Thursday, 21 June 2012

Hollywood Babble On & On #921: Random Thoughts...


The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled in favor of the TV networks over the FCC's enforcement of indecency rules which in recent years have managed to be both erratic and heavy-handed.

Now before you scream out "Won't somebody please think of the children!" and run to man the barricades, I have something to tell you.

Civilization is NOT going to collapse.

The ABC Network is not going to debut a sitcom named Fuck Off Freddy, and CBS isn't going to turn The Good Wife into hard-core porn... though that does have possibilities...

Anyway... The networks aren't going to start going "indecent" because in the long run there is no profit in it for them. Networks are big organizations with big overheads, and to profit they need to reach the widest possible audience, and you can't do that if you're dropping pointless f-bombs and flashing boobies before every commercial break.

Need proof? Look at the box office. On average movies rated between G and PG-13 tend to have larger audiences, make more money, and have longer shelf-lives than movies rated R to NC-17.

Once the novelty of naughtiness wears off the market enforces a natural set of decency rules much more effectively than any government office given to the whims and caprices of bureaucracy.

So chill the fuck out.


The internet literally shit a brick.

People were freaking out, screaming defenses of Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and every other female comedian with a regular job as proof of how Carolla is a sexist neanderthal who needs to be censored. 

Which made me think of two questions.

1. Why do people think female comedians need to be defended so vociferously?

2. Have any of these people seen his act?

I mean if you can prove beyond any reasonable doubt that at least one female comedian or comedy writer lost work because of Carolla's comment, I will bake you a cake.

Also, female comedians and comedy writers are not delicate little flowers in need of your protection. Comedy club green rooms, and TV comedy writer's rooms are brutal dog-eat-dog environments that would make the saltiest sailor blush, and Carolla's comment sound like an invitation to high tea with the Queen by comparison. Any woman who can survive that sort of environment isn't going to be hurt by Carolla's comment. In fact, they might thank him, because it gives them something to talk about. There's a whole "methink they doth protesteth too much" vibe about the whole uproar.

And then there's the man himself.

I ask if any of the outraged have seen his act, because if they did, then they'd see it in a whole new light. He's not a comedian who comes out with a carefully crafted act of pre-written jokes. He comes out, interacts with others, and from that interaction says things that are provocative and/or offensive to every gender, race, religion, and political affiliation in the world. He then doubles down on the offense and provocation until you realize that he is the real target of the joke after all.

So all this controversy is a fart in a thunderstorm. You can disagree with him, I do, I've seen a lot of funny women, but don't wet yourself over what he said.


  1. In fact, the ruling didn't say the FCC could NOT police broadcast networks. It said they had to "give fair prior notice" and be less vague.

  2. Yeah, but their power comes from the vagueness of their rules and their knee-jerk enforcement of those rules. Rationalize their powers and they lose a lot of that power.

    Personally, I think the FCC is a moribund pack of time-serving political hacks.

  3. Interestingly, the PTC has called it a "victory" for the FCC.

    But, then again, after their over-the-top reaction to the split-second middle-finger during Super Bowl Halftime Show