Apparently THE WONDER YEARS Was Cancelled Because of a "Ridiculous" Sexual Harassment Claim Against 16-Year Old Fred Savage
For those of you who have ever wondered why the classic series The Wonder Years was canceled, actress Ally Mills, who played Norma Arnold in the series, said it due to a sexual harassment scandal involving 16-year-old Fred Savage, which she says was "completely ridiculous."
This is the first time anything like this has been talked about regarding the show. While talking to Yahoo, Mills explained:
“When we shot the series finale … nobody knew whether or not The Wonder Years was going to be renewed. And that’s because of a completely ridiculous sexual harassment suit that was going on against Fred Savage — who is, like, the least offensive, most wonderful, sweet human being that ever walked the face of the Earth.”
The sexual harassment lawsuit was filed in 1993 by a 31-year-old costume designer named Monique Long. It wasn't just against Fred Savage, though. It was also filed against 20-year-old Jason Hervey, who played Wayne Arnold. Long alleged that the actors "verbally and physically harassed her, and because of that, she claimed, she couldn’t do her job properly and was fired." Representatives for the show and for the actors denied these allegations years ago. Mills went on to recall:
“So I just thought [the lawsuit] was a big joke and it was going to blow over. It’s a little bit like what’s happening now — some innocent people can get caught up in this stuff; it’s very tricky. It was so not true. It was my dresser, and I don’t care if she’s listening — I probably shouldn’t be telling this, but I don’t care because it was so long ago and it’s gotta be over now.”
Mills went on to claim that she “wasn’t allowed to talk” about the lawsuit back then, she also said that it made her upset, and added that, “We had a gag order on us, and I wanted to scream on television, ‘This is ridiculous!’”
The lawsuit ended up being dropped after an out-of-court settlement was reached. Mills wasn't too happy about that because it made the people involved look guilty.
"I just thought this was a joke. You know, they bought her off, which really made me mad. That was incorrigible that the network did that; they should never have paid her off. They wanted to avoid a scandal or something, but it made them look guilty. You know, you don’t pay someone off when there was no crime, you just fire the girl.”
I wasn't expecting that to be the reason The Wonder Years was canceled! What a shame to end a great series on such a sour note.