In the race to be the superior streaming service, there are sacrifices to be made. In this case, it could bring comic book king DC Comics to their knees.
The news that Warner Bros. releasing their movies on HBO Max is part of the plan to dismantle Time Warner in an attempt to combat Netflix and their success. AT&T, the parent company of many oligopolies such as HBO Max, Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Comics, and DC Entertainment, rests its finger on the trigger and scouts out their next move regarding franchises' fates.
There are claims that AT&T may potentially shed WarnerMedia and sell the property. There are employees that are optimistic that the marriage between AT&T, WarnerMedia, and HBO Max will triumph, but the optimism butts head with those who believe that AT&T will dispossess WarnerMedia for the sake of a surge in stocks.
AT&T may also be considering selling off DC Comics, as artist Ethan Van Sciver had touched on the reality of this time and time again. Van Sciver has said while AT&T may either close down or sell DC Comics, the characters - at least the popular ones such as Batman and Superman - will likely carry on in some form if the company is not sold off completely. Select popular characters will be licensed to other companies for print publishing, while AT&T still retains the rights to the movie, television, and video gaming properties in order to supplement their cash flow.
A number of changes at DC Comics have resulted in a domino effect impacting the comic book company's demise, starting with chaos challenging those who sit at the top, and with Jim Lee said to be leaving altogether, the company is rumored to close by mid-2021.
"Comic books themselves have fallen into the hands of extremely irresponsible people in editorial and in publishing who have taken comics and turned them from a good, fun pastime, escapist fantasy into identity, political, evil, poisonous pamphlets that insult their own readers," Van Sciver said on his ComicsArtistPro Secrets YouTube channel. "AT&T fired a big portion of their editorial staff in April and just this week they fired the rest of them, essentially. We understand from sources at this point that there are no editors at DC Comics anymore. There are the people who just used to get coffee, interns, people who aren't making very much, people who are going to be running the company until it ends."