Les Moonves' Axing &
Its Upcoming Impact
Text by: Cyndi Seidelman
It's been quite the hellacious month at CBS so far with a lot of bloodletting taking place all over. For starters, Doug Davidson is no longer on The Young and the Restless after spending 40 years on the show. A stable presence on the show and one of its best characters is now gone for an unknown reason. Then you had 60 Minutes Executive Producer Jeff Fager being fired because of threatening texts he sent to reporter Jericka Duncan as well as the report of sexually harassing multiple female employees. But then there's the big one as the boss himself, Les Moonves, was ousted from his job after two scathing reports by Ronan Farrow of the New Yorker, chronicling his years of sexually harassing female employees, with the last one being the straw that broke the camel's back. So, what does Les' ouster mean for the network?
Well, the main impact is being felt right now by Les' wife, Julie Chen. At the time of the writing of this commentary, she had just announced her departure from The Talk with a pre-recorded video of her leaving. We do not know what will happen with Big Brother, but after her defiant sign-off on Thursday's show, rumor is that she'll no longer be presiding over that show as well after the 20th season wraps at the end of the month. This isn't because she is bad at her job, but she's being a massive hypocrite about the allegations. Flashback to when Bill Cosby was facing all of these allegations and she chastized his wife Camille for staying with someone who was obviously guilty. Now that it's happening to her with Les Moonves, she's sticking by her man and is parroting everything what Camille said during the time the allegations came out about Bill Cosby. If anything, she's being even more defiant than Camille was because Julie Chen still has a career and rakes in millions.
So let's talk about what will happen with CBS' schedule. If anything, don't expect any changes to the Daytime lineup. With Deal, Price, Y&R, Bold and The Beautiful & The Talk dominating daytime, nothing will be cancelled and besides the two staff changes already noted. I don't see anything changing there. I know there are a lot of Anti-Drew people out there who think that this will be the end of Drew's run because Drew was hand-picked by Les Moonves. I say that they are completely diluted if Drew will leave over this. Drew after 11 years has made the show his own and it's up to Drew himself if he leaves the show or not. My money is on not since he's still having the time of his life hosting the show. Having attended a taping this past August, he's great and won't be leaving anytime soon.
The big thing that will change is Primetime. We already know that The Big Bang Theory is ending its run, but the rest of the schedule could see a massive shakeup. Right now, the schedule has no less than 5 reboots. MacGyver, SWAT, Hawaii Five-0, and the upcoming Magnum P.I. and Murphy Brown reboots. I fully expect many of them to go away, along with shows like Criminal Minds. What might also change is the afformentioned Big Brother. While Julie Chen has said she will stay on, the new head will more than likely give her the boot, just to distance themselves from Les. The question becomes the following: Who replaces her?
The rumor mill is swirling hard in this moment. Right now, three names have been bandied about. First on the docket is Big Brother Canada host, Arisa Cox. She would bring a whole new style to the show and is well liked by a lot of Big Brother fans. The problem with her is that she isn't a name in the states. That's usually a big priority when it comes to a big show such as Big Brother. Ross Mathews is another name that's been bandied about by the fanbase. While my thoughts on him hosting Big Saturday Night have been made well known, he is a big fan of the show and would be able to do it justice. What he has going on for him is that he's a name and is still working on E!. Recently, Dr. Will Kirby has also thrown his hat into the potential pool. I'm certain fans might be interested to see how this goes, but I don't see him being the host that he thinks he is. A great player? Absolutely. But can that translate to being a good host? I don't think so.
So what will actually happen? Only time will tell.
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