Media bias is a growing concern as President Trump continues to hound the mainstream media. However, political control is not only exerted in our news.
Fans were dismayed when ABC announced earlier this year that their hit conservative sitcom, Last Man Standing, would not be renewed for a seventh season. Rumors circulated that Country Music Television (CMT) was considering to pick up the sitcom, but Vulture reports that salary negotiations fell flat, leaving the show without a home.
Many, including the show’s star, Tim Allen, have speculated that Last Man Standing was canceled because of its conservative political message. However, fans of the show noted that the conservative message always took a back seat to the show’s main theme–the importance of family.
The Wrap speculates that Allen’s show was canceled in response to comments he made on the Jimmy Kimmey Live show a few months before ABC announced the show’s end.
Being a Republican in Hollywood is “like 1930s Germany,” Allen quipped. “You gotta be real careful around here, you know. You’ll get beat up if you don’t believe what everybody believes.” Ironically, it appears that Allen’s joke about liberal Hollywood was completely correct, and he got the ax for refusing to parrot tired leftist talking points.
Fans of the show have launched a boycott of ABC and a corresponding petition asking the network to renew the sole conservative show for a seventh season. To date, the petition has received over 400,000 signatures.
ABC has denied that politics impacted their decision. Instead, they claim the show no longer had a place on Friday nights after the network made major changes to their line-up favoring drama over comedy. “Politics had absolutely nothing to do with it. We have actors on our shows who have all sorts of different political views,” said ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey, according to the Independent Journal Review.
However, the explanation offered by Dungey actually dodges the complaint made by conservative fans. Critiques complained that the show was canceled for its conservative themes, and not the political views of the actors involved.
What is clear, however, is that Last Man Standing was not canceled for poor ratings. Before its cancellation, Last Man Standing was the second most watched comedy and third most watched scripted program on ABC, falling slightly behind Grey’s Anatomy and Modern Family.
Deadline reports that while most shows suffer declining viewers each year, Last Man Standing was remaining steady, and even saw an increase in viewers for their popular sixth season.
Last Man Standing was canceled despite strong performances, while, at the same time, ABC renew other comedy series with a decidedly liberal slant, including Black-ish and Fresh Off The Boat. Both been renewed for fourth seasons despite losing in the ratings to Allen’s show.
Unfortunately, CMT’s apprehension to take on Last Man Standing likely marks the end of the only conservative-leaning sitcom on television. While it is not clear exactly why Last Man Standing was canceled, the fact that it does not promote ABC’s liberal agenda probably was an important consideration in the decision.