If Nickelodeon Cancelled Sam & Cat Over Those Photos, Then They’re Effing Prudes

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Jennette McCurdy and Ariana Grande in Sam& Cat promotional photoNickelodeon just canceled their hit show Sam & Catand I'm so indignant on behalf of Jennette McCurdy that I hardly know what to do with myself.

As you may recall, Jennette is the star of the show alongside Ariana Grande, and she's the one who had those scantily-clad photos get leaked earlier this month. And also the one who boycotted the Kid's Choice Awards this past weekend due to mysterious issues with the network, which are becoming clear right about now.

I want to say first of all that Nickelodeon has denied that their decision not to renew the show has anything to do with the pictures, but the timing is certainly suspicious. Particularly given how immensely popular Sam & Cat is, the fact that they'd won ‘Favorite TV Show' less than a week ago, and the fact that they'd done only a single season of the show, I'm a little skeptical of the explanation they provided in their statement:

“The photos caused no issues between McCurdy and the network, and we have the utmost respect for her. We are wrapping up what was an unusually long production cycle of ‘Sam & Cat,' and everyone is understandably tired.”

They're asking us to believe that a season being forty episodes long is a typical reason to cancel it? When one of its stars had a photo leak less than a month before? That's a lot of coincidences.

Here's my thing. Nickelodeon is free to cancel as many of their hit shows as they want. It's their prerogative to make or not make money however they see fit. But if the show is being canceled as a result of the photo leak, then I have some pretty strong objections to that. For one thing, Jennette didn't release the photos herself. According to her, she sent them to one specific person, and he or she violated her trust in handing them over to the media. Is it really fair that a vindictive ex could cost a talented performer her job simply by making private photos public? I don't think so.

And for another thing, Jennette isn't even naked in the pictures. I understand that parents probably still don't want their kids seeing photos like that, and for good reason, but in that case it seems like the internet itself would be your concern. There are certainly ways to prevent your child from seeing photos of a twenty-one year old adult in lingerie, but taking her show off the air isn't one of them. Just ask The Walt Disney Company, who was ballsy enough after nude photos of Vanessa Hudgens leaked in 2007 not to drop her from High School Musical 3 and to issue the following intelligent, well-reasoned statement:

“Vanessa has apologized for what was obviously a lapse in judgment. We hope she's learned a valuable lesson.”

Unfortunately, I don't know that Vanessa quite did learn her lesson, as she had subsequent photo leaks, but what's the real lesson for Jennette to learn here? Not to trust the person she sent the photos to, right? Do you really think she needs to lose her job as well, to help her learn it? I don't.

(Photo: Terry Doyle / Nickelodeon)