Recent HBO dramas like Game of Thrones, Luck, and The Newsroom do more than generate HBO brand equity—they quantify that equity and determine the conditions under which it might be converted into other kinds of Time Warner equity. These incipiently financial dramas are futures markets that establish rates of conversion between heterogeneous equities and should be understood as functionally equivalent to the class of financial instruments known as derivatives.
HBO’s Flexible Gold
MICHAEL SZALAY teaches fiction and television at the University of California, Irvine, where he directs the Center for the Study of Creative Economies. He’s the author of New Deal Modernism: American Literature and the Invention of the Welfare State and Hip Figures: A Literary History of the Democratic Party.
Michael Szalay; HBO’s Flexible Gold. Representations 1 May 2014; 126 (1): 112–134. doi: https://doi.org/10.1525/rep.2014.126.1.112
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