NEW ORLEANS — An animated horror comedy featuring Danny DeVito as the voice of Satan is “clearly evil,” says a Republican congressman from Louisiana whose Facebook post denouncing “Little Demon” had reached millions of people by Tuesday morning.
U.S. Rep Mike Johnson objected to the sitcom aired by FX Networks. Its website says the series is about a woman and her 13-year-old daughter who are trying to live normal lives even though Satan is the girl’s father and wants custody of her soul.
A trailer for the show, which airs its fourth episode late Thursday, played during Sunday night's TV broadcast of Louisiana State University's football opener against Florida State.
“I couldn’t get to the remote fast enough to shield my 11-year-old from the preview, and I wonder how many other children were exposed to it — and how many millions more will tune in to the new series, owned and marketed by DISNEY,” the congressman and vice chairman of the House Republican Conference wrote on Monday.
FX Networks and Hulu, where the show is streamed, are among entertainment assets that Disney bought from Fox in a stock deal worth about $52.4 billion in late 2017.
On the show, DeVito voices the role of Satan and his daughter, Lucy DeVito, plays Satan’s daughter, Chrissy the Antichrist. Aubrey Plaza plays the mother. New episodes are broadcast at 10 p.m. Thursdays on FXX.
Disney and FX Networks did not immediately respond on Tuesday to emails requesting comment.
Johnson posted on Tuesday that more than 6.1 million people have read his earlier post — more, he said, than watched Sunday's game, “which the latest ratings say dominated Sunday night TV with 5.87 million total viewers.”
He had written online Monday: “Our job as parents is to guard the hearts and minds of our kids. This culture has become alarmingly dark and desensitized and this is not a game. Disney and FX have decided to embrace and market what is clearly evil. STAY FAR FROM IT.”
Although many people thanked Johnson for the post and talked about boycotting Disney, many others disagreed with Johnson's assessment. Some noted that “Little Demon” was made for and marketed to adults. Children should be in bed by 10 p.m., some wrote. Others said people opposed to the show's existence are trying to make networks shelter their children when that's a job for parents.
Johnson responded on Tuesday in a Facebook message and tweet that also were linked to from his House webpage.
“Free speech is an important principle, and in this country, everyone can obviously make their own decisions about what media they and their families consume,” he wrote. ”But a corollary is that Christians have the freedom to fulfill our obligation to ‘speak the truth in love’ (Eph. 4:15), even — sometimes most importantly — when it may not be popular."
Johnson was first elected in 2016 to the U.S. House district that covers a large swath of western Louisiana. He was reelected in July to a fourth term when nobody qualified to run against him.