“Fatal Attractions” vs “Skins”


MTV recently fired up a controversial show called “Skins,” which is an Americanized version of a similiar show that was produced in Britain (for crying out loud…can’t we come up with an original idea ourselves anymore???). I haven’t seen it but I’ve read about it. The internet has been FLOODED with reports of child pornography, sexually explicit material and racy innuendo. And the reason for this is because the show is about teenagers. Teenagers dealing with sex. Teenagers dealing with drugs. Teenagers dealing with hormones. Teenagers dealing with…well…being teenagers. It’s a MUST SEE for anyone under the age of 18, I’m sure.

On the flip side, over on the Animal Planet network, there’s a show apparently about bestiality that’s about to hit the air and it’s not getting ANY negative press. The show is called “Fatal Attractions” and I haven’t seen it either. But I HAVE seen the promo for it and I gotta tell you…there’s gonna be an UPROAR once everyone sees this little time-filler! It’s got real, live human beings kissing and loving tigers and alligators and chimpanzees. It’s got all kinds of tail-chasing and living in sin with killer animals. And the difference between these 2 shows? Well…maybe nothing?

In one show, you have people housing dangerous animals and this isn’t a problem but you take a camera into a house party with a bunch of hormonal 16-year olds and you get video of them making out and showing some skin and GAH!!!! IT’S CHILD PORN?!?!

Well…of course it is. It’s all done for shock value people. Cathleen Falsani, a religion columnist from the Huffington Post, has seen “Skins” and has this to say about the sexual attitude of the show…

“MTV’s Skins is neither authentically sexy nor remotely soulful. Sex scenes are shot with fractured, breathy imagery — a wandering hand or a craning neck here, open mouths and the small of a back over there. There’s plenty of panting, groping and writhing, but the complete bodies — and the complete personhoods — of the characters are envisaged with the eye of an amateur cubist.”

She later goes on to say this about what she feels is the true nature of the show…

“…what is most disturbing and, perhaps, most “dangerous” about MTV’s Skins, is that the facile young characters are little more than objectified body parts meant to entertain us. And by “us,” I mean adults. Reducing children to commodities — to be traded for advertising dollars, market share or worse, sexual entertainment for adults — is disgraceful.”

And on that topic, I wholeheartedly agree. But what of “Fatal Attractions.” Granted, it might appeal to an entirely different type of odd curiosity but still…it’s people living with deadly animals (And what do they do while “living” with these animals? Well…I dunno WHAT they do because I haven’t seen the show and I’m just going by the suggestive nature of the commercial I saw while working out in my hotel gym). What about the subject of bestiality? Is THAT okay for television?

The Animal Planet website has THIS statement as a tease for it’s hot new show…

“It’s a basic instinct for humans to want to love and be loved. But for some, this basic desire can take them into obsessive and dangerous territory.”

Sounds kind of kinky if you ask me. But is there anything wrong with it? April MacIntyre of “Monsters & Critics” has this to say about the new Animal Planet show…

“The series is both sensationalistic and sad, as the mauled pet owner, and often times dead owner’s relatives, realize in hindsight that the ego rush of being able to have such a “pet” in their possession was probably a bad idea.  Many are undiagnosed with some sort of mental disorder, and have traits similar to OCD sufferers.”

So there you have it. One show is about teenagers having sex and the other show is about mentally unstable people who believe they can actually live with a dangerous wild animal. Which show is MORE dangerous for the viewing public?

Here’s what I know…teenagers have always been interested in sex and MTV will have to decide at some point whether or not it’s catering to teens who are probably watching to SEE sex or if it’s catering to perverts who want to see teenagers having sex. Companies are pulling their ads and if the entire purpose of having a show is to sell ad time, then it seems “Skins” is in for a short shelf life. As for “Animal Attractions,” I have to believe that it will probably live on, just like shows such as “Hoarders,” as networks make money off people with mental diseases or odd addictions. It’s unfortunate that we can’t figure out a way to make quality entertainment without themes like this but they both obvious pander to a certain audience.

In this case, in MY opinion, they are BOTH losers. And I can say I won’t be watching either of them. But in the battle of “Skins” vs “Fatal Attractions,” it’s a tie. In one hand you have a show about kids who could potentially ruin their lives by having unprotected sex and doing drugs. On the other hand you have a show about people who put their lives and their family members lives in jeopardy by living with wild, killer animals. Both equally have absolutely no redeeming value but neither does “Jerry Springer”and he’s been on the air for 15+ years….so I got nuthin’.

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