The Duggars have once against been canceled by TLC, but is this the end for them?
The family shot to fame in 2008, when they became the subject of the reality TV show, "19 Kids and Counting," but TLC pulled the series in 2015 after accusations emerged that the oldest son, Josh Duggar, had molested four of his sisters and a babysitter. He was never charged but admitted he had acted "inexcusably."
A spin-off of the show, "Counting On," was created months later featuring members of the Duggar family, but not Josh, but TLC canceled it after 11 seasons. The latest move comes as Josh awaits trial on charges of downloading and possessing child pornography.
The former reality TV star was arrested and charged earlier this year. Prosecutors said Josh possessed the material, some of which depicts the sexual abuse of children under the age of 12, in May 2019, but he has pleaded not guilty. Josh’s trial, which was scheduled to commence in July, has now been postponed until November.
In announcing the cancellation of "Counting On," TLC said in a statement that it felt it was important to give the Duggar family the opportunity to address their situation privately.
Jinger (Duggar) Vuolo and her husband Jeremy Vuolo said they supported the decision in a statement posted on Instagram.
"We are grateful for TLC giving us the opportunity to be on their network over the years and their kindness towards the Vuolo family. It's been a remarkable journey that has opened doors to traveling and experiencing the world in a way that we wouldn't have imagined possible," they wrote about the show.
"We wholeheartedly agree with TLC's decision not to renew 'Counting On' and are excited for the next chapter in our lives. We'd like to thank our fans, friends and the amazing film crew who have shown us love and support. We look forward to continuing our creative journey in Los Angeles and seeing what the future holds."
The question is, what happens next for the Duggars?
Judging by the media coverage and ongoing attention the family receive, both good and bad, it appears they are not going anywhere anytime soon. "Counting On" is still available on Discovery Plus, and the show is as popular as ever.
"There’s always a level of notoriety with any reality TV families, and the Duggars have certainly lived up to that reputation," Tom Nunan, a former network executive who was president of UPN and a professor at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television, told Washington Post.
He speculated that many shows succeed only if there is controversy, which drives hype.
"The first controversy with the Duggars was the epic nature of how many kids there were. But then, of course, it got into the darker side of family life. … Every family has secrets, and they turned out to be no different than any others," he said.
Several of the Duggar daughters remain in the limelight as influencers with popular YouTube channels and Instagram accounts. This type of attention may lead to ways to expand the brand and the family.
"Typically, these things come down to the executive suites at networks, and down to the advertising and sales departments, the ones who step forward to the programmers and say, 'We can’t sell this anymore. We’re not attracting the kind of brands we need to support this show, and it’s becoming a liability for us,'" said Nunan. "When it reaches a tipping point, it usually comes from ad sales, that it just doesn’t make sense as a business anymore."
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.