Monday, August 31, 2009

What Does a Disney Buyout of Marvel Mean Creatively?

Lots of buzz around the Intertubes today about the Disney buyout of Marvel. Interestingly, this has really made me think that it's time for The Walt Disney Company to change its name to something vastly more neutral. It might even make sense to do one of those corporate renamings where the new name is some variant of an English word, but just skewed enough to be trademarkable.

As an example, one person suggested that this was, "bad news for anyone who like mature-themed comics and movies," in a Slashdot feedback post. The problem with this is that Disney is a giant holding corporation that owns everything from Hannah Montana to Kill Bill to Queen. Since the mid-1990s, Disney really hasn't resembled the original Walt Disney Corporation (even though they continue on as one of the many Disney brands).

I'm not a big fan of Marvel comics. I've enjoyed Joss Whedon and Warren Ellis's work for them, but then I'd enjoy their work for the sanitation planning department (actually, no, don't let Ellis near my city's planners, thank you very much, but you get the idea...) There's nothing that I think will be lost once Marvel, an already behemoth corporation, is absorbed by an even larger behemoth. But that doesn't really have anything to do with Disney and what they'll do to the brand. It has to do with the risks that you don't take when you're in charge of billions of dollars worth of intellectual property.