Sunday, November 28, 2010

Lint licker

You're such a [expletive] [expletive], you [expletive] [expletive]!

No, that isn't actually a cohesive sentence.  Although I bet if you gave me enough time I'd find something colourful enough to fill those voids..

I recently got to a bit of thinking - all inspired by minor things I've heard within my family, or what have you.  Specifically, I'll reference something of interest to me: Glee.  It's pretty funny, although the writers have really dropped the ball recently (I would launch into how much I hate that they've made a certain annoying character so central and that it would be more appropriate to call the show 'Kurt's Adventures plus His Friends', or perhaps 'Glee: the Show About Very Special Lessons' but that's a whole 'nother story) and I think it's the music that keeps it fresh and keeps me tuned in.  Anyways, I digress; point is, I usually watch it with my family, and whenever a risque joke comes up my mom or dad usually do the slow turning glance at me as if to make me feel even more uncomfortable.  To use an example there was the time that Brittany and Santana were making out on Brittany's bed - woah, if you don't watch the show you'll certainly be going WTF? - and Santana says something about how she's getting tired of all the 'scissoring.'  This prompted my mother to scoff and my dad to say "everyone on this show is lesbian."

When was it that censorship in the media became so lax?  I can remember the day where the use of the work 'fuck' automatically ensured an R rating; now you can safely use it a handful of times in a PG film, in addition to flashing a bum or showing a bit of blood.  The media has become exceedingly liberal; MuchMusic, for example, is the first instance in my mind where I've heard the use of 'shit' aside from HBO; in fact good old channel seventeen is now showing uncensored episodes of Jackass at 4:00pm on weekdays.  (it's beyond an awkward situation where you happen to be watching an episode and the parents start slowly trickling in, home from work and stopping to glance at the TV when Johnny Knoxville and the gang decide to have their semen tested for quality.  This did happen.  Last Tuesday)

Perhaps censorship has become so relaxed because parents have.  No parent wants their child witnessing a movie bloodfest sprinkled with gracious nudity and sex scenes (I'm lookin at you, Watchmen) or playing a video game where the prime objective is to assassinate terrorists - but the fact of the matter is, kids witness or play these things anyways because parents let it happen.  Perhaps the censorship boards have decided to completely disregard boundaries as if to punish parents for their lack of discipline.  You don't care what your kid watches?  Then here, here's some boobs at 5:00pm on cable.

Is it marketing's fault?  I've read online that Glee sometimes gets flack for their raciness at times - prime example, look at that who GQ scandal (which by the way: what the hell.  Do children even read GQ?  No.  So let Dianna Agron take off her clothes).  But: I've NEVER seen Glee as being a family show to begin with - this is the show with teen pregnancy and blink-and-you'll-miss-them lines about racism and sexism and sex; with careless sex as a pressure on teenagers.  Yes, the fact that it's about teenagers almost automatically installs some sense of family familiarity, but I've always appreciated the show for its adult humour.  So then, to the problem of marketing: they don't market it as a satire, but rather as "look, we're a musical!"  Even then, for something like Glee, the marketing of being a musical is integral to its success commercially; it then again boils down to parental stupidity.

To parents, then, I say: you know that censorship has become liberal and that even 'family-friendly' shows border being inappropriate, so control your kids (or yourselves for that matter) accordingly.  Censorship has long been rapidly heading toward becoming obsolete, as previously mentioned by the amount that the MPAA lets into a low rated movie or by the liberal attitude channels like MuchMusic exhibits.

We're living in a world where ignorance simply won't do anymore.  In that sense, I see the breaking down of censorship's walls to be nearly refreshing; we can't lie to ourselves that an audience really does want to see blood and guts and nudity and swearing, and we know that these things exist in the world, so why not just show the world for what it is.  Maybe this is all because I'm old enough that I can watch and buy whatever the hell I want, and maybe my freedom in what I choose to expose myself to is influencing me to say 'shame on you!' throughout this entire thing.  I wasn't aiming at a formulated answer - I never do; it's just something to think about.  Isn't that the point?

Now fuck off.

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