• MTV’s Girl Code Degrades Girls

    by  • November 14, 2013 • 4 Every Girl, Cable Choice, Sexualization, Worst Cable Show of the Week • 7 Comments

    “They’re as complicated and complex as we are. VAGINAS!”

    And another episode of MTV’s Girl Code gets underway.

     The November 6th episode of MTV’s trashy “comedy” sexualized girls and exploited their insecurities…  earning the program the title of Worst Cable TV Show of the Week.   

    According to the show’s MTV website, Girl Code is a “how-to manual full of over the top tips to push the envelope and open the dialogue about the wonders and woes of womanhood.” In fact, it is a series which degrades young women by teaching them that they are valued only for their looks, and that servicing men sexually is their purpose in life. 

    Think that claim is extreme? Then witness the first words spoken in the “vagina” segment: 

    “A vagina is something every girl has, THAT YOU LET A LOT OF PEOPLE IN,”Girl Code smirks Carly Aquilino. This statement is accompanied by a cartoon of a pink, vulva-shaped elevator door, which is being entered by a line of men in the process of pulling down their zippers. That one image alone tells viewers everything they have to know about MTV’s attitude toward women. 

    “It’s your baby hole. It’s your baby maker. It even is, kind of, like a baby,” continues “lover of cliché girl s**t” Jamie Lee. “Like, it looks weird, and it’s squishy, but people seem to be really into them.” Nothing like teaching teen girls to hate their bodies, Jamie. With no sense of irony, Jamie is posed in front of an image of Ms. Marvel, a comic-book superheroine who was intended as a symbol of female empowerment. Because telling teenage girls that their bodies are ugly is TOTALLY the essence of female empowerment! 

    Naturally, no commentary on female genitalia would be complete without hearing from a sex-crazed male (who goes by the name “Charlamage Tha God,” no less). “Vagina is, like, the Eighth Wonder of the World!” he leers, as the screen helpfully displays a fake newspaper headline reading, “Vagina – Greatest Natural Resource”, with an arrow pointing toward a naked woman’s crotch.

    “Describe a vagina?! What am I, a doctor?” shrieks Playboy contributor Jessimae Peluso. (Who better to tell teenage girls how to behave than someone who writes for the publication that invented sexual exploitation of women?) Peluso gets some help from Girl Code’s army of has-been/wanna-be “comedians”: 

    Shalyah Evans: “There’s the, like, outside opening part…” 

    Tanisha Long: “There’s a clitoris. That’s where all the fun times happen.”

    Nicole Byer: “The labia majora, the labia minora… Wait. Is it minora? No. A menorah’s a Jewish thing.” (A cartoon helpfully displays a Jewish menorah. Why not throw in a little mockery of religion while discussing genitalia?) 

    Voice-over: “You’ve got to know your holes, ‘cuz guys have no idea what they do.”

    Chris Distefano: “I t’ot everthin’ else just came outta da vagina hole. I t’ot it wuz a multi-tasking kinda organ.”

    Carly Aquilino: “Your baby hole is not your pee hole. If it was, you would be in a lotta f***ing pain.” 

     

    “In a lot of f***king pain” is the way most viewers were probably feeling at this point. But wait: there’s more, as Girl Code further undermines girls’ self-image by —  well, see for yourself:

    “When you start watching porn,” comments “Nessa,” you’re gonna compare your vagina to porn stars’. You’re gonna wonder, ‘Does mine look like that?’ Probably not.” Because girls aren’t already under enough pressure from the media to look and act “sexy”; now, MTV is telling them they need to compare their looks and private parts with those of women in pornography. 

    Note that Nessa said, “WHEN you start watching porn,” not “if.” Because obviously,  in MTV’s warped world, it is a foregone conclusion that all teenage girls WILL watch pornography…and if they don’t, they should. How else will they learn how to do what is expected of a woman, namely, serve as a tool of sexual gratification for men? Also, way to encourage women to help exploit their fellow women — by supporting the pornography industry! 

    But Girl Code isn’t done offering “helpful” advice. “You can get a urinary tract infection, which is so painful. You can get a yeast infection. You can get pregnant. That’s a vagina problem,” says Carly Aquilino. Though it’s only a “problem” for shallow MTV types who believe the only purpose of sex is personal gratification, not creating new life. Naturally, Carly offers no advice on how to AVOID this problem, even though she began the segment by saying that women should “let a lot of people in” their vaginas. Rampant promotion of sexual promiscuity, without concern for consequences or potential problems…standard procedure for MTV.  

    Other segments on the episode included texting, wearing leggings, and apologizing. “There are a million ways to say ‘I’m sorry,’ says the show’s narrator. Unfortunately, there is no way for MTV to say “I’m sorry” to the millions of young teenagers it has negatively influenced with this degrading show. Naturally, MTV rates the program TV-14, appropriate for young teenagers – all the while knowing that the network’s shows are aimed at even younger viewers.  “Our real core demo is really 12-24; that’s who lives and breathes all of our shows,” boasted MTV’s former president of programming David Janollari. 

    (And this isn’t even mentioning the mock “Morning After Talk Show” by Jessimae Peluso, in which she interviews the random man she had drunken sex with the night before. What message is THAT sending kids?) 

    The last time the PTC criticized an episode of Girl Code, we were deluged with hate mail from enraged college students, telling us to “lighten up” and realize the show is a comedy aimed at young adults. While twentysomething viewers may indeed be sophisticated enough to appreciate the show’s over-the-top, sarcastic tone, this totally ignores the effect the show can have on MTV’s stated target audience of 12-year-olds…or on the eight- and six-year-old children who watch TV with their older siblings. That MTV is deliberately targeting the show’s destructive messages at children is underlined by the show’s airtime: while new episodes first air at 10:00 p.m. Eastern, reruns are consistently shown at 4 o’clock in the afternoon – ideal for after-school viewing by latchkey kids. 

    For deliberately exposing young children to graphic content, horrific “advice” about sex, and degrading messages about being a girl – all while forcing every cable and satellite subscriber in America to pay for it – MTV’s Girl Code is the Worst Cable TV Show of the Week

    _________________

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    About

    Christopher Gildemeister is the PTC’s Head of Research Operations. He began as an Entertainment Analyst at the PTC in 2005. From 2007-2016, he was Senior Writer/Editor, responsible for communicating the PTC’s message to the public through newsletters, columns, and the PTC Watchdog blog. Dr. Gildemeister holds a Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America.

    7 Responses to MTV’s Girl Code Degrades Girls

    1. Michelle
      February 12, 2014 at 4:24 am

      **** ***, I’m a girl who watches Girl Code everyday and it has never hurt my self esteem. My name is Michelle and if you would like to point a finger at them, its basic math three are pointing at you *****. My friends Sarah, Cary, Carly, and Nicole all agree. Just so you know we didn’t use curse because of influence, I wanted release an anger forming inside that attached itself to your article, like spindle fibers in the cell cycle.

      __0_
      l

      Sincerly, a group that hates you

    2. Morgan
      July 20, 2014 at 9:16 pm

      Girl code is meant to be funny. If you are taking the show seriously then maybe you should seek advice somewhere else. Honestly, who watching MTV for anything they than entertainment. If your child isn’t old enough to undertstand this type of humor then they shouldn’t be watching Girl Code at all. My advice to you would be to change the channel and find something else to watch. ;)

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        July 21, 2014 at 7:57 am

        Morgan,

        as my various responses to other commenters have made clear, the issues are:

        1) MTV *DELIBERATELY* aims this kind of programming at very young girls. One VP of MTV has even said the networks’ shows are intended for 12 year olds. And of course, the network execs know that if 12 year olds are watching, so are their 8- and 6-year old brothers and sisters. Does the network bear no responsibility for the programming they choose to put on? Are cigarette manufacturers and drug dealers totally blameless for addiction? After all, “if you don’t like it, don’t use drugs,” right?

        2) No, youngsters SHOULDN’T be watching Girl Code. But in a world of smartphones and tablets, parents cannot control what their children see every second of every minute of every day.

        3) Yes, I could (and do) “change the channel and find something else to watch.” But that doesn’t help the millions of children being brainwashed by MTV. Sometimes, people have to get involved and do more than shrug their shoulders and say, “if it doesn’t affect me, it doesn’t matter.”

    3. Dale Barbara
      August 11, 2014 at 5:33 am

      This sounds like a Monty Pyhton skit! XD

    4. Sheridan
      October 16, 2014 at 2:14 pm

      Okay, I’m sorry to say but I completely disagree with your argument. Girl Code does not in any way shape or form and endorses girls hating themselves, I honestly have no idea where you came to that conclusion. If anything, girl code teaches young maturing girls that they need to love themselves and embrace who they are fully and proudly. I understand where you’re coming from, because some of the material is very sketchy but, overall it’s a comedy show and it comically teaches girls the ins and outs of learning the way of the world, and their place in it. You obviously need to watch more episodes to understand of course watching one episode about women’s describing vaginas isn’t going to get you anywhere but if you actually took the time to watch the “trashy” show that you believe is on the air then you would understand.

    5. Mackenzie
      November 6, 2014 at 2:52 pm

      Okay, no. stop looking to just hate any shows pushed out by lightly controversial media. they’re telling the truth, how all girls and women think. they aren’t degrading them, they’re sharing how they feel and relating to you because knowing you aren’t the only one who feels weird about all this “growing up” business. I started watching this show at 14, and I’m not going to reveal how old I am now because “Oh, you’re so young, you don’t know anything!” but anyways this show has empowered me. yeah, being a girl sucks sometimes but we are amazing and powerful and have to own our bodies.

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        November 10, 2014 at 11:55 am

        Mackenzie,

        You claim that Girl Code makes you feel “empowered.” I can’t help thinking that there must be better ways to empower girls than encouraging them to have sex with every guy that comes along.

        Also, you’ll pardon me if I’m a bit dubious that “all girls and women think” the way Girl Code portrays them.

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