Hey, ABC, Let Me Save You A Few Million Dollars…[Updated]

Following the implosion of the new “Roseanne,” ABC is reportedly considering rebooting the show without its evil, racist star. The idea is to spin-off a new “Roseanne” spore, this one focusing on Darlene, the character played since the original show’s inception by actress Sara Gilbert, who smartly signaled her virtuousness by being the first cast member to condemn her TV mother’s ugly tweet. From The Hollywood Reporter:

“As we previously reported, executive producers Tom Werner, who also executive produced the original series, and Gilbert, the main driving force behind the revival, are believed to be spearheading the efforts to continue the show and keep the writers, led by executive producer/showrunner Bruce Helford, and crew employed post-cancellation.”

The ethical value here is either incompetence—for this idea is doomed to fail—or dishonesty,  if ABC and Disney know it will fail, but are just launching a hopeless mutant to remove any lingering bad public relations over punishing hundreds of artists and fans of the new “Roseanne” because of a single, misbegotten tweet.

It is one or the other. Continue reading

Ethics Dunce: “Johnny Football”—True, But Now What? Maybe Hollywood Had The Solution

You don't know this actress, do you? There's a reason...

You don’t know this actress, do you? There’s a reason…

Texas A&M Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel, a.k.a “Johnny Football,” ended last year by winning the 2012 Heisman Trophy, the first freshman ever to do so. He has spent the first 8 months of this year showing that he is an immature, arrogant kid with a dangerously inflated ego, with no sense of his obligations as a widely admired elite athlete, and little expertise in how to conduct himself responsibly and ethically.

A brief and incomplete sampling of his exploits:

  • In January, following his team’s  A&M’s Cotton Bowl win over Oklahoma, he visited the Winstar Casino in Oklahoma for some late-night gambling. He tweeted a photo with friends, waving money around. When the photo went viral on the web, sparking criticism, Manziel tweeted, “Nothing illegal about being 18+ in a casino and winning money…KEEP HATING!”
  • In March, Manziel was frustrated after throwing an interception during a spring football scrimmage, so he shoved aside a graduate assistant who happened to be in his way.
  • He was photographed with a fake tattoo of Texas A&M’s archrival Texas Longhorns, infuriating the fanatic fans of the Aggies. Continue reading

For Broadway Patrons, A Bill of Non-Existant Rights

What do Broadway theater-goers have a right to know and expect? The blog Gratuitous Violins has proposed a “Ticket-Buyer’s Bill of Rights.” While superficially reasonable, this manifesto embodies what is wrong with the expectations of consumers in general and theater patrons in particular. “Let’s face it,” the blogger, “Esther”, writes, “the producers are selling a product and we consumers should be able to make an informed purchase.” Okay. An informed purchase, however, does not require being routinely informed of all aspects of the production, particularly when the information is readily available to the responsible consumer.

Here are Esther’s three tenets of the “Bill of Rights”: Continue reading