ICYMI: Terrence Winter, head show runner for Vinyl, was ousted from the show last week. Terry Boy has had a very fruitful relationship with HBO in the bast while working as an executive producer on The Sopranos, and also heading Boardwalk Empire. HBO cited that they are looking to move in a different “creative direction” for the show.
This comes as a HUGE surprise for several reasons. First being that Winter has had such a prolific history with HBO. Sopranos and Boardwalk were both varying degrees of successful. Second, removing a show runner after a single season is no small transaction.
Third, and definitely most importantly, it just became abundantly clear that HBO is really feeling the heat right now. The network hitched their proverbial wagon to the Vinyl horse to the modest sum of $30 million, JUST FOR THE PREMIERE. A premiere that was pretty much universally seen as a Martin Scorsese freelance. Make no qualms about it, HBO is concerned for the show. While I personally am a huge fan, many critics are not. And the numbers have proven the same, as viewers have continued to dwindle each week, despite really finding its footing in the second half of the season.
HBO is counting on Vinyl to be a premier show. Not just for its own network, but for Sunday nights in general. In today’s modern TV world where society is over-saturated with quality content, it has become tougher than ever for HBO (the historic flagship network for shows) to continue to dominate. However, they’ve never seen competition like this before from entities such as Netflix, Hulu, AMC, Showtime, FX and Amazon (to name a few) all blowing “seven different types of smoke.”
At the moment, HBO has a sure fire drama hit on Sundays in Game of Thrones for the next two years at a minimum, but what about beyond that? HBO has struggled to develop another hit since GoT premiered in 2011, and they prayed like Laurence Fishburne in The Matrix that Vinyl would be “the one.”
So, does this mean that Vinyl is going to blow up in HBO’s face? Not necessarily. We here at No Filter Network are big fans of the show ourselves. But it does mean that they have to make manyyyyy more people buy into the show. And that all starts next season with a new show runner in place. Until then….