Fear Factor Makes An ‘Ass’ Out Of NBC
By Mysterious Q
Just when I thought that the Reality TV shows currently available everywhere had managed to defy every standard of decency and offend just about everyone in all ways possible, Fear Factor breaks through the barriers of common sense and propriety and ramps bad taste in entertainment up to a new level. The show that regularly has its contestants eat bugs and perform all kinds of crazy stunts has finally reached a new low and managed to get an episode pulled by NBC.
Fear Factor contestants Claire Odioso and Bryne Odioso were told that they had to drink donkey urine, and then down a glass of donkey sperm. The episode which was titled 'Hew Haw, Hew Haw' never aired on NBC. Someone leaked the news about the unbelievably disgusting acts the Odioso twins apparently performed during the show and that caused public outrage. After animal rights advocates got involved expressing their indignation to NBC, the network got the message loud and clear and decided not to air the controversial episode.
The Odioso twins recently guested on a radio show in their hometown and said that they didn't think the experience was all that bad. While on Tampa Bay Radio they said that they were disappointed "because we wanted to share the experience with our friends and family." Perhaps they can convince NBC to give them a DVD of the show as a keepsake? While they are at it, maybe they can get the network to help them out with a few free sessions with Dr. Phil or some other Shrink?
I cannot imagine that anyone in their right mind would drink donkey urine and semen no matter how much cash was at stake. Forget the fact that anyone performing that kind of act anywhere would probably be considered some kind of pervert by an overwhelming majority of people, but the fact that it was set to air on national broadcast television makes the situation completely unacceptable. Isn't it bad enough that an X Factor contestant got completely naked during the first American season of that show and that there were no consequences resulting from that act for the producers or network responsible?
In the case of the X-Factor incident the man's private parts were blocked out for TV, but there were kids in that live audience who must have seen everything. I do not know how the producers or network could have even allowed such a thing to occur in the first place, but after it did there should have been legal consequences for the man and FCC fines for the network that foolishly chose to air that person's audition. All things considered, that incident seems smalltime next to the Fear Factor donkey episode. I just cannot believe that NBC actually considered airing that show and only pulled the episode after people got wind of it in advance and expressed their outrage.
NBC and other broadcast networks used to have some credibility with me and a lot of other people that still value morality and have a sense of decency, but I guess it's really all about money and they must believe that outrageous, raunchy and raw equals ratings. This sad situation was foretold and done so very well by films like Network and Stay Tuned. In those flicks all TV programs degenerate into reality formats where news broadcasts are all about popular pundits and prime time shows feature punishments, and even death delivered live. How long before we get there?
It all comes down to the old argument which asks whether the entertainment media influences popular culture or is merely a mirror of it. Well, since I do not see too many people being served donkey pee or sperm at their local watering hole (yet), my guess is that the entertainment media believes they are on some kind of mission to create a new standard of lewdness and gross us all out. Either that or they think they are being progressive by offering up disgusting displays like the Fear Factor donkey episode that was almost aired on NBC. What was the Peacock thinking?
This is the network that once helped to break new ground by allowing the inclusion of a female African-American cast member as part of the ship's crew on the original Star Trek series at a time when that wasn't a common practice. That series also broke a long-standing taboo by showing television's first interracial kiss which occurred between Captain Kirk played by William Shatner and an Alien female played by an African-American actress. That is being progressive, not showing people doing truly disgusting things they ought not to be doing.
All in all, I am glad that Fear Factor has managed to make an 'ass' out of NBC. Considering the reality show crap that they and some of the other networks and channels regularly serve up to their viewers as entertainment, they all deserve whatever criticism and backlash they get. While I am no viewing prude, I just cannot stomach and refuse to accept that kind of thing as entertaining. That's one reason why I often find myself watching old TV shows on retro networks, newer programs like Once Upon A Time and family programming like Heartland on GMC. I haven't gone soft, just gotten sensible.
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