‘Designing Women’ creator details how ‘misogynist’ Les Moonves destroyed her career

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I know I’m dating myself, but I loved Designing Women when I was a kid. I honestly don’t remember if I watched it when it originally aired, but I know the reruns were on constantly when I was growing up. There’s an entire generation of women and gay men who worship Dixie Carter and Delta Burke and Annie Potts and Jean Smart because of Designing Women. There’s an entire generation who grew up with Julia Sugarbaker’s Southern-accented take-no-prisoners speechifying. Designing Women was written and created by Linda Bloodworth Thomason, who was for a time one of the most powerful women in television. She had a great contract with CBS and a lot of support from CBS executives. Then Les Moonves was made president of CBS. And that’s when it all changed. Bloodworth Thomason wrote a lengthy essay for The Hollywood Reporter about how Les Moonves was always a misogynist and he destroyed her career simply because she’s a woman and he hates women. You can read the full piece here, and here’s the beginning:

This is not the article you might be expecting about Les Moonves. It’s not going to be wise or inspiring. It’s going to be petty and punishing. In spite of my proper Southern mother’s admonition to always be gracious, I am all out of grace when it comes to Mr. Moonves. In fact, like a lot of women in Hollywood, I am happy to dance on his professional grave. And not just any dance — this will be the Macarena, the rumba, the cha-cha and the Moonwalk. You get the idea. I was never sexually harassed or attacked by Les Moonves. My encounters were much more subtle, engendering a different kind of destruction. In 1992, I was given the largest writing and producing contract in the history of CBS. It was for $50 million, involving five new series with hefty penalties for each pilot not picked up.

Designing Women was my flagship CBS show, and Evening Shade had just been lauded as the best new comedy of the season. CBS chairman Howard Stringer and president Jeff Sagansky attended many of the Designing Women tapings, reveling in the show, quoting the lines and giving us carte blanche to tackle any subject, including sexual harassment, domestic violence and pornography. They even greenlighted an entire episode satirizing Clarence Thomas’ Supreme Court nomination. It was, to say the least, exhilarating. Little did I know that it would soon all be over.

By 1995, Mr. Stringer and Mr. Sagansky were gone and a new, unknown (to me) president named Les Moonves had taken over. By then, I was producing a new pilot, prophetically titled Fully Clothed Non-Dancing Women. I was immediately concerned when I heard that Mr. Moonves was rumored to be a big fan of topless bars. Then, someone delivered the news that he especially hated Designing Women and their loud-mouthed speeches. He showed up at the first table read and took a chair directly across from mine (actress Illeana Douglas, who later accused him of sexual harassment, sat next to me). Having been voted most popular in high school, I felt confident that I would be able to charm him. I was wrong. He sat and stared at me throughout the entire reading with eyes that were stunningly cold, as in, “You are so dead.” I had not experienced such a menacing look since Charles Manson tried to stare me down on a daily basis when I was a young reporter covering that trial. As soon as the pilot was completed, Moonves informed me that it would not be picked up. I was at the pinnacle of my career. I would not work again for seven years.

[From The Hollywood Reporter]

Linda goes on to detail the campaign Moonves waged against her, turning down every one of her scripts and refusing to allow any CBS-contracted actor work with her. She details how Moonves would not hire any actress who didn’t want to “f–k” and how he once told a popular actress that she was too old to be on his network… and then he forcibly kissed that actress. Linda describes several instances where specific actors – Bette Midler, Huey Lewis – actually requested her involvement in their projects only to have Moonves turn them down cold. She also made a really devastating point about Moonves’ tenure at CBS long-term, how he erased all of the brash, funny women who were known in the history of CBS programming and replaced them all with “highly profitable, male-dominated series, always careful to stir in and amply reward an occasional actres… But mostly, he presided over a plethora of macho crime shows featuring a virtual genocide of dead naked hotties in morgue drawers, with sadistic female autopsy reports, ratcheted up each week….”

Linda doesn’t come away with any inspiration or feeling that she’s passing on a better industry to a new generation. She writes: “I just feel angry. The truth is, Les Moonves may never be punished in the way that he deserves. He will almost certainly never go to jail. And he has already made hundreds of millions of dollars during his highly successful and truly immoral, bullying, misogynist reign.”

Les Moonves

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131 Responses to “‘Designing Women’ creator details how ‘misogynist’ Les Moonves destroyed her career”

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  1. Lucy2 says:

    This whole story has infuriated me. I so applaud her for showing this from the rooftops, no punches pulled.
    How many careers did this monster ruin? How much art and creativity and work did he stamp out just because he hates women?

  2. Ty says:

    For each of these powerful misogynistic asses
    100 talented profitable people were lost, 90 of them being women

    No mercy for them or any excuses of their talent and profitability.
    They destroyed more than they created

    • KNy says:

      ITA. NO MERCY.

    • Flan says:

      This is why I am sick to death of series and movies glorifying ‘cool’ male action heroes, where women are just there to worship the guy.

      They make me puke and I haven’t watched them for years, no matter how much people recommend that trash.

  3. damejudi says:

    This is heartbreaking. I was a big fan of Designing Women and Evening Shade (RIP Burt Reynolds).

    Bloodworth Thomason’s anger is palpable, and I like that she acknowledges her anger without apology.

  4. BigGirl says:

    See NYT today about Moonves was still trying to find job for a new accuser even after the first denial in July. Guess Julie Chen organized the photos of moving van to save her job.

  5. Darla says:

    This was hard to read. I read it last night. I actually had wondered, from time to time, what happened to Linda. Now I know.

    And we are supposed to let these animals take two months off and then make a “comeback” right? How many women did they destroy along the way?

    • The Other Katherine says:

      Exactly. This is why I’m not concerned with opportunities for “redemption” at this point. These criminals need to ATONE first, before we start worrying about absolution. As it is, most of them can’t even bring themselves to make a fake apology.

  6. Lala11_7 says:

    I’m dating myself…so…I’m 51 years old…and I remember, as a child…what a VANGUARD network that CBS was concerning women…”The Mary Tyler Moore Show”… “Maude”….”Rhoda”…”Phyllis”….seguing into the 80s with “Cagney & Lacey” and ‘Kate & Allie”…and of course “Designing Women”…in fact, it looked like, for a minute…CBS was setting LBT up to be like Norman Lear before her…and Shonda Rhimes after her…where she would have SEVERAL shows on the network…and when she DISAPPEARED…I ALWAYS wondered why…what happened…and WHY did…all of a sudden…CBS become the network full of military/police/firemen shows that highlighted mostly White men….

    Now I know…and like her…I am SO MAD I COULD SPIT FIYAH!!!!

    • damejudi says:

      @Lala11_7, wish there was a big “like” button for your comment.

      Fellow 51 year-old, grew up on all those great shows. I was torn between wanting to be MTM or Rhoda as a kid.

      • MaryContrary says:

        Joining you ladies. Turning 52 in a few weeks-and I loved MTM so much. Those were all great shows.

      • Betsy says:

        I’m with you, too. I’m a smidge younger than you, so I am not personally familiar with those shows, but I also wondered where Bloodworth Thomason went.

    • Lala11_7 says:

      Oh my goodness…I also forgot…”One Day At A Time” and “Alice”…too…ALL pivotal shows because they showcased single women out in the workforce raising their children…the other networks weren’t pushing shows like that back in the 70s…so CBS really stood apart with that stance…It’s so funny…thanks to television channels like “MeToo” and “Antenna TV”….I can see so many of the shows I grew up with…and see which ones REALLY AGED BADLY (i.e., “Alice”…because…REALLY Mel?!?!)…and shows like “Maude” and “One Day At A Time”, etc. that STILL resonate today….

      • lucy2 says:

        Have you seen the Netflix update of One Day at a Time? I ended up enjoying it, but it does have a weird dated feel to the style, yet is very current on issues.

      • Janet says:

        I am a generation or three younger, but reading this is making everything SO much clearer. I grew up at the very tail end of this, where similar shows were still aired during the daytime, but never got the good time slots. No wonder I was so drawn toward the CB (Network…was it UPN before or something) and stuff like Gilmore Girls. Amy Sherman Palladino is a freaking godsend! Not only are her shows interesting and funny, they feature strong, volatile women and dialogue that is engaging. No other shows can quite hold my interest, because they’re full of Rosses and Chads and Agent Malloys who do nothing but grimace smugly and let their smarter colleagues do the work. I am SO glad to hear about all of these lost gems. I am looking forward to binge watching all of them.

        Eff this guy. Men need to take their damn seats and s.t.f.u.

    • adastraperaspera says:

      I am right with you!!

      • Jan90067 says:

        Same here! What a walk down memory lane! I remember watching all those shows as a kid, thinking how I wanted to grow up and be like those strong women.

        I hope she’s got a new show in the works now.

    • Emmet says:

      As you mention this, last night Lifetime (I know . . .) had a special on Nancy McKeon who had a successful comedy on CBS during the regime change. She actually said Moonves cancelled her show.

    • The Other Katherine says:

      This also explains the pile of crap that is Two and a Half Men. THIS IS WHY WE DON’T HAVE NICE THINGS

      • Jan90067 says:

        LOLOL. I KNOW!! I can’t believe how that sh!t show is literally taking over syndication again. Seems every channel is running it all day.

    • Rachistina says:

      I’m a few years younger; I don’t remember much about these shows but remember loving watching them. Talking with my mom about this letter last night she commented that she didn’t remember “Designing Women” at all – so I wonder about that generation gap or whether I saw the shows after school while she was still hard at work. (I felt bad she’d missed out on them; she could have pulled from their strength, too.) Anyway — I don’t think I realized until yesterday the disappearing act that was pulled on us by Moonves and I am so pissed off that he took away these amazing and great characters and role models from me during my formative years. I remember Julia Sugarbaker’s fire and now I wonder if that lit me as kid and what partially drove my feminism as I ran hard away from the backwater where I grew up. Somehow these characters she created made me realize at a young age that women are not objects for men to do with as they please and have agency of their where I did not see that in my day-to-day life much at all. It’s useless to think about but I wonder how things would be different now if the enlightened ideas from that wave of feminism and television writing had been allowed to shine more brightly instead of snuffed out by these old white men. So, so sick of it but a tiny bit hopeful some lenses are aligning with the light again to burn these suckers for good once and for all.

  7. me46 says:

    He’s such a disgusting pig. I also remember his comment about how trump might be bad for America but great for CBS.

  8. Carol says:


  9. ItReallyIsYou,NotMe says:


  10. Aims says:

    I absolutely believe her. I grew up watching her shows and loved them. I would rather watch loud, smart women anyday of the week over men who go through life like it’s one big frat party. She was a highlight of the network and I really enjoyed her writing. I’d be scorched the earth pissed and would be enjoying watch this ass go down.

  11. Darla says:

    BTW any guesses on who the actress she talks about in her piece might be? The one Moonves insulted by telling her she was too old for a new show, and then sexually assaulted? She says the actress in question was coming off her just cancelled “iconic” woman detective show.

  12. Ms. Turtle says:

    It infuriates me that he walks away unscathed, sitting on his millions. He may never work again but his life won’t be destroyed.

    Julia Sugarbaker FOREVER!!

  13. manda says:

    I just don’t understand WHYYYYYY some men are like this? Why would a businessman want to destroy a successful thing? Weren’t there other people that were like, “whoa, she’s really smart and does a great job for us, what is your effing problem???” I didn’t realize the hate for women was so strong until the last few years and it has been so deflating. I mean, what is the big deal? We are all just people!

    • maggi says:

      Good question and I share your sense of deflation at having what I knew to be true made overt. Now I see the overt aggressions everywhere I look in my past and present and I just don’t get it. Does that type of man feel gratified by destruction? Does it feel manly to beat a woman down? I know decent guys who would never so wtf?

    • Sue says:

      The short answer to your question is – he’s a psychopath! That’s how psychopaths roll. Logically, you would think he’s want a successful show for his network, but no, he enjoys seeing someone destroyed. He derives pleasure out of their suffering.

  14. BengalCat😻 says:

    So many amazing stories/performances and art have never seen the light of day because the right person for the job didn’t make some gross executives’ dick hard. Smh.

  15. Adrien says:

    I first heard about Moonves when Howard Stern appeared on Letterman wearing “I hate Les Moonves” shirt. That was more than a decade ago. I believe more people will speak out against him.

  16. PlaidSheets says:

    She also talks about the “macho crime dramas” that cake to dominate the network. Criminal Minds was the worst of them. How many different ways can a woman get raped and murdered? Men were/are occasional victims but it became way too much.
    I hope the tide changes for CBS and they drop the rampant misogyny that permeates so many of their shows. However, it saddens me to think of what we lost as a culture by stifling so many female creative voices. For f-ing Two and a Half Men.

    • Betsy says:

      She is so right on this. CBS has just a repellent body count that revels in the violence against women. Les Moonves must have some really twisted psyche and sexuality to produce all that filth.

    • NightOwl says:

      It all makes so much sense now. Maddening to think of all that art and creativity that was lost due to misogyny and also the pervasive negative effects of the shows that DID air and influence. Appalling.

    • lucy2 says:

      Mandy Patinkin was very outspoken a few years ago about why he left Criminal Minds, he too was disgusted with the stories and the disturbing violence against women in the show.

      • Jerusha says:

        I remember that. They revel in ways to show extreme violence.

      • holly hobby says:

        And they trotted out all the old Mandy stories about how he was difficult to counter his statements.

      • NightOwl says:

        @holly hobby – Right! I found that so odd at the time but could not put my finger on it.

      • Deering says:

        Heh. Paget Brewster recently had a lot of between-the-lines stuff to say about the time CBS cut her and JJ’s roles and brought in a younger (cheaper) replacement female agent to put money toward CM’s ill-fated spinoff. As well, there are a lot of female series characters that mysteriously “leave” on that net’s shows. No one has yet explained exactly why Abby (Pauley Perrette) on NCIS left after years on therer, for example.

    • Jerusha says:

      I loathe Criminal Minds. Let’s all write to Ion TV and ask them to PLEASE stop showing it. So many other good shows to replace it with … Psych, White Collar, Leverage, any number of better programs.

      • Fluffy Princess says:

        I just wanted to give high five for “Psych” and “White Collar” — two of my all-time favorite shows! (Both of which had great female characters, too.)

      • Agenbiter says:

        Good idea – I will write to Ion about Criminal Minds.

        Wouldn’t it be great if a ‘Mothers Against Voyeuristic Violence Against Women’ group came out of this to organize publicity campaigns and calls for boycotts!

    • Trashaddict says:

      This. I used to watch these things and then I decided they just perpetuate the violence and misery.

  17. Goldengirlslover34 says:

    Wow! I mean wow! What a horrible, horrible man! I’m happy she is admitting to celebrating his downfall. What a horrible man! Women are constantly told to keep their emotions in check. Well girl, celebrate! I’ll buy you a drink!

  18. launicaangelina says:

    I read this last night and it made me so angry. I’m 38 and remember watching Designing Women in syndication and love it! Me and a couple of friends would spend lazy summer days catching the show. My favorite episodes have the four core women.

  19. adastraperaspera says:

    I, too, wondered what happen to Linda. I loved Designing Women! It was weird how we went from shows like Maude and Rhoda to drivel like The Kardasians. In every industry, the backlash against women since the advances by the 1980s has been vicious. Women have been disappeared. Moonves did not do this alone; there must be an entire leadership team in place that put this attack dog in place and egged him on. This is a classic example of systemic sexism. By killing positive images of women in their many shows–for decades now–they have baked in misogyny and shoved us aside–pretty much holding half the population hostage. I am so happy that Linda wrote this article! I hope it opens the floodgates and other people come forward, so we can finally change the system.

  20. Other Renee says:

    Designing Women is one of my all-time favorite shows. My ex-husband and I watched it religiously every week. I loved all the women but it wouldn’t have been quite as good without the amazing Meshach Taylor.

    It hurts my heart that so much talent was lost thanks to pigs like Moonves. Things would have been different had there been other outlets at the time such as Netflix.

  21. Marjorie says:

    Heh, Linda compares him to Charles Manson…good for her.

    No way people didn’t know about this.
    Also no way Julie Chen comes back to the View.

    • Leigh-Klein says:

      Looks like she was pretty much only arm candy for this pig anyway.

      • NightOwl says:

        I don’t know much about her professional accomplishments, but I’d hate to diminish her to arm candy for his wrongdoings, although she’s culpable in other tangible ways with the Janet Jackson situation for example.

      • Leigh-Klein says:

        Well, she was the other woman, wasn’t she? And most on here are okay with the view that she wasn’t particularly talented, aside from being married to the “big guy.” I’m referring more to him, as obviously he doesn’t respect women, but having an attractive one on his arm seems to be important to him. The article link I just posted is just unreal. Another Weinstein, or perhaps worse. Maybe not as “prolific” but equally revolting.

      • Jamie says:

        I imagine a lot of people think she only got where she is because she slept with the boss. The public didn’t give her then nickname “Chenbot” because she’s so charismatic on camera.

  22. Chaine says:

    This was so depressing to read. I hope #metoo will really make a difference but it just seems there are so many of these guys in such high places that this could just be a momentary blip and they will regroup, like Louis C.K. already having his comeback gig.

  23. boredblond says:

    I’m feeling very old..I loved the show from the start, but remember it wasn’t really a hit until they moved it to Mon as a lead in to Murphy Brown..and when Delta Burke left it slowly lost steam..and that was before sexist prick noonves ever showed up.

  24. Robyn says:

    Argh! I am so glad she informed in this way! But I am so pissed off. How will he pay? Hopefully by having every woman with a story about him come out and speak up and humiliate him until he is shunned, like OJ, by any decent society and eventually jailed for his criminal acts. In The meantime, let’s start a movement. Find a nickname. For him. Cnut is too good for him because it is a female body part. How about #Jackal Taint. Suggestions?

  25. SJhere says:

    I really enjoy smart, well thought out comedy. Which is almost impossible to find these days.
    Moonves is a total sh*thead and for the first time in years I’m agreeing with Howard Stern.
    LBT has more talent in her little finger than most people currently working in TV.
    And yes, Moonves will not get much in the way of punishment. These dogs rarely get what they deserve.
    Julie Chen your CBS career is over. Moonves was the only reason she was on air.
    Bad luck and troubles to both Mr. & Mrs. Moonves.
    Sickening behaviour.

    • Robyn says:

      After reading your comment, I searched “Howard Stern on Les Moonves” and the results included “Howard Stern debuts his Les Moonves puppet. I actually laughed out loud watching it as childish as it is, it’s hysterical.

  26. JRenee says:

    What a powerful story. No apology needed. Add a few other dances to your list Linda.
    And the reader up top was right, powerful women shoes were replaced with the over the top guy shows.
    According to the daily fail, they were moving things in, not out. She’s riding it out with him this far.

  27. Ali says:

    The things coming out about this man and his behavior are awful. The tolerance and not even tolerance but support for such an awful awful human being makes me so angry and sad.
    I want an I hate Les Moonves T-shirt, too, but even more so I want an I love Linda Bloodworth Thomason tshirt.

  28. bella says:

    There are way too many shows on tv that depict violence against women over and over again–I am looking at all those CSI shows. It has to stop! People are so used to it they don’t even realize that they are being brain washed to hate women. It is subtle and systematic and it has to end. I will not watch any show that that has numerous situations where woman are either being raped or killed! LBT is awesome and I hope she gets more air time!

    • NightOwl says:

      Totally agree. There are way too many crime shows in general that are really all setups to depict women in horrible ways.

    • Agenbiter says:

      When Criminal Minds, et al, appeared I felt I had missed the public discussion that made endless displays of misogynistic violence on network tv not only acceptable but ‘celebrated’.

      Now we know the backstory, and it all makes sense.

      • NightOwl says:

        I felt the same way too! Barely watch any TV these days and felt that there was such a tidal shift in what was considered “entertainment”. And the networks wonder why viewership is off on all fronts.

    • Veronica S. says:

      I literally had to stop watching SVU at one point because an episode upset me so much visually that I felt sick. And if I was that affected – and I have never had the misfortune of being a sexual assault victim – how exactly did people who were react? Unbelievably evil, the constant war of degradation and fear American media wages on women, and we don’t even realize it.

      • Anon33 says:

        Rape survivor here. I absolutely cannot watch SUV. Not even one second of it.

      • Alarmjaguar says:

        Never could watch SUV despite liking the rest of Law and Order and while I love procedurals because they are basically mind popcorn, but every once in awhile I have to step away because of what you have all stated above!

  29. holly hobby says:

    I came across this article last night and it was so disturbing. Seriously that man is not working with a full toolbox because he came in and automatically hated LBT? Is it because she wasn’t what he considered “f—able?”

    Let’s not forget there was a CBC Cagney and Lacey reboot pilot starring April from Grey’s Anatomy. It was a big deal announcement at the time but that did not get picked up. Now you gotta wonder if Leslie did that.

    Sorry Julie Chen is complicit. She fell prey to his mo and became Mrs. Moonves. Don’t tell me she didn’t know it was sexual harassment in the work place.

    If you read the whole article, LBT had a penalty fee for each show Leslie rejected. In the end he refused to pay those fees, that bastard.

  30. Whatever Gurl says:

    At what point is Julie Chen complicit?

    Are you telling me she does not know he is a vindictive, hateful narcissist?

    Is she not covering for him and helping his image by marrying him?

    Let’s not forget that Julie got with him while he was married to his first wife so let’s not pretend she has the highest morals.

    At what point does she need to take responsibility for protecting a monster?

    And please, I’m sure his mask must have slipped a few times.

    • Cine Johnson says:

      I hope Chen is removed from her TV shows. Is she so naive that she saw NOTHING of what went on virtually under her nose? If she is, even more reason to remove her from thought-provoking shows. But then, I cannot for the life of me understand just who is Sharon Osborne’s audience? She’s a terrible terrible role model, and an enabler of the first order. Why would anyone take her counsel ? Ugh. I’d like to see women who did not ride the marriage game to success. Earn it – and you have my ears.

  31. Fluffy Princess says:

    This is all so infuriating from top to bottom. The worst part is — you cannot turn back time. So, in the end we can all be pissed off but Moonves will ride off in his ultra expensive car and live in one of his ultra expensive houses and live an amazing well-paid life of extreme luxury and comfort.

    There will literally be no justice for any of these women. None. Like all these #metoo abusers, nothing will happen to them, they’ll just live off the gajillions of dollars they made by being complete cretinous maggots and sure they cry their bitter tears for not being able to be an a**hole until they die, but in the end life will be peachy keen for them.

    • NightOwl says:

      Yes absolutely! And you cannot undo the cultural influence either.

    • sid says:

      “The worst part is — you cannot turn back time.”

      Exactly. How do you make up for all of the opportunities and money that were lost? Just looking at Linda Bloodworth Tomason and Janet Jackson, Moonves basically cut their careers off at the knees. These were two women who had reached the top of their respective industries, yet he was still able to do it. This is infuriating.

      • Fluffy Princess says:

        Absolutely. It is breathtaking how galling and just down right unfair it is, because there is NOTHING that can fix or rectify this situation. Yes, it would be nice if he sat out his remaining years in jail for his actions, but again, these hugely talented women still had their careers damaged beyond repair and they all paid the ultimate price — and for him, nada, zilch, nothing. It’s beyond infuriating, frustrating, and maddening. AAAAARRRRGH!

      • Flan says:

        The only reason men like that get away with this, is because we still watch their programs, series, movies.

        The only thing that will stop this is that we stop watching them. Yes, also when you really love so and so actor in a series, or if it makes you nostalgic for some reason.
        We need to stop watching this crap.

      • Deering says:

        Jackson’s shaming was as egregious as it gets—a classic case of “degrade that too-successful black woman who most assuredly set out to make me hard.” One can imagine the kind of “apology” he would have demanded of her. Bastard.

    • holly hobby says:

      Karma is a bitch and one day Leslie will get his. That’s all we can hope.

    • MaryContrary says:

      I have to believe that some of these guys (especially at their age) are very focused on their legacy. Now that their names are tarnished they don’t have that anymore. Everyone has heard what a-holes they are. Plus, both Moonves and Weinstein have young kids with their newer wives-how would you like to have these stories out there for their children to read? It may be small consolation-but it is something.

      • Deering says:

        Mary, these guys don’t give a damn about their kids or the fallout on them. Or their wives. Or relatives, either. People are just props in their lifelong ego-wank to their power and glory.

      • Trashaddict says:

        Yup, I agree with Deering. They only care about their families to the extent that they make them feel good or look good.

    • Agenbiter says:

      You cannot turn back time, and there have been how many years of tv shows pushed by this creep and others like him that normalized misogynistic violence as an appropriate subject for voyeurism on network tv rather than seedy porn shops. These shows cannot be unmade and unshown …

  32. Veronica S. says:

    I guess Julie Chen has now informed the world of the monetary amount it takes to sacrifice your dignity and self-respect.

  33. Biting Panda says:

    I am so mad. I am so mother fracking mad at every single “good guy” who worked side by side with these monsters and did nothing. I’m so mad at every single “good guy” who watched these men, followed the directives of these men, who didn’t stand up and call them out on their crap.
    They actively committed in these crimes, even if they weren’t the predator in the room.

  34. Michel says:

    Such a creep. He may have his money but I hope social ostracization ruins him. Keep bringing these a-holes down.

    • Leigh-Klein says:

      Creep doesn’t even begin to describe him. I just read an article in The New Yorker. He had a remotely-locking door like Matt Lauer. One woman threatened to scream so loud and long that everyone would come running if he didn’t unlock it; he didn’t come to the door to unlock it but unlocked it another way. She knew immediately it was a setup. The lies he told are staggering. He only admitted to “trying to kiss” someone. This “payout” that he’s supposedly getting, for being a complete pile of steaming shit, it’s just beyond words. Frightening man, frightening. Long read but a very good one.


  35. Lisabella says:

    I would love to know why Linda had Delta leave Designing Women… Does anyone know?!?

  36. noway says:

    This is the story I personally know, and thank you Linda for giving a powerful voice to it, as I kind of thought it would never be told, as it isn’t quite as horrific as the assaults, but may be as damaging for society. I never knew anyone who was sexually assaulted by any of these men accused in the media, even though I worked with some. I worked at two networks and a few television production companies. However, I knew a lot of talented women who lost their spark and drive, because they were relegated to second tier status just cause they were a woman. The amount of young women given the menial almost housekeeping tasks for jobs while the guys just didn’t enter a career that way is just mind boggling. Even when some succeeded, and you see a glimmer of hope; some man comes and crushes them. Think of Hillary Clinton just not as public. You wonder why Hillary didn’t look authentic, because after years of being smashed you become something different. At the time, some women would give in, and as they say “sleep their way up,” although looking back I’m sure some were assaulted, and this only pitted women against each other. As the ones who refused were left behind, and even the ones who did generally didn’t get much further. Yes there were a few women who made it, but not as many as the untalented men.

    Now Moonves, aside from all the other things sounds like a deuchebag, but I wonder if Thompson’s dramatic interpretation of her Designing Woman read through was just how she sees it in her mind now cause it was so painful. Since this whole metoo movement I’ve tried to dissect my career, which didn’t really turn out how I wanted it to when I started, and my memories are of much more subtle shade. The guy who gets the chance to rewrite the script instead of the girl who everyone knew was better. The total dismissal of the women’s idea until they weren’t contributing as much. Now if Moonves didn’t assault the women would we still be talking about this? Cause the assault is criminal and it’s easy to figure out a punishment for that, even if he doesn’t get it, but it’s jail. What Moonves did to Thompson wasn’t criminal, but a big societal problem and far more common than the assaults. In addition to striving for just criminal punishment we need to discuss the other too so women have a shot at least to follow their dreams. .

    • Fluffy Princess says:

      I absolutely think what he did to LBT WAS criminal. She had proven her worth literally million$ of times over–and yet, because she wasn’t a douchebro, well then ef her, she’s taking some man’s spot at the table. Basically it all boils down to: We will NEVER EVER value you, your input, your intelligence as much as we do a man.

      Who wants to go through your work life with people who think you are less than they are, second class, just a piece of ass (and it better be an attractive poa at that!)

      Even when it’s clear that some guy is not even close to a female colleague’s caliber, he gets all the goodies nonetheless–i.e. who is sitting in the WH right now? An illiterate piece of trash. :-(

    • Cine Johnson says:

      Welp. At the very least he did not honor a contract. AT THE VERY LEAST, it’s a civil matter. Ive no doubt he committed criminal acts but someone has to accuse him of criminality before the SOL runs. Bring on those victims and smush this dbag.

    • Sue Denim says:

      I think we need to shift the conversation… I think this behavior is on the same continuum as the sexual assaults, part of an overall pattern of abusing power to keep women from rising. We learned years ago that rape was not about sex, it was about power. That seems to be lost in a lot of the discussions I’ve seen, explanations like Cosby’s fetish for sex with “sleeping beauties” or however psychologists have dressed it up. No, it’s about wanting to keep women down — scared, hurt, ashamed, confused, distracted, disoriented — so the men can retain their power and privileges. And by the way, what’s criminal v not has generally been codified by judges and juries of white men…and that’s only going to get worse w the Margaret Atwood Supreme Court…

  37. Darla says:

    I don’t have any sympathy for Chen. Give me a break she didn’t know. She knew. It’s probably how they first got together. Now LBT had her career ruined, and she is so talented, but Julie Chen whom as far as I can tell has no talent, has two hit shows and drives around in a Bentley, because she f’d the pig so good that he left his wife and put a ring on it.

    Sorry, I will save my sympathy for his assault victims and the many incredibly talented women he ruined.

    • Nic919 says:

      She also signed off the live Big Brother episode as Julie Chen Moonves… something she’s never done before. She’s chosen a side. And should pay the price.

  38. Lucky says:

    You know I’m on a serious self-love kick because when you said “dating myself” I totally thought you meant like being good to yourself an dtaking yourself out for a dinner and a movie. 💗 I also loved Designing Women.

  39. Helen says:

    So many “what happened to (enter female name)…” questions I’ve had about deeply talented women in entertainment have been answered by the #MeToo movement. I loved DW and wondered why the creator disappeared.

  40. Sue Denim says:

    This is so revealing…and heartbreaking… Not on the same scale, but I’ve been at my job for 6 years and have had to move offices almost every year, always to make way for some new guy, always w some reasonable-ish explanation. The past year, I had to share an office w one tall white guy, a guy brand new to the org, who has less experience, fewer credentials and admits to working half as hard, prob for 2-3 times the pay, tho we have the same exact title and workload. I’ve also been asked to take on various leadership roles beyond my main job, but from my end with the best of intentions and commitment. Well, a new smaller windowless office came free, so guess who gets to keep the big office we shared, while I have to move to the other office… And they thought they were doing me a favor… They were like “why didn’t you say something…” They said this AS I was saying something! I’ve been working so hard for 20 plus years but something just broke in me with this. I’m enraged, sad, frustrated but also just like — oh of course, it was never a fair game. It was never about my work or contributions or credentials or any of the things I’ve been told/gaslit to believe. They just keep moving the goal posts to explain why men get pushed forward and up and women get pushed down… It’s obv so much more than just the office at this point. Any suggestions for how to cope in these times of raging sexism/misogyny? I’m struggling…

    • ravynrobyn says:

      Hi @ Sue Denim–I’m so sorry you have to endure this, and I’m even sorrier I have no words of wisdom. For 25+ years I worked in the human services field, which is approximately 95% female. No ageism nor misogyny. but watch out if you’re unhealthy or (God forbid) old. And if you’re like me, old & sick?? Then you’re forced to “retire”. Thank God I had worked there as long as I did so I could take a service retirement w/ a pension instead of a disability retirement.

      I dont know what field you work in, and I realize that probably the MAJORITY of career fields have white men in charge–but–is there any way you could find another job and then quit? I really hope you don’t take offense; the six years that you described at your current job sounds more like 66. I obviously don’t know anything else about you or your life except that you have an extremely brutal, shitty, mind-fucking and soul-crushing job…you deserve better, to say the least.
      Try to find ways to take care of yourself.

    • Trashaddict says:

      Been there. Still sitting there (lost my office, just got a cubby office after several years with none and new hires getting full ones). Message to the younger women: learn the pay grade at your organization. Track the accomplishments you are making. Do your homework for going pay grade in your job area, and negotiate your salary when you are hired. You have to be prepared to say no if they don’t meet it. (I have seen that men are more prepared to leave for a pay raise and have other opportunties lined up.) If you’re already somewhere and you realize the pay grade is unequal, consider negotiating that with your boss but be prepared to tick off what you have done for the company. If all else fails, consider filing an EEOC complaint. Here’s the link for Chicago, google the one in your area:
      Consider whether you could run your own business.
      The good news where I work is, since more women appeared at management level, the pay issue is not just being studies, it’s being addressed.
      Just wanted to let you know, there is some good news out there.

  41. AppleTartin says:

    In no way do I think Ronan Farrow was in cahoots with Shari Redstone as he was working on this story for well over a year. But I do take such pleasure in knowing Shari triumphed over him and he’s out. Maybe now the Viacom channels and can stop being held hostage and other cable carriers and internet services can start accessing them on demand aka Hulu!

  42. JayneBirkinB says:

    I see that ABC jumped on that shizz and signed Linda Bloodsworth-Thomason to a Designing Women Part Deux show. It’s about time something good came out of this!

    But I have to say, what I really want to see is a throw back show: Designing Women set in the mid 1960′s when Julia Sugarbaker was in her 20′s and her cousin Suzanne Sugarbaker was a beauty contestant. I want to see Julia’s early rants at the “Mad Men” types, and Suzanne throw shade at the other contestants in pageants. It would be divine, and the fashion and interior design would be so much fun to recreate!

  43. Trashaddict says:

    I really don’t watch much network TV anymore (know I know why), but this news just put that a$$hat so far up my S#it list- Have they already given him his severance? It not, time for a mass letter-writing campaign to CBS.