After the coffee. Before checking out Season 2 of "House of Cards."
The Skinny: I was so tired by the end of Thursday that I skipped a "House of Cards" screening and party in favor of coming home and watching two episodes of "Girls." Maybe that was too much information. I'm still kind of wiped but at least it's finally Friday. Wish I had the Monday holiday off! Today's roundup is a lot of Comcast-Time Warner Cable. Also, the weekend box office preview and a review of "House of Cards."
Daily Dose: If there is one plus to Comcast buying Time Warner Cable it's that there will no longer be confusion over what's Time Warner and what's Time Warner Cable. Even though Time Warner spun off Time Warner Cable years ago, most of the general public still thinks they are the same company, much to the chagrin of both. Well, that's what happens when you have very similar names. After the deal closes, Comcast will do away with the Time Warner Cable brand.
The big get bigger. Comcast's $45.2 billion stock deal to acquire Time Warner Cable will make an already big media company into a true giant. Already the largest pay-TV provider before this deal, once it closes Comcast will have about 30% of the country. It will also have a few more programming assets to play with as Time Warner Cable has some sports channels including two in Los Angeles. The move also cements Comcast CEO Brian Roberts as the new king of media for the 21st century. Big picture takes on the deal from the Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal and New York Times.
A big hill to climb. Although on paper the Comcast-Time Warner Cable marriage doesn't violate any current Federal Communications Commission regulations, that doesn't mean there won't be a lot of scrutiny over the deal from lawmakers and media activists. Comcast notes that it does not compete against Time Warner Cable in any markets so the deal is not anti-competitive, nor is it reducing consumer choice. True, but does an even bigger Comcast have the potential to derail competitors? More on the growing backlash to the just-announced deal from the Los Angles Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Variety, Re/code and Broadcasting & Cable.
Everyone has an opinion. Naturally a deal as big and game-changing as Comcast's proposed acquisition of Comcast-Time Warner Cable will give pundits fodder for the next year. The general consensus is big is not always better for the little guy and at least be honest and don't pretend you are doing this to better serve your subscribers as opposed to getting leverage over suppliers and a leg up on competitors. Some opinions from the Variety and Los Angeles Times.
Charting a new course. Charter Communications executives no doubt went to bed Wednesday night thinking, how the heck did that just happen? The cable company had been in the midst of its own takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable and was trying to persuade Comcast to partner with them on the effort. But crafty Comcast was burning the candle at both ends and when it didn't like what it was hearing from Charter it reached out to Time Warner Cable and did its own deal. How that happened and what it means for Charter from the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg.
Lego world. It's Valentine's Day so do something romantic and take your loved one to see ... "The Lego Movie?" Yup, "The Lego Movie" is expected to own this holiday weekend and take in an additional $50 million. A remake of "About Last Night" should do decent numbers although anyone who remembers the original David Mamet play knows that it was never meant to be a happy love story. Also opening are remakes of "RoboCop" and "Endless Love." I would probably react like RoboCop if someone tried to drag me to "Endless Love." Box office preview from Variety.
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