Last Man Standing is an American sitcom starring Tim Allen that originally aired on ABC before being canceled after the sixth season. With such a supportive and upset fan base, Fox made the decision to pick up the series and revive it for a seventh season.
While most of the original cast did return for the Season 7, there was one striking difference in the cast – Mandy Baxter. Previously, the middle daughter was a small brunette. Instead, Season 7 introduced a much taller blonde as the new Mandy.
Molly McCook was recast to take on the role of Mandy after Molly Ephraim was unable to return to the show because of scheduling conflicts. When the series was canceled by ABC, Ephraim took on other projects not expecting to later have the option to return.
During the Season 7 premiere, the writers used comedy as a way to ease viewers into the idea of a new Mandy. The script included a conversation about how something was different about the middle Baxter daughter. When she came down the stairs, she also admitted to getting lost.
While the entire cast, producers, and writers did expect fans to take issue with the recasting, what McCook did not expect was so much negativity to come pouring directly onto her social media feeds.
Unhappy fans of the show took to Twitter using hashtags like “#NotMyMandy” to express how they felt about the casting change.
Speaking to Country Living, McCook admitted to having a hard time dealing with the backlash at first. Initially, she took the negative responses pretty personally.
“Then I realized that… the people who are trolling and being very negative are never going to be happy with such a big change. But the hardcore fans of the show have been extremely supportive, which was so helpful,” she continued to explain.
Molly took to Twitter reassuring Last Man Standing fans to give the casting swap a chance, “Give it time, beauties!!! The show will continue evolving, as will Mandy. I’m so excited for you to discover it as I do. It’s gonna be such a fun season!”
Give it time, beauties!!! The show will continue evolving, as will Mandy. I'm so excited for you to discover it as I do. It's gonna be such a fun season! @LastManStanding— MOLLY✶McCOOK (@mollyjmccook) September 29, 2018
In the comment section of Molly’s tweet, she received nothing but love and support from fans of the show. Many fans reassured her it would just take a little time for everyone to adjust to the new Mandy.
“Getting to feel comfortable with new actors takes a little time. But happy 2 have the entire Baxter family back,” one user commented.
“Molly you were wonderful. You fit the part great. I can’t wait to see more of you in my favorite show. Again, you were great,” a second chimed in.
One individual even told McCook to ignore anyone who didn’t have anything pleasant to say about the casting change.
“Please ignore trashy people on social media. You are doing a beautiful job! Shut out any hate and keep up the great work! Remember, something as good as chocolate ice cream could still get Twitter hate!”
While there were a few people reaffirmed their dislike of the new Mandy in the comment section, this type of comment was buried far and few between the positive and supportive comments.