Sometimes a joke can go too far. That may be the case after a parody site’s claims that Netflix had cancelled its hit show “Orange Is the New Black” led to a massive Twitter storm of shock and outrage.
Many of those outraged were clearly doing so based solely on the headline article. Inside the body of the story on Empire News, which is a humor site like The Onion that creates fake news, it’s explained that Netflix CEO Reed Hastings cancelled the show because creator Jenji Kohan refused to put in more male leads.
According to the article, he got upset with how the show portrayed women, saying, “A woman’s place is in the home, in the kitchen, taking care of children. A woman in jail? How does anyone even watch this show in the first place? It’s like we took everything bad about ‘OZ,’ and make this show with the leftovers.”
The article further claimed that not only was the streaming service cancelling the show after two seasons, but that it would be removing the first two seasons from its services as well.
Such an outrageous and what would seem to be obviously fake quote and story nevertheless freaked out a sufficient number of fans to convince Netflix, the show’s official Twitter feed and even the show’s stars to respond.
At least one fan did read the whole article, and still believed it. @alisonjmcdonald wrote, “Orange is the New Black has been canceled by Netflix bc the owner thought there should be more male leads..ITS A SHOW ABOUT A WOMANS PRISON”
One fan, going by the handle @haayweez, went so far as to write, “I just read somewhere that the third season of orange is the new black has been canceled. If that is true then I consider my life over.”
Ironically, @missedyourpoint wrote, “This talk of orange is the new black being canceled better be a rumor” The good news is that it absolutely is.
– Netflix US (@netflix) July 12, 2014
Orange Is The New Black has NOT been canceled. Whoever started this rumor will be spending some time in the SHU. pic.twitter.com/tslCdjBkht
– Orange Is the New… (@OITNB) July 12, 2014
@OITNB I will escort the responsible parties personally along with a few of my friends
– Michael Harney (@MichaelHarney4) July 12, 2014