Friday, July 03, 2020

Fri-Yay: Streaming Services Remove Episodes of Sitcoms Due to Racial Jokes; The Kominsky Method Final Season Announced

It's time for another edition of Fri-Yay! That means we will take a look back on some sitcom happenings in recent days or weeks or other fun sitcomy stuff. It's a sitcom lover's paradise! Happy Fri-Yay!

Scrubs

by Vincent

In response to the ongoing protests regarding racial injustice in America, several streaming services have removed episodes of sitcoms due to jokes that might now be viewed as "racially insensitive," mainly regarding instances of the use of blackface. Obviously, this is a very serious issue that's much bigger than a few sitcom episodes. But it has nonetheless sparked an interesting discussion in the TV world about censorship and what to do about jokes that might now seem insensitive. The episodes in question include: three episodes of 30 Rock (featuring the use of blackface and removed at the request of Tina Fey who says she now regrets the episodes), two episodes of Scrubs (removed by creator Bill Lawerence for similar reasons), five episodes of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and one episode each of Community and The Golden Girls. An episode of The Office was also edited to remove a blackface joke. All episodes contained some sort of use of a non-black character painting their face black, although in nearly all instances it was used satirically to make a point about why blackface is wrong and ridicule those who do it.

Many feel that this is mostly a symbolic gesture, though, and removing a few episodes that no one was complaining about is not exactly fixing the issues of racial injustice in society or in the entertainment world. Additionally, fans of Community and The Golden Girls pointed out that the episodes removed, despite having some potentially iffy jokes, actually have quite positive messages (Community's episode dealt with suicide and mental illness and The Golden Girls advocated for the acceptance of mixed race couples.) Perhaps a better method would be to add a disclaimer to the episodes in the same way HBO Max did with Gone with the Wind, noting these episodes contain some jokes that might seem insensitive today but represent a changing of the tides in terms of racial awareness on television. Still, no matter how you feel about the episodes, it's a good reminder that as used to streaming media as we are, episodes and shows can be taken down at any time. Owning physical media is still the best way to ensure the original and unedited copies of all of your favorite TV shows. (Perhaps not coincidentally, box sets of 30 Rock, Scrubs, Community and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia sold out on Amazon after the news of the episodes being pulled.)


The Kominsky Method - Alan Arkin and Michael Douglas

The Kominsky Method has been renewed for a third and final season by Netflix. Acting coach Sandy Kominsky and best friend Norman Newlander keep each other laughing as they navigate the ups and downs of getting older. The sun isn't setting yet on the once famous Sandy Kominsky and his longtime agent Norman Newlander. Academy Award(R) Winners Michael Douglas (Kominsky) and Alan Arkin (Newlander) continue their journey as two friends tackling life's inevitable curveballs as they navigate their later years in Los Angeles, a city that values youth and beauty. Both comedic and emotional, The Kominsky Method is a half-hour single camera comedy created by 8-time Emmy Award Nominee Chuck Lorre. Lorre, Al Higgins and Michael Douglas executive produce the series which is produced by Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc. in association with Warner Bros. Television.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Saturday, September 23

none scheduled

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of September 18)

Friday, September 22

  • Kathryn Newton (Gary Unmarried) - Watch Kathryn on a repeat of Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Ralph Harris (On Our Own) and Jimmie "JJ" Walker (Good Times/At Ease/Bustin' Loose) - Ralph and Jimmie are guests on repeats of Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen on CBS between 12:37-1:37am.
  • Alfonso Ribeiro (In the House/The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air/Silver Spoons) - Alfonso is a guest on Live with Kelly and Mark, so check your listings.
  • Sam Jay (Bust Down) - Sam appears on PIX11 Morning News on WPIX in New York at 8:50am.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (June-October)

Mayberry R.F.D. - The Complete Series Night Court (1984-1992) - The Complete Series Family Matters - The Complete Series Step by Step - The Complete Series ALF - The Complete Series (Deluxe Edition)

06/13 - Mayberry R.F.D. - The Complete Series
06/13 - Night Court (1984-1992) - The Complete Series
07/18 - South Park - Seasons 21-25 (Blu-ray) (DVD)
07/25 - The Neighborhood - Season Five
07/25 - Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin - Season One
07/25 - Superstore - The Complete Series
08/22 - Back to Life - Season 1 / Season 2
08/29 - Smiling Friends - Season 1 (Blu-ray) (DVD)
09/05 - Young Sheldon - The Complete Sixth Season
09/12 - Abbott Elementary - The Complete Second Season
09/12 - Rick and Morty - The Complete Seasons 1-6 (Blu-ray) (DVD)
09/26 - Family Matters - The Complete Series
09/26 - Step by Step - The Complete Series
10/10 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season Thirteen / The Complete Season Fourteen
10/17 - ALF - The Complete Series (Deluxe Edition) (Shout! Factory Special Offers)
10/17 - Night Court (2023) - The Complete First Season
More Recent and Upcoming TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

09/22 - The Santa Clauses Season 2 Launches November 8; CBS Alters Fall Schedule
09/21 - Penn & Teller: Fool Us Gets New Return Date; Netflix's Unicorn Academy Premieres November 2
09/20 - Paramount+ Announces Colin from Accounts; The Really Loud House Gets Halloween Movie
09/19 - The Simpsons Season 34 Streams October 11 on Disney+; Good Burger 2 Set for Holiday Season
09/18 - Hulu's Huluween and Disney+'s Hallowstream Line-Up; Shining Vale Returns October 13 on STARZ
09/17 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of September 18, 2023)
09/16 - SitcomsOnline Digest: ABC Cancels Wonder Years Reboot; Byron Allen Makes $10 Billion Offer to Buy ABC
09/15 - Antenna TV's Bewitched Halloween Marathon; Rewind TV's Sabrina the Teenage Witch-O-Ween Marathon
09/14 - Dancing with the Stars Season 32 Cast; BUZZR Celebrates 40 Years of Press Your Luck
09/13 - TBS Acquires Modern Family; The Frasier Awards on COZI TV
09/12 - Comics Unleashed with Byron Allen Gets CBS Late Night Run; Unsolved Mysteries: Behind the Legacy Special
09/11 - Matt Rife Gets Netflix Special; Star Trek Day and Kid Cudi Join Forces
09/10 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of September 11, 2023)
09/09 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Warner Bros. Television Suspends Deals with Top Creators; Fran Drescher Re-Elected President of SAG-AFTRA
09/08 - CBS Announces Hosts of Game Show; New Goosebumps Premieres Friday the 13th This October on Disney+ and Hulu
09/07 - MeTV Presents Svengoolie's Halloween BOOnanza!; The CW Moving Fall Comedies to Thursdays
09/06 - CBS to Air NCIS: Sydney This Fall; Fox Makes Fall Change
09/05 - TBS and TNT September Stunts Include Big Bang Theory Batman Day Marathon; Netflix UK Produced Series Updates
09/04 - TV Marathons on Labor Day 2023 Include Three's Company
09/03 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of September 4, 2023)
09/02 - SitcomsOnline Digest: No Third Season for How I Met Your Father; Spectrum Dispute with Disney Could Spell End of Cable
09/01 - September Is Anniversary Month on Hulu; Freeform's 31 Nights of Halloween Returns for Its 25th Anniversary
08/31 - Max's Original Comedy Series Starstruck Season 3 and Our Flag Means Death Season 2 Premiere Dates; AXS TV Announces Fall Programming Lineup
08/30 - The Partridge Family Coming to AXS TV Starting Oct. 2; CBS to Air A Tribute to Bob Barker Special Aug. 31, Marathon of Match Game Episodes to Air Sept. 2 on Game Show Network
08/29 - Once Upon a Time Coming to Hulu; Young Love Launches on Max in September
08/28 - Remembering TV Legend Bob Barker; Wolf Like Me Returns in October on Peacock
08/27 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of August 28, 2023)
08/26 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Frasier Reboot Date Set, With CBS Also Airing First Two Episodes; Doogie Kamealoha, M.D. Cancelled
08/25 - Rick and Morty Returns October 15; Switch New Season Begins September 18 on Game Show Network
08/24 - Hulu Fall 2023 Slate; Apple TV+ Series Still Up Debuts Trailer
08/23 - Frasier Returns October 12 on Paramount+; And Just Like That... Renewed for Season 3
08/22 - ABC Fall 2023 Premiere Dates and Revised Schedule; Upload Season 3 Returns October 20