CBS Diversity White Males

CBS Boss Criticized for White, Male Freshman Class: 'We Need to Do Better'

CBS’ fall TV slate features six new series fronted by a total of eight white men — a glaring fact that network president Glenn Geller was asked to account for on Wednesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour.

“We’re very mindful at CBS abut the importance of diversity and inclusion. We need to do better and we know it,” Geller acknowledged. “We are definitely less diverse this year than last year, and we need to do better.”

Because whereas ABC, NBC and The CW’s new fall shows feature a mix of male and female leads, and Fox’s Pitch is fronted by a young black female, CBS’ Bull, MacGyver, Pure Genius, Man With a Plan, The Great Indoors and Kevin Can Wait count zero females and no non-white actors among their leads.

Geller previously deflected the topic at the May Upfronts by noting that CBS’ returning series offer a better balance, starring actresses such as Tea Leoni, Allison Janney, Anna Faris, Beth Behrs and Kat Dennings, while NCIS: LA and Hawaii Five-0 feature racially diverse ensembles. NCIS, NCIS: New Orleans and Criminal Minds, meanwhile, have respectively added Wilmer Valderrama, Duane Henry, Vanessa Ferlito, Adam Rodriguez and Aisha Tyler as series regulars.

With ensemble casting “we actually were more diverse this year than last year,” Geller maintained on Wednesday at TCA. “Eleven [of 16 series regulars added to fall shows] are diverse, and that is our commitment to diversity. Those aren’t just words, that is real action.

“I understand the inclination to just look at leads,” he continued, “but I do think we also have to look behind the camera,” with writers and directors, “and there we are doing very well.”

Geller also noted that the midseason drama Training Day, for example, features a black co-lead in Justin Cornwell, while Doubt costars transgender actress Laverne Cox as a transgender character, in what he called “historic” casting.

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  1. Sarge says:

    It comes down to what are the casting directors looking for when casting? What directions are they given? What does the show runner ask for? What did the script call for? Was it specific or was it written with a specific actor attached? Look at all these questions and then, if you’re a casting director or writer, ask yourself, are you part of the problem?

    • Ben says:

      If I were a writer, I’d never consider myself part of the problem. I want to write the show I want to write. That doesn’t necessarily call for diversity.

      The problem comes when the network selects a slate of pilots to pick up. If I want to write a show with a non-diverse cast (and there might be legitimate reasons for doing so within the framework of the show I am writing) I should be fighting against other similar shows… my road to getting picked up might be longer, and people writing more diverse shows their road might be shorter, and that’s the way it should be.

      Each network usually has something like 200 shows to look at per season. The problem isn’t that all 200 lack diversity. You should have writers write shows they are passionate about in ways they are passionate about, and then have the network pick a diverse group of shows. Then you will get diversity that isn’t just token diversity.

      • Brooke says:

        If you are a writer, you sure are part of the problem. If you decide to write a show about a cop, and you default to a white male, when the story itself has nothing to do with whiteness or maleness….then why?

        • Ben says:

          Because the character WOULD have something to do with whiteness or maleness – I conceive characters whole and who they are and the way they act is informed by literally who they are. That’s not to say I would necessarily always do that, but there is no way I’d write for others. I’m not the kind of person that would write stories with one-size-fits-all shoes. I’m also not saying I’m only interested in writing white males – but if I was writing one, that is what they would be.

          And no, that isn’t part of the problem. The problem is that if I came up with a show about a 16 year old asbergers asian girl, a network would probably be more likely to pick the show up if I agreed to change the asian girl to a white boy. My characters are my characters. The job of diversity is firmly on the network.

        • DJ Doena says:

          Because “write what you know”. I can write about the experiences of a white straight male, because I’m all of that. I can even write myself as a green Ogre Mage who battles cave trolls. Because no one can tell me “I’m doing it wrong”.

          Me, writing about the experiences of a black woman living in Japan? Blacks, women and people living in Japan might have something to say about my story.

          Take this little example: American actors who can’t speak German but do it in a role? It’s almost always incomprehensible gibberish. You probably don’t mind because for you, it sounds “German enough”. Different-but-same example: When D’Onofrio-as-Fisk spoke Chinese on “Daredevil” it sounded “Chinese enough” for me. But out of curiosity I asked my Chinese colleague what she thought and she basically gave the same “gibberish” assessment.

  2. Dana says:

    Out of all 6 shows I’m going to watch MacGyver’s episode #2 with Amy Acker in it. Other than that I don’t care for any new show on CBS.

    • Josh Knoll says:

      I saw scenes of MacGyver at San Diego Comic Con. It looks so bad! I mean not good bad but bad bad. After one ridiculous scene, my friend and I looked at each other and just rolled our eyes. It’s going to fail as a tv show update/reboot.

      • HAP says:

        They should have rebooted MacGruber instead!

      • Ben says:

        You mean, just like the 80s version? It’s probably hard to reboot an 80s show and make it both good for modern times but true to what the original was.

      • Dana says:

        Nah idk if it’s bad I’m not going to watch Mac anyway. I’ll watch only 1×02 and Amy makes everything look better so her episode probably will be the only good MacGyver’s episode. lol

  3. Kevin K says:

    Did Geller forgot to mention about Doubt the series starring Katherine Heigl set to debut mid-season?

  4. Zayne says:

    All of these shows look terrible and I predict only 1 makes it through the season so they should be happy that it’s all white men because then they get to make another useless and unfoudded point at the end of the season saying “See, I bet if you’d been more diverse, the shows would have been successful”

    If you’re that out for something/someone to criticize, go after the writers or the casting directors. The CBS exec just picked up the shows that he felt had the best shot to be successful. He was likely wrong given how awful these shows look, regardless of the leads. This is a silly article trying to stir stuff up.

  5. rehabber says:

    What happened to picking the BEST actor for the job, does EVERYTHING have to be about affirmative action and PC?

    • Zayne says:

      Of course it does. SJWs are like freaking tribbles nowadays, growing exponentially and requiring more and more PC-ness and Diverse-ness to sate their insatiable hunger for Social Justice!

      • Tony says:

        And the fact you use that ridiculous term to dismiss the argument says alot about you and where you stand

        • Zayne says:

          I’m sure there are people out there that would dismiss a talented and hilarious actor of color based on race and that is a horrible thing that shouldn’t happen. However, this article is repeating a baiting/leading question and the PR response to it. I would be wildly surprised if there was some deep seated racism behind the decision to pick up those shows.

          So yes, I think the ridiculous nature of this article and situation that spawned it warrants the use of a “ridiculous term” to classify it.

          • Tony says:

            But there is some deep seeded racism involved. Or at the very least deep seeded ignorance that stems from deep seeded racism that continues this cycle of the same ole same ole. And honestly , I hope the topic is brought up again and again until there is some actual movement on the matter. Not a show with diverse characters every other season (and no, tired ass NCIS or whatever other paint by numbers procedural they think will shut people up) And once again, the term is ridiculous and dismissive in fact,the need to use it for code for what you really want to say is more insulting

      • Ray says:

        Just a guess, but you’re a privileged white male?

        • Eric H says:

          I’m an Asian male and I find the SJW cause has gotten old, stale, and annoying the past few years. I personally don’t feel the need to have everything reflect my own race because race just doesn’t color everything I think about and do on an average day.

          • Tony says:

            Good for you that you have that luxury. I guarantee you many African Americans would love to go about their day, not having race thrown in their face. Not to mention, there is nothing wrong with wanting to see more of a reflection of our world in our entertainment. No different than any other institution that was/is lily white

          • parstl says:

            Just remember Eric, the road was plowed and paved primarily by African Americans, Native Americans and in certain states Latinos for other minority and ethnic groups. That’s one thing some African Americans resent when they see newer immigrants stick their noses in the air to those of us who have been here in the trenches longer.

          • cryssybee says:

            If you find your culture, ethnicity, and experiences so personally worthless, why are you bothering all of us with your pointless opinions?
            If you want no voice, then keep your mouth closed.

            There are plenty of other Asians who WOULD like to see their stories told on television. They would like to see families like theirs, experiences like theirs, FACES like theirs shown on television.

        • Zayne says:

          I was going to write out a response to your assumptive comment but Eric H pretty well wrapped it up in a bow.

        • Ralph says:

          there is no such thing as white privilege. It’s another excuse for minorities to blame racism on their lack of ambition or the fact that they are twice as likely to commit violent crimes.

    • justsomeguy says:

      You could counter this argument with the fact that there are over 7 billion people on this planet, and you’re telling me that this is the best you can come up with? Over 7 billion people and the best person for the job is another while male? It isn’t entirely about racism, and yet it is because it’s about a complete lack of opportunity for everyone, of all races, which is why you see this come up time and time again because the only answer that makes sense is that networks exclude other races on purpose which is racism. You will never convince me that in this whole wide world, the best person for the job is yet another retread white male to lead another sitcom to cancellation.

      • Cas says:

        I feel like this would be a valid point if all of those 7 billon people were actors. The pool is much smaller though. And say you have it narrowed down to one white male or one black male. But the white one is more qualified. Do you not hire the white one just because he is a white male?

        • Jellymoff says:

          Maybe for PR purposes they should release who else was in the running for the part?

        • Tony says:

          Sure, not all 7 billion people on this planet are actors. But the issue here isn’t just the casting (though it is an issue and many show runners have proven how ridiculous the outdated way of doing it is). Its, once again, a problem that starts from the top.

          • PatriciaLee says:

            I thought the problem started at the bottom, which viewers of a certain age will watch. I assume the elephant in the room is what will get the viewers. People from lands of almost billions are rather picky, too, and there was Moonves saying to go after “international”. I’ve reached the point I will just fast forward to scenes from favorite actors. I’m still bummed out about Detroit 1-8-7 and Almost Human being cancelled.

      • Ralph says:

        America doesn’t make shows for 7 billion people. Especially when 2/3 don’t own a tv. Using your logic more shows should have more Asians than black or Hispanic.
        We make shows for our own citizens and if they have an appeal for non-Americans that’s great. Black people make up less than 13% of Americans. If we really have to use a quota system, one out of every 8 roles in the media should go to a black person. The media more than covers that. There shouldn’t be restrictions on who gets a job based on affirmative action unless it’s severely noticeable that racism is involved. The two most popular shows on Tv are Big Bang Theory and NCIS. The first has no African Americans in it and the second has 2. If every show has to be sufficiently diversified then Empire should have a 60% white cast. Be careful for what you wish for….

    • Preacher Book says:

      Again, it’s the latest twist to deny opportunity to people of color by claiming the “best” person was chosen. And when racism is this systematic, yes everything will be about race.

    • jj says:

      your point only stands if they actually considered non-white actors for the roles. If they only auditioned white actors, it came down to picking the best white actor.

    • cryssybee says:

      Yes, because it’s just a “coincidence” that 9 time sin 10, the “best” actor for the job happens to be a white dude.

      • Ralph says:

        Ummm, let’s see. 30% of the American public are white males and 5% are black males. 6/1 ratio. I’d say probably yes. Why aren’t you asking the same questions about Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder?

        • cryssybee says:

          Umm, let’s see, your statistics make no sense and don’t apply.
          90% of males in America ARE NOT WHITE, so why are 90% of male leads on tv? There are also Latino males, Asian males, Native American males who could headline shows.
          And the reason I’m not asking about Scandal or HTGAWM is because even with those tv shows, there are hardly any network primetime tv shows with black women as leads.
          Over-represtation of black female leads on television isn’t an issue (go ahead, check your statistics on that), but there IS an over-representation of white male leads on television, to the exclusion of everyone else.

          • Ralph says:

            There aren’t 90% of white males leading tv shows. Can you count past 10 without taking your shoes off? Almost half the shows on television have female leads or co leads. Not just Scandal and HTGAWM but also, Madam Secretary, Good Wife, Rizzoli and Isles, Greys Anatomy, Supergirl, Castle, Bones, Empire, Elementary, etc.

            I’ll agree that Latinos and asians don’t get their fair share of representation but women and African Americans do.

  6. jj says:

    Although it’s off topic, I find this statement interesting “starring actresses such as Tea Leoni, Allison Janney, Anna Faris, Beth Ehlers and Kat Dennings”. Thereby acknowledging that Allison Janney is a lead actress despite Allison constantly competing in the supporting actress category at the awards shows.

  7. tannerose5 says:

    Someone is always looking for an argument. CBS has “diverse” actors. I watch CM and NCIS. They both have “diverse” cast members. I don’t care if the color of their skin is red, white, blue, orange, black or not. All I look for is if the actor or actress is best for the part. If I don’t like the show, I’m not going to watch it. Again, I am not looking at the color of anyone’s skin. Are they right for the part. And CM has some very good diverse writers. Don’t know about NCIS.

  8. Rick Katze says:

    You pick the best shows. if they have all black leads, so be it. Quality is not achieved by having diversity. Stop crying if you can’t compete without a special preference.

    • Preacher Book says:

      Yeah, that’s what they said when blacks fought for their right to vote. It’s the newest excuse used to discriminate. Well, that and it’s against my religion to be a decent human being.

    • Tony says:

      I disagree. I do think having a diverse group of actors and actresses (as well as production staff) can contribute to the quality of a show. It certainly doesn’t hurt. And no one is asking for special treatment. Also, what competition are you talking about? How can there be competition when some aren’t even invited to the game in the first place?

  9. Shib says:

    Diversity or special treatment sounds like people want special treatment 12.8 %. Diversity / equality means best person for job or in this case best story

  10. queerbec says:

    These represent the decisions of the senior executives and programming directors at CBS. These are the shows that their gut feelings tell them will be successful and that research tells them will be successful (as well as appeal to their traditional advertisers). Of course, the research is centered around a sample of their target audience, and if they haven’t changed the parameters of their target audience, then these results reflect what their target audience prefers. (Of course, the programs need to be greenlighted before they can be presented to target audiences for intensive review and research). A show runner or producer is also aware of what “sells” to CBS (remember they got rid of Supergirl) so is more likely to propose a lily-white show to the execs with a lily white male star. Let’s face it: that’s the culture at CBS. They know an African-American lead will not provide the comfort and reassurance that an typical CBS audience looks to the network for. Even their “duo” lead shows tend to be two white folks, with remarkably the occasional Asian-American, no doubt a condition that provides comfort and reassurance at least to the President of the network. CBS’s procedurals are designed to wrap up at the end of each episode so that viewers can go to bed knowing all is right with the world and the US has once again brought justice where there has been none. CBS may believe that it is difficult for a person of color or a woman to provide that, as look for example how important Tim Daly and Keith Carradine are to helping Tea Leone confront her issues and problems. And Alicia, while a Good Wife role model, faced serious undermining in every episode and was ultimately looked on with suspicion and distrust by nearly everyone in the cast (and of course she looked on everyone else with the similar suspicion and they looked on each other that way). A CBS lead male lawyer would need to be tough, commanding and authorative as the lead,, while the female lead can be more nuanced, she often veers toward the more helpless. Maggie Q anyone?

  11. Preacher Book says:

    The Donald Trump network???

  12. KLS says:

    And “Drew” with Sara Sashi was “too female”? I am not saying that I liked the show’s premise, but it was hailed as too female and a toss up between it and yet another Katherine Heigel/legal drama.

  13. Brooke says:

    Funny, remember a few months back when they said Drew, starring Sarah Shahi, was deemed too female? Ya..obviously because they have so many female led shows on CBS. Silly me!

    • Ralph says:

      They really do. I was looking forward to Drew because Sarah and Vanessa Ferlito are two of my favorite actors. CBS has no shortage of female led tv shows.

  14. tara17 says:

    I love the header picture. All these 40ish white males. To be fair, they all seem to be quite assertive and seem to know what they’re doing :-)

    I’d love to see next season’s header with leads of various cultures and genders (including one white dude, to be fair).

  15. G says:

    The site, and this page in particular, is all wonky in my Chrome browser. Multiple ads were playing sound over each other, and forcing the page down to the bottom ad multiple times instead of letting me read the piece.

  16. Mr. Smith says:

    When will people stop looking at supposed diversity and start looking for absolute talent? So what if all the “new” comedies feature a white guy??? Do they not have other actors that are female, darker skin, etc.???

    • Katherine215 says:

      They’ll stop doing that when white privilege is no longer a thing that exists in our society. So, not any time soon.

      • Ralph says:

        White privilege doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Black people make up 12.6% of the public but are more likely to commit 50% of the crime. Want old white ladies to stop clutching their purses tighter when black guys enter her elevator? Start holding the black thugs most likely robbing her accountable instead of the black community covering for them.

        • cryssybee says:

          Ralph, white people never cease to amaze me when they put forward arguments like this. ESPECIALLY considering the history of the world.
          If anything, white people should be the LAST ones demanding that every person must take responsibility for, or be judged by, the misdeeds of the members of their race.
          If that were the case, you, and every other white person on this planet would be locked up from birth until death.

          • Ralph says:

            Were not saying every black male is a thug but when they are most likely to perpetrate the crime people will look at their skin color and form of dress with a jaundiced eye. If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck and quacks like a duck? It’s a duck! You’re racism is showing. White people aren’t the only race that has performed evil acts on the world population. I think it can be spread around pretty equally. From Nazis to African head hunters to Pol Pot. No race holds the patent on it.

        • cryssybee says:

          My point Ralph, is that if you want to judge people because of the crimes committed by members of their race, I promise you, white people will come out worse. As far as I know, African head-hunters have not been responsible for multiple genocides on a global scale. White Europeans have.

          Additionally, the link between race and crime is incredibly weak when controlled for poverty. The link between poverty and crime is much stronger, as is the link between urban areas and crime vs say, suburban or rural areas.

          Meaning that being poor and living in an urban area has a greater tie to criminality than just race alone.

          Blacks in America have always been over-represented in the lowest socioeconomic ranks since this nation’s inception. From 1776 until 2016, America has never managed to not marginalize blacks en-masse into poverty at a greater rate than whites.

          Furthermore, phenomenons like white flight, red-lining, and discriminatory lending have corralled black people–even those with good jobs, credit, and savings–into lower income urban areas.

          Whatever the crime rate is among black people in America, it is the direct cause of this nation’s legacy of discrimination, racism, and marginalization of blacks.

          It’s a problem that persists because people like you would rather paint black people as boogey-man thugs, than acknowledge the societal and instructional racism we’re shamefully carrying into yet another century.

          • Ralph says:

            Really? I see you as an excuse maker/ apologist for bad behavior. Yes racial economic conditions have some responsibility but not all. I don’t paint all black people that way but a large enough group would rather blame racism than take personal responsibility. Opportunities are there. People just have to take the initiative to take advantage of them. If anything, it’s you Social Justice Warriors that would rather give some of them excuses to give up and not make an effort.

          • Ralph says:

            Google Idi Amin. When given the opportunity, despots occur in every race.

    • cryssybee says:

      Let’s tease out the logic of this argument:

      All white casting = hiring the “most talented” actors
      Diversity in casting = looking for “less” talented actors

      Ergo, the most talented actors in Hollywood are white, and all the non-white actors in Hollywood are simply less talented than the white actors, otherwise non-white actors would also receive leading roles.
      If talent must be the determining factor in casting leads, it follows that the lack of non-white leads can only be explained by a lack of talent among every single non-white actor in Hollywood.

      Now, not only does this argument defy the bounds of mathematical probabilities, but it defies the bounds of decency and intelligence, because the only way you could actually believe this is if you are a racist or a moron, maybe both.

      • Ralph says:

        You’re assumption has too many holes in it. Acting talent doesn’t guarantee a successful career in show business. It’s all about charisma. Some awfully bad actors have had lengthy careers and some incredible thespians haven’t been able to eke out a living. Even after winning accolades like Oscars. Diversity doesn’t mean less quality actors. It means trying to fill a quota system. We don’t have a problem with African Americans and Hispanics dominating sports. Asians are considered great mathematicians and scientists. Why is there a problem with Caucasians dominating acting roles? Why is it okay to think that a race is a known factor for excelling in a field as long as that race isn’t white? Not only is availability a factor but also a lack of training. There are more Caucasians so there are bound to be more Caucasian actors so logic would dictate more availability. If good actors get the chance they will usually make a living if the public likes them enough to support them. There is just as big a percentage of unemployed white actors as there are minority ones. There are some very good non-white actors (like Idris Elba, Viola Davis and Morgan Freeman, Andy Garcia, Ben Kingsley,etc). They just don’t outnumber the white ones. At least not in this country.

  17. Douglas from Brazil says:

    I don’t see any problem with white male leads.

  18. Michelle says:

    Truth, and diversity isn’t making a show featuring a white woman either…

  19. Susan says:

    This is the type of crap that pisses me off! You hire the best person for the job. I’m so over the fact that they are white and not of another race or gender. Enough of the PC and diversity. Unbelievable!

  20. Liz says:

    I’m always curious as to how many people actually care about this? Like someone said oh I really liked the show but it has a white male lead and noooo diversity so I’m out. People watch things they like… i don’t know anyone who considers the actors race or sexual orientation as part of their criteria in deciding what to watch.

    • Jason says:

      This is such a white thing to say. Its so privileged. Go your entire life with your features, skin color, race, religion now being represented and see how you feel being told in art. you do not matter.

      • Zayne says:

        Honestly, attitudes like yours are no healthier, assuming anyone that says race/orientation/religion doesn’t factor into what they like and watch must be white and privileged. Your type of attitude is just as inflammatory as the crazy white racist on the other side of the aisle. Some of us are tired of the “agree with us 100% or gtfo” attitude that seems to permeate every single discussion on this topic.

        Did I miss a quote in there somewhere where the exec said he picked those shows because he doesn’t think shows with people of color in the lead matter?

        • jj says:

          Your comment doesn’t hold up. If Liz’s comment was simply about her and how she chooses what shows she watches, that would be fine. But her comment is about everyone in general stating that she doesn’t get why this is an issue at all and why anyone cares about this. Her comment minimizes the feelings of people in minority groups (as does yours). It’s not difficult to step out of your own perspective and try seeing the situation from someone else’s perspective if you actually try. I’m a white male and can easily see the issue of a lack of representation on television. Regarding your comment about there being no quote from the exec, not all forms of discrimination are explicit discrimination. I recommend you read up on the subject including issues such as in-group favoritism.

          • Zayne says:

            I’m not sure what about my comment needs to be held up. My comment was specifically directed at Jason’s equally unproductive and inflammatory response to someone not seeing the issue. I’m pointing out to him that his kneejerk and aggressive response is not going to pull anyone new into an awareness of the issue he’s championing. Not entirely sure how that minimizes his feelings.

            A healthier discussion for everyone would be saying. Alright, what were you options this season? If there were pilots with non-white leads, why were they rejected? Why were non-white actors not hired instead of the ones chosen? Who was in the running? Let’s get a better picture of the facts. This article is written in a very click-baity way (and it worked).

            The last part of my comment was clearly hyperbolic and based on your response, I’m pretty sure you’re smart enough to have recognized that and decided to write back and sound smug and superior anyway. So, well done on that front.

        • Ben says:

          The question isn’t about what people like and watch. The question is whether or not, when people who are in minorities sit down and watch what they like to watch, what are the odds of them seeing people like them? What are the odds of those people surviving on the show? What are the odds of them being the ‘good’ characters?
          And the reason this is important is well documented in research, because it’s clearly linked to institutional equality which is known to improve average outcomes for people in those groups. That’s women, racial minorities, LGBT etc… higher education, lower suicide, lower crime rates etc.
          So, if you care about those things, and if you care about people (on average) from those kind of groups, you would care about things like diversity on TV, even if you yourself don’t gain anything from it.
          I don’t have a ‘agree 100% or gtfo’ attitude, but I do come from the background of thinking ‘it should always be the best person for the job’ and what’s more I continue to agree with that idea, and the idea that writers should be entitled to say ‘I envision this character to be a white man’. I think that’s important. But it’s on the network to choose a range of shows that provide fare that is diverse overall because of the things I mention above. I didn’t used to understand the impact, but now I do, and that’s what has changed my perspective.

    • Tony says:

      I’m pretty sure a lot of people do. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

    • KLS says:

      No, but if there is a kick-ass, intelligent female as a lead, I WILL try that over another 40ish white male lead.

    • jj says:

      The people who care about this are the people who are from a minority group. There are many cases of actors/actresses from a minority group speaking about how growing up they didn’t feel represented in tv shows/movies and the huge effect it had on them when they eventually saw someone that looked like them featured on tv or in movies. It’s not about it being a criterion in deciding what they watch, it’s about tv and movies being representative of the population.

  21. Michael Summerset says:

    You also have to consider CBS’s core audience. CBS was just trying to pick the shows it’s audience watches. CW gets the young people. ABC tends to get the women. NBC and FOX play to the minorities. I doubt they realized there was a lack of diversity until after they had picked the shows.

    Of course with Bull and MacGyver the lead had already been determined because of the material that proceeded it.

    Also consider that they’re only dealing with the main character even though the show may be an ensemble show with a diverse cast.

  22. Karen T. says:

    I have never been a fan of most CBS shows, with the exception of one or two, like Elementary or some of their summer fare, but I think in their arrogance in choosing to make people pay for their on-demand services that they’re making a grave mistake. I would love to watch the new Star Trek-Discovery series, but I refuse to pay extra for a network station that I only watch a couple of shows on. If people want to make a stand against them and their non-diverse new shows and on-demand premiums, best bet is to not watch and don’t pay.

  23. R Kelly says:

    I am sick to death with political correctness. So, CBS features six (6) new series with white male leads. CBS already has quite a few successful series with female leads and a very good amount of racial parity as it stands. All of which are coming back for at least another season. So, all of you racial and political correctness jerks out there give it a rest.

  24. amy says:

    Yes, NCIS, NCIS:LA, NCIS:NOLA, Criminal Minds, and so fort, are so diverse what with their one woman and one african american character (and half the time they’re the same person), to go with their 10 white male characters

    • Bri says:

      FYI Criminal Minds cast is comprise of 4 men and three women. Of the three women one is African American. Of the 4 men two are from minorities groups.

      On the behind the scene, the show runner is a woman, half the writers are women and one of them a man from a minority.

  25. hey here’s a statistic for you; white people make up 66% of the total population. tv is a business not a charity organization and the fact is they need advertisers to sustain that business. you racist agitators need to stop creating trouble where there is no reason too. it’s entertainment!

    • DIB says:

      I can’t help but think that diversity is just as important from a business perspective though. I mean just look at how well Empire is doing in the ratings.

      • Ralph says:

        Empires ratings have fallen dramatically since it premiered. It’s stil a hit but also gets clobbered in the ratings by NCIS and The Big Bang Theory every week.

  26. Wesley says:

    Perfect opportunity for them to do a Root x Shaw spinoff. :)

    • Ben says:

      So, what, the Machine creates a physical manifestation of itself, in the form of Root? This would get awkward fast…

      • Wesley says:

        I think there’s a lot of ways they could go. It could be set in a different reality. I mean, the ep in which Root died they had a whole debate on reality and whether or not the reality they were in was even real to begin with. If all else fails, there’s the resurrection rout. Crazier things have been done in genre television than that. Smart writers could come up with some amazing ideas for either scenario, in my opinion.

    • Dana says:

      Please top with this spin-off ideas. Root is dead and Amy Acker needs her own show. Period.

  27. Robberey says:

    There are way too many blacks on BET…….

    • Amanda says:

      Actually Gary Owens got his own show on BET…now go over to CMT and find me an “all black cast” show and then your argument will stick!

    • luke says:

      You understand the difference between a network targeted towards everyone excluding non-white people (50% of their audience) and a network aimed at a single demographic right?
      BET is black content aimed at a black audience, so of course the narrative focus is of course black people… getting peeved off at them is like getting peeved at cartoon network for not having more adult stories, when of course they don’t, its made for kids.

  28. Hannah says:

    limitless had a pretty diverse cast. Yes I’m still very bitter

  29. Piers says:

    The US population is 75% white. And like it or not a majority don’t gravitate toward shows that feature/star other ethnicities. IMO the current media particularly TV ads is over saturated with people of color.

    • ScottJ says:

      This is pretty much the point people like to ignore. The networks pick up shows they hope will get good ratings. The biggest part of the potential audience is generally not interested in shows with ethnic / minority leads. So you can be as rude as you like about the network choices but all they’re doing is reflecting the discriminatory attitudes of the wider society.

      • cryssybee says:

        Actually, the non-Hispanic white population is down to about 60%, as per the US census department’s 2015 numbers.

        But the REAL point people pretty much like to ignore with the “N% of America is white” argument, is that it proposes that white Americans are incapable of identifying with non-white protagonists.
        It further proposes that non-white television audiences should be perfectly fine having to identify with (almost) nothing BUT white people.

        So basically, white people shouldn’t have to watch non-white people on television, but non-white people are expected to watch white people, or simply not watch television at all.

        Sounds like racism to me.

        • Ralph says:

          Rubbish. White audiences were responsible for much of the success of The Cosby Show, Sanford and Son, Jeffersons, Empire, etc. They wouldn’t have made sequels to Beverly Hills Cop movies or Rush Hour films if it wasn’t for white audiences. Most people don’t care as long as they’re entertained. Just about every cast today has one or more minorities in it. Are we going to ever see a 50/50 split? Probably not and why should we? It’s not a fair representation of Americans. The people doing the most complaining don’t want a fair dispersal of the work. They won’t be happy until they have a monopoly.

        • Ralph says:

          It is not a one extreme or another situation. The overwhelming majority of white people will watch a show with black characters. Probably the same percentage as black people will watch a show with white characters. NCIS is the most watched scripted tv show on any network and while its cast is mostly white it does fulfill its AA quota with Rocky Carroll. One out of eight, remember? It still gets a diverse audience. The percentage of black people in the country is not big enough to make a hit out of any show unless they watch it as a monolith. Even Empire wouldn’t be a hit without white folks.
          White people watch black led tv shows all the time. Sanford and Son and Cosby wouldn’t have been hits without us. It’s not that most of don’t like nonwhites in our tv shows. We’re just tired of the people getting their fair share whining about it. Asians, Latinos and Native Americans are definitely underrepresented. Whites and blacks are not!

    • Ben says:

      In my experience, Americans are actually pretty good at watching good TV no matter what the demographics of the actors/actresses are.

    • cryssybee says:

      And that’s the crux of the problem. Either wrongfully or rightfully, white people audiences seem to only be expected to identify with white protagonists. For whatever reason, either they can’t, or are never asked, see non-whites people as fellow human beings with worthy stories to tell that parallel their own experiences, or can expose them to new experiences and viewpoints.

      Frankly, if I were white I’d be insulted at that assumption. I’d probably like to think of myself as not being that small-minded, ignorant, and backwards.

      But then we have people like you Piers, who seem to be outright offended by the idea of having to look at non-white people on your television screen.

  30. Mary S says:

    Quite frankly, the only one of the new Can’t be Sensible network shows that even remotely interests me is Bull, and the only reason I would give it a try is because of Michael Wetherly. I watched (and stay loyal to) the original MacGyver and have no interest in seeing a poor knock-off, and none of the rest of them sound like anything I would like.
    I will continue watching (with joy!) all of the versions of NCIS plus the other returning shows I love…but , nothing in the new lineup captures my attention at all.
    I don’t care if the leads are male, female, transgender, white, black, pink, purple or green, the storylines, as described, simply do not capture my attention. Sadly, most of the shows I liked have been cancelled and I no longer want to become involved with characters who will soon disappear.
    Granted, the cancellations have occurred across-the-board at all networks, but I am tired of getting into a show and having it replaced with drivel, so I will be watching the returning shows and spending a lot of time with the Food Network, Netflix and HULU.

  31. JosiahBartlet4President says:

    One more reason not to watch anything on CBS! That and the fact that now that The Good Wife is gone, all their shows are crap except for Mom.

  32. Teresa Kay says:

    It should come down to the quality of the show, and the quality of the actor, race and religion should never be brought into it….

  33. hank ronson says:

    From the same network that got rid of person of interest. Michael Emmerson should have won the emmy. TEAM MACHINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  34. MTB says:

    Are you kidding me with this? I would love to put a show on TV called “White-ish”. I would love to have a channel called “WET”. Tell black people to write something and take it to the networks. Was “Uncle Buck” black? NOOOOO! Now it is a black family. What do you want?

  35. danoregon says:

    It isn’t just that the shows have white male leads – it is that they are so unimaginative.

  36. peterwdawson says:

    Same old, really. Default White Guy mentality constantly pops up thanks to testing, writing what you know, stereotypical casting, women getting pregnant potentially hurting the show’s production schedule in some way… It’s a plethora of reasons, and sadly Rome was not built in a day. Things are generally getting better but if you’re looking for something a bit more representative of equal casting we’re just not there yet. Problem is as things get better the steps that seem to go against the grain are all the more glaring.

  37. DJ Doena says:

    No you don’t. Diversity for diversity’s sake in itself should not be a goal. I want good actors selling me a good story.

    I watch comedies like The Carmichael Show and You’re the Worst because I like the characters exactly the way they are. And I don’t give a sh!t that TCS does not have white characters in it.

    Hell, my TV diet is almost exclusively US and UK food. I don’t watch a single German show – and I’m German!

  38. Ralph says:

    Forced diversity doesn’t work. The two most popular shows on television have pretty much all white casts. NCIS and Big Bang Theory. One out of every 8 actors in the media should be black if we’re going the affirmative action route. The biggest complainers don’t want equity, they want domination. It’s never going to be 50/50 and it shouldn’t be. How many white people do you see in movies made in Asia, South America or Africa? They don’t whine about diversity!

  39. lettie says:

    they look like a typical line up for an svu episode. average looking, average height, middle aged and white. kind of dull for anyone looking for just a smidge of something different. instead of “we need to do better” like do better? don’t just write it off as ~future CBS’ problem.

  40. Ralph says:

    Psst! Come closer. I have a shocking surprise for the SJW whiners. White people still make up about 65% of the American public. So, yes, there will be more shows with white leads. CBS has plenty of shows with female leads or co-leads. Blacks make up less than 13%, black males are at 5-6%. If one out of every 20 lead actors on tv are black males, they’ve met their quota. Why aren’t these same SJW idiots complaining about the lack of diversity in professional sports?

  41. Ralph says:

    The biggest hits in tv history have had mostly all white casts. With the exception of Cosby, most of those shows had a deluge of white actors. Not necessarily because they were better actors but because people had real lives and didn’t whine about it. Dallas, MASH, Seinfeld, Cheers, CSI, NCIS and their spinoffs, Dynasty, All in the Family, Lucy, Mary Tyler Moore, etc.
    we live in a predominantly white country. Get over it! If you go to Asia or Africa you won’t see many white actors on their shows either. They don’t seem to have people clamoring about lack of diversity. We’ve had plenty of shows featuring more diversity in leads. I would say a much better track record than most other countries around the world.