Tuesday, 21 Aug 2018
Entertainment Earth

Chris Hardwick Returning to AMC Following Sex Assault Investigation (NSFW Content)

Chris Hardwick

Editor’s Note: This story contains language not safe for work.

Chris Hardwick is returning to his post at AMC after seemingly being cleared of misconduct allegations.

The network announced that after a “comprehensive assessment” by an outside firm, Hardwick has been reinstated at the network. He will resume work on August 12, once again hosting “Talking Dead” after the mid-season premiere of “Fear the Walking Dead.”

We reported back in June that abuse allegations against Hardwick were leveled by a former girlfriend. Those charges included mental and emotional abuse, and most disturbing, allegations of sexual assault. Hardwick denied the charges, but has kept largely silent.

While it seemed Hardwick would be the latest celebrity to see a professional downfall in the #MeToo movement, several people came to his defense, including friend and actress Jaimie Alexander. Fans even started a #IStandWithChrisHardwick hashtag to show their support.

Entertainment Weekly has more.

Hardwick had his show Talking with Chris Hardwick pulled off the channel a day before season 2 was to premiere after ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra accused him of sexual assault and emotional abuse in a first-person online post. He also bowed out of moderating The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead, and Doctor Who panels for AMC and BBC America at Comic-Con in San Diego last week, and frequent Talking Dead guest Yvette Nicole Brown was announced as an interim host for a Walking Dead season 9 preview special on Aug. 5. and the Aug. 12 edition after the FearTWD midseason premiere. Brown will still host the Aug. 5 preview special as production is already underway on that, and will now be a guest on the Aug. 12 post-Fear episode.

The network had conducted an investigation into the allegations against Hardwick and issued the following statement on the findings and decision to return the host to the air: “Following a comprehensive assessment by AMC, working with Ivy Kagan Bierman of the firm Loeb & Loeb, who has considerable experience in this area, Chris Hardwick will return to AMC as the host of Talking Dead and Talking with Chris Hardwick. We take these matters very seriously and given the information available to us after a very careful review, including interviews with numerous individuals, we believe returning Chris to work is the appropriate step.”

No word yet on when Talking with Chris Hardwick will return to the air and if the episodes — including the season premiere with Donald Glover — that were pulled will ever make it onto the channel.

The response on social media has been mixed. While the allegations were disturbing, in the #MeToo age, any high-profile investigation into wrongdoing would be comprehensive, and set a higher standard to be cleared. As it appears Hardwick has cleared that standard.

Even so, some are not ready to consider Hardwick innocent.

Kathy Griffin, ever so ready to jump into any controversy, tweeted this.

One Twitter user felt it was important to treat him as guilty, regardless of the truth, as a show of support to future victims to come forward.

Others argued the truth is likely somewhere in the middle.

One even pointed out that the investigation may not have been as thorough as one might think.

Reaction ran the spectrum.

Post your thoughts in the comments section below on the return of Chris Hardwick to AMC.

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