First Adam Lambert, now Chris Brown! "Good Morning America" is again making headlines for canceling a controversial performer's appearance on the show. Make no mistake, though, ABC's decision to bump Brown from the "GMA" lineup has nothing to do with him being a convicted abuser. It wasn't even that he -- like Lambert -- was deemed inappropriate entertainment for daytime TV, and it certainly isn't a sign that his career is in danger.
Despite the outcry last week over the network's decision to boot an "unpredictable" gay guy while keeping a self-confessed woman-beater on the schedule, a spokesperson explained to me in an e-mail that after screening "GMA" anchor Robin Roberts' pre-taped interview with Brown they simply decided it was a better fit for "20/20." Aw, poor baby -- he's getting bumped to prime-time! And just in time to promote his new album, which will be released a couple days earlier.
So, perhaps The Women's Media Center blogger who on Monday congratulated everyone "who called out GMA’s preference for a convicted assaulter over an openly gay man" was being a wee bit too optimistic. The New York Post made a similar insinuation by mentioning early on in its story about the cancellation that the network had been "bitterly criticized" for ditching Lambert and keeping Brown. The criticism won't take away from the ratings fest ABC will enjoy when the R&B crooner makes his December 11 appearance on "20/20."
On a positive note, the "GMA" spokesperson added that ABC hopes "to continue the conversation about domestic violence that the first interview [with Rihanna] sparked." Here's hoping he doesn't do the same old song and dance like he did on Larry King, and speaks candidly instead of calling it this abstract "thing" that he did.