The CW is about to undergo some major changes under its new owner

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The CW, which is currently home to DC’s only functional universe, has witnessed a controlling stake change hands following the Warner-Discovery merger. Nexstar is the media group that currently hosts the show, and they hinted at major changes coming to the network.

One thing Nexstar has promised for the future of the CW is “broader and cheaper programming,” which makes you wonder if they don’t think superheroes like The Flash or Superman and Lois are too elitist (or if they’d rather just squeeze a budget of a couple episodes into a few seasons of reality TV).

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According to the deadline, Nexstar gets a 75% stake in the network, which leaves Paramount Global and Warner Bros. . It’s like in the classic joke about where a 1000-kilogram gorilla sits: what does the owner of 75% of your network see? Everything she wants, and according to the new owners, the gorilla wants to cut costs. Nexstar CFO Lee Ann Gliha pointed out that the company’s goal is to make the CW profitable by 2025, saying, “It’s no secret that the CW does not make a profit, but this is atypical for fully distributed broadcast or cable networks. In fact, according to SNL Kagan, no other broadcast network operates with permanent losses.”

What this does not concern is that the lack of profitability as a network does not mean the lack of profitability in general. It is impossible to imagine that the T-shirts and figures of “Green Arrow” and “Flash” have not undergone significant changes during the existence of their respective shows, but the era of squeezing every penny available from any source is also passing away. Continuing the theme of reduction and incineration, Gliha added: “We expect to invest a small 9-digit amount during this three-year period as our plan is implemented. We view this amount as an approximate purchase price—or an investment made over time, rather than a constant cash flow containment. You know us. We are focused on profit and cash flow and expect this asset to achieve profitability.”

Nexstar president Tom Carter echoed this, saying that Paramount and WBD would continue to produce the script until 2023, but after that the options were open (it’s good that Archie’s gang in Riverdale had already planned their farewell). This is a sign that, like any business, they comply with their current obligations and contracts, but the specification of mentioning “scripted content” is a huge red flag waving dramas in favor of mass reality—based programming.

Combined with appeals to a wider audience (something wider than the superhero genre dominating all box offices), fans shouldn’t get their hopes up. When Carter finished, noting “lower unscripted costs”—unscripted, like in a reality show-is a good indicator of the future of the CW. It doesn’t look like even Superman can save the day.

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