• Archer Creator Admits: “It’s Cartoon Porn”

    by  • April 3, 2015 • Cable Choice, Worst Cable Show of the Week • 40 Comments

    The creator of FX’s animated spy series Archer has admitted the obvious: the cartoon is pornographic. And every cable and satellite subscriber in America is paying for it.

    Now in its sixth season, basic cable network FX’s animated program Archer is a crass conglomeration of raunchy sex, ultra-graphic gore, and non-stop profanity. The PTC has repeatedly condemned the program as the Worst Cable TV Show of the Week for its explicit content. (See here, here, here, and here.)

    Until recently, the show’s creators have defended the program’s excesses with that most tired, unconvincing, and inaccurate claim – that it is “satire.” But true satire actually, well, satirizes something, usually in an attempt to make a social or political point. Archer doesn’t. Yes, it imitates James Bond movies and other spy thrillers in its basic set-up; but it doesn’t use this setting to advance an agenda or make a deeper point. It just shows people copulating, spewing f-bombs, and blowing each others’ heads off.

    Now, however, even the show’s creator has stripped away the pretense of “satire,” and has openly admitted the obvious: Archer is pornography, plain and simple. A recent episode ended with lead characters Archer and Lana openly copulating animal-style in the nude. Asked about this scene by The Daily Beast, Archer creator Matt Thompson opined:

    archerQuote1Us getting away with the amount of sex we got away with in that episode where Archer is having sex with Lana from behind, and Lana’s breasts are jiggling all over, was great. I read a comment online that said, “OK, now Archer is basically cartoon porn,” and I thought, “Yeah! It’s cartoon porn! F**k off! It’s great!” I hope it’s cartoon porn. If you can get away with it, do it.

    This attitude is all too prevalent among creators of cable TV today. “If you can get away with it, do it,” in spite of the fact that every program on basic cable – pornographic or not – is forcibly supported by millions of Americans, whether they want it or not, watch it or not…even if they find it offensive. The only alternative such Americans have is to cancel their cable or satellite subscriptions completely. This is an unfair alternative for those who want to receive Nickelodeon or Disney Channel for their children (or even TBN or EWTN for themselves), but are forced through the entertainment industry’s extortionate bundling schemes to support open pornography, just because Matt Thompson thinks he can “get away with it.”

    Matt Thompson is no doubt thrilled to be “getting away with” putting his twisted sex fantasies on TV; and his program’s tiny audience is likely equally gratified. But there is no reason why every American with pay-TV should be forced to support what the creator himself says is pornography.

    To learn about PTC’s Cable Choice Campaign, click here.

     

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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.

    40 Responses to Archer Creator Admits: “It’s Cartoon Porn”

    1. lisa
      April 10, 2015 at 4:59 am

      Thank you Christopher for an eye opening article. Even day another person no longer pays for cable and I don’t miss the trashing coming in to my home.

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        April 13, 2015 at 3:17 pm

        Thank you for your kind words, Lisa. :-)

      • Matthew
        June 28, 2017 at 12:06 am

        You all are ignorant. I am 14 years old and archer is hilarious. I watch it with my dad and we both find it enjoyable. I am a straight A student. Instead of parents freaking out over what there kids might see, they should teach there kids the difference between right and wrong, fiction and reality, and lastly parents (once they feel that there child is mature enough) should teach their kids about all the bad and good in the world, instead of hiding everything and hoping they won’t find out.

    2. S. A. Angle
      April 10, 2015 at 5:35 am

      This TV show about PORN needs to be pulled from TV. We need writers and directors that have the guts to show FAMILY ORIENTED show. Good family oriented shows are what we need.

    3. Ann Moore
      April 10, 2015 at 5:54 am

      Do you have contact information for Matt Thompson? I’d like to tell him when I think of him and his cartoon .

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        April 13, 2015 at 4:32 pm

        Not Matt Thompson specifically. However, the Archer Twitter account is: @Archerprod

        Contact information for FX is:

        FX Network
        10201 W. Pico Blvd.
        Los Angeles, CA 90035
        (310) 369-1000
        user@fxnetworks.com

        You could try variations on “matt.thompson@fxnetworks.com,” “mthompson@fxnetworks.com,” and the like.

        Good luck! Let us know if you get a response.

    4. Kay Worley
      April 10, 2015 at 6:00 am

      Archer is repulsive, offensive, and harmful to all society. This must be stopped. It is America at it’s worst. We must raise our Nations children with family values and good morels. Let’s not go down as a vulgar Nation.

    5. kay
      April 10, 2015 at 6:15 am

      It doesn’t take much to recognize the character of a pervert. Any way to get away with anything a dirt bag will do it. I’ve seen the commercials for the filth and think it’s disgusting so I am praying GOD will bring shame and disgrace upon you and cause you to have to get so low looking up is all you can do.

    6. Roylene Michels
      April 10, 2015 at 6:38 am

      This is totally disgusting and pray that you can get this and other programs like it off the air.

    7. Karen
      April 10, 2015 at 7:15 am

      He is practically committing the crime of porn himself. Kids watch these shows. Horrible!

    8. Mumzie
      April 10, 2015 at 7:25 am

      Remember seeing an Eddie Murphy special years ago on cable. I always thought he was an amazing talent, creative, funny! But on stage, when he told a joke and it bombed, he would just yell, “f@@k” and the audience would roar laughing. That’s humor? No, its just people responding to the “F bomb” in their own uncomfortable way or encouraging “shock value”. Talent? How many people could stand on a stage and say the F word? How much should one get paid to do that? Same with entertainment today, no talent, no creativity, no exploring new venues. It’s just sex & violence, how far can we go, what is the shock value? A violent or sex scene eats up time until the commercial. Less salary for writers, editors, sets, etc. End of of an era of talent, innovation, creativity, imagination…So what’s the problem with moral decline, surely there is some end result to make more money….God Help Us! xxxo

    9. Ann Macdonald
      April 10, 2015 at 7:38 am

      If Matt Thompson was distributing his filth to children in written form, he could be arrested. Why should he be allowed to distribute it on television? FX should be ashamed to allow it on their station.

    10. Catherine Wilford
      April 10, 2015 at 8:08 am

      I am appalled that I am being charged for this filth! It’s a sad day when people go on record bragging about creating a pornographic cartoon!

    11. Uncle Dave M
      April 10, 2015 at 8:13 am

      What frustrates me to insanity is, I will be watching The Simpsons most nights from 6pm to midnight on FXX. The time-frame of 6pm, 8pm, 10pm would seem like a reasonable time for dinner/after dinner watching. Then the commercials for Archer and Animation Domination come on; bird-shaped characters blowing-up a gazebo, zombie-children … apparently there is a show called “Ax Cop”? And the topper, an animated scene where a child walks in on his parents doing some bondage/rubber suit/whipping thing…

      Some of these shows are bad-enough but thankfully they are (at least) after midnight… but why contaminate my family’s TV with the commercials?

      • Streetlight Mary
        November 9, 2016 at 12:17 am

        For someone named Uncle Dave you’re awfully repressed about some Venus in Furs type s—

    12. Anne Ryan
      April 10, 2015 at 9:31 am

      For any station to air such heinous and outrageous filth is incomprehensible. As a paying subscriber to cable television, I am horribly appalled at the programming your cable brings into the homes of millions of your subscribers. This programming is destructive, racist, bigoted and pornographic.

      Your company is making it easier for me to make that call to say “I’m done with your trash”.

      Please remove this program before I pick up that telephone.

      • moax429
        April 13, 2015 at 3:34 pm

        I *already have* picked up my phone, Anne – and I’m glad to say I *don’t* miss cable at all, especially when I discovered with the PTC’s help my money was supporting “entertainment” like this.

        Less to *no* power to Thompson and his sick cohorts. I can rest easier knowing he *won’t* get any more of my hard-earned money to support his “work.”

    13. Walt Schulcz
      April 10, 2015 at 9:39 am

      As I work with young men and old men who are fighting a porn addiction I find so many similarities. Their relationships with women are often in trouble. Porn portrays women as objects to be used and abused. The longer they watch porn, the more violent and abusive material they have to watch to get the same thrills. Starting with cartoons, young boys and girls will be needing more and more to be satisfied. Porn rewires the brain just like an addictive drug. You cant just quit.

    14. brandon johantges
      April 10, 2015 at 9:58 am

      I always considered Archer more parody than satire. Because you are right the point of satire is to create change. The point of Archer is clearly meant to spoof spy films not satirize them. Now satire can include crudeness and obscene material but it has to have the purpose of creating change in something to be satire. A Modest Proposal is a great example in satire. The government wont fix the lack of food issue so lets just eat babies. It’s hilarious and it spurred the government to fix the hunger issue.

    15. Carol
      April 10, 2015 at 10:01 am

      I agree Archer is not satire. As for the cartoon porn thing, I don’t mind. It’s still a fun show.

      • Joanne
        April 16, 2015 at 11:10 pm

        Carol: Wow, if the plot summaries of “Archer” are anywhere near accurate and you actually find watching such things to be amusing and entertaining, then you are an integral part of the carnage that takes place in our society today and that many people shake their heads in wonderment at and are baffled at how another human being could mistreat or abuse someone else. Shows like this one that are thought of as “fun” that desensitize the viewer to cruelty and perversion make it easier because people tend to imitate what they have seen. To coin a computer phrase “GiGO-garbage in, garbage out”

        • Streetlight Mary
          November 9, 2016 at 12:21 am

          Joanne: That’s hilarious actually. Carol was quite respectful and although she acknowledged this article’s complaints she still respectfully disagreed without any form of insulting behavoir to the writer, his site, or any commenters here. You though, Joanne, despite your ever-so-brave and self-righteous refusal to watch a television show (lol), said what could clearly be a very hurtful and insulting thing to our friend, Carol, if her skins isn’t very thick. What’d you say about desensitization towards cruelty though?

    16. judy
      April 10, 2015 at 10:15 am

      Hard to believe in my thought process, that there are people out there this sick. I know it’s true, but do Not want to believe. Evil is among us.

    17. Lynn
      April 10, 2015 at 5:06 pm

      It seems that there is no shame in Hollywood society. And what kind of message does that send? There are people – adults, technically – who can be sensitized to ugliness, which is what cartoon porn is, and who will pass that attitude on to their children, and in the end society will be drawn down to the lowest common denominator. And it starts with leadership in any position. A cartoon producer, for instance. I have no respect for him or his work.

    18. Nelva
      April 10, 2015 at 7:29 pm

      This is why we need to be able to pay for only the programs we want to view.

    19. Harriet Eastburg
      April 11, 2015 at 7:31 am

      We don’t want any cartoon porn, period!

    20. Carolyn Kiester
      April 11, 2015 at 9:02 am

      I will surely be glad when I can cancel my satelite

    21. Marianne Johnston
      April 11, 2015 at 10:20 am

      This world doesn’t need people Matt Thompson invading our homes with what HE obliviously finds entertaining.
      It is this kind of sick thinking that has the country/world in such a downward spiral. May GOD protect our kids
      from this kind of trash.
      There is so much good on television and we do not watch this kind of garbage! We do not like our cable bill paying
      for this “cartoon porn”!!!
      Keep up the good work PTC, you have our support.

    22. Janice Gaskill
      April 11, 2015 at 10:58 am

      Please let’s start a campaign to get this off the air!

      • Carol
        April 13, 2015 at 10:49 pm

        It’s the highest rated show on FX and it is heading into its 7th season. No amount of campaigning would get it cancelled. As for the “cartoon porn” thing this is nothing compared to some of the animated porn films that came out in the 70s. Fritz the Cat (1972) and Down and Dirty Duck (1974).

        • Christopher Gildemeister
          April 14, 2015 at 8:15 am

          The examples from the 1970s you named were shown in movie theaters. A person had to leave their home, drive to the theater, and deliberately pay to see a pornographic film.

          By contrast, Archer is shoved into every living room with a cable, satellite, or internet connection…and its episodes are available to children online any time.

          In the 1970s, you had to go out of your way to obtain pornography. Today, you have to go out of your way to avoid it.

        • Carolyn
          April 24, 2015 at 4:57 am

          Carol, you seem to be a supporter/defender of the show. I’m confused as to why you’re on the PTC website campaigning for what the PTC is obviously going to protest, for good reason.

    23. Ollie Beverly
      April 13, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      I for one have never watched this show, but I am so sick and tired of TV now a days because of all the crap that people think is entertainment. It is no wonder our children no longer have any morals. Something needs to be done to control TV again and stop all this.

      • Brad Douglas
        April 14, 2015 at 11:04 am

        It would take extremely drastic action by the federal government to get TV, movies, and the rest of the entertainment industry under control. At this point, our only recourse is to scrap those industries altogether and start overa again from scratch. Close the studios, sentence all the writers, producers, directors, actors, etc, to long prison sentences, then disbar from ever working in media or entertainment again,

        Better yet, let’s just get rid of these industries altogether. We don’t need them. America survived for 120 years without a film or recorded music industry, 170 years without a TV industry, and 200 years without an internet industry. We could do it again.

        • Carol
          April 15, 2015 at 10:24 am

          But that would be robbing the world of creativity and imagination. Some of the worlds most beautiful artistic expressions are made through film. “8 1/2 (1963)” “A Trip to the Moon (1902).” The Film industry is not just raunchy comedies and violent horror films. There are truly artistic feats that have come from motion pictures. Without that industry I think the world would be robbed of a truly beautiful artistic medium.

          You should watch the short films by Georges Méliès and other shorts of the late 1800s and early 1900s. They truly show the beauty and artistic majesty that motion pictures can bring.

          • moax429
            April 19, 2015 at 11:52 am

            Well, yes and no to both comments.

            Yes, Carol, it *would* be a shame if those portions of the entertainment industry didn’t exist anymore, not only for those examples you mentioned, but also because of the power of television to *educate* and *inform,* if it were used *properly* (e.g. in the case of the former, those PBS kids’ shows I used to watch when I was a boy in the late 60′s and early 70′s; those made learning fun).

            But on the other hand, Brad, *no,* let’s not start all over again from scratch. Let’s just go back to before Monday, November 25, 1968, when the late (as well as snarky) Jack Valenti tainted the industry with the weak, ineffectual film ratings system we have now. The films of the 50′s and 60′s, at their worst before that date, would probably be the equivalent of what’s now PG-13. Otherwise, most films from that era seemed family-friendly.

    24. brandon
      May 4, 2015 at 4:09 pm

      Hollywood always seems to confuse Satire with Parody. Which there is nothing wrong with Parody it can be very good depending on the writing. One example of the confusion is Family Guy. They call it a satire when it really isn’t. It can be satirical sometimes but mostly it’s just parody. Satire has the intent of creating change by bringing attention to an issue. Parody has the intent of making fun of something that is usually taken seriously. Now sometimes the two can be very close to where the deciding point is the author’s intent. The Family Guy Road to the North Pole is only time I can think of where Family Guy was doing true satire and doing it well. With Archer people say “It’s satirizing spy films.” OK, what about spy films is it satirizing? What is the the issue with spy films it wants pointed out?

      Really the best example of animated satire is South Park. Every episode is taking some kind of issue and exaggerating it with the hopes of drawing peoples attention to it. For the most part it does that really well and sometimes it doesn’t. One great example is the episode, “Over Logging” it was satirizing societies over dependence on internet. When there is an internet shortage the world turns into the “Grapes of Wrath.” The South Park Movie was a satire of organizations like the PTC. Parents get so aggressive about protecting there children from inappropriate media that they even start a war with Canada to do it. So that is the true difference between Satire and Parody and still to this day Hollywood can have trouble telling the two apart.

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        May 6, 2015 at 9:08 am

        Brandon,

        A sharp analysis and, I think, right on the money. The difference between “parody” and “satire” can sometimes be a fine one; but more often, those in Hollywood claim they’re “satirizing” something when really, they’re just indulging in “bad-boy” behavior with no larger point.

        The classic examples are Seth MacFarlane’s various shows: Family Guy, American Dad, The Cleveland Show, and the (thankfully) short-lived live-action series Dads. In each case, MacFarlane claimed that he was using racist dialogue as satire, just as All in the Family did. But, of course, he wasn’t. All in the Family‘s creator Norman Lear clearly had an agenda to change society by mocking bigotry. By contrast, the characters on MacFarlane’s programs also indulge in bigotry, but there is no larger perspective or purpose to it, other than to shock viewers.

        (It’s not exactly germane to this discussion, but it’s also notable that Lear’s characters were far more nuanced than MacFarlane’s. Archie Bunker may have been an ignorant bigot, but he was also a hard-working man who loved his family and at least tried to do what was right. MacFarlane’s “characters” are barely characters at all; most are merely mouthpieces for “jokes” about race, sex, and child molestation.)

        You’re also dead on about South Park. Nearly every episode has some satirical content; many have a strong point to make about society, and use genuine satire in making it. This is not to say that South Park is a paragon of clean, family-friendly humor; it DEFINITELY is not! Parents would to well to keep their children as far away from South Park as possible, as often the content crosses into the downright perverted and grotesque (and this is why the PTC has criticized the show in the past). But there is no denying that, disgusting as the show’s content can be, there IS a strong satirical component to it — and often, some very sharp and clever writing, as well.

        Thank you for your comment.

    25. June 5, 2015 at 10:29 pm

      I’m a little confused about something; at one point the article states, “The only alternative such Americans have is to cancel their cable or satellite subscriptions completely. This is an unfair alternative for those who want to receive Nickelodeon or Disney Channel for their children,” yet I thought most modern televisions have built-in parental controls that allow parents to block specific programs and channels. Is this method flawed, and if so, has the Parents Television Council brought this up with any of the leading television manufacturers?

      • Christopher Gildemeister
        June 8, 2015 at 10:06 am

        Eddie,

        Yes, the current V-Chip-based “parental control” system is very definitely flawed — in fact, it’s totally unreliable. We haven’t approached TV manufacturers, because it’s not the technology that’s at fault. That works fine, although programming your “parental controls” is usually more difficult and complex than it would need to be.

        The problem is, whether a program is blocked or not depends on the TV content rating the show has been given (TV-MA L, TV-14 DLSV, TV-PG V, and so forth). First of all, parents don’t really understand the TV ratings which, it often seems, the entertainment industry has gone out of its way to make as confusing as possible. (Why they didn’t adopt the same ratings as the movie industry, which were already familiar to Americans, is a great question.)

        But the most important reason the V-Chip doesn’t work is that the ratings are inaccurate. Adult content is often rated TV-14 or even TV-PG. Whose fault is this? The people who assign ratings to the TV shows. And who are those people? THE TV NETWORKS THEMSELVES.

        Yes, you heard that right. The same people who make the show, rate the show. Obviously, they have an incentive to rate it incorrectly! If they give a show that ought to be for adults only a rating that lets kids watch, they’ll get more viewers. Moreover, they’ll get more YOUNGER viewers, which are more attractive to advertisers. The result? The network will get a larger number of viewers, which they can then use to demand that advertisers pay more for showing their commercials.

        But it gets even worse. If you object to the way a TV show is rated, what can you do? You can complain to the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board, which has oversight responsibilities for the TV ratings system. And who sits on this board? THE VERY SAME PEOPLE WHO RATE THE SHOWS FOR THE NETWORKS! So the networks make the shows; rate the shows; and oversee the ratings process. This is like having the presidents of Exxon and British Petroleum run the Environmental Protection Agency.

        For more information documenting the flaws in the TV ratings system, click here.

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