Last weekend, news broke that the actor behind Greendale Community College’s most crotchety old student might be more like his character than we initially thought. Yes, Chevy Chase was infamous for his Saturday Night Live altercations with, well, pretty much everyone, but his threats to leave the world’s most lovable study group were a shocker to the show’s many devoted fans. Hints of Chase’s less-than-stellar on set behavior could be seen in co-star Alison’s Brie’s “Pierce or Chevy” tweets, (Example: “You’re a spoiled Jewish brat!” then pointing to me and Gillian, “Wait, which one’s Jewish?” #PierceORChevy) but so far the cast has kept mum about his feud with creator Dan Harmon.
If Chase wises up and makes nice with Harmon, this little debacle could fade away into the dark recesses of television history oblivion. If not, we could have another Nicollette Sheridan situation on our hands. In honor of Chevy and the man he called a “goddamn a**hole alcoholic fat sh*t,” let’s take a trip down TV feud memory lane.
Nicollette Sheridan versus Marc Cherry
In 2010, Sheridan filed a $20 million lawsuit against Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry, alleging that she was assaulted by Cherry on set before her “wrongful termination” in 2009. Cherry said that the decision to kill her meddlesome character, Edie Britt, had been made in 2008, and cited her unprofessional behavior as his reasoning. The rest of the cast leapt to Cherry’s defense, despite the fact that Sheridan claimed that some of them had been similarly assaulted.
Outcome: The battery charges were thrown out due to lack of evidence, and on March 19, 2012, a mistrial was declared when the jury was unable to reach a verdict. Cherry is no longer involved in the case, but Sheridan and ABC will duke it out again in a few weeks.
Shannen Doherty versus Jennie Garth (And everyone)
In 1994, tragedy struck when one of TV’s greatest heroes, Brenda Walsh, left Beverly Hills to study the dramatic arts in London. Maddeningly, this injustice was caused by Shannen Doherty’s on set behavior, most famously her arguments with that prissy Dylan-thief, Kelly Taylor (Err, Jennie Garth). Tori Spelling claimed that the two female leads once got in a fistfight, but sporadic lateness and general bad behavior were the publicly accepted impetuses behind her untimely exit.
Outcome: Doherty never returned to the original Beverly Hills, 90210 during the remainder of its six-year run, but she later showed up for a guest stint on its less-than remake, 90210. She starred in Charmed from 1998 until 2001, and similarly left that show amidst rumors of a clash with Alyssa Milano.
Isaiah Washington versus T.R. Knight and Patrick Dempsey
In 2006, the award-winning Isaiah Washington disappointed fans of romance in scrubs everywhere when he used a homophobic slur against his Grey’s Anatomy co-star, T.R. Knight. His comments led to an on-set argument with Patrick Dempsey, as well as the public outing of Knight. Washington later apologized, but the damage had already been done: Dr. Burke was officially DOA.
Outcome: Washington finished out the remainder of the season, then faded into obscurity when his contract was not renewed the following year. And Cristina totally moved on.
Janet Hubert versus Will Smith
Prof. Vivian Banks was a staple on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air: The matriarch of the Banks family loved and supported her children and nephew, through good times, bad times, and Playboy pictorials. Unfortunately, actress Janet Hubert’s relationship with the show’s star, Will Smith, was troubled. Both Smith and Alfonso Ribeiro (Remember him?) spoke out about the supposedly cuckoo bananas starlet on several occasions.
Outcome: Hubert was replaced by Daphne Maxwell Reid after three seasons, and has seemingly dropped off the face of the earth. As a “wink wink, nudge nudge” gag on the show, the Banks family would look at old family photos and question Viv’s changed appearance.
Kim Cattrall versus Sarah Jessica Parker
These Sex and the City ladies were the best of friends on camera, but rumors of an on set rivalry plagued the actresses for years. Kim Cattrall fueled the fire when she took longer than her three co-stars to sign on for the movie and its sequel, sparking additional rumors of Parker-induced jealousy.
Outcome: This time, the outcome was pretty good (Not the movies). Cattrall eventually signed on to both films, and the women have been seen together publicly many times since. According to Cattrall, the haters didn’t like to see two successful women getting along, so they made the stories up to fan the flames.
Of course, these are only a few of my favorite television scuffles. We’ll always have Sheen versus Lorre, and Elisabeth Hasselbeck versus knowledge. Readers, let us know: What are your favorite TV feuds, and why?
Follow Shaunna on Twitter @HWShaunna