'Heathers' Episodes Pulled in Wake of Pittsburgh Shooting

Heathers Still - Publicity - H 2017
Courtesy of TV Land

Viewers looking to binge the long-gestating Heathers reboot missed two central episodes Sunday on Paramount Network.

The Viacom-owned cable network opted to pull the two installments that were scheduled to air Sunday following the Saturday synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh that left 11 dead. Sources tell The Hollywood Reporter that the two episodes that were to air featured a storyline involving students at the school's central high school undergoing active shooter training. Saturday's episodes aired as scheduled. Monday's finale, which has been edited to remove sensitive storylines including the school being blown up, will also air as scheduled. Saturday's episodes are available to watch via VOD and the Paramount app and website.

Paramount Network scrapped the series and attempted to find a new domestic home for the series after the anthology was originally delayed from its planned March 7 premiere in a move designed to be respectful to the victims, families and loved ones following the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead. A new premiere date was never set, though sources noted the cabler considered an early July return before the Houston-area Santa Fe school shooting happened.

Sources told THR earlier this month that executives at Paramount Network were frustrated by the inability to find a domestic home for Heathers. (Netflix and Freeform, among others, passed on the series, which sold to multiple international territories.) Instead, two specific scenes were edited out from the original series that cleared the way for it to be broadcast. The final two episodes, for example, were condensed into one featuring a cliffhanger after a storyline in which the school was blown up was removed. (The original 1988 movie ends with the school also being blown up.) Also gone is a scene in episode five that featured a central character playing a video game in which he went on a shooting rampage down the school's hallways, killing multiple people. Sources say editing the original 10 episodes was not part of the June conversations to drop Heathers as the plan at the time was to sell the series to a third party so it could air as it was originally shot.