‘Daddy’ rocks the Cradle

Protest grows against reality show

HOLLYWOOD — Illinois-based adoption agency the Cradle has joined the list of groups protesting Fox’s upcoming reality skein “Who’s Your Daddy?”

Although they haven’t screened the show, groups are up in arms over the “Daddy” conceit, which revolves around an adopted woman who’s introduced to eight men — one of whom is her real father.

The contestant, who is completely aware of the game, wins up to $100,000 if she correctly identifies her real dad; otherwise, one of the fake pops earns the dough. Show bows as a 90-minute special Monday at 8 (Daily Variety, Dec. 13).

“Adoption is not a game,” Cradle president Julie Tye said. “For all who strive to unite willing adopted persons with willing birth relatives in an honorable and ethical manner, the show creates a warped sense of reality and does a tremendous disservice to our efforts.”

Besides the Cradle, other groups protesting the show include the Children’s Defense Fund, the Child Welfare League and the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute.

Fox, however, notes that the groups have been riled up by the skein’s provocative title — but adds that it wasn’t indicative “of the special’s actual content.” Net notes that the participants on “Who’s Your Daddy?” were all “willing and informed” of the show’s concept. In its conclusion, the woman is still united with her actual biological father.

“This special in no way detracts from the relationship between adoptive parents and their children,” the net said in a statement.

Adoption advocates protested the title to the WB sitcom “Maybe I’m Adopted” in 2001, arguing that the name painted adoption in a negative light. Frog later changed the short-lived laffer’s title to “Maybe It’s Me.”

“Who’s Your Daddy” comes from Fox TV Studios and exec producers Ken Mok, Scott Hallock and Kevin Healey. Beyond the special, Fox has ordered seven more episodes for possible air at a later date.

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