After a two-year run, Netflix announced their first talk show, “Chelsea,” is canceled. Although disappointing, it won’t be the end of Handler and Netflix’s relationship.
The fiery comedian and host was spurred to action by the 2016 presidential election. Handler has been an outspoken advocate against President Donald Trump’s political agenda, using her show as a platform. Handler has also commented about Trump as a guest on other talk shows, such as “The Late Show with Trevor Noah.” During one “Late Show” appearance, Handler told Noah, “I mean, I can’t even discuss him in real terms. He’s not a real person. He takes advantage of everyone around him.”
Handler explained to fans via Twitter why her talk show will not be returning. The reason? It’s political.
From Handler’s perspective, the decision to not go forward with “Chelsea” was a joint one.
Since the announcement, Handler has received a divide in responses, with some positive remarks:
And some not-so-nice responses:
tweets featured here have since been deleted
Netflix’s dive into the world of talk shows was a risk; “Chelsea” was a first for the streaming platform. The show aired three episodes a week, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, running 30 minutes each episode. The second season was significantly shorter, with only one episode aired weekly.
By the launch of “Chelsea,” Handler was already a late-night television veteran. In 2014, Handler left her previous E! Show, “Chelsea Lately.” Around the same time, male hosts began to dominate the late-night television scene. “Chelsea Lately” was a huge success for the host and the network, running for eight seasons. Before “Chelsea Lately” became a hit, Handler experienced a string of failed attempts trying to make it to the late night game. Her previous shows, “On the Lot,” “The Chelsea Handler Show” and “Are You There, Chelsea?” all ended after one season.
The decision to quit her show due to political reasons is not surprising. Handler has shown a passion for politics and actively uses her voice to make a difference. Throughout “Chelsea”’s run, Handler welcomed a plethora of guests to converse about politics. One guest, Frank Grillo, compared anti-Italian discrimination to anti-black discrimination, putting the word “Black” in air quotes. This left a wrong impression on what the show’s message was trying to spread. The episode is no longer available to stream on the website.
As Handler herself tweeted, her relationship with Netflix is not ending. The activist comedian is in talks to create a documentary which will explore different cultures around the world. She hopes the collaboration will expand her knowledge of what is going on politically in countries other than the United States.
Handler previously worked with Netflix on a show called “Chelsea Does.” The show saw a total of four episodes and examined topics like racism, drugs, marriage and technology.
With “Chelsea Does” tackling such sensitive and topical issues, we can only imagine what a Handler and Netflix documentary would look like. It is sure to be a must-watch event, giving new and old fans the chance to learn along with Handler in her new adventure.
“Chelsea” will continue streaming weekly until the end of the year, only on Netflix.