ABC's decision to cancel its long-running sitcom Last Man Standing has sparked a backlash among fans, with some calling for a boycott of the network. Reacting to the news last night, the show's star Tim Allen wrote that he was "stunned and blindsided" by the cancellation.
Given that Last Man Standing performed relatively well for the network in its Friday night time slot, some fans have speculated that the cancellation was due to Allen's politics, and specifically his on Jimmy Kimmel Live back in March about what it's like to be a conservative in Hollywood.
During a conference call with reporters on Tuesday, ABC entertainment president Channing Dungey said that the show was cancelled due to programming strategy, and not politics. "A large part of these jobs are managing failure and we've made the tough calls and canceled shows that we'd otherwise love to stay on the air," Dungey said, per . "That's the job... Last Man Standing was a challenging one for me because it was a steady performer in the ratings, but once we made the decision not to continue with comedies on Fridays, that was where we landed."
But that hasn't stopped fans from protesting the decision – to save the show currently has more than 200,000 signatures. That petition hails Last Man Standing as a rare example of a show that "extols conservative values", and "one of the only shows on broadcast television, and the only sitcom, that is not constantly shoving liberal ideals down the throats of the viewers." The petition encourages fans to boycott all ABC shows, in a bid to get the network to change its mind.