Lori Loughlin has been deposed from her throne at the Hallmark Channel, rap sheets and their schtick being somewhat incongruous. But the very casually costumed show must go on! Hence, the creators of When Calls the Heart are “retooling” the remaining un-aired episodes.
Producer Brian Bird released a statement on the show’s Instagram, announcing a “creative hiatus” to rework the episodes that already in the can, presumably so they can figure out how to kill off Loughlin’s character, Abigail Stanton. Or maybe they’ll do the funniest thing, which would be to simply recast her without a single word of explanation. (Lacey Chabert???)
The statement continued:
“#Hearties, thank you for your love, support, and patience these last several days as we have all been preoccupied with the news about Lori Loughlin and her family, and the decisions our colleagues at the Hallmark Channel USA needed to make. As you can imagine, everyone involved with ‘When Calls the Heart’ was surprised by these developments, so we hope you can forgive us for initially staying silent while we sorted through how to respond.”
Deadline noted that the season six premiere on February 24 was the channel’s highest rated premiere ever, so this is all very annoying timing for Hallmark—and also, they are not going to let this show die if there is anything they can do to proceed without Loughlin. “Let us reassure you, When Calls the Heart has always been bigger than the sum of its parts, and it HAS NOT BEEN CANCELED,” Bird added in his note.
Perhaps in their retooling they might consider revamping their wardrobing budget, so that it looks less like a high school production of Thornton Wilder’s Our Town? Just a thought.