Why Fuller House Needs to Stop Referencing the Olsen Twins' Absence

It's time for the Netflix series to let go of this part of its past

By Chris Harnick Dec 09, 2016 4:45 PMTags
Fuller House, Mary-Kate Olsen, Ashley OlsenNetflix; Getty Images

Fuller House is back for a second season and so are all your Full House favorites—D.J., Stephanie, Kimmy, Danny, Uncle Jesse, Aunt Becky, Uncle Joey, Steve and even Stephanie's friend Gia make return appearances. The gang is all there…except for Michelle Tanner.

Yes, Mary-Kate Olsen and Ashley Olsen still have not returned as the youngest Tanner sister Michelle, the role they shared for eight seasons on Full House from 1987 to 1995. And much like the first season, the characters referenced the absence, drawing attention to a topic that should be left alone. To quote Elsa from Frozen, "Let it go," Fuller House, let it go.

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In the Thanksgiving episode of Fuller House season two, the Tanner clan gathered for a dinner. During the toast, D.J. (Candace Cameron Bure) referenced her missing younger sister.

"We're so fortunate that we're all here together and we're healthy. We miss Michelle, we hope that she'll be with us next year," D.J. said.

John Stamos' Uncle Jesse then turned to the camera, broke the fourth wall and said, "Come, it'll be fun."

Let it go.


Cameron Bure's line would've been enough. Stamos' feels like needling. When E! News sat down with Andrea Barber, Kimmy Gibbler on the series, and Jodie Sweeten, middle Tanner sister Stephanie, the two said it's an "open invite" for the twins.

"Door's always open, anytime they want to come," Barber said.

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In the Fuller House world, Michelle is busy running a fashion empire in New York, very much like the real life of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. The Olsen twins' reluctance to return to the Tanner family fold is their prerogative. They're not acting anymore. Whether or not they would return for the sequel series generated headlines for months until producers put out this statement.

"Although Ashley and Mary-Kate will not be a part of Fuller House, I know how much Full House has meant to them and they are still very much considered family," executive producer Robert L. Boyett said in a May 2015 statement. "It has been exciting to see how they have built their professional careers, and I support their choice to focus on their fashion brands and various business endeavors. I appreciate their support and good wishes towards Fuller House."

By continuing to draw attention to the subject, Fuller House is only hurting itself. Let the show stand alone, it can. Fuller House's success does not hinge on whether or not Mary-Kate or Ashley will return, its quick season two renewal and unofficial Netflix ratings prove that.

There's an open invite for the Olsen twins to return, let's leave it at that. The fourth wall should remain up.

Fuller House season 2 is now streaming on Netflix.