The #MeToo movement may be new, but sexual harassment most certainly is not.
And it can happen on even the most wholesome of productions.
Alley Mills, who played matriarch Norma Arnold on classic sitcom The Wonder Years, revealed to Yahoo the real reason the show was canceled, something she’s had to keep quiet about for years:
“When we shot the series finale… nobody knew whether or not ‘The Wonder Years’ was going to be renewed. And that’s because of a completely ridiculous sexual harassment suit that was going on against Fred Savage — who is, like, the least offensive, most wonderful, sweet human being that ever walked the face of the Earth.”
Um, what?? Lil Fred Savage??
As far as the cancelation, who can say for certain — but the sexual harassment suit was real!
It was even written about in a Los Angeles Times article in 1993, long before the Internet could spread it like wildfire.
According to that quiet little write-up, 31-year-old costume designer Monique Long sued producers who she says ignored her complaints that Savage (who was only 16 at the time) and his TV brother Jason Hervey (then 20) were harassing her.
Long claimed Savage “constantly held her hand, asked her to have an affair and made sexual remarks” towards her and that both young men made “sexual and lewd” comments to various women on the crew.
Her suit alleged she was fired as a result of speaking out about the harassment.
Mills says she was so sure it was untrue she wanted to tell people about it — but she was ordered not to by the studio:
“We had a gag order on us, and I wanted to scream on television, ‘This is ridiculous!'”
She compares it to the current movement — but thinks it should serve as a warning marker:
“It’s a little bit like what’s happening now — some innocent people can get caught up in this stuff; it’s very tricky. It was so not true. It was my dresser, and I don’t care if she’s listening — I probably shouldn’t be telling this, but I don’t care because it was so long ago and it’s gotta be over now.”
See her whole statement on the matter (below):
We wonder how Fred Savage, now 41 and married with three children, will react to his TV mom bringing this back into the light.