NBC Entertainment has pulled Mail Order Family only 72 hours after executives announced the TV show. Jackie Clarke developed the show “based on her own experiences growing up in a home with the mail-order Filipina bride her father ‘purchased’ from a catalog, just a few years after her mother’s death.”
But people immediately protested the show, including Philippine women’s rights group Gabriela USA:
“Mail order brides are victims of human trafficking as they are forced into sex slavery and domestic servitude. Mail order-brides are vulnerable to violence because of the fundamentally unequal nature and imbalance of power where money is exchanged for an arranged marriage. Many mail-order brides become vulnerable to violence because they may be financially dependent on their husband, are isolated in a foreign country, and husbands can easily threaten them with deportation.”
NBC heard them loud and clear:
“We purchased the pitch with the understanding that it would tell the creator’s real-life experience of being raised by a strong Filipina stepmother after the loss of her own mother,” an NBC spokesperson told NBC News in a statement. “The writer and producers have taken the sensitivity to the initial concept to heart and have chosen not to move forward with the project at this time.”
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