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Fox’s reality hit “The Masked Singer” has always touted itself as family-friendly escapist fare, the kind of mass-appeal, broad-based hit that is the antidote to these troubled times. That became especially true during the pandemic, when viewers were looking for a show to take their mind off real-world chaos.

That promise of a fun, stress-free show, devoid of mean-spiritedness or snark, is a key selling point for “The Masked Singer,” and why the show remains delightful for millions of fans. They’re watching to see wild, amazing costumes, a wide range of musical performances, the guessing game of who’s under the mask, and the playful banter between the show’s panelists.

That’s why I still have a hard time believing Wednesday’s ‘Masked Singer’ report on Deadline.com, which claimed that former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani is set to be unmasked on an upcoming episode. That would have been funny perhaps a decade ago. (Although, would it really have been?) But Giuliani has descended into darkness for some time, and is currently accused of leading a scheme to overturn the 2020 election and steal the presidency for Donald Trump in a coup.

That’s not funny. Or family friendly. Or escapist. It’s terrifying. This nation could very well be on the brink of losing democracy. It’s not the time to throw a costume onto one of the chief conspirators and yuck it up, normalizing the fact that this person has done unspeakable harm to our nation.

Which is why, again, I have a hard time believing Fox or the producers of “The Masked Singer” would do something so out of tune with the show’s mantra. They would have to know that any attention a Giuliani appearance might garner would surely be overshadowed by the negative reaction and ugly mark that it would permanently give the show, perhaps ultimately hastening fans to no longer feel safe or comfortable watching the show. That’s definitely not worth the temporary ratings bump that episode might get from looky-loos.

Attempting to overthrow a legally and rightfully elected president might have once upon a time landed you in jail. Now it lands you a spot on “The Masked Singer”? That’s troublesome.

But I’m getting ahead of myself here. Fox has so far declined to comment or confirm the spoilers — but it also, troublingly, hasn’t denied it. I know the show’s producers, and the executives at Fox, and they’re smart, savvy folks. They turned the fun and silly “Masked Singer” franchise into a megahit. I can’t imagine they’d risk all of that for a cheap, one-time gimmick. Maybe this is just an inside prank that was never meant to see the light of day. (Listen, I’m trying to give them the benefit of the doubt here, in the absence of the network commenting on it. But, and this is a big sigh, I do believe that the Giuliani stunt is happening. Sigh.)

Yeah, I know, they had Sarah Palin on as a contestant a few years ago. I wasn’t a fan of that, since again, this is supposed to be escapist TV. Bringing in polarizing political figures seems antithetical to the show’s mission. (Also looking at you, “Dancing With the Stars.”) But as far as we know, Palin didn’t try to help orchestrate an overthrow of our government. Call me crazy, but the line is pretty low on who we accept on reality TV, but shouldn’t there still be a line?

Meanwhile, I can think of a few more reasons why this is a bit ill-advised. Fox Entertainment is already wary of being lumped in with its polarizing siblings at Fox News; why tempt with giving viewers reason to further blur the lines between the two very different operations?

And then there’s insult to the show’s regular talent. According to Deadline, panelists Ken Jeong and Robin Thicke left the stage, at least temporarily, in protest after Giuliani was unmasked. To me, it’s unfair to put any of the panelists in the position of having to make a moral statement on a show that, again, is supposed to be about lighthearted fun. Not only did it force Jeong and Thicke to feel like they had to take a stand on a show that’s not about taking stands, but it has also now put Jenny McCarthy and Nicole Scherzinger on blast for not leaving the stage when Giuliani unmasked. No one wins here, but now “The Masked Singer” feels as divided as the rest of America.

Jeong has strong political opinions on social media, and I know is also concerned about the state of this country and the fear that democracy is fading away. He fears that what happened on Jan. 6, 2021, is a precursor for more dark times ahead. But he doesn’t bring those issues up on “The Masked Singer.” Because it’s a safe space. A place to briefly escape the fears and concerns of the real world.

If Deadline is right, and I hope that it isn’t, then that safe space has been invaded.

“The goal is entertainment. The goal is to inspire, ignite,” a former costume designer once told me a few years ago on a “Masked Singer” panel. “We got hit during COVID times and we were able to create something so beautiful on stage that took people out of our sadness or our struggles and bring this innocent, beautiful, just creative world that we can all live in.”

Please, “Masked Singer,” don’t go back on that mission.