News has surfaced that ABC had pulled a February episode of Black-Ish due to political differences.
In the episode that has been pulled, father and son played by Anthony Anderson and Marcus Scribner, engage in a debate over whether athletes should be permitted to kneel during the national anthem at sporting events. The episode also covers a whole slew of political issues facing America today, done through the nondiscriminatory eyes of a child.
Showrunner Kenya Barris broke down the situation in conversation with Variety.
“Given our creative differences, neither ABC nor I were happy with the direction of the episode and mutually agreed not to air it,”
In the same conversation, he maintained his sense of pride and accomplishment.
“Black-ish is a show that has spoken to all different types of people and brought them closer as a community and I’m so proud of the series.”
The episode titled "Please, Baby, Please," was supposed to air on February 27th but was instead replaced with a non-sequitur re-run. The series continues to engage television viewers in political conversations on issues such as the Trump Administration, police brutality, mental health, and discriminatory language.
The conflict of interest between Kenya Barris and the show's parent network seems to have been handled "diplomatically" but we are likely to come to our own conclusions on the reasons why. As long as Black-Ish continues to be a ratings draw, this discord will prove costly to either side of the debate.