‘The New Normal’ pulled from Utah station; GLAAD responds

While network affiliates often choose to air the same primetime lineup as many of their sister stations across the country, there are some exceptions to the rule — and Utah station KSL is proving once again that they are this very exception.

If you remember last year, this network made the decision to not air the NBC drama series “The Playboy Club,” citing the show’s controversial subject matter and their family viewing audience. (The irony here is that this show wasn’t really any more explicit than some other NBC dramas.) Now, they are doing the same thing with the Ryan Murphy-producer comedy series “The New Normal.”

In a statement about this decision, the CEO of KSL’s parent company Bonneville International in Jeff Simpson had the following to say to the Salt Lake Tribune:

“From time to time we may struggle with content that crosses the line in one area or another … The dialogue might be excessively rude and crude. The scenes may be too explicit or the characterizations might seem offensive.”

Considering that none of the dialogue in this pilot is worse than in many other comedies, the argument can be made easily here that KSL’s decision really just revolves around the fact that “The New Normal” is a series at its heart about two gay men and their decision to have a child together via a surrogate. GLAAD has already issued a statement of their own on the subject through President Herndon Graddick:

“Same-sex families are a beloved part of American television thanks to shows like Modern Family, Glee and Grey’s Anatomy … While audiences, critics and advertisers have all supported LGBT stories, KSL is demonstrating how deeply out of touch it is with the rest of the country.”

At the end of the day, this is an interesting topic for debate — while KSL certainly has the right to not air “The New Normal,” this decision leaves some people in their coverage area without an option as to how to watch the show. It’s foolish and short-sighted to think that every viewer has the capability to find it online, or is going to want to go through that much trouble.

At the end of the day, shouldn’t the show’s ratings really speak for itself? The issue for “The New Normal” should not be whether or not the subject matter is offensive — it should be whether or not it is funny.

No matter your thoughts here on “The New Normal,” we will find out for sure how well it does when it premiere on Tuesday, September 11 at 9:30 p.m. Eastern time. Do you think KSL should decide to air the series? We want to hear some of your thoughts below!

Photo: NBC

 

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