In the wake of this weekend’s horrific mass shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue, the Paramount Network opted to pull two episodes of the controversial reboot of “Heathers” off its schedule on Sunday night.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources indicate the decision to not air the episodes was due to a storyline in which high school students undergo active shooter training. The season finale is still scheduled to air on Monday, Oct. 29 as planned, although some “sensitive storylines” (including one that features the school being blown up) have reportedly been edited out.
This isn’t the first time that Paramount Network’s “Heathers” series (loosely based on the 1988 black comedy) has been surrounded by controversy.
The original “Heathers” film followed the efforts of a charismatic sociopath (Christian Slater) to murder the “cool kids” in Westerburg High; the new TV series reboot is set in the same school but follows a new group of students.
“This is a high school show — we’re blowing up the school, there are guns in the school, it’s a satire and there are moments of teachers having guns. It’s hitting on so many hot topics,” Keith Cox, president of development and production at the Paramount Network, explained to The Hollywood Reporter at the time.
After the Parkland school shooting in February that left 17 dead, Paramount Network decided to delay the show’s scheduled premiere date of March 7. A new premiere date in July was announced, but that date was also scrapped, with reports indicating the network might not air the show at all.
Earlier this month, however, the network revealed plans to air the entire first season as a five-night “event,” with two episodes airing each night beginning on Oct. 25.
Scripts for a second season have already been written, although it seems increasingly unlikely they’ll ever be produced.