The series depicts an Episcopalian minister, played by Aidan Quinn, struggling with an addiction to Vicodin, among other problems in his diocese. Jesus is actually a character on the series, depicted in imagined conversations with the minister.
Last month, the conservative American Family Assn. began calling on affiliates and advertisers to bail out of "Daniel." Many stations have been flooded with e-mails and calls from viewers objecting to the series.
KARK-TV in Little Rock, Ark., and WTWO-TV in Terre Haute, Ind., announced Wednesday they would pre-empt "Daniel," when it premieres Friday at 9 p.m. Both are owned by Nexstar Broadcasting Group,
KARK-TV declined to air "Daniel" citing "careful consideration" of viewer feedback. Little Rock's WB affiliate, KWBF-TV, will air "Daniel" instead.
However, WTWO general manager Duane Lammers said he is not pre-empting "Daniel" due to its content but rather to protest what he views as the networks' strong-arm approach to affiliates, as well inconsistent federal oversight of indecent content.
Earlier the Hollywood Reporter described the new show.
When it comes to troubles, Daniel's sacramental cup runneth over. Eldest son Peter (Christian Campbell), 23, has come out of the closet to the family but to no one else. Meanwhile, Webster's father (James Rebhorn), a church bishop, can't let two minutes pass without encouraging Peter to settle down with a girl.
Sixteen-year-old daughter Grace (Alison Pill) is a reincarnation of Claire on "Six Feet Under." She's busted for selling pot and wears a perpetual scowl. Adopted teenage son Adam (Ivan Shaw) has more hormones than Pfizer and constantly breaks the rules. Supportive wife Judith (Susanna Thompson) is increasingly frustrated with staying at home and maybe a little too free with the alcohol. Meanwhile, Daniel's mother has Alzheimer's, and his brother-in-law has absconded with millions in church funds. Daniel is fighting -- and losing -- a battle with Vicodin addiction.