As those who are well-versed in Sister Wives lore know, there was a very real possibility that Kody Brown was going to get arrested and do some time behind bars simply for being a polygamist. There was a hungry Utah County attorney investigating the family because they were committing the crime of polygamy and they were documenting their crime via television.
Speaking to Variety, Sister Wives producer Chris Poole notes that TLC was well aware of the possibility that Kody Brown was going to be arrested. It was something the network and production team had planned for. Some fans argue the network and production team may have even wanted Kody Brown to get arrested.
Reflecting on this time in the family’s history, Chris Poole explains that Kody Brown getting arrested would not have caused the show to get canceled. In fact, it would have been full steam ahead. TLC had plans in place to keep the cameras rolling if Kody had been arrested.
TLC planned to film Kody Brown’s arrest
If Kody Brown had been arrested in the state of Utah, Chris Poole reveals the cameras would have definitely been rolling. He understands that with some shows, a member of the cast ending up behind bars results in an immediate cancelation of the series. Kody Brown being arrested, however, would have just been a real risk associated with being a plural family.
And, the network felt that it would have been a crucial thing to film. Likewise, Kody Brown’s arrest would have created an intense storyline as fans would have wanted to see what happened to the rest of the family following his arrest.
We figured even if — it was actually a real possibility — if the state of Utah came down hard on the family and Kody was arrested, we’d cover that. It was obvious that he was looking to charge them with crimes. If they had been charged, they wouldn’t be able to leave. They’d be fugitives if they left, but they had not been charged, so they were free to move. They decided that was the best course of action because there really was a real risk of Kody being arrested and separated from his family.
Any other show would have pulled the plug
Chris Poole continued to explain that what TLC and the production team did by continuing to film as Kody Brown faced the real possibility of being arrested before making the decision to leave Utah was unfounded. It was something TV shows didn’t do. At the time, however, it felt crucial to document what was going down despite so many other members of the polygamist community telling the family continuing to film was a mistake.
Chris continued to explain: “It was fundamentally blowing things up. It was essential to document it. There were people who thought it was not a good idea.”
Ultimately, the cameras did continue to roll and Kody Brown was not arrested. But, TLC was prepared to keep filming in the event that he was.
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