Jerrod Carmichael happened to tape an episode of Chelsea Handler’s Netflix talk show as NBC was considering pulling an episode of his sitcom, The Carmichael Show, that deals with America’s culture of mass shootings. The reasoning stemmed from the fact that the installment, “Shoot-Up-Able,” was scheduled to air last night, the same day two separate gunmen carried out attacks in Virginia and California. And while the network ended up making that call, the interview makes it clear that Carmichael was not on board.
“I understand a corporation making that decision, but really to me what it says is you don’t think America is smart enough to handle real dialogue and something that reflects real family conversations and something that feels honest and true and still respects the victims,” Carmichael told Handler. “We handled the episode with as much love and integrity as we possibly could. To just pull that is just—it’s criminal. It seems to do a disservice to the viewer. It does a disservice to you. it does a disservice to all of us.”
Unlike other examples of episodes that have been postponed in light of similar events, “Shoot-Up-Able” doesn’t dramatize a shooting. Instead, the episode focuses on the honest, difficult, but still funny back-and-forth among Carmichael’s character and his family after he survives a shooting that takes place at a mall.