Why did Hyde leave That 70s Show?

Answered by Randy McIntyre

Hyde’s departure from That ’70s Show was not a creative decision or part of the show’s storyline. Rather, it was due to the circumstances surrounding actor Danny Masterson, who portrayed Hyde on the show. Masterson faced serious legal issues that ultimately led to his exit from the show.

In 2017, four women accused Masterson of sexual assault, with the incidents allegedly occurring in the early 2000s. The accusations gained significant media attention and prompted an investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department. Masterson denied all allegations and maintained his innocence throughout the legal process.

However, as the investigation progressed, Netflix, the streaming platform that aired That ’70s Show and its spin-off, The Ranch, decided to take action. In December 2017, Netflix announced that Masterson had been fired from The Ranch due to the serious nature of the allegations against him. This decision was made before the investigation had concluded or any charges were filed.

While That ’70s Show had already ended its run in 2006, the spin-off series That ’90s Show was announced in 2021. The new show aimed to revisit the characters from the original series, including Hyde. However, due to Masterson’s ongoing legal issues and the serious nature of the allegations against him, it was decided that he would not make an appearance in That ’90s Show.

It’s important to note that Masterson has consistently maintained his innocence and vehemently denied the allegations made against him. The legal process is ongoing, and as of now, Masterson has not been convicted of any crimes related to the accusations.

In light of the #MeToo movement and the increased focus on holding individuals accountable for their actions, Netflix made a decision to distance itself from Masterson and severed ties with him professionally. This decision was likely influenced by the desire to prioritize the well-being and safety of the individuals who came forward with accusations against him.

The decision to exclude Masterson from That ’90s Show is a reflection of the wider industry trend of taking allegations of sexual misconduct seriously and not providing platforms for individuals facing such accusations. It is a way for networks and production companies to show support for victims and to avoid associating their brands with individuals facing serious legal issues.

Ultimately, Hyde’s absence from That ’90s Show is a result of the ongoing legal issues faced by Danny Masterson and the subsequent decision by Netflix to distance itself from him.