Infinity Train creator and showrunner Owen Dennis took to Substack to share his feelings and what he knows about the show’s removal from HBO Max in an honest, sometimes heartbreaking, but ultimately hopeful 2,500 word essay.
The removal of Infinity Train, and the dozens of other shows taken off HBO Max, was as much a shock to Dennis as it was to anyone else. “I had no idea it was coming, neither did any other show creator I’ve talked with, nor any of their representatives,” he explains in the post.
According to Dennis, everything related to or mentioning the show has been removed from HBO Max and Cartoon Network, their Twitter accounts, their Youtube accounts, and all music streaming services. The show is still available (at the time of writing) on iTunes, Amazon Prime, Vudu, and Google Play. Importantly, he pointed out that even he doesn’t know how long it will be available on any of those services and offered no guarantee that anyone who purchases a digital version of the show will be able to keep it indefinitely. He says he has been assured by Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD), for whatever a guarantee from them is worth these days, that it will not be taken down by any pay-per-season/episode service.
After admitting that neither he, nor anyone close to him, knows why the shows were removed from HBO Max, he did say that he’s received assurances from WBD that the show is not being used for that tax write off loophole that many are associating with Batgirl and Scoob!: Holiday Haunt.
“Will this continue to be true?” he asks. “I also don’t know, but the end date for the tax write off is the beginning of September, so maybe that will give us a hint.”
When discussing the future availability of the show, Dennis says that apart from the unreliable assurances from WBD that the show will remain available for digital purchase, he is working with his management team on figuring out a more accessible future for Infinity Train.
About his own feelings towards what’s going on at WBD, Dennis says he feels “Shitty… I think the way that Discovery went about this is incredibly unprofessional, rude, and just straight up slimy. I think most everyone who makes anything feels this way. Across the industry, talent is mad, agents are mad, lawyers and managers are mad, even execs at these companies are mad. I can’t think of a single person who works in animation and entertainment that, when you bring this all up, doesn’t say ‘What the fuck are they doing? How do they plan to have anyone ever want to work with them again?'”
And why would anyone want to work with them again, he asks. “What is the point of making something, spending years working on it, putting in nights and weekends doing their terrible notes, losing sleep and not seeing our families, if it’s just going to be taken away and shot in the backyard? It’s so incredibly discouraging and they’re definitely not going to be getting their best work out of whoever decides to stay.”
It’s an opinion that is certainly not unique to Dennis, especially among those who worked for WBD on the now-inaccessible shows.
Dennis’ complete post, including instructions on what fans can do (or not do) to help keep the show vital, can be found on his Substack.
In a final thoughts section, Dennis concludes:
I’ve also seen all the thoughtful, wonderful things people have said about Infinity Train online and I’m very touched. My friends and I and many of the former members of the Infinity Train crew have been sharing images, texts, and emails they’ve received about the show with each other and every one of them is absolutely appreciated. Thank you so much, and I will continue to try and get more made somehow.