The Cops season 33 premiere has been cancelled by the Paramount Network out of respect for George Floyd's family. Additionally, A&E has revealed that they will pull episodes of their Live PD series this weekend. Protests launched across the United States after a Minneapolis policeman killed Floyd, which was all caught on video. The horrific video spread like wildfire and quickly morphed into a worldwide movement. A&E had this to say in their statement.
"Out of respect for the families of George Floyd and others who have lost their lives, in consultation with the departments we follow, and in consideration for the safety of all involved, we have made the decision not to broadcast Live PD this weekend."
Paramount Television did has yet to release a formal statement and instead just pulled the Cops season 33 premiere from its schedule. It is not clear when the network plans on airing the new episodes. Instead, Ghostbusters will be playing in its place, while A&E will be going with episodes of Live Rescue in place of Live PD. Cops has not played on the Paramount Network since last Monday.
Cops first started back in 1989 and quickly became one of Fox's biggest shows. The series follows city police officers and county sheriff's deputies out on patrol. There is no script in place, so all dialog comes from law enforcement to help push the story along before any arrests take place. From there, it's normally the criminals who provide the entertainment. In recent years the show has seen a decent amount of controversy over the treatment of those who are arrested, with many claiming that they are coerced into signing waivers in order to use their footage on TV.
Cops has also been criticized for largely taking a pro-law enforcement stance, which involves letting officers make any edits that they want, ensuring there will be nothing painting them in a negative light. Whatever the case may be, Cops is still a popular series, even over 30 years after originally debuting. Live PD is a newer series on A&E and it's one of their biggest hits. It takes the premise of Cops but turns it into a live event where just about anything can happen, making it one of the more popular shows out there.
Live PD has to take a break in the middle of March, but returned to live episodes in April where it quickly went back to its number one slot for Friday and Saturday nights. For now, it is unclear when the network plans on bringing its number one show back, but now probably isn't the best time. Protests have been going on for nearly two weeks now as North American law enforcement finds itself under the microscope. Variety was the first to announce that Cops and Live PD episodes have been pulled out of respect to George Floyd and his family.