Writer and producer Ryan Murphy has the midas touch when it comes to scripting hot new series for television, but at least one US market is underwhelmed.
According to the Washington Post, the Salt Lake City division of NBC television station — a satellite owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — has just drawn a line under the famous Irish American's latest about to be hit show.
The Mormon owned station has said it will not broadcast The New Normal, a new Ryan-penned comedy series about a gay male couple having a baby via a single-mom surrogate.
This being a Ryan comedy, complications set in in the form of a 'small-minded' grandmother who is less than pleased with spiteful relish by Ellen Barkin.
Nanna, as Barkin is called, delivers trademark zingers like: 'I happen to love the gays — I could never get my hair to look this good without them.'
The New Normal is the latest offering from the creator of breakout hits like Glee, Nip/Tuck and American Horror Story. Ryan has even confessed that the show is somewhat semi-autobiographical.
But the Mormons of Salt Lake City are having none of it.
'For our brand, this program feels inappropriate on several dimensions, especially during family viewing time,' Jeff Simpson, the CEO of Bonneville International (the Mormon Church-owned parent company of the NBC station) said last week in a statement.
Simpson, who was clearly not getting the jokes, said the show’s 'dialogue is excessively rude and crude; the scenes are too explicit and the stereotypes are offensive on all sides.'
The New Normal has also been targeted by the right wing anti-gay group One Million Moms — the same group that targeted JC Penney for featuring Ellen DeGeneres as its spokeswoman.
Murphy's show, the group said in a statement, 'continues to subject families to the decay of morals and values, and the sanctity of marriage in attempting to redefine marriage.'
The group added that Murphy's new show 'is damaging to our culture.'
Responding to the growing controversy, NBC said in a statement that The New Normal 'is also making a statement about the changing definition of the nuclear family.'
NBC added that 'the show is against bigotry and hatred in every form and will make that point whenever characters say outrageous or unacceptable things about race, religion, sexual identity, disability of tolerance of people outside the definitions of normal.'