Online calls for The Walking Dead super-fan Yvette Nicole Brown to replace Chris Hardwick as host of live aftershow Talking Dead are growing following allegations of long-term abuse made by ex-girlfriend Chloe Dykstra.
Brown, best known for roles on beloved comedies Drake & Josh and Community, is well-known to Talking Dead viewers: the actress and comedian has appeared as a guest in 15 episodes since 2012, typically toting a notebook filled with hand-written musings supporting her Walking Dead commentary.
Hardwick has hosted the hit AMC talk show since its inception in 2011. The series frequently features cast and crew from both The Walking Dead and spinoff Fear The Walking Dead as well as celebrity guests.
Dykstra penned a lengthy and damning piece for Medium, published Thursday, recounting her history with an abusive ex-boyfriend, claiming both sexual and emotional abuse as well as blacklisting.
The actress and professional cosplayer did not name the perpetrator, but the Nerdist founder and Talking Dead host was swiftly identified by particulars offered in the piece detailing Dykstra’s three-year relationship with Hardwick.
“[I was] terrified to piss him off, so I did what he said. Including let him sexually assault me. Regularly," she claimed. “I was expected to be ready for him when he came home from work. ... Every night, I laid there for him, occasionally in tears. He called it 'starfishing.' He thought the whole idea was funny.”
“To be fair, I did go along with it out of fear of losing him," she added. “I’m still recovering from being sexually used (not in a super fun way) for three years.”
Dykstra was left suicidal from the abuse and wrote her ex allegedly “made calls” to companies she used to receive regular work from to “get [her] fired by threatening to never work with them.”
“A sincere and heartfelt apology could have made my last four years a hell of a lot easier. The person I used to date would try to sue me due to pride — I would not recommend it,” Dykstra wrote, ending the Medium piece with words aimed directly at her abuser.
“I have audio/video that will support and prove many of the things I’ve stated in this post. I’ve chosen not to include it for your sake, in the hopes that the person you’ve become will do the right thing.”
Both Hardwick and AMC — the network that owns and airs Talking Dead — have yet to issue comments. Hardwick is named as producer on both Talking Dead and Talking with Chris Hardwick, which is currently scheduled to air the first episode of its second season this Sunday on AMC.
Brown has experience hosting Cosplay Melee, a reality competition television series aired on SYFY.
So, can Yvette Nicole Brown FINALLY replace Chris Hardwick in prominence as relatable host, as she been more charming, a lot less tone-deaf about women and POC, and more thoroughly and genuinely engaged as a fan for years? pic.twitter.com/H5HuadvoA8— Domino'sLucky4CFro (@MsGo) June 15, 2018
Until today I've been a fan of Hardwick and loved him on TTD, but I would support this idea 1,000,000%. Yvette has always been amazing, and she's knocked any hosting duties she's ever had out of the park. Please let this become a thing!— 3xFour (@3xFour) June 15, 2018
If anyone should replace Chris Hardwick at all his gigs it should definitely be Yvette Nicole Brown. I love everything about her! @YNB— Jailain (@jailainhollon) June 15, 2018
It seems a lot of ppl are thinking Yvette Nicole Brown for this and what a logical choice - VIEWERSHIP WOULD GO UP. She’s fucking awesome.— Full Name (@NYRanting) June 15, 2018
Only @YNB could change such a sad and ugly situation into a charming, knowledgeable win! I love her and her ever-present notebook! ❤️— Connie SmokeyEyed Cunt ??#FuckTrump (@connie92506) June 15, 2018
so many folks asked for this years ago pic.twitter.com/wmWnhtIyB2— Dusky Literati (@duskyliterati) June 15, 2018
I vote @ynb replaces chris hardwick.
in everything.— Alec (@swishyhair93) June 15, 2018
Hopefully @AMC_TV will fire you today and make is a great day.— Bobby VanSistine (@BVan87) June 15, 2018
Uhhh not that walking dead is good anymore but its time to replace chris hardwick with yvette nicole brown— taako's modern life (@g0romajima) June 15, 2018
She shouldve hosted in the first place lmao
I vote Yvette Nicole Brown replaces Chris Hardwick— Rosalie (@Rosalie8710) June 15, 2018
Same. Hopefully AMC replaces him, otherwise, "Talking Dead" is dead to me.— Rebecca Hosley (@RebeccaHosley) June 15, 2018
I agree with a campaign to keep Talking going and replace Chris Hardwick with Yvette Nicole Brown if she'd like to. Fuck Chris Hardwick. What a disgusting human being.— goodbye despair. ??? (@bibleland6) June 15, 2018
I’m voting for Yvette Nicole Brown. pic.twitter.com/xHVfziP8BO— Jusтιne (@justjustineq) June 15, 2018
Every black woman I meet who has seen Chris Hardwick host Talking Dead saw how he spoke to the female guests and how he spoke to the actresses on the show. He's condescending trash, his takes are awful, and that hair is thinning faster than TWD is losing viewers. @AMC_TV Fire him— Thortavius Odinson (@annsthewoman) June 15, 2018
So @AMC_TV better make Yvette Nicole Brown the new host of Talking Dead.— Matt Osaki (@LolitaDahlia) June 15, 2018
I’m here for replacing Chris Hardwick with Yvette Nicole Brown on the Talking Dead as the host and if they do that I’ll start watching that show again.— (future) doctor c. michael jones (@cjmjones) June 15, 2018
Talking Dead better replace Chris Hardwick with Yvette Nicole Brown— junglejim4322 (@kaitlinpadgett2) June 15, 2018
"Welcome to 'The Talking Dead' hosted by Yvette Nicole Brown," has a really nice ring to it.— pajiba (pronounced with a long i) (@pajiba) June 15, 2018
get rid of your shitty talking dead host if you want to keep your viewers. replace him with Yvette Nicole Brown or someone who’s a decent human being.— Jod ? (@Jodie276) June 15, 2018
You know what would be awesome and the right thing to do? If @AMCTalkingDead replaced the huge piece of shit Chris Hardwick with the lovely Yvette Nicole Brown.— Amber J (@HailToTheFire) June 15, 2018
Man, I really liked Chris Hardwick. Enjoyed him on Talking Dead, midnight with Chris Hardwick, Talking with Chris Hardwick and other things he has done.
Now, he can go fuck himself. Won't be watching anything he's involved with anymore. He's a piece of shit.— Matt (@adoringshuri) June 15, 2018
So uh Yvette Nicole Brown is clearly hosting Talking Dead now right— Paul Tassi (@PaulTassi) June 15, 2018
hey @AMC_TV replace Chris Hardwick with Yvette Nicole Brown! give us nerds the queen what we deserve!— Petty_Shabazz ✊? (@a_for2day) June 15, 2018
Every panel Chris Hardwick was supposed to moderate should be given to Yvette Nicole Brown. #SDCC— Sarah (@sarahtv3) June 15, 2018
Hey @AMCTalkingDead, time to take out the trash and hire Yvette Nicole Brown as your new host! I don't want to watch an emotional abuser interview the stars of my favorite show.— Rebecca Hosley (@RebeccaHosley) June 15, 2018
oh great, now #ChrisHardwick is done, can Yvette Nicole Brown take over Talking Dead??— Amanda Reckonwith (@click4amanda) June 15, 2018
BUT can we please have Yvette Nicole Brown take over as Talking Dead host? Please and thank you.— Holly (@Holz090) June 15, 2018
I predict AMC's Talking with #YvetteNicoleBrown will be announced very soon.— Patrick Moore (@patrickwm68) June 15, 2018
Opened Twitter to note that Yvette Nicole Brown @YNB should replace Chris @hardwick on all iterations of @AMCTalkingDead, found that many people are already calling for that. Better join them! If he's not replaced, I'm not watching.— ?Sarah Cooper? (@QTipMoose) June 15, 2018