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Celebrity Slam (08/17/2016)

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Kicking it with Thomas Gibson

There's no disputing that starring on a network television series is a lucrative gig. People know your face, you make good money it's a sweet job.

However, no matter how integral you might believe yourself to be with regards to a show's relative success or failure, there's always going to be a line. The location of that line will likely vary depending on just how famous and/or integral you are, but it's always there. And if you cross it, wellyou're probably done.

That's just what happened to Thomas Gibson, one of the stars of CBS's long-running procedural drama 'Criminal Minds.' Gibson has been unceremoniously kicked to the curb following an on-set incident.

Long story short, he apparently kicked a guy.

According to the story, Gibson was actually serving as the director of an episode of the show when some creative differences arose between himself and Virgil Williams, a writer/producer on the show who happened to have penned the episode in question. Said creative differences apparently got quite heated and boiled over into a physical confrontation in which Gibson allegedly kicked Williams in the shins.

Williams filed a formal complaint with HR and gave an extensive interview. Initially, Gibson was suspended for two episodes and another director was brought in to finish the work that Gibson had started. However, on the day after the suspension became public, CBS went ahead and dismissed Gibson completely.

Rumor has it that Gibson has retained counsel and is considering litigation, but as of now, he's out; CBS has yet to announce how the show itself will address the character's exit.

(Note: While the circumstances of Gibson's departure obviously preclude this from being an option, we can all agree that the best way to write him out would be some sort of cut scene where he wakes up in bed next to Jenna Elfman while an episode of 'Criminal Minds' featuring whoever replaces him plays on the TV in the background.)

Look, this kind of behavior isn't particularly surprising in the entertainment world there are a lot of famous people who are, at their core, essentially petulant, entitled children. However, we usually expect it to come from young idiots and reality stars and the like; Gibson is in his mid-50s and has been a TV series regular for something like two decades.

This is a dude who should know better, is what we're saying.

Working on a network television set has got to be a stressful thing. There's no doubt that these sorts of disagreements regarding creative choices happen all the time. However, one has to assume that the majority of the time, these disagreements are resolved using, you know, words.

And lest we forget, the manner in which Gibson vented his frustrations was more akin to a toddler engaged in a sandbox disagreement than any sort of interaction between adults. Seriously he kicked the guy in the shins. Who even does that? If you're going to get into a fight, fine, but shin-kicking? You're about 50 years too old for that kind of foolishness.

As for the lawsuit? Good luck, buddy. You can argue that your dismissal was unjustified until your blue in the face, but the simple truth is that you appear to have kicked a guy. A vague self-defense argument has already pretty much been waved away, but even if it hadn't you kicked a guy. A guy who is a writer and producer on the show you (used to) star in. And you did it because you were sitting in the director's chair and decided it was a throne.

Here's the thing your argument regarding creative direction could well have been valid (though it seems unclear what kind of narrative curveball you're going to put in a sedentary dinosaur like 'Criminal Minds,' but whatever). But we'll never know, because instead of dealing with things like a grown-up, you employed a tactic best used when stealing a smaller kid's lunch money.

Come on, man there's almost always a peaceful solution to this stuff. Did your marriage to Dharma teach you nothing?


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