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'The Other Two' Ending Amid Allegations of Toxic Behavior in the Writers' Room

By Allyson Johnson | TV | June 29, 2023 |

By Allyson Johnson | TV | June 29, 2023 |


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In an example of “writing what you know,” The Other Two creators Chris Kelly and Sarah Schneider have come under fire due to staff complaints and a formal investigation following accusations of verbally abusing writers and overworking crew. The current season three will be its final season, with the finale airing on June 29. However, reports state that the cancellation has nothing to do with the allegations against the showrunners.

Although the two were ultimately cleared of wrongdoing, there have been whispers of toxic behavior for months, dating back to a speech given by fellow SNL alum Tina Fey at the PEN America Literary Awards. After a jab at executive producer Lorne Michaels, where she critiqued his indulgence of writers that has “unleashed an army of monsters into the world,” she continued with the damning statement, “You know it, I know it, and the crew of The Other Two knows it — oh, I was supposed to change that.”

On the one hand, we can’t be surprised based on all that we know about Hollywood and the rampant egos that disrupt the lives of those lower on the totem pole. Maureen Ryan, who wrote the novel Burn It Down: Power, Complicity, and a Call for Change in Hollywood tweeted:

“I have a whole chapter in my book about how the extremely questionable culture/’norms’ at SNL over the years spread out to afflict many other parts of the industry.”

A source from the show noted that “other writers tell stories about The Other Two writers’ room like other people tell ghost stories.”

What makes the story surprising is the show itself, which takes a scalpel to the insidious nature of Hollywood and the egos the industry is built on protecting. From skewering Disney for its phony LGBTQ+ support and empty platitudes to calling out the industry’s exploitation of child stars once they’ve turned 18, the writing is relentless in the takedown of the lecherous underbelly of the business.

Molly Shannon, Drew Tarver, and Helene Yorke are phenomenal on the show, and the writers, despite the alleged circumstances, have infused all three seasons with acerbic, biting humor. As the WGA strike continues, it’s yet another reminder of how critical it is that their demands are met as the systemic cycle of abuse continues, even on shows where we’d least expect it.