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'Last Man Standing' And The Conservative Persecution Complex

Canceling a mediocre sitcom is an attack on the American family? Really?
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Tim Allen Last Man Standing

Last week, I covered the strange tantrum that arose from conservative corners after the Tim Allen sitcom Last Man Standing was cancelled by ABC in a completely mundane, run-of-the-mill business decision. And I say strange because it was clearly done for the one reason that conservatives care about more than anything: Money.

According to Vox, the show was getting increasingly expensive with each season, and it was popular with audience members over 50, which isn't the most profitable advertising demographic. On top of that, ABC's recent acquisition of American Idol blew a sizable hole through their programming budget and schedule forcing them to axe several other shows as well. But Last Man Standing is apparently special. Like a snowflake. (See what I did there?)

However, despite reams of evidence to the contrary, some conservatives are still convinced that ABC suddenly decided to sacrifice the show to appease liberals - Tim Allen is a noted conservative/libertarian. - and they haven't budged even though ABC is bringing back Roseanne starring vocal Trump supporter Roseanne Barr.

(I know what you're thinking, wait a minute, doesn't Roseanne belong to the Green Partry? Surprise! She got even crazier.)

So because I don't value my time or sanity, I've been traveling down the rabbit hole of conservative whining and made the god-awful mistake of dipping into the comments on Variety's report that 20th Century Fox is shopping Last Man Standing to other networks, yet noticeably isn't picking it up for the channel it owns and operates. In fact, there's a whole paragraph about it!

“Last Man Standing” faces an uphill climb in search of a new network. After six seasons, costs for the series are significantly higher than those for younger multi-camera comedies typically are. And the buying patterns of broadcast networks this development season showed little appetite for multi-cams among most of the Big Four.

But right-wingers aren't having logical, easily verified explanations for why their favorite show wasn't getting new episodes, and shortly, the comments were filled with earnest rants about how canceling a Tim Allen sitcom is an obvious attack on the American Family™. Unlike, say, purposefully nuking health care coverage so we all die bankrupt as shit, or snatching up schoolchildren and/or their parents for speaking Spanish. Apparently those attacks don't count.

Here are just a few of the highlights. And while the context of these is a tepid, network sitcom, it's also a terrifying window into where some conservatives minds are at these days. Which is that the world is aligned against them despite the fact that they control the House, Senate, executive branch, and most local governments. Not to mention Christianity is still the largest religion in America. But there are gays on TV, so clearly they're living in a hellscape specifically engineered against their super-important asses:

I think it was cancelled for political reasons. Surely everyone in Hollywood isn’t liberal . I love this show. It was nice to see a show that had a conservative right wing on it. You all have all the crappy full of sex and gays shows. Even shows with gay kids. It was nice to see something that wasn’t so trashy that you could actually let your kids watch. Put it back on. I hope every conservative quits watching anything on your network period.

This guy thinks the networks want to destroy conservatives, despite the fact that the show was created by a network (20th Century Fox - owned by Rupert fucking Murdoch) that kept it on the air for five seasons and has a syndication deal to keep it airing even longer:

BS is was not a because he is a conservative. Those networks hate and want to burn down all conservatives and anything they support.

It's the only show on TV about families ever!

A show with family values like most Americans. Of course , we can’t have that! Please someone pick up this show. You can count on one hand the shows you can watch together as a family

Sensing a theme here?

There is very little “entertainment” on TV today that you can feel safe and good about letting your entire family watch.

(Gays. The theme is gays.)

Abc must not like TV show morales values last man standing had all that we don’t need more gays TV show I hope CBS pick up the show or NBC I will quit watching the abc network

Okay, this is getting out of hand.

I watch Tim Allen because it is clean family oriented, no so much sex, violence. It also does not seem to cater to the TV norm that every tv show a now has to have a gay and lesbian theme. But ABC believes Tim Allen is not representative of their values


That leaves one thing; the politics of perverts, which is fine. Praise God, He will let them ride out filth, depravity, and perversity to their own detriment.

And now for a really fun game. (It's not. I'm lying to you.) Scroll through the comments and see how many of them mention watching the show on Netflix. It's a lot.

In fairness, I don't expect the Average Joe from any side of the political spectrum to know how streaming rights work, but here's how it does for Last Man Standing: Because ABC doesn't own the show, it doesn't see a dime from people watching it on Netflix. So those views were doing jack-o-squat to keep Last Man Standing on the air. Which is yet another facet to the money equation that led to the show's cancellation. It's also a rapidly growing problem for any broadcast show as audience's viewing habits skew toward streaming services.

Unfortunately, I might as well have read that paragraph to a wall because most conservatives - especially of the evangelical variety - are conditioned to believe that the world is out to get them. And, granted, it kind of is because they can't stop being on the wrong side of the history. Slavery, denying gay rights, reducing women to nothing more than baby ovens, you name it. However, at the end of the day, no one will ever tell them who they can marry, what language they can speak, detain them at airports, write legislation telling them what to do with their bodies, or gun them down during routine traffic stops. The only adversity they'll face is watching other people share the same rights, representation, and privileges they've had since goddamn ever. 

And if they can't handle that, then here's a phrase they were fond of after putting a rapey kumquat into the Oval Office: Cry more.