• New Shows to Watch Out For

    by  • January 3, 2017 • Broadcast Decency, CW, Fox, NBC, Profanity, Sex, Violence • 7 Comments

    Girl Code

    The new year brings several new shows about which parents should beware.

    With the “safety zone” of the Christmas season (during which a large number of family-friendly programs air) now past, the broadcast networks are eagerly turning to their new programing…and some of the new programs contain graphic violence, sex, and profanity which should be of concern to parents. Here are some new shows of which parents should beware:

     

    Star (Fox, Wednesdays 9:00 p.m. ET)

    The flip side of Fox’s Empire (which tells the story of the top executives of a record company), Star follows a trio of young women who form a band and try to break into the Atlanta music scene. The lead character’s backstory includes stabbing her foster father after he sexually molests her sister, then the two sisters running from the law – only for the older sister to find employment in a strip club. Sexualization of women is a major focus of the series.Foul language is also a concern, with frequent use of the words “bitch,” “ass,” ‘damn,” and slang terms for women’s anatomy.  Underaged drinking and drug use also occur in the series.

     

     

    The Mick (Fox, Tuesdays 8:30 p.m. ET)

    Fox’s own publicity for this alleged “family comedy” boasts that The Mick is “a no-holds-barred comedy that gives new meaning to the phrase ‘dysfunctional family.’” The show centers on Mackenzie “Mickey” Murphy, an irresponsible, thoroughly obnoxious, foul-mouthed, alcoholic ne’er-do-well who crashes a party at her sister’s affluent suburb, originally intending to sponge off her relatives – only to be forced into raising her rich sister’s spoiled kids, when the sister flees the country to avoid a federal indictment. The kids are snotty teen drama queen Sabrina;  Chip, an arrogant, entitled neo-conservative 13-year-old (in Hollywood, nothing is more abhorrent than conservative values); and seven-year-old nerd Ben. Trailers for the program show Mickey using little Ben to promote drinking alcohol (“Champagne is the classiest way to vomit,” Mickey notes); making New Year’s resolutions to “drink more” and “get the last 4 digits of my nephew’s social”; and creating an ad campaign with T-shirts labelled “#KidsAreDicks.”

    Over the course of the first episode, Mickey drugs Sabrina during a drinking contest; advises Chip to humiliate the school bully by “ripping his pants down and pointing at his tiny pecker” (when Chip follows the advice, the bully beats him up, with Chip remarking his penis “was humungous – I’m lucky he didn’t beat me with THAT!”); and teaches Ben to steal ice cream by starting fires nearby. The kids routinely use words like “bitch,” “ass,” “dick,” and the like – another example of broadcast TV’s tendency toward Trash-Talking Teens.

    Given the show’s content, it’s TV-14 rating seems inadequate. Even the Los Angeles Times agrees that the program is “a shallow exercise in provocation…not enough to overcome an unfortunate tendency to mistake vulgar excess for subversive humor,” and states that “This is one of those shows that probably ought to come with a ‘don’t try this at home’ warning.”

     

    Emerald City (NBC, Fridays 9:00 p.m. ET)

    This dark, twisted reboot of The Wizard of Oz places the famed children’s story into an overtly menacing world that imitates Game of Thrones. In the show, college student Dorothy Gale is transported to a land of magic where the Wizard, here a dictator, has outlawed magic and faces not only the wrath of the witches who are still alive, but also a looming disaster brough on by a supernatural force.

    Violence is the greatest concern in this show. The first episode features Lucas, Emerald City’s surrogate for the Scarecrow, stabbing a woman through the chest, then beating her nearly to death. Lucas himself is discovered earlier on by Dorothy while hanging on a cross, and both are tortured by the Witch of the East using disturbing magical means. Sex is also a concern, with the Witch of the West shown having sex. Language includes uses of “whore” and “damn.”  Parents and children should avoid this Yellow Brick Road.

     

    Riverdale (CW, Thursdays 9:00 p.m. ET): Premiering January 26, this program continues the trend of turning beloved children’s properties “edgy” and “grim ‘n gritty.” Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead go the Gossip Girl/Pretty Little Liars route into a world of slap-fights, arson, and murder of teenagers. Archie and Jughead are enemies, Betty’s mother is giving her drugs, Cheryl Blossom is hiding something about his brother’s death…oh, and  Archie is having an affair with his teacher, Ms. Grundy.  In short, not your fathers’ Archie comics…and probably not your children’s, either.

     

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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 New Shows to Watch Out For

    1. moax429
      January 3, 2017 at 6:27 pm

      Thanks very much for the warnings.

      Another one to beware of is that sorry reboot of “Match Game,” which somehow ABC felt should be (needlessly) renewed. But at least it will air in the 10:00 P.M. Eastern slot, during the “safe harbor” period.

      Gene Rayburn, Mark Goodson, and Bill Todman must still be spinning in their graves.

    2. Adrienne
      January 4, 2017 at 11:54 am

      This reminds me of the big bully who comes along and smashes your sand castle on the beach! Here is Hollywood smashing lots of memories of stories held dear to many of us….

    3. Paula Sullivan
      January 6, 2017 at 12:21 pm

      When l recently saw the promos for EMERALD….l thought l was utterly going to ‘puke’!! I was so taken back as to what l was seeing…not to mention seeing it on NBC late afternoon, early evening….when any child could view it!!!! For the studios to produce such a horrifying spin of such a BELOVED, MEMORABLE & CLASSIC part of our childhood, our children & granchildren’s childhood…..l’m not only APPAULLED….very UPSET….& OUTRAGED…..BUT I’M SICK & TIRED OF IT!! Their complete lack of INTEGRITY….JUGEMENT….ACCOUNTABILITY….CONCERN….SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY….TO ALL OF US (HUMANITY)….BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY TO THE YOUNG PEOPLE IN OUR SOCIETY!!!! DO THEY FEEL NO SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY TO WHAT THEY’RE PRODUCINGING….LET ALONE THE EFFECT OF WHAT THEY’RE PROMOTING???? AND TO THINK….IT WILL BE AIRED AT AT 9:00pm….WHICH SHOULD NOT BE AIRED AT ALL!!! What ‘s happened to FCC RULES….OUR MORAL COMPASS????? ARE THERE NO BOUNDARIES….
      NO COMMON DECENSY…OR SENSE OF RESPONSIBILITY TO OUR CHILDREN LEFT IN OUR SOCIETY?????

      HAVE THEY NOT BARED WITNESS TO WHAT’S OCCURING DAILY IN OUR REALITY & THE DEPRAVITY OF IT!!?? WHY PROMOTE SUCH SAD, SICK VIOLENCE….& MIND-SET….WHY PROLIFERATE IT….ON WEEKLY TV FOR GOD’S SAKE & THE SAKE OF OUR CHILDREN????

      I GUESS THERE IS NO DISCERNMENT OR MORAL INTEGRITY INVOLVED….BUT ONLY GREED…& THE LOVE OF MONEY!!!! THEY SHOULD BE ASHAMED!!! WHERE & WHEN DOES IT END???

      • Jonathan
        January 9, 2017 at 11:05 am

        First off it’s not the job of a network, creator of a show, writer nor a director to monitor any child. That is the parent’s responsibility. Second, a show airing at 9:00 PM eastern stranded is a respectable time to air a TV-14 show. Now, you say that it shouldn’t even be aired. What gives you the authority to say a show shouldn’t be aired just becasue you don’t like the content?

        In this day of technology you can monitor what your child watches 24/7 with a little invention called parental controls. Don’t want your kid watching a TV-MA or TV-14 show? You can block any shows with that rating. You can even block any channel.

        It’s funny how angry and upset your getting at a show that you’ll most likely never even watch.

        • anonymous
          January 12, 2017 at 8:40 am

          Jonathan, if you don’t like what we have to say then why do you continue making such sardonic and caustic comments?

          If you don’t like our responses then either *don’t* respond or find another website where your sardonic liberal comments will fit right in. I was glad to hear facebook blocked you.

          *Leave us alone!*

    4. Poe
      January 6, 2017 at 4:18 pm

      I agree with this in principle, except:
      Archie was *not* intended for children…

    5. Justin
      January 15, 2017 at 7:21 am

      Thanks for the warnings PTC!

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