Less than two weeks ago, Mayans M.C. fans were stunned to learn that co-creator Kurt Sutter — who was already in the process of stepping down as co-showrunner — had been fired from the series and the FX network altogether. Not too long after, the Sons of Anarchy alum teasingly admitted he had “ruffled a few mouse ears,” suggesting that something he said or did wasn’t too well-received by FX’s new owners, the Walt Disney Company. Now, according to a new interview with Deadline, it seems like that’s exactly what happened.
Sutter stresses that he, and no one else, had “created the circumstances that led to my being forced out” at FX. What’s more, the ex-showrunner explains he had “overestimated my value and underestimated the unf*ckability of the mouse” — in other words, the higher-ups at Disney. But how, precisely, did he accomplish this? By tossing in several incredibly dark jokes about Disneyland and Walt Disney himself into the Mayans M.C. second season premiere’s
“It all started with a joke. And not a very good one. There was a line in the Season 2 premiere. EZ [JD Pardo] and Coco [Richard Cabral] were getting off the bus at the school where the drugs were being processed. There was supposed to be a really gnarly playground out front. Filled with debris, dangerous looking swings, sharp objects, rusty jungle gym, etc. As they exited, Coco sees EZ’s distracted and says: Lighten up Boy Scout, and gesturing to the playground, says, We’re going to Disneyland. EZ replies: Yeah? Guess this is where Walt buried all the Jews he had killed. Coco comments: That’s dark man… And exits.”
“I knew it would ring some bells,” Sutter adds. “Whether real or imagined, I was already experiencing the tightening of the noose” by way of several “production issues.” So, when the inevitable notes regarding the Disney jokes came from above, he agreed to change them — though not entirely. “I agreed and changed it to… We’re going to Disneyland. And now EZ says, Yeah… if Mickey and Pluto were pedophiles.”
Sutter imagined these changes as a “f*ck you” to his Disney bosses, and they seemingly agreed, because his direct overseers were evidently getting all kinds of pushback. “When I got the call from Dana [Walden], she just seemed so tired and burned out. I felt badly,”
he says. “In hindsight, I realize that dialog grenade was the beginning of my exit.” These jokes were ultimately cut from the Mayans M.C. second season premiere, but the damage was done.