A number of weeks ago, the FCC imposed a $3.6 million fine on CBS for airing a "teen orgy scene" during Without A Trace, a primetime procedural show that obviously needed the ratings boost that only teen orgy scenes can provide. (For a hilariously robotic play-by-play account of the $3.6 million action, go here). But what about other "teen orgy scenes"? I mean, Oprah was alluding to sex just the other day on her show. (Not teen sex, mind you, Oprah sex). Well, today Scanner pointed me to this document, which contains FCC rulings on complaints about indecency on every non-cable channel. Yes, even PBS. So, what do people find offensive? Short answer: everything. More specifically: 1. Cartoon Semi-Nudity
Someone complained about this scene in from
The Simpsons, saying that it was "a graphic and explicit depiction of a scene in a strip club," and, even worse, that there was "physical contact between Smithers and a female cartoon dancer's buttocks." No!!! The FCC Says: "Although the movements of the two female dancers shown with Smithers are somewhat sexually suggestive, and one of the dancers is shown from behind wearing a 'thong,' the scene is not graphic." Conclusion: Not offensive enough to be "patently offensive." Complaint denied. 2. Pixelated Boobs and Ron Jeremy
The Parents Television Council complained about "The Pool Party Episode" of
The Surreal Life 2, saying that during the ten-minute sequence about the party, "the episode displays approximately 20 pixilated views of various female guests' nude breasts." Also Ron Jeremy is there. And Andy Dick. The horror! The FCC Says: "A child watching this program could easily discern that nude adults are attending a party and participating in, or soliciting participation in, sexual activities." Conclustion: Pool party + porn star + Andy Dick= "Patently offensive." $27,500 fine against the WB. 3. A Naked Baby Falling On A Pacifier
If I saw this, I would think it's hilarious. (Oh, how I tried to find a clip…) But when a person in Rochester, New York saw this on
America's Funniest Home Videos they sent a complaint to the FCC saying that "a 'butt plug' was inserted into a naked male infant." The FCC Says: "The videotape reveals that the episode depicted a naked infant falling back onto his pacifier, which then becomes wedged between his buttocks." Conclusion:"Marginally explicit" but not indecent. Complaint denied. 4. Blues Documentaries Seriously. Someone in San Mateo, California complained to the FCC when their local PBS affiliate aired The Blues: Godfathers And Sons because the documentary contained the "F-Word," the "S-Word," and "various derivatives of those words." Yes, it really is awful when an old Bluesman says "motherfucker" on PBS, or when they call their songs such hateful things like "The Cocksucker Blues." The FCC Says: "Because the expletives are vulgar, explicit, graphic, dwelled upon and shocking to the audience, we conclude that the broadcast of the material is patently offensive." In Conclusion: Nevermind historical accuracy, it should be "***ks**ker Blues" instead. $15,000 fine to PBS. And there's so much more (including one woman's complaint about seeing a couple in kissing in bed on Alias). I just don't get it. Have any of you ever been offended by anything on TV? Really? Why? Also, please stop.