ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)



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Entertainment Media Analysis Report

Ed TV (1999), PG-13
CAP Score: 45, CAP ID: 1.38

Thomas A. Carder
CAP President




Executive Summary / Commentary
Findings / Scoring

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WARNING! A point of this analysis is very blunt. It might even be considered vulgar by some. But what I have to say was there -- in "Ed TV." At this point, you would be as well to consider "Ed TV" as equivalent to R-rated programming of 1995/96 in Sex/Homosexuality, possibly even X-rated programming. I do not know what CAP scores would equate to X-rated programming in magnitude. I will NOT analyze X-rated (or NC-17) movies. If this is enough to convince you of the inappropriateness of this show not only for kids but for everyone, then trash this announcement now. Remember, the CAP analysis model does not rely on the single most invasive example of unacceptable programming present to make its determination as does the Motion Picture Association of America. The CAP model incorporates the magnitude of all examples of ignominy together, no matter how large or small in terms of invasive properties.

To boost ratings, a failing TV station decided to select a common person and follow him moment by moment through his daily life with TV cameras. A central figure in the movie was Ellen Degeneras -- an admitted lesbian from the TV series "Ellen." This movie is a sad and dangerous commentary for homosexuality. Degeneras was good, very good as an actress. But there was no mention or suggestion I could find to reveal her homosexuality in Ed TV. But a bunch of other characters suggested and expressed homosexuality. There was no nudity associated with homosexuality -- the nudity in Ed TV was associated with heterosexuality, but there were ample hints and suggestions of homosexuality.

That which the entertainment industry has done for years to lower the general threshold of acceptability and inhibition is now being done with homosexuality -- burying and camouflaging ignominy beneath a layer of warmth, love, and human compassion; disguising it as completely acceptable and desirable, indeed satisfying. The usual other examples of ignominy were there also: foul language (but not the most foul of the foul words), God's name in vain both with and without the four letter expletive, and token drug/alcohol content.

While the only elements of a violent nature I noted was "I'll just have to kill myself..." and a violent display of attitude, the Sex/Homosexuality Investigation Area was thick with little and slight snippets of sexual innuendo and suggestion (both hetero and homosexual). In addition, there was nudity, sex talk, and vulgar gestures with human anatomy. Here is the point warranting the WARNING: As the story cameras were shooting Ed as he woke up from a night's sleep, Ed stroked himself under his bedclothes. Please look to the listing of examples of unacceptable programming in Findings/Scoring on the website for this analysis.

FINDINGS / SCORING: Ed TV (1999) CAP Thermometers

Wanton Violence/Crime (W):
  • "I'll just have to kill myself..."
  • a violent display

    Impudence/Hate (I)(1):
  • 52 uses of the three/four letter word vocabulary
  • a man bursting into a woman's restroom

    Sex/Homosexuality (S):
  • a noted lesbian actress as a central figure
  • sexual reference, talk, and innuendo
  • vulgar hand gesture, manipulation of human anatomy, and body gesture
  • nudity
  • homosexual presence
  • a sexual T shirt
  • suggestive eye movement
  • sexual activities in a car
  • inappropriate touch
  • a woman on a man, dressed but female under-dress crotch showing
  • cohabitation
  • adultery
  • masked sexual intercourse (an undressed couple in bed under sheets)

    Drugs/Alcohol (D):
  • alcoholic beverages and drinking with drunkenness
  • "would fourty of these (prescription pills) kill me?"

    Offense to God (O)(2):
  • 7 uses of God's name in vain with the four letter expletive and 9 uses without
  • "I am the golden goddess of TV."

    Murder/Suicide (M)(3):
    None noted

    (1) As noted in CAP Special Report-001, "Investigation Area and Scoring Trend," of the six CAP Investigation Areas, Impudence/Hate was the strongest presence in all four movie classifications. It has a strong revelation about the entertainment media.

    (2) The use of the three/four letter word vocabulary without God's name is incorporated into the Impudence/Hate Investigation Area. The use of God's name with or without the three/four letter word vocabulary is incorporated into the Offense to God Investigation Area. There is no duplication. As required of the Holy Scriptures, unless God's name is used with reverence to His glory and praise, its use is considered in vain, whether literal or euphemistic.

    (3) Only portrayal of successful murder or suicide are incorporated into Murder/Suicide. Presentation of attempts to commit murder or suicide and deaths by police action or war are incorporated into Wanton Violence/Crime.

    Additional reviews of this movie may be located at "Movie Review Query Engine at Telerama."

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    Lord, Master, Teacher, Savior, God.

    Thomas A. Carder
    ChildCare Action Project: Christian Analysis of American Culture (CAP)

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