A&E confirmed Monday it has cancelled a controversial reality TV show following swingers in Warren County's Hamilton Township.

The buzz about the program's fate began circulating late Sunday after the network did not air the third show in the "Neighbors with Benefits" series Sunday, which aired at 10 p.m. Sundays on the network.

Tony and Diana McCollister, who are portrayed as the leaders of what's described as a thriving swinging culture in their Thornton Grove neighborhood, posted messages on Facebook and Twitter late Sunday indicating the show would not air and deferring all questions to A&E officials.

"#‎NeighborswithBenefits won't air this Sunday. Please direct all questions to A&E. We LOVE our fans & hope to be back on the air soon!" read the couple's social media posts.

A&E officials declined to provide details on why the show, which drew national criticism from both conservative groups and critics, was cancelled.

The nine-episode series followed several local married couples who swap partners and engage in extramarital relationships as they go about their regular lives as parents, professionals, soccer moms and little league coaches.

The portrayal of this 300-plus home suburban community as a hotbed for out-and-proud swingers sparked moral outrage from neighbors, who insist many of the show's cast members don't live in the neighborhood.

It drew calls for boycott of the show, its advertisers and the A&E network from Citizens for Community Values, One Million Moms and the American Family Association.

However, the show was also critically panned by reviewers, who called it "cringe-worthy" and filled with "manufactured drama."

"…most of the extramarital encounters within the show — despite a discretely placed bra here and some kissing there — are so awkward and stilted that there's nothing particularly sexy about them, to the point where the viewer-discretion advisory seems wholly unnecessary," Variety TV columnist Brian Lowry wrote in his reviewof the first episode.

"Because even if the audience suspends disbelief, the benefits associated with watching this show are barely worth getting out of — or for that matter, into — bed over," Lowry wrote.

"While the idea of swinging is supposed to be titillating, A&E's new reality show, 'Neighbors With Benefits' proves it's kind of anything but. In fact, after watching the premiere episode, anyone considering this lifestyle may quickly realize it's probably something best left as fantasy instead of reality" Entertainment Weekly's Gillian Telling wrote in her review.

In an interview on 700 WLW last month, the McCollisters defended their lifestyle and marriage.

"Our policy is honesty and truthfulness. Are our kids happy? Yes. Do we have a happy family? Yes. We might be different compared to other marriages, but it's okay to be different," Diana McCollister said.

 

Syndicated from: http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2015/04/06/warren-county-swingers-show-cancelled/25353203/

HAMILTON TWP. -- Police in this Warren County bedroom community will be stepping up their presence in one neighborhood in anticipation of the Sunday premiere of a controversial new TV reality show filmed in the area.

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- Two activist groups are taking aim at an A&E show centered on a Tri-State community.

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