Television Q&A

Celiac disease cost ‘Blue Bloods’ detective her role


Akron Beacon Journal

Q. Can you tell me why the detective partner on Blue Bloods left?

Jennifer Esposito, who played Detective Jackie Curatola on the CBS drama, has been dealing with celiac disease, a disorder caused by eating gluten. According to the Celiac Disease Foundation, symptoms can include fatigue, weight loss and cramping. On her doctor’s advice, Esposito said, she asked that her workload on the show be reduced. Instead, she said, she was expected to maintain her previous schedule and collapsed on the set.

While she was later ready to go back to work, the show decided to part ways. In a statement, CBS’ production company said: “Jennifer has informed us that she is only available to work on a very limited part-time schedule. As a result, she’s unable to perform the demands of her role and we regretfully had to put her character on a leave of absence.”

Fans were outraged and, in a recent Tweet, Esposito said, “Have celiac and it’s not going away but not disabled can work.” Still, the show has moved on, basically writing out Jackie in the episode that aired on Nov. 9 and introducing Megan Ketch as a new detective and foil for Danny (Donnie Wahlberg).

Q. Please say GCB is returning and when. And what does the title really stand for?

It is not returning. The letters originally stood for Good Christian Bitches, the title of the book on which the show is based. Not surprisingly, some viewers took issue with that. There was a period when it appeared the show was going to be renamed Good Christian Belles. Then it aired simply as GCB, leaving the viewers to decide. These days, it stands for “Gone, canceled, bye!”

Q. When you mentioned the end of Made in Jersey, your information was not up-to-date. It is coming back on CBS on Saturdays beginning Nov. 24.

As some of you may know, this column runs in other newspapers besides the Beacon Journal. In this case, the information changed between the time I wrote the answer and the time you read it. But, yes, Made in Jersey fans, the show will get a run on Saturdays on CBS. Still, keep in mind that this does not mean there will be more Made in Jersey once the last few episodes have been televised.

Q. Did John Thaw of Inspector Morse have an artificial leg? He appears to walk as if he did.

Many viewers wondered about Thaw’s leg, and even speculated that he had a wooden one, according to one obituary after his death in 2002.

There was no wooden leg, but it appears that Thaw, who played the inspector from 1987 to 2000, did have a problem. His wife, Sheila Hancock, said in her book The Two of Us that Thaw had a withered leg, much like his grandfather, which Thaw blamed on copying his grandfather’s walk, “although a more likely explanation was a neglected ankle injury from a car accident causing him to drag his foot and therefore underuse his calf muscles.”

Send questions to TV Mailbag, Akron Beacon Journal, 44 E. Exchange St., Akron, OH 44309 or Replies cannot be guaranteed.

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