In 2018 (let that sink in), Apple thought it would be a great idea to greenlight a show called Bastards for its upcoming obligatory streaming service, Apple TV+. Based on an Israeli drama of the same name, it was to feature superstar Richard Gere, America's Real Dad, as one of two old veterans who, after deciding they have nothing more to live for, go on a massive killing spree to take their country back from "self-absorbed millennials." Then, for some reason, when America doubled down on its need to beat its own mass shooting high score every month in 2019, Apple thought it wise to do the panicking throat cut motion at the series, canceling it.
The Hollywood Reporter
But, amazingly, it wasn't because they thought the show was in danger of glamorizing spree shooters, but because it wasn't glamorizing them enough. According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources claim Apple was totally fine with making the show, but the version they got wasn't "aspirational" enough. Apple nixed the show because showrunners Howard Gordon and Warren Lee focused too much on the violence in this violent plot. Instead they wanted the focus to be on the friendship between the two killers, as if they're the Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid of people who quote Tucker Carlson in their manifesto.
Which is stupid, and not because there are a million better reasons not to make a confusing-sounding Death Wish reboot in a climate that's literally raining bullets on innocent bystanders. No, it's because even if Bastards had been all violence and senseless killing, the show would've still have been plenty aspirational. You can't put mom-bait like Richard Gere in your story and pretend you're not glamorizing the monster he's playing.
Remember, Breaking Bad's Walter White allied himself with actual Nazis. and people still unironically quote his badass knock-knock routines. And just as many frustrated young men worship the clear parody that was Fight Club's Tyler Durden just because Brad Pitt wore a cool jacket. So given that America clearly has a gun violence problem that's intertwined with white nationalism and toxic masculine ideology, do we really need a show about the guy from Pretty Woman reenacting what's on the goddamn news nonstop?
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