TV Squad: 11-year-old Ohio native Tyler Wilson became national news back in September when he was bullied at school for wanting to be a cheerleader. Apparently the other kids thought that was worthy of a beating that led to a broken arm for Tyler. Bullying certainly isn’t a new issue in schools, but it’s getting more attention lately, as big-name celebrities are speaking out against it. When Tyler’s story made headlines, the cast of The CW’s ‘Hellcats’ made a PSA reminding kids that it’s their right to be whatever they want to be; they even invited Tyler to the show’s set to see some tough TV cheerleaders, male and female, in action (EXCLUSIVE: ‘Hellcats’ Gets Anti-Bullying Message to Larger Audience (VIDEO)).
Hellcats is an American cheerleading comedy-drama television series that airs on The CW in the United States. Based on the book Cheer: Inside the Secret World of College Cheerleaders by journalist Kate Torgovnick, the series focuses in the lives of college cheerleaders, mainly Marti Perkins (Aly Michalka), a pre-law college student who has to join the cheerleading team, the Hellcats, in order to get the athletic scholarship she needs. The main cast also includes Ashley Tisdale, Robbie Jones, Heather Hemmens, Matt Barr, Gail O’Grady and Sharon Leal. In May 2010, Hellcats had been picked by The CW for the fall 2010–11 season. Initially with a 13-episode order, The CW aired the series after America’s Next Top Model on Wednesday nights. The pilot episode aired on September 8, 2010, and became the first premiere to ever match or build on an America’s Next Top Model lead-in since The CW began in 2006. The CW later gave a full season order for the series, with executives saying they were “thrilled that [it] paid off for us”. Hellcats has been described as “Election meets Bring It On” by critics. It received generally mixed reviews during its first season, obtaining a Metacritic weighted average of 51 percent, based on the impression of 22 critics. The series also earned a nomination in the 2011 People’s Choice Awards (Wikipedia).
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