Nickelodeon weathered a firestorm of a protests to air a June 18 Nick News
special on kids with same-sex parents. The Viacom net logged 100,000 complaints in a campaign led by the conservative Traditional Values Coalition.
Nick soldiered on with My Family Is Different
to teach tolerance, according to producer Linda Ellerbee. "We've done shows about racism and AIDS ... kids being bullied for all kinds of reasons," she added. "This was one of those shows. It's a golden-rule show."
Rosie O'Donnell and Rev. Jerry Falwell appeared in the show, although Falwell later came out against it.
The network did proceed cautiously, airing the special commercial-free at 9 p.m. (Nick News
usually airs at 8:30 p.m. on Sundays) and including a disclaimer and TV-PG rating. The reaction from viewers was strong, with 1.2 million households tuning in for a 1.4 rating.
Future My Family Is Different
specials will focus on multicultural and single-parent families, Ellerbee added.