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For several weeks now, we’ve been hearing reports that the Duggar family’s reality show, Counting On, had been canceled amidst declining ratings and growing controversy.
The rumor was the result of little more than silence from both the Duggars and TLC with regard to a renewal of the long-running series, but that was enough to send some fans into a state of premature mourning.
After all, if the show had been canceled, it wouldn’t come as too much of a shock.
Criticism of the Duggars has grown louder in recent months thanks to transphobic comments made by Derick Dillard during a series of bizarre social media tirades.
But the family has survived countless scandals in the past, and it looks as though the Duggars will successfully weather this latest storm, as well.
According to a new post from the ever-popular Duggar news Facebook page Life Is Not All Pickles and Hairspray, Joy-Anna and Jana Duggar were recently spotted filming scenes at an Arkansas beauty salon.
The page even posted photo evidence to prove that the girls are currently filming:
Pickles and Hairspray also shared an extensive list of things that we can expect to see on the show this season, along with a few things we most certainly will not see.
That list includes, of course, Josh Duggar and Derick Dillard (the former is still in exile, the latter has either been fired by TLC or quit the show of his own volition, depending on whom you believe).
Apparently, we also won’t see any of the Duggar girls wearing pants, even though several of Jim Bob and Michelle’s daughters have been favoring a more modern sartorial style in recent months.
The page sardonically informs fans that they also won’t be seeing, “The real religious views of the Duggars even though they consider the show their Christian ministry.”
Burn. Needless to say, Pickles isn’t exactly Jim Bob’s favorite Facebook page.
But hey, Duggar fans are likely just ecstatic that they’ll soon be treated to another season of fundamentalist hijinks.
There’s been no official word regarding a premiere date as of yet, but TLC sources have indicated that the show will return in spring of 2018.
Watch Counting On online to get caught up in time for what should be a gloriously Derick-less season.
We know that Amy and Matt Roloff are feeling the Christmas spirit already, but is TLC in the giving mood?
Because we still haven’t heard any word about when Little People, Big World is returning for another season. When it comes to a series renewal, no news is usually bad news.
So we had to go to Amy Roloff’s social media to find Little People, Big World‘s fate.
The Roloff family has defied the odds, year after year.
Reality shows can be amazing, but those that strive to be educational by highlighting a misunderstood minority group often struggle with ratings.
Remember all of the “controversy” about All-American Muslim, that TLC series about 5 Muslim families living in Dearborn, Michigan?
Bigots were coming out of the woodwork to protest it because they felt threatened that other people have the audacity to exist, basically. But the families on the show were just normal people.
In fact, they were so normal and even boring that the show was canceled after one season because people weren’t watching.
And I Am Cait isn’t around anymore. It was supposed to educate the public about trans women as Caitlyn Jenner explored living as her authentic self.
but it turns out that filming a bunch of women on a bus who go take salsa lessons or whatever isn’t must-watch TV.
Why do we bring up these shows?
Because Matt and Amy Roloff didn’t decide to make their family into reality stars just for kicks. They wanted to educate viewers about little people and their lives, in a way that Little Women: L.A. certainly wasn’t going to do.
Despite the educational nature and general normality of the Roloffs, they’ve managed to keep Little People, Big World on the air for years.
Why? Because viewers love them.
Not just Matt and Amy, who are no longer together and have found new romances with new partners.
But their children, Jeremy and Zach and Molly and Jacob. And their partners. And, most recently, fans have gotten to know and love the Roloff grandchildren.
Last spring, Zach Roloff and Tori welcomed their first child: a precious baby boy named Jackson Roloff.
In early September, Jeremy and Audrey Roloff welcomed their baby girl, Ember Jean, into the world.
Viewers who don’t keep track of the Roloffs between seasons haven’t yet “met” Ember, but we know that they’ll get to love her … if they get the chance to see her.
Little People, Big World season schedules have been almost random — in 2016, the season began in the fall. This year, it premiered in, what? May?
But it’s been clear for a while that we wouldn’t be getting new episodes during the autumn months.
In two weeks, winter will officially begin. (There’s snow rapidly accumulating outside of my window as I write this)
But not only has a new season not begun, TLC hasn’t even announced a premiere date. This is worrying to countless fans of the series and the Roloff family.
Thankfully, when networks don’t announce things, sometimes the stars themselves step up.
Previously, Amy had predicted that the series would premiere in January of 2018.
Much more recently, on Facebook, Amy posted this:
“No word here that our show is ending. We don’t have a … confirmation on when the new episodes will air. We are hearing in March or earlier in the new year.”
That is sounding like an agonizing wait.
But we need to look at this as good news: Little People, Big World is getting a new season!
Truth be told, we figured that it was, as we’ve heard a lot about the Roloffs filming a new season, even featuring baby Jackson!
So not only is Little People, Big World coming back, it’s likely going to feature two new stars: Jackson and Ember Jean!
We’ve also heard that Jacob Roloff, the “black sheep” of the family who spent some time estranged from his parents, has been repairing his relationship with the family and especially with his mother, Amy.
That said … don’t hold your breath for Jacob to show up on camera again. The show is still a sore spot for him.
Of all of the reality star families on television, few — if any — are more controversial than the Duggars.
They’re so controversial, in fact, that 19 Kids and Counting was cancelled years ago. Most of the Duggar clan can still be seen on Counting On.
But since the last season ended, there’s been no official word of renewal. Has TLC finally canceled Counting On?
The Duggars were always going to be controversial. When you exist on the political and religious fringes of society and view normal American culture as some sort of contaminant, people are going to raise their eyebrows.
When you have 19 children, whom you endeavor to keep isolated from most of society as you groom them to share your worldview, people are going to talk.
When you believe that women are effectively the property of their fathers until they are traded off to their husbands, when you don’t allow the wearing of pants by girls in your household, people are going to be alarmed.
But all of that is what made 19 Kids and Counting such a talked about series. The supervised “courtships” and side-hugs, Michelle Duggar’s hair, and the very concept of having 19 children made the Duggars an entertaining family for some.
Others watched, with concern and fascination, realizing that there are other families in the US whose children are forced to grow up this way — barely even knowing that their experiences are so extreme.
None of that is what got 19 Kids and Counting canceled, however.
Back in 2015, 19 Kids and Counting was canceled by TLC.
And Jim Bob Duggar and Michelle had covered it up.
So, suddenly, Counting On became the vehicle for the Duggars to espouse their worldview — without Josh, of course. And, initially, without Jim Bob and Michelle.
But Counting On hasn’t exactly been scandal-free, either. We don’t just mean the “scandals” for the Duggar family, like Duggar daughters wearing pants or Joy-Anna Duggar’s very probably shotgun wedding or Jill Duggar’s nose piercing.
We mean actual scandals.
Like the one that got Derick Dillard fired from Counting On. Derick and Jill had been slammed multiple times for shadily begging fans for money to help with their already controversial “mission trips.”
But what got Derick Dillard fired by TLC was his ongoing, one-sided feud with fellow TLC star Jazz Jennings.
Jazz is a teenage star of her own series, I Am Jazz. What stuck in Derick Dillard’s craw was that Jazz is trans, and Derick believes that “transgender is a myth.”
Which is an odd thing to say about a teenage girl who literally exists. It’s also the kind of statement that leads to real-world violence against trans women.
Derick continued to attack Jazz over social media and to misgender her at every opportunity, until finally TLC had enough.
The question remains: will Derick Dillard’s firing lead to the cancellation of the entire series?
The Josh Duggar scandal hasn’t actually gone away, except (apparently) in the minds of the Duggars.
Counting On has had six seasons. But we don’t know if there will be a seventh.
Inquisitr reports that TLC posted that Counting On had been renewed … only to immediately delete the post.
That’s a clue … but of renewal for season seven, or of cancellation?
It may be that TLC intended to release the renewal announcement, and accidentally posted it early. That happens sometimes when you’re scheduling a post for a future date.
It may also be the case that TLC had scheduled a renewal post a while back … and then forgotten to cancel it when they changed their minds.
The Duggars have posted on their own family blog that they don’t yet know if they’re getting renewed.
Which means that no one outside of TLC knows.
The fact that TLC hasn’t openly declared whether the Duggars are getting the axe or a renewal is probably a sign that TLC may still be weighing their options.
They’ve already looked at ratings, so there must be other factors that they’re considering. Perhaps things of which the public isn’t even aware.
Our guess is that higher-ups are either still mulling it over … or they’ve decided to cancel Counting On and are waiting for the right time to drop the news.
Perhaps back-to-back with another announcement? Or perhaps over the holidays?
We’ll let you know as soon as we find out, but things are looking grim for fans of the Duggars.
MTV and the Garden State formed an unholy alliance years ago with the debut of Jersey Shore, a harrowing documentary series about the devastating impact of Ed Hardy shirts and tribal tattoos on one sleepy seaside town.
Both parties experienced tremendous good fortune in the years that followed–MTV with the Teen Mom franchise, and Jersey with the slow, meatball hoagie-fueled decline of Governor Chris Christie.
So hopes were high when it was announced that the network execs who gave us Snooki and the state that gave us Springsteen would once again be joining forces for Teen Mom: New Jersey.
The project was announced over the summer, and MTV immediately cranked the hype machine up to 11.
Within days, there was sky-high anticipation from the same demographic that made Teen Mom: OG and Teen Mom 2 smash hits.
Social media pages were launched, and the identities of the show’s stars were teased as though they were the members of a new Simon Cowell-founded pop group.
So you can imagine the waves of surprise and chagrin that rippled across the internet yesterday when The Ashley’s Reality Roundup reported that MTV had pulled the plug on Teen Mom: New Jersey before the show ever made it to air.
Yes, it seems that the show will never see the light of day, and its “stars” are every bit as confused as its potential audience.
“Last weekend the girls on the show got calls basically informing them that the show isn’t going to air,” a source tells The Ashley.
“They didn’t really give them an explanation—just the standard ‘We’re moving in another direction’ line. The girls are really upset because they’ve worked so hard on this project and were really excited for its premiere.”
Details are scarce, but it sounds as though MTV simply passed on the show, presumably after getting their first glimpse at the finished product.
It’s worth noting that the show was not produced by 11th Street Productions, the company responsible for the 16 and Pregnant and the original Teen Mom shows.
It’s another reminder that you can capture lightning in a bottle twice, but not three times, as Teen Mom 3 so poignantly reminded us.
Sigh. At least we’ll always have the original series.
So practice some self-care and watch Teen Mom: OG online to get yourself through this difficult time.
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Counting On aired its most recent season finale last month, but the TLC series’ future – and the Duggar family’s – is very much up in the air.
Rumors of Counting On being canceled by TLC were fueled by the network deleting a post announcing the show’s renewal for Season 7.
Never a good sign … but is there anything to it?
Fans surely recall that in 2015, 19 Kids and Counting was canceled on the heels of the Josh Duggar molestation and adultery scandals.
Despite that fall from grace, the network repackaged it as Jill and Jessa Duggar: Counting On, not featuring Josh, less than one year later.
The controversial spinoff, later shortened to just Counting On, has chugged along ever since, despite being on thin ice ratings-wise.
Ironically, or perhaps fittingly, ridding the series of Josh Duggar hasn’t made the viewing experience as vanilla as executives might like.
That’s because a new “villain” of sorts has stepped in to take his polarizing place, and one that no one would’ve expected a few years back:
Jill’s husband, Derick Dillard.
Forget about what you see on the air; Derick’s controversial posts and comments on social media may be tearing the Duggars apart.
Things have gotten so bad in recent months that Dillard’s absence from the family’s Facebook page can’t be an accident or coincidence.
The crazy part is how deliberate he is; Duggar family members are all under a microscope, but he goes out of his way to stir the pot online.
Derick sparked controversy online by bashing TLC star Jazz Jennings as an “oxymoron” and saying that being “transgender” is a myth.
While he defends this as freedom of speech instead of bigotry, he doesn’t exactly pass up a chance to publicly share his divisive views.
The question is whether he – and more significantly, his giant family of in-laws – will pay a heavy price for this recurring behavior pattern.
Reports of Derick Dillard cheating on Jill Duggar are likely untrue, but the fact that he’s become a magnet for gossip speaks volumes.
Slowly but surely, he may be sinking this ship.
Counting On began with a smaller audience than 19 Kids, and what remained of the viewership then began to steadily decline further.
The Duggars have managed to stay afloat for two years under those circumstances, but how much more heat can the family endure?
Gossip about the Duggars’ imminent demise isn’t new, in large part because a growing chorus of critics would love to see that day come.
Given the dark cloud that will always linger over the reality series, how long with TLC conclude that it’s worth keeping this on the air?
With Derick emerging as a figure that Duggar detractors hate with a passion, they’re hardly shoring up the support they need at this stage.
If we had to venture guess?
We’d say TLC hasn’t made up its mind one way or another, and is having a lot of internal discussions about the direction they’re going in.
Perhaps the powers that be are waiting to see if any better show ideas come along before rolling the dice on another year of Duggar.
Or they are fully prepared to bring Counting On back but are taking an offseason break from hyping it up in light of recent controversies.
It’s also possible that the show returns with Derick getting the Josh Duggar treatment … sun glare and kids in front of face included.
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