For a long time 19 Kids and Counting was TLC’s biggest hit, bringing families into the lives of the large and intriguing Duggar family. However, after reports leaked that son Josh had molested several girls, including some of his sisters, when he was 14 years old, the network quickly sought to distance itself from the famous clan. That didn’t last long, though, and three specials were soon commissioned--just without Josh. Now, TLC is definitely back in bed with the Duggar clan and recently signed on for brand new series Jill and Jessa: Counting On.
Counting On will follow Jill and Jessa and their ever expanding families. Jessa and her husband Ben Seewald currently have a very young baby, and TLC is banking on audiences finding the kid adorable. On Jill’s end, she and her husband, Derick Dillard also have a child and they are currently working as missionaries in Central America, which is pretty interesting. Obviously brother Josh seems to be missing from all of the upcoming footage, but his wife Anna will be around, as will a slew of other Duggar siblings, including Jana, Jinger, Joy Anna, John David, Josiah and Joseph Duggar. That's not all of the 19 kids, but it's quite a lot.
Along with Josh being on the outs with TLC, familiar patriarch Jim Bob and mom Michelle seem to be off the network, as well. When the Josh scandal broke, it seemed as if Jim Bob and Michelle had potentially not helped the situation by getting information covered up and not getting Josh the proper care. When Jim Bob and Michelle found out was Josh was up to, reports indicate they withheld information from the authorities, instead choosing to send Josh to a Christian treatment camp. They later spoke with a police office who simply gave Josh a stern talking to. That officer, Jim Hutchens, is reportedly in jail on child pornography charges.
Obviously, there is still interest in Jill and Jessa. The two young ladies were the subject of three specials that aired late last year that did well for the network. Thus, TLC is looking for ways to keep the franchise going even though 19 Kids and Counting doesn’t have the best reputation.
You can check out the first trailer for the Counting On TV series, below. It gets into sisterhood, adoption, goofy moments and more. It also mentions that the year 2015 was tough on the entire Duggar clan, for obvious reasons. Expect the series to milk the after effects of what happened with Josh for all they are worth.
Counting On is set to premiere on TLC in just a couple of weeks. You can catch new episodes starting on March 15 at 9 p.m. ET.