are Getting Pulled From Streaming (Because Streaming Sucks)

Since the head of HBO Max is no longer a superpowered dog distributing magical remote controls throughout the world, the folks in charge have apparently decided to cultivate a new image as the streaming service that scraps highly-anticipated movies willy-nilly and will happily gut its own library for tax purposes. Yeah, while they will still host every single goddamn episode of Arli$$, HBO Max has now excised 68 titles, including movies like The Witches and shows like The Not-Too-Late Show with Elmo – yeah, this company is so cut-throat they’ll literally cancel friggin’ Elmo.

In addition to HBO’s purge, Disney+ just quietly removed Avatar from their library, presumably in an attempt to juice up business for next month’s theatrical re-release of the original film. Which is bad news for anyone who wanted to watch the movie at home without having to shell out for a ticket or be judged by all the moviegoers heading into other, less-stupid movies.

This is yet another example of why we shouldn’t have been so quick to abandon physical media, dammit; now we’ve given these companies even more power to restrict the availability of their libraries. Like, even before the internet existed, Disney was weirdly controlling with their movies, creating the “Disney Vault” – a concept that allowed them to arbitrarily remove films from circulation, making them unavailable for long stretches of time purely to create a false sense of scarcity for consumers and drive demand for future theatrical re-releases. 

So, given this history, it seems unlikely that Avatar will be the last time they yank a title for business purposes. Even Gravity Falls creator Alex Hirsch expressed concern that his show could be withdrawn from circulation and placed in the vault along with Song of the South and the skeletons of Walt’s enemies.

And when it comes to the HBO mess, most of those shows aren’t streaming elsewhere or available at all on DVD or Blu-Ray – leaving fans literally no option to watch them ever again … legally, at least.

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Thumbnail: 20th Century Studios

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