A daily newsletter guide to what is happening on your screens - TV, streaming, movies, games, VR, AR
Dan Barrett is an industry commentator & TV critic. He does radio - 4BC & ABC GC and co-hosts the Screen Watching podcast. He's a former Mediaweek deputy editor and content creator for SBS.
All your Game of Thrones news! Curb set for 2020! Archer set for 1999!
Always Be Watching is curated by Dan Barrett from today's home office in Kanazawa, Japan.
The Always Be Watching groundhog yesterday poked its head out of its burrow to watch Game of Thrones and declared that there will be another 5 weeks of Game of Thrones this season. So, if the show isn’t your thing, maybe just look the other way. It’ll all be over soon.
But, you know what annoys me: the performative delight of people online who carry on about having never watched ‘the dragon show’. It annoys me for the same reason as nerds dismissively talking about ‘sportsball’. People are always looking for an escape from their lives and enjoy being caught up in mass-cultural events. Why be so vocally dismissive of something just because it isn’t your bag? Is it THAT offensive that people are enjoying something that you do not?
In Game of Thrones news:
17.4 million people watched the premiere episode for its final season yesterday across the broadcast and via on-demand platforms HBO Now/HBO Go. That’s a viewership high for the series. Source: Indiewire
Martin Starr from Silicon Valley and Rob McElhenney from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia appeared in the return episode. If you blinked, they were two men dispatched with by Theon when he was rescuing his sister. Source: Vulture
DirectTV screwed up yesterday and released the episode four hours early via its streaming playform. Source: Gizmodo
Another new season of GoT means more opening title changes. Polygon has all the detail you need. Source: Polygon
In some pretty, pretty, pretty good news, HBO has confirmed 2020 returns for Curb Your Enthusiasm, Westworld, and Insecure.
Still to be determined are Jordan Peele & J.J. Abrams’ Lovecraft Country, Joss Whedon’s The Nevers and Abrams‘ Contraband (fka Demimonde). Also TBD is HBO’s Perry Mason limited series starring former The Americans star Matthew Rhys.
In an interview with Bob Iger, he admitted that Disney only bought the Fox assets because it planned to get into streaming. Dox didn’t make sense for them through more traditional distribution model needs:
“We would not have done that transaction had we not decided to go in this [streaming] direction because – if we hadn’t, we would have been looking at that business and through a traditional lens: ‘Oh, we’re buying TV channels. We’re buying more movie-making capability, et cetera’.
But by the time the acquisition opportunity came up, and we knew we were going in this space, we evaluated what we were buying through this new lens of: ‘Wow, what could National Geographic mean to us?’. What could it mean having access to [Fox’s] library, not to monetize it through traditional means, but to do it through [streaming]?. Bam! I mean, the light bulb went off.”