‘Counting On’ Viewers Are So Over the Duggar Family’s Over-the-Top Gender Reveals

It’s a girl for Joy-Anna Duggar and Austin Forsyth. The Sept. 15 episode of Counting On features the couple’s big gender reveal celebration for their daughter Evelyn Mae Forsyth, who was born Aug. 21. But critics who watched a preview for the episode had some issues with the way the couple decided to announce the gender of their baby. 

‘Counting On’ features a helicopter gender reveal  

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In the episode, Joy-Anna and Austin decided to reveal the gender of their baby in an unforgettable way. The couple had a helicopter piloted by her older brother John Duggar drop a load of pink confetti all over a field as they and members of their families watched. 

Gender reveals are something of a tradition for Duggars. Joe and Kendra Duggar had their first child smash into a cake on his first birthday; the pink frosting inside revealed their second baby would be a girl. Lauren and Josiah Duggar used confetti-filled balloons to reveal the gender of their first child. John and Abbie Duggar’s gender revealed involved a plane with a banner. But with so many babies, coming up with a new way to announce whether it’s a boy or girl has become a bit of a challenge.

“We feel the family has used up just about every gender reveal possible,” Jessa Duggar says in the episode.

“It is so hard to come up with something original,” Austin says. “So many babies.”

However, Joy-Anna and Austin proved they were up to the task with their helicopter stunt. The moment was especially meaningful to the couple given that Joy-Anna experienced a miscarriage in 2019 at 20 weeks.  

Critics react to Joy-Anna and Austin’s gender reveal

Joy Anna Duggar with her kids
Joy-Anna Duggar with her kids | joy4site via Instagram

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While Joy-Anna and Austin’s gender reveal was a hit with the Duggar family, some commenters on a TLC Instagram post promoting the episode were less impressed. They accused the pair of littering. 

“What an excellent way to litter the planet earth,” one critic wrote on Instagram.

Several also pointed out that an episode celebrating a dramatic gender reveal seemed inappropriate given that a recent wildfire in California was started by a gender reveal gone wrong. 

“A fire started recently in CA bc of a stupid gender reveal. Guess what, it could be 1 of 2 genders. Thrilling,” commented another. 

“Can we stop with this? The world is on fire. Some of it because of gender reveal nonsense. Seriously TLC. Read the room,” wrote a fed-up viewer. 

A few took issue with the concept of gender reveals entirely. “Announcing [to] the world what the shape of your infant’s genitals are with balloons, smoke, confetti, and pyrotechnics seems excessive, unnecessary, and rather archaic,” one person declared. 

See Joy-Anna and Austin’s gender reveal for yourself on the Sept. 15 episode of Counting On, airing at 8 p.m. ET on TLC.

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