Home » Drake Bell accusers face online attacks after ‘Quiet on Set’ docuseries 

Drake Bell accusers face online attacks after ‘Quiet on Set’ docuseries 

by NBC News

Supporters of former Nickelodeon star Drake Bell have rallied behind him after he came forward with his child sexual abuse story in an explosive docuseries. But some people have gone to extremes, harassing women who previously shared their own abuse allegations against Bell, who pleaded guilty to attempted child endangerment in 2021.

In the wake of “Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV,” dozens of TikTok videos have been published discussing the child endangerment case, casting doubt on his alleged victims’ claims of abuse against Bell. Some have received millions of views. Some commenters under these videos called the victim in the case a liar, comparing her to the actor Amber Heard (who was similarly attacked online for her claims of abuse) and speculating that she was hired by Bell’s convicted abuser Brian Peck to destroy him. Peck didn’t respond to a request for comment. 

Melissa Lingafelt, Bell’s ex-partner who separately accused the actor in 2020 of physical and emotional abuse, which he denied, shared on her Instagram Stories last week that she had received harassment from his fans after the docuseries debuted. A representative for Bell declined to comment.

The attacks on Bell’s accusers fit into a larger pattern of social media being used to harass, demean and discredit female victims of sexual violence and abuse. In Bell’s case, experts who study gender and psychology said that onlookers often struggle to recognize that a perpetrator can also have been a victim, even though perpetrators have often been victimized in the past. 

“In our culture, we just want people to be good or evil,” said Carine Mardorossian, a University at Buffalo professor who authored “Framing the Rape Victim: Gender and Agency Reconsidered.” She said that in the search for the “good” or “bad” person in a nuanced scenario, oftentimes, “more harm than good” is done.

“Quiet on Set” has ushered in a tsunami of online reactions over the treatment…

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