TV Censorship Sucks

You know when a movie or TV show is uncensored and makes sense, and then gets re-released for network TV and is censored and makes no sense?

My wife is a fan of the movie The Wedding Date, and she got really excited when it aired on TV. So we DVR’ed it (off TBS, I think) and watched it… or tried to watch it. Throughout the film, she kept exclaiming, “Wait! They cut out that whole bit” while I was exclaiming, “This movie makes no sense.” I think they cut about a half hour out of the movie to make way for commercials. Why? Why not just make the runtime longer to put more commercials in? Or just not show the butchered movie at all?

Just as bad as censorship-for-time-constraints is censorship-for-prudishness. Hey, I can be as much of a prude as the next person, but when prudishness takes the humor out of TV, that’s just wrong.

This prudish censorship makes Sex and the City unwatchable for SatC fans (I realize non-fans already think it unwatchable—whether it’s censored or not). In one scene, Miranda calls Skipper (while he’s having sex with another woman) to see if he wants to get together, and Skipper likes Miranda better, so he breaks up with the other woman. In the original dialogue, the woman says, “You’re breaking up with me while you’re still inside of me?” In the censored version, she says “You’re breaking up with me now?” Yeah. Hilarious.

Another great prudes-take-the-humor-out moment is in the censored version of Return to Me. Like Return to Me is just so risqué. At one point, Bonnie Hunt’s character is arguing with her husband (James Belushi’s character) and says, “Great. You taught him hell. That’s great.” He gets all defensive and suggests that it’s possible their child might have learned the word hell from the mother, who replies “I never said hell, you son of a bitch.” All the irony is lost in the TV version, of course, in which she says “I never said hell.”

Well, thank God for HBO and Showtime. They may cost a bit more than the regular channels, but they’ll at least keep the laughs in.

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4 Comments

  1. I think I hate it worse when I see them in the reverse order. Take just about any Stephen King movie. Great on TV. I watch the original on VHS or something and I have to turn it off half way through because it was just too much. That’s the best example I’ve been able to think of, but I’ve done this alot; watched the shortened version, then watch the long version and the parts they cut were such low quality compared to the rest, or really repetative, and it just puts a sour taste in your mouth for whatever it was you liked.

  2. some shows need to be shown to scare america. have you seen this new show Baby Borrowers where they loan children to teens to test their mettle… good luck with that

  3. Was just thinking about Bonnie Hunt’s line “You taught him hell!, you son of a bitch!” ….. it is the loudest I have ever laughed in a movie theater – I can’t find that anywhere on YouTube, do you have a link?

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