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Twitter Reacts to Bizzare Season Three Title Change to ‘Pennyworth’

P:TOOBB doesn't quite have the same ring either.

Alfred Pennyworth looking annoyed. Image: DC.

Because it’s a day that ends in “y,” Warner Bros. Discovery+ is back in the news with changes to more DC programming. However, instead of cancellation news or saying how much faith they have in the upcoming Flash movie, it’s due to HBO Max’s newly acquired series Pennyworth being renamed to Pennyworth: The Origins of Batman’s Bulter. This silly at best—and demeaning at worst—change three seasons into a show caught the eye of many people online.

Most Batman fans over the age of 10 will probably know who Alfred Pennyworth is, so this feels very unnecessary. It’s as recognizable as the names “Bruce” and “Wayne.” Whenever a close friend of mine mentions one of her favorite shows, Wayne, I internally panic a bit trying to remember if she said it was or wasn’t a Batman show. I don’t want to ask because I know I ask every other time. Alfred Pennyworth works very similarly, even being a supporting character. He’s iconic. That’s why there’s a whole show about him now.

Three seasons!

A combination of Covid-19 pandemic time warp has led me and others to discover the fact that Pennyworth is an Epix original and has been running for some time. Yes, I and at least one other person found out Pennyworth was three seasons deep due to this announcement. This seems like a bigger issue. Especially because since learning this, I’ve seen some wildin’ out images that make me want to watch the show! Most DC shows have been on HBO Max and the CW. Both services/channels are owned by Warner Bros., now WBD. Epix is owned by MGM (so, Amazon), but at 2021 DC Fandome (according to David Zaslav and friends, an event for the boys), it was announced the series would migrate over to HBO Max to join other existing DC shows like Titans, Doom Patrol, and Peacemaker.

This isn’t the first time that live-action DC stories have done weird things with names in favor of riding the coat tails of a more widely recognized character. The Direct reminded us of when Birds of Prey‘s title was finalized as Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of Harley Quinn), but then even in some places (including theaters), it was called Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey?

Instead of a full rename that is very silly sounding and demeaning to their audience and the character, they could have just left the commercial at Pennyworth coming to HBO Max, used footage from the show that links the characters in the promo, or just emphasized his first name in the trailer. This is if they really felt like clarification was the way to go and an option that’s not giving it a long subtitle. We already learned that the new folks who have charge of HBO Max don’t have faith in certain beloved characters (and audiences), but now we see WBD doesn’t have faith in its “male” audience or “male-skewed” shows either either.

(via IGN, featured image: DC)

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(she/her) Award-winning digital artist and blogger with an interest in art, politics, identity, and history—especially when they all come together. This Texan balances book-buying blurs with liberal Libby use.