Sunday, October 16, 2005

Sex and violence

Just a quick thought. Sex and violence are the two things on TV to which children's access is limited. But as a parent, I react to them in opposite ways.

With sex, I am happier if it's realistic - ie non-pornographic, and portrayed with its consequences and attendant emotions. With violence, the more realistic it gets, the more unhappy I am.

I'm thinking that because we're all hooked on Firefly, the cult-TV-series (thanks to Eamonn Sullivan, who lent us the DVDs).

It's a 15, but then so is Joss Whedon's previous opus, Buffy, and that went out at tea-time on UK TV. There's been implied sex right from the start, with a major character being a "Companion" or high-class call-girl, but it's only in Episode ten when there is torture, that I start to think, is this all right for everyone? Actually, if there's torture, I'd rather it was unrealistic, like the machine in the Princess Bride, than seeing someone's ear cut off....

On the whole, I'm happy to trust Whedon's moral universe and press on. It's great character-driven storytelling. The girls are all hooked, and sing the theme tune all the time....

But violence. Why do we watch it? Is it different because I can't actually imagine real pain and am genuinely scared of it?

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