Normally, I’d let this pass, but it’s illustrative of some of the myopia and sloppiness currently plaguing the news business.
“Hollywood Blasts AMC After ‘Walking Dead’ Shakeup,” read the headline on the Huffington Post, after the
head-scratching decision to allow exec producer/showrunner Glen Mazzara to leave the huge cable hit. All Mazzara did was keep the show running smoothly — and indeed, in many ways improve it — after the network replaced Frank Darabont, who developed the series based on the comic books.
Look, even without knowing all the particulars, what AMC has done is inexplicable, simply based on the adage “Why mess with success?”
But there’s a rather significant oversight in HuffPo’s report: Both Shawn Ryan and Kurt Sutter — the two showrunners who assailed AMC on Mazzara’s behalf — also happened to work with Mazzara on “The Shield.” These guys toiled in the trenches together. They’re friends. Or at least, they’re hardly non-partial arbiters in this case.
Also, if you’ve been following Sutter on Twitter, the “Sons of Anarchy” producer “blasts” everybody. That’s just the way he communicates. He’d probably be the first to tell you his tweets are hardly representative of “Hollywood.”
That’s not to say the producers are wrong; in fact, I completely agree with them. But the headline “Hollywood Blasts” is misleading. It’s sort of like saying “The investment banking community blasts” if the best man at my wedding rose to defend me.
That said, the funniest thing I’ve read about “Walking Dead” did come from another showrunner, “Lost” co-creator Damon Lindelof, who tweeted, “Walking Dead is to showrunners as Spinal Tap is to drummers.”
On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d give that an 11.