“Nanna,” as Barkin is called in the show, provides the pilot episode with lines like, “I happen to love the gays — I could never get my hair to look this good without them.” And, “There’ s a giant homosexual elephant in the room.” And: “I feel like I just ate a black-and-gay stew right before I went to sleep. This is a nightmare!”
“The New Normal” is from Ryan Murphy, the creator of “Glee,” “Nip/Tuck” and “American Horror Story.” He says the show is vaguely semi-autobiographical.
“For our brand, this program feels inappropriate on several dimensions, especially during family viewing time,” Jeff Simpson, chief executive of Bonneville International — the Mormon Church-owned parent company of the NBC station, KSL-TV — said late last week in a prepared statement. (The show will air — in some places, anyway — Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET).
Last season’s lottery winner was NBC’s drama series “The Playboy Club,” which the station declined to air because, a station exec told The TV Column back then, the Playboy brand “is associated with pornography.”
Turns out, the show wasn’t associated closely enough with pornography, and viewer interest was tepid at best; NBC wound up pulling the much-ballyhooed series after just three episodes.
In 2003, KSL declined to air NBC’s prime-time remake of the Brit-com “Coupling”; NBC also wound up pulling this much-ballyhooed adaptation — this time after four episodes. (No less than Jeff Zucker, who rose to become president and chief executive of NBCUniversal, explained publicly that the move was owing to the show having stunk.)
And in 2000, KSL said no dice to NBC’s animated comedy “God, the Devil and Bob.” This much-ballyhooed show, which drew the ire of some religious groups, also was yanked from NBC’s lineup after just a handful of episodes aired; it had low ratings nationally and fell into NBC’s Life Is Too Short Category.
Does this mean you should put your money on “The New Normal” being the first cancellation of the 2012-13 TV season, what with KSL seeming to have its finger on the pulse of American TV-viewing taste?
Simpson told the Salt Lake Tribune that the station “struggles” with content that “crosses the line in one area or another.”
And by “crosses the line,” he said he means dialogue that is “excessively rude and crude” or scenes that are “too explicit” or characterizations that “might seem offensive,” though he did not say to whom.
“The New Normal” has been targeted by a conservative anti-gay group calling itself One Million Moms — the same group that targeted J.C. Penney for featuring Ellen DeGeneres as its spokeswoman. OMM wants advertisers to boycott “The New Normal” and NBC for using public airwaves “to continue to subject families to the decay of morals and values and the sanctity of marriage in attempting to redefine marriage.” OMM added that “these things are harmful to our society, and this program is damaging to our culture.”