Tim Allen receives an equal amount of praise and criticism for his controversial Last Man Standing character, Mike Baxter.
Last Man Standing tells the story of the father of three girls who is “trapped” in a house of women. Very political with lots of deep rooted opinions, Allen’s character cracks many jokes that border on what is appropriate and what is hurtful.
During a recent sit down with Forbes, Allen revealed that he enjoys stepping into the shoes of Mike Baxter.
“I like it that we can make statements and poke fun at very brittle liberals. In [Hollywood] there is nothing more annoying than a well-educated character who is conservative. They don’t like it. The more they don’t like it, the more you push that button,” Allen admitted.
While both the actor’s sense of humor in character and in real life are something many consider to be an acquired taste, Country Living confirms that his strong beliefs and pushy personality played a huge factor in why Last Man Standing was picked up by Fox after being canceled by ABC.
For those unfamiliar with the show’s history, it was off the air for nearly a year-and-a-half before Fox picked it up. Despite fans being super thrilled that the sitcom was coming back, the show’s reboot did have a bit of a rough start as fans had to digest and accept new characters, absent characters, and actor changes.
While writers and producers were doing their best to provide continuity, some changes had to be made.
“It was a year and a half afterward, and everyone had moved on” Allen told Forbes.
Some of the cast members including, Molly Ephraim (who played Mandy Baxter), had accepted other projects after the initial cancellation and weren’t able to return. The role was recast with budding actress Molly McCook.
Ephraim, who had spent six years portraying the sassy and beloved short brunette-haired middle daughter, was replaced with a very tall blonde. Unsurprisingly, it was a change many viewers took issue with.
'Last Man Standing' star Tim Allen says it's 'nobody's business' what he thinks about politics https://t.co/PYtsqdgVqJ— Fox News (@FoxNews) September 29, 2018
Some hardcore fans took to social media to express their distaste for the change. The hashtag “NotMyMandy” became a trend with these posts as fans grieved the recast.
McCook told Country Living she initially took the posts personally, but later learned the fans were just there to give the show the love and support it needed after being rebooted.
Despite its numerous cast changes, the beloved, controversial, and provoking sitcom is still bringing fans to the screen and has been picked up for an eighth season.