Is the Duggar family being ghosted by TLC?
Fans are wondering if Counting On has been cancelled after there's been zero official word of the series being renewed for a seventh season.
It turns out viewers aren't the only ones in the dark ... the Duggars don't seem to have any idea what the future holds either.
Season Six of Counting On ended in October. We've had no word of renewal since that time. We've also had no word of cancellation.
It wouldn't be shocking for the TLC series to be renewed, as the show has a very devoted - albeit modestly sized - fan base.
Not all of them are fans of the Duggars themselves, but they're captivated by the fundamentalist lifestyle that the family lives.
Watching massive family and its strict rules - and the social media presence of the younger Duggars - all but guarantees major drama.
For example, Joy-Anna Duggar and Austin Forsyth got married this year, but Joy-Anna's huge baby bump has raised many questions.
Many believe the Forsyth wedding was a shotgun wedding, a result of Joy-Anna breaking her family's medieval courtship rules.
The idea that family found out about this, rushed her to the altar and is lying to the world to save face may be a stretch, but it's compelling.
This would not be the first time they covered up something scandalous either (remember Josh?) so it's not like their track record is stellar.
In any case, with all of that drama and more to come, would TLC really cancel the tabloid phenomenon that is the Duggars? Maybe.
Counting On has never done as well with ratings as 19 Kids and Counting did, and that's before you consider how polarizing they are.
Some former viewers may have lost interest in the Duggars, or have been frightened off by their lifestyle as more about it becomes public.
Josh Duggar continues to cast a dark cloud over the family, but it's not like he's the only source of controversy within their ranks.
Recently, Derick Dillard was fired from Counting On after engaging in repeated bigoted messages about trans teen Jazz Jennings.
Jazz, a fellow TLC star who has her own show on the network, Being Jazz, is transgender ... a "myth" in the eyes of Jill Duggar's spouse.
In general, it's considered bad form to bash a show on your own network or a star on it unless they've done something atrocious.
In Dillard's case, he went out of his way to criticize Jazz - not just her show, but her very existence as a young trans woman.
That kind of badmouthing doesn't help anybody's ratings and will upset higher ups at the network ... which Derick clearly did.
TLC had enough, and fired him for it ... and with the husband of one of the main stars now banned, can the show even go on?
It's a fair and intriguing question ... but if you think that the Duggars know the answer to it any more than you do, think again.
This week, on the Duggar family blog, the Duggars candidly shared their total lack of news about the fate of their TV empire:
"Counting On has been off the air for six weeks now, and we know you all are eager to hear whether the Duggars will be returning for a new season."
"We have been in contact with TLC," the statement continues, "but at this time, there are no announcements to share."
In contact but not told anything? Sounds like network executives are straight up ghosting the Duggars as they ponder their fate.
"As soon as there is news to give, we will post it here," they said, reiterating that right now, no news is ... well, no news.
We're sure they will update us at some point, but then the statement concludes with a hilarious bid to change the subject:
"In the meantime, we're curious to hear what you like most about the show and what other TV programs you watch, if any?"
The Duggars, famously, eschew mainstream TV.
We don't think that your recommendations of Stranger Things or The Good Place or whatever are what they're looking for.
This whole situation sounds like, at the very least, whichever producers they're talking to don't know the future of the series.
Maybe TLC is simply trying to figure out logistics, like if they can court a new sponsor or two or figure out a new time slot for the show.
Either or both of those factors could find a better formula to mesh well with the family and their other programming. It's entirely possible.
Or maybe TLC is just waiting until the right time - when there's other big news, or during a holiday when everyone's distracted - to drop the hammer.
The announcement that Counting On will not be getting a seventh season would not be well received by fans. So maybe they'll bury it?
We don't know. It's just a theory, but right now, that's all we've got, as it's odd to hear that the Duggars are as in the dark as the rest of us.