One of the top political news stories for the week has an unlikely source – the cancellation of network television sitcom.
ABC made waves in conservative media this week when they canceled the television show, “Last Man Standing” starring former “Home Improvement” actor Tim Allen.
Until today, the actor has been largely silent on the subject of the cancellation.
However, after a petition on the website Change.org, calling for the reinstatement of the show, cleared 100,000 fans, Allen obviously felt the need to make some kind of statement.
The text of the petition states:
Despite consistently high rankings, especially considering the time slot in which it is aired, Tim Allen’s show “Last Man Standing” has been cancelled by the network on which it is aired, ABC.
Last Man Standing stands out in the sea of network television sitcoms. It is a show that appeals to a broad swath of Americans who find very few shows that extol the virtues with which they can identify; namely conservative values.
Last Man Standing was not just selling conservative ideals though, as some of the characters in the show are clearly of the liberal persuasion, yet the characters on the show all manage to get along and take care of one another, despite their politically opposed views. The show is about more than politics though, it is about family. In fact, politics is only a secondary part of the show, but one in which many Americans can readily identify.
Last Man Standing is one of the only shows on broadcast television, and the only sitcom, that is not constantly shoving liberal ideals down the throats of the viewers. And sadly, that is likely the real reason the show has been cancelled.
The intent of this petition/boycott is to attempt to get ABC to renew the show. With that in mind, I will no longer be watching any ABC shows. I have cancelled the DVR settings for the other ABC shows that I regularly watch. If you want to help try to save Last Man Standing, I encourage you to do the same. Even if you are not willing to boycott the network, but still want to save the show, please sign this petition and share it. If you do plan to boycott ABC, please say so when you sign. Let them hear our voices.
Allen posted the following message on his Twitter page shortly after the petition cleared 100,000 signatures (it’s currently looking like it might clear 150,000 sometime this evening):
It would seem Allen was just as surprised as conservative viewers to learn that his show, which was doing fairly well in the ratings, had been abruptly canceled after a successful run.
For their part, ABC has claimed that the cancelation was just business as usual in the TV business and had nothing to do with politics. From an interview in Variety:
“’Last Man Standing’ was a challenging one for me, because it was a steady performer,” said Channing Dungey, ABC Entertainment President. “Once we made the decision not to continue with comedy on Friday, it was just kind of that’s where we landed.” She made her remarks on a conference call with reporters. ABC’s Friday lineup will be stacked with two one-hour super-hero dramas, “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” and “The Inhumans,” along with the news program “20/20.”
Dungey said she used the same criteria in considering the future of “Last Man Standing” as she did in examining what to do with other canceled series, like “The Catch,” “The Real O’Neals,” and “American Crime.” She also said studio ownership, future creative direction, ratings and viewer engagement were factors she considered in making her decision.