Scandal Fall Finale Back on ABC.com After Being Pulled in Wake of Newtown Tragedy

KERRY WASHINGTONABC.com over the weekend temporarily removed a gun-heavy episode of Scandal from its player “out of respect for those affected by the tragic events” in Newtown, Conn., the network hub explained. UPDATE: On Monday evening, the episode was restored online.

The episode in question, from Dec. 13, shed light on the shooting of President Grant, by rifle. But perhaps most relevant, it involved the tragic murder of an entire family – kids included.

Following the mass shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Fox pulled new episodes of Family Guy and American Dad! and a Die Hard-themed repeat of The Cleveland Show Sunday, out of a concern that the programming contained offensive material.

On Friday – the same day as the event that left 27 victims, many of them children, dead – Syfy pre-empted a Haven episode that featured violence at a fictional high school.

Unlike the Fox and Syfy examples, however, ABC’s content had aired before the shootings and was only available on demand.

What do you think about ABC’s decision? Sound off in the comments.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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45 Comments
  1. James R. says:

    Lol.. LETS GET RID OF ALL SHOWS THAT HAVE A GUN IN IT.

    • respect says:

      Lol? Really?! It’s disrespectful. And pulling this episode is out of respect, plain and simple.

      • J says:

        From the air I get. From an on-demand web service post-airing, a little arbitrary. I understand the better-safe-than-sorry approach, but nobody would theoretically be clicking it if they didn’t want to watch a shooting aftermath. There was no “stumble on” factor.

        • Britta Unfiltered says:

          You don’t know that. A lot of people only watch TV online and have no idea what happened on an episode when it aired. It’s possible they could have started up the episode having no idea what was going to happen on it.

        • jenna says:

          considering the episode in question aired the night before the Newton shooting (thursday at 10) Its not surprising that many people would want to watch it on friday instead. However had the episode aired earlier in the week before the events, I would consider pulling it arbitrary as well

    • Red says:

      Amen to that. Too bad ABC doesn’t get rid of Rhimes as all she knows is shooting and/or killing people – her idea of entertainment.

      • Mistymi says:

        Forget Rhimes. You have had violence as entertainment forever. Now you want to get rid of a single player??? I bet there is some undertone that I don’t know about yet. What else is it that you don’t like about Rhimes? Did he or she vote wrong? Is this person a member of NRA? To single out a person has to have some other interest for you. I see that this is a “she.” Are you against the woman?

  2. Guy says:

    I actually do think it’s a good decision. I’m not someone who gets offended easily, but I remember watching the scene where they have two kids dead and how I was haunted by the scene, a fictitious one… and then just a few 12 hours later…

    The point is that better safe than sorry in this case.

    • Lisa says:

      I watched it on Friday night off my DVR and I am not going to lie I was sick when I saw that scene. I actually stopped watching and have still not completed the episode.

      It is not the shows fault I understand this, but it was extremely disturbing to me nevertheless. I think it is a classy thing on the part ABC to pull the ep, at least for a few weeks.

    • christina says:

      I watched it live and found the scene hauntingly disturbing, don’t think I would be able to stomach watching it again so close to friday’s events

  3. Sash says:

    right call, the murdered family scene contained very graphic images of children with gunshot wounds. it was disturbing when it aired, and even more so in the wake of friday’s events.

  4. Ben Kabak says:

    I love Scandal!

    • margaretames says:

      Could someone please tell me the name of the episode and when it is back on. It’s not on my TV I don’t think. I love Kerry Washington and I love Scandal. I’ve been asking this for what seems like weeks now and I still haven’t gotten an answer.

  5. Ken Hamilton says:

    I had recorded that episode and watched it Saturday and thought to myself that if hadn’t aired on Thursday it would have had to have been postponed after Friday’s horrible event.

  6. wordsmith says:

    Having seen the episode, I can understand the decision. I don’t think they should just go around pulling every show with gun violence in it willy-nilly, but this one did unfortunately feature lingering images of two children who had been shot dead, which clearly hits a little too close to home right now.

  7. Jon says:

    Instead of the Winter finale (why are all shows doing this now), bring it back as the mid-season opener. After the holidays, enough time will have passed so as not seem too sensitive.

  8. Serena says:

    I agree with the decision. I was haunted by the scene and even more so after what transpired on Friday.

  9. MrMank says:

    Ridiculous!! As with everything else, let the f-ing people decide if they’re gonna watch it!! Why do we need someone to babysit us??!? Out-and-out censorship, and it sucks!

    • soxfan says:

      @MrMank – if any one of those 20 children were yours & you were having to pick out a casket instead of helping them open up their Christmas gifts you wouldn’t be crying out censorship because MrMank, I believe you would be begging God to wake you up from what you think is a horrible nighmare, only you are awake – please, stop about the censorship. This country is in dire need of people with smarts – not smart asses. And let’s not worry about stomping on people’s rights – there are 20 children whose right to live was stomped on by other’s rights to bear arms & then turn that semi-automatic rifle on them – multiple times & tearing tender flesh off of tiny little bones & their body frames – blood spattered everywhere – if that is what you missed watching, I will describe what I believe other students, teachers & first responders actually witnessed – how about if you volunteer to go to Newtown & help clean up the shooters’ bloodbath ….

      • moobear says:

        If any of those kids were yours, in all honestly I doubt you’d care what was and wasn’t available for people to watch online. My heart goes out to those families, but the reality is right now their world has been destroyed and I don’t think anything is able to penetrate their grief. I doubt they care what people watch, I’m not sure any parent is going to be thinking of something like a tv show, when they will be saying goodbye to their child forever.

        ABC was just siding with caution and while I can see why they did, I think that they should of just put a disclaimer and a message about the shooting.

      • Midori004 says:

        If someone in my family was dead I wouldn’t worry about what was on some show online. Get your priorities straight.

      • wh says:

        I am traumatized by your graphic post and believe it should be censored.

    • BBJedi says:

      Censorship is the infringement of free speech imposed by a government. ABC is not a government. Therefore, this is NOT censorship. This was a decision made by the network alone, no one coerced them into pulling the episode. You’re free to disagree with the decision, but it is NOT censorship.

      • Alex says:

        Actually, censorship is not necessarily imposed by a government. You are using an extremely narrow definition of the word. ABC is indeed committing censorship by pulling the episode. Go check a dictionary.

    • Faith says:

      Yes, people decide what they watch. But, the network is fair to assume the majority of the shows audience would not know what was going to occur. I didn’t choose to watch the show because an innocent family was slain for someone else’s agenda. I started to watch it because I enjoy the show and wanted to see the next chapter in the story. If I had known that twist was in the episode, I would have chosen to view at a later date or skip that scene. The network knew what was in it and its most likely effect on a viewership rocked by an insane incident. For once they were being responsible and being accountable.

    • aciel says:

      so your that outraged for a show when ur supposed be thankful that abc didnt put this episode because those kids not only had their lifes taken from them but their future too it really pains me that those children wont get expeireince a lot of things in life. i bet u if one of those children were urs you’d be thankful

  10. K says:

    Yes, keep all the guns and hold tight to your right to a “well armed militia” but god forbid any entertainment actually show a gun or gun related violence. The episode has already aired and its only available online, so unless you actually seek out the episode its pretty much off the public radar. Was it the right call to remove it? Maybe, but are we going to trample the first amendment right so that the second amendment is saved?

  11. prish says:

    Just write the plot for us to see what would have happened, like reading a story. That’s ok.

  12. Jeff says:

    I was hoping to see it on Demand (COMCAST), I think it is stupid that I can’t see it, esp. since all the other episodes in the arc are still on demand

    • Britta Unfiltered says:

      If missing an episode of Scandal is the worst thing that’s happened to you in this last week, then I envy your life. And I’m sure all the people in Newtown envy it as well.

      • Jeff says:

        It not the worst thing, I just think I am mature enough to watch an entertainment show, and be VERY VERY sad and upset over idiots like the Newtown shooter, and I feel I should make that choice not a network

  13. Keenan says:

    Really?

  14. SJ says:

    This pulling of episodes is getting ridiculous. And I don’t even like Scandal…

  15. Jake L says:

    Especially because this already aired, pulling it is a bit much. If it’s online and on demand, only people who want to watch it would seek it out. That said, glad it’s back online now. I watched it Thursday live, it’s still in my DVR and I will probably watch it a few more times before the next episode airs.

  16. Rachel B says:

    Have you all seen the episode? It shows children shot in cold blood. If it was any other weeks episode or just an average cop show with shoot outs I wouldn’t have been bothered. But I think they were being sensitive to this grieving community by pulling it.

  17. Midori004 says:

    I watched it by other means the day after the shooting, I live 50 miles away from it tops.

    This is way too much. It’s a website, what’s the point of pulling it for 2 days?

  18. Faith says:

    I had not watched the episode yet or read anything about it. I was halfway through on my streaming service when I first got the news Friday. The president/rifle storyline didn’t bother me, but when the family scene hit, I couldn’t handle it with it being so close to me first hearing about the kids in CT. I applaud them for realizing how that would affect viewers with it being a shock and how raw emotions were this weekend.

  19. dude says:

    But it was a repeat online. The only people who could watch it are people that searched for it. Was anyone going to really say “hey, you have an episode that aired a week ago on your site and it has a gun in it and even though the only people who can watch are fans of the show that should know what the episode is about, that’s offensive.” It’s not like anyone could stumbled upon it while flipping around.

    • christina says:

      considering the episode aired live a mere 12 hours before, its likely they put up the repeat episode in the wake of the events

  20. Lilith Ilk says:

    By all means. let’s all get obsessed with tv shows featuring guns and shootings and the political correctness of it being aired; and just forget the real guns being sold, used to kill real people, by real people. more than a decade into the 21st century, and USA is still holding on to their gun laws that is a ginormous gateway to these kind of actions. Those were babies that died there. BABIES. The adults should be protecting them, by any means available. And, oh surprise, that includes the law too. Citing the second amendment and saying guns don’t kill people, people kill people is just plain stupid, Because GUNS DO KILL PEOPLE THAT IS THEIR PURPOSE. Surf the net and look for statistics for death by gunshot world wide. Forget about the gunshot. Search for school shootings.. And see which country has the highest numbers. But then again, just forget about it and obsess about a show being shown or pulled out of air. Because obviously, that is the point we should all obsess about.

  21. Mistymi says:

    Gun sales soared in Newtown and other places right after the shooting. What do you think those people plan to do with those guns? As for curtailing the sales of guns to people we consider unsavory, remember that the guns that killed those children belonged to a responsible member of society who just happened to like guns. An assault rifle??? How about banning the sales of bullets as well as guns, but not just from people we desire to label as potential criminals, but all of the “nice” people as well. Australia did, or so I read and heard on Piers Morgan.

  22. Tara says:

    I saw that episode on the Thursday and was so disgusted by how needlessly graphic and horrific it was (i.e dead mother on floor shielding dead child …killed by a person who was glorified as a ‘smart killer’). Why? Both my husband and I wrote the show off – will never watch it again. He was even more angry than me. The next day we woke up to the Sandy Hook horror. There is enough graphic violence in this world – it should never be glorified. I’m done with the show.

  23. Maggie Ames says:

    I can’t even find it on demand. Where is it?

  24. finn says:

    I think it was a very thoughtful as well as respectful decision to not air the show. FYI Rhimes knows more than just shooting and killing.

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