The 1988 movie Heathers was basically the original Mean Girls. Winona Ryder, Shannen Doherty, Lisanne Falk, and Kim Walker played a clique of high school girls who were the epitome of terrifying teens. Ryder’s character, Veronica, misses her old friends and hates that she’s part of the Heathers. Her psychotic boyfriend J.D., played by Christian Slater, goes around killing all the people he doesn’t like, which includes the Heathers. Ah, to be young again!
The movie is a cult classic, and gave us iconic lines like “What’s your damage?” and “f–k me gently with a chainsaw…” But people were less than impressed when not only was it revealed that Heathers was going to be remade, but that now it was going to be a TV show instead of a movie.
Selma Blair signed on for a recurring role in the series, and Shannen Doherty was slated for a guest appearance as well. Those were the only real similarities between the original and the series, though. Heather Chandler is all about promoting body-positivity as a social media influencer, Heather McNamara is a lesbian, and Heather Duke is portrayed as genderqueer. It got a lot of people wondering why even bother claiming it to be a remake if you’re changing so many aspects.
The show was set to premiere on March 7th, but one big social movement prompted the studio to push it back.
According to Paramount Network, the company releasing Heathers, the release date has been pushed back “out of respect” for the Parkdale shooting victims. The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School saw 17 people lose their lives with a gunman opened fire in the halls.
“Paramount Network’s original series “Heathers” is a satirical comedy that takes creative risks in dealing with many of society’s most challenging subjects ranging from personal identity to race and socio-economic status to gun violence. While we stand firmly behind the show, in light of the recent tragic events in Florida and out of respect for the victims, their families and loved ones, we feel the right thing to do is delay the premiere until later this year.”
Paramount had already made the Heathers pilot available on their website one week after the shooting in Florida, but have since taken it down. There’s no word on when the show will end up making its premiere other than “later this year.”
Paramount pulling the show may actually bring attention to it that wasn’t already there. Early reviews for the reboot were less than stellar, with people calling it “a Trumpian, LGBT-Bashing Nightmare.” People who had not previously planned on tuning in to the new series are now wondering what the big deal is.
Another theory is that the decision to delay had less to do with the shooting and more to do with the negative reviews.
“Obviously, we only have the network’s statement to go on as of right now,” Kevin O’Keefe said on Twitter. “But as it stands, the show was released early online, then got a negative reaction, and is now being delayed indefinitely because of a shooting … that happened before the show was available for streaming.”