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Last Man Standing returns to airwaves

By Maya Gaynier
On November 1, 2018

Despite differing political views, the cast of "Last Man Standing" are portrayed as getting along.

The much-anticipated sitcom “Last Man Standing” is back from the dead.
Last Man Standing first premiered on ABC in October of 2011. This sitcom ran for 6 seasons before being cancelled. “Last Man Standing” has returned this fall and premiered its seventh season on FOX.
When the show was canceled, a petition from fans speculated that it was because of the conservative views of the main character Mike Baxter, played by Tim Allen. 
“‘Last Man Standing’ is 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. And sadly, that is likely the real reason the show has been cancelled,” the petition stated.
However, ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey explains the real reason why the show was canceled. She said scheduling, ratings, critical acclaim, and ownership were all considered when canceling the show. Dungey stressed that political views were not considered in the decision to cancel the show.
“I wouldn’t say that was the deciding factor,” she said.
The premiere episode drew eight million viewers, a number that had not been reached since season four. Additionally, it was FOX’s most-watched comedy on any night in almost seven years.
However, fans have mixed reactions to this reboot. 
One area of displeasure involves the recasting of Mandy Baxter, the middle daughter on the show. This was a big change, as fans had grown to love the actress in the original six seasons. Unhappy viewers sent many negative messages to the new actress, Molly McCook, including the hashtag #NotMyMandy.
McCook spoke out against these negative reactions.
“The people who are trolling and being very negative are never going to be happy with such a big change,” she said. “But the hardcore fans of the show have been extremely supportive, which was so helpful.”
Despite the political comments on the show, fans find the family aspect more important.
“‘Last Man Standing’ was not just selling conservative ideals though as some of the characters in the show are clearly of the liberal persuasion,” the petition stated, “yet the characters on the show all manage to get along and take care of one another despite their politically opposed views.
“The show is about more than politics though, it is about family.”
Nancy Travis, who plays Vanessa Baxter, also stressed the importance of the family aspect on Last Man Standing.
“We’re a show about a family who has different viewpoints and that family still manages to find their way to each other and be a family,” she said.

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