Mel Gibson Booted from Lethal Weapon 5; Franchise Rebooted

In the business of episodic television, when producers get irritated by cantankerous star,  they order up an "elimination episode" to get rid of his character. In the business of movie franchises, they order up a reboot.

That's what Warner Brothers just did to solve its Mel Gibson problem vis-a-vis Lethal Weapon 5, one of the two hugely profitable franchises Gibson made with the siblings studio (the other being Mad Max),  according to Deadline: New York.

Rather  than have to handle the negative publicity for the star whose baby mama, Oksana Grigorieva, has accused him of domestic abuse (a charge for which he has yet to be indicted), the studio is resetting the franchise.

I'm very fond of Gibson, both as an actor and guardian angel (he was instrumental in helping both Robert Downey, Jr. and Britney Spears regain their professional footing after their substance-abuse episodes). But given the allegations, which make the actor sound dangerously close to his borderline-unhinged Lethal Weapon character, Det. Martin Riggs, one can understand the studio's position.

Gibson has not commented on this development. But Martin Riggs would probably say (and did in the original Lethal Weapon),: "As one shepherd said to the other: 'Let's get the flock outta here.' "