Ashton Kutcher’s Netflix series, “The Ranch,” has earned the descriptor “revolutionary” for the way a recent episode handled the controversial subject of abortion.
Kutcher, 39, who holds the role of executive producer, also stars as Colt Bennett, a good-natured football-player-turned rancher. The sitcom’s third season, which premiered June 16, dives right into the topic of abortion, when Colt learns that his ex-girlfriend Heather (Kelli Goss) is pregnant with their child.
Colt’s reaction is noteworthy: In a show of absolute support, he purchases a small football jersey for the baby and even offers to marry Heather.
“I want you to know this kid will absolutely be my first priority,” he tells her. “You, you’re going to be a great mom. And I’m going to be a great dad. And the three of us, we’ll make a great family.”
But Heather is adamant that she has other plans for her future.
“I’m getting an abortion,” she tells him. “I’m 23, Colt — I’m not ready to have a kid. I’ve seen how hard it’s been on my mom and [my sister] Darlene to raise kids by themselves.”
Colt assures her that she isn’t alone, and that he will be there for their family. For him, abortion doesn’t seem to be an option.
“It’s not about what I want anymore, this isn’t about me, it’s about this kid, and we’re going to have to make sacrifices,” Colt says.
Heather tries once again to convince Colt that abortion is their only choice.
They don’t love each other, she tells him, reminding Colt that he loves another woman.
“I don’t want to talk about it, Colt,” she says. “I made up my mind.”
Still, Colt seems to view love and commitment as more of a choice people make, and a far better choice than abortion.
“This is wrong,” he insists. “You can’t just take the easy way out.”
Fast-forward to the third episode of Season 3, when, after much reflection and multiple conversations with is mother and father, Colt offers to drive Heather to the abortion clinic.
“We’re probably not gonna ever to see eye to eye on this,” he tells Heather. “But I want to support you. I care about you … This is my responsibility too.”
Colt’s selflessness leaves a big impression on Heather. At the clinic, Colt gives Heather his St. Christopher’s medal that is “supposed to protect you.”
“It’s real sweet of you,” Heather says of the gift. “I’m glad you’re here.”
But after filling out the paperwork to have the abortion, something changes. When Colt offers to take the paperwork to the receptionist for her, Heather breaks down.
“I can’t. I can’t do this,” she says. “I thought it’s what I wanted but, now that I’m here and it’s all happening…”
Shifting gears, Colt asks if she wants to leave the clinic and never return.
“Is that still okay with you?” Heather asks.
“Yeah, it’s always an okay with me. I just want to make sure that’s what you want,” he says.
“Alright, we’re doing this,” she says.
In a recent interview with “Parade,” Kutcher revealed that the new season would address controversial social issues like abortion and immigration.
“None of these issues are cut-and-dried and simple,” Kutcher said. “If it were easy, people would just fix it! What this show gets to do is unpack these issues in a different way—and empower people to laugh while exploring them.”
The Media Research Center’s Katie Yoder noted that the sitcom “broke the mold” as other popular shows and films continue to push an overtly pro-abortion agenda. But standing for life often comes at a price.
Yoder remarked that “The Ranch” “hasn’t received much notice from the media” despite its notable pro-life plot. But there’s always at least one exception. Yoder reported that an Indiewire TV critic “decried the show’s ‘cop-out’ after an ‘admirable set-up’ for an abortion.”
WATCH the trailer for Season 3:
You can catch up on episodes of “The Ranch” on Netflix by clicking here.
(H/T: Media Research Center)