In June, actress and cosplayer Chloe Dykstra wrote a heart-wrenching essay on Medium about an emotionally and sexually abusive ex-boyfriend. Even though she didn’t name her abuser, it didn’t take long for the internet to connect Dykstra’s story to Nerdist creator Chris Hardwick. In the wake of the backlash against Hardwick, AMC recently announced that Community actress Yvette Nicole Brown will be taking over for him on AMC’s Talking Dead.
AMC told Deadline on July 13th that Brown will “step in as an interim guest host” on The Walking Dead’s after-show when it returns August 12th, also adding that she will host the Season 9 preview show. The network did not specify how long Brown would be hosting the show, only saying that she would fill the role “as we work to complete our assessment related to Chris Hardwick.” According to IndieWire, Brown has regularly appeared on the show as a guest since 2012.
Variety reported on July 3rd that Brown will also take over moderating duties for Hardwick at the Fear the Walking Dead and The Walking Dead panels at San Diego Comic Con July 19th through July 22nd.
Although Hardwick has denied that he was abusive to Dykstra, the backlash against him has been swift. On June 16th, two days after Dykstra published her essay, AMC announced that Hardwick’s show, Talking with Chris Hardwick would not air until they were finished assessing the situation, according to the New York Times.
Amid anger from Hardwick’s fans after the news, Brown reiterated on Twitter that she has only been named host of Talking Dead for the time being.
It’s encouraging to see that AMC is taking the allegations against Hardwick seriously, and we think Brown is going to make an excellent interim host. In the meantime, we stand with Dykstra and all survivors of sexual abuse or assault.
If you or someone you know has or is currently experiencing sexual assault, contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.