How could I have missed that episode?
For those not familiar with Cheaters, it’s a program that is so bad, it’s good. The last time I watched it, they featured a cheating boyfriend, caught on camera f***ing another woman in his girlfriend’s living room. The footage was then shown to the victim (the girlfriend who engaged the Cheaters crew) outside the restaurant the cheating boyfriend was dining at with the other woman.
This was so that the victim would be riled up enough to put on a good show of confronting the cheater and his ho.
Compelling exploitative television, and disturbing only because of its exploitative nature.
And so the cable company was fined $10,000 for showing lesbian footage, even when the offending bits were pixelated the same way as the offending bits of the heterosexual cheating acts like the one I watched.
From Yawning Bread, I found that there was such a thing as the Programme Code for Subscription Television, Para. 4.2 of which reads:
Information, themes and subplots on lifestyles such as homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexualism, transvestism, paedophilia and incest should be treated with utmost caution. Their treatment should not in anyway promote, justify or glamorise such lifestyles. Explicit depictions of the above should not be broadcast.
Homosexuality, lesbianism, bisexualism, transvestism are lifestyles?
Wait some more.
Paedophilia and incest are lifestyles?
Though I’m not sure if ‘Cheaters’ has been pulled from the channel completely (where it was slated under the ‘Family Tier’ of SCV’s offerings), I must say that there is something incongruent with the fine and the fact that Channel 5 recently aired the movie ‘The Salton Sea‘ without so much as a complaint letter to the Forum – there were enough drug references and drug usage in the first half hour of the movie alone to put down a horse.
Almost as shocking as the time when I was thirteen, and the whole family sat down after dinner one night to enjoy a pirated tape copy of ‘An Officer and a Gentleman‘. Nothing prepared us for the quite explicit, though quite stylised sex scene between Richard Gere and Debra Winger.
Those were the longest three minutes of our young lives, as my parents, brother, sister and myself sat, transfixed because we didn’t want to look at each other, mortified because we were wondering how much more explicit the scene would get.
Thankfully, the scene ended, and my sister broke the silence, saying ‘wah, never censor one ah?’
We couldn’t muster anything to add to that comment, so traumatised we were. It was only a few years later that I borrowed the movie again to really follow the story.
My family never sat down to watch another video together again. If I remember correctly, we went from watching E.T. – the Extra-Terrestrial to An Officer and a Gentleman to nothing.
Um, so… don’t complain about censorship ok? It saves you from embarrassing family moments like that.