Why

Where were you in the great battle for the rights to stream Big Bang Theory?
Photo: NBC

Forget The Office, Friends, or even goddamn Seinfeld. Apparently, the highest-valued television show in the history of the world is a humorless screed about a bunch of neeeeeeeeeeerds. CBS’ The Big Bang Theory is back with what might be the most-expensive streaming deal of all time. Just when I thought I was free.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, WarnerMedia’s streaming service, HBO Max, has secured a five-year agreement for exclusive domestic streaming rights to all 12 seasons of The Big Bang Theory, as well as expanding its syndication deal with TBS through 2028. Official numbers aren’t available, but the deal is believed to be worth “billions of dollars.” The show will arrive on streaming with HBO Max’s debut, which is expected sometime in spring 2020. Billions of dollars! For The Big Bang Theory!

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Thanks, streaming wars! These are the battles we fight now. Who gets Friends? Who gets Seinfeld? What disgusting gobs of money are we going to throw down for The Office, for Parks and Rec, for countless other streamable shows that are now in each of their own little walled gardens?

Welcome to the future of TV. Just like the past of TV, really.


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About the author

Beth Elderkin

Video Editor and Staff Writer at io9. My doppelganger is that rebelling greeting card from Futurama.