I’ve been on a BBC kick recently (okay, so more like a Doctor Who kick, considering it’s a steady diet of the Doctor, Torchwood, and Sarah Jane Adventures), and one thing that keeps jumping out at me is just how much I covet a BBC level of permissiveness for American television.
Sure, stuff like Breaking Bad and The Riches (and a goodly chunk of F/X’s post-watershed programming) can pull that stuff off via the basic cable, but just imagine how much less formulaic network television would be if the FCC allowed the palette to widen enough to honestly and frankly reflect how we talk (ie, profanity) and live (ie, that motivator of all things: sex). Sure the U.K. has hooligan culture, but somehow I doubt it’s due entirely to being exposed to boobies and the word ‘fuck’ on television.
Even Canada kicks our ass in the honesty department, for crying out loud. Check out this disarmingly frank and brutal series of PSAs for workplace safety: Watch the Prevent It series of PSAs.
Kinda beats the holy hell out of a ‘this is your brain on drugs’ spot, don’t it?
Canada often gets accused of having a nanny-state mentality regarding citizen health, but at least they’re willing to honestly present something like this in a manner open enough to make you notice.