An Iconic Band Is Being Canceled

By Jessica Scott | Updated

It won’t be a very merry Christmas for the Backstreet Boys this year. According to Variety, the Backstreet Boys’ Christmas special that was set to air on ABC this week has been canceled – and potentially, so has Nick Carter. There are allegations that the singer raped a 17-year-old girl in 2001 and now the whole band is facing the consequences.

A Very Backstreet Holiday was recently filmed in Los Angeles, California. Aside from the Backstreet Boys themselves, it was also set to feature stars like Meghan Trainor, Rob Riggle, Seth Rogen, Nikki Glaser, Atsuko Okatsuke, and Ron Funches before it was canceled. 

backstreet boys canceled nick carter
The Backstreet Boys

As one might expect, fans of the Backstreet Boys are not thrilled about them being canceled. Many people (fans or not) even claim that the lawsuit that brought about all this is being fabricated so that the lawyer involved can get his 15 minutes of fame.

The controversy began on Thursday when a 39-year-old woman named Shannon “Shay” Ruth filed a sexual battery lawsuit against Nick Carter. She claimed the Backstreet Boy not only raped her but also infected her with the HPV virus when she was 17 years old. In February 2001, at the height of their fame and long before they were “canceled,” she went to see one of the band’s concerts in Tacoma, Washington. 

Allegedly, once the Backstreet Boys concert was over, Carter forced himself on her. She says that she pleaded with him to stop, but that he refused. He even allegedly went so far as to call her a profane and derogatory slur and that, if she tried to report the crime, no one would believe her. Based on this statement alone, it is no wonder that the Backstreet Boys are facing being canceled by our current “cancel culture.”

However, there are two sides to every story, and this one is no different. Attorney Michael Holtz, who is representing Carter, says that Ruth’s entire claim is “meritless.” Not only did it take place 20 years ago, so there is obviously no evidence to be found now, but this is also not the first time Ruth and her lawyers have tried to get the Backstreet Boys canceled. 

For several years, Ruth and her legal team have been making false allegations about Carter, all of which Carter denies and all of which have changed multiple times. According to him, it is a “press stunt orchestrated by an opportunistic lawyer.” So, before the Backstreet Boys are canceled, it is important to take a step back and view all sides of the issue.

Holtz goes on to say that, in reality, it may not even be Ruth’s fault that this is continuing to escalate. Ruth identifies as autistic and has cerebral palsy, and this may play a part in her being potentially manipulated into continuing with these ever-changing legal claims. 

Regardless of whether or not this story is true, the Backstreet Boys holiday special has been canceled. It is possible that execs at the ABC network may eventually change their minds, but that surely also depends on whether Carter and the rest of the Backstreet Boys end up getting “canceled” by the public themselves.