Censoring Zack and Miri… plus Fake Porno Parody Titles 2 – The TV Edition!

Well, well, well. Aren’t we quite the puritanical society? Apparently, you can’t say the word “porno” on TV. George Carlin isn’t even cold in the ground yet and we’re already adding new words to the list of things you can’t say on television.

Several major markets have refused to air ads for Kevin Smith’s new film due in theatres October 31st, Zack and Miri Make a Porno, on the grounds that the word “porno” is obscene. Fox Sports led the charge to block advertisement of the film during a World Series playoff game. This doesn’t come as much of a shock. If Fox News is any indicator, it’s small wonder Fox Sports gets all hot and bothered about one little word.

Among the list of uptight cities refusing advertising for the film is my own adopted hometown of Philadelphia. Even Philadelphia’s deputy mayor for transportation made a statement about how even stick-figure advertisement for this film is inappropriate for that beat-all, end-all, raison d’censorship: “the children.” Again, I can’t say I’m shocked. While known for its blue-collar ethic, Philly is a seriously prudish city.

Having worked in the outdoor advertising industry, I’ve heard complaints from people who take issue with things most folks wouldn’t even blink at. As a result, before ad copy hits the streets, it has to undergo a rigorous in-house version of “Standards and Practices,” with management giving the final word as to if there is anything even remotely “questionable” about the copy. Advertisements featuring bikinis; the faintest trace of cleavage; guns (I’m not even kidding here); or plays on words that would — in other markets — garner the creative team an Addy Award or a Clio, are usually nixed in favor of more sedate (read: boring) copy that is sure to appease the bland palate of the city’s denizens.

Wow. Way to think outside of the box! (Heh. I said “box.”)

Sadly, the loud voices of the few outweigh those of the many who aren’t quite so sensitive as to have their delicate sensibilities ruffled.

All this over just one word. “Porno.”

The marketing team for Zach and Miri Make a Porno have taken a more creative route around this blockade. Advertisements with stick figures citing that “Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks made a movie so titillating, we can’t even tell you the title.” have been a clever way to circumvent the ban and get out word about the film.

Additionally, the word “Porno” is omitted from some promotional posters in areas that prohibit the film’s name from being showcased in its full, p-word packin’ glory. Even on television commercials in the Philadelphia market, the words “…Make a Porno Movie” are muffled, or almost dropped off of the title at the end of the commercial.

The result is advertising for a movie called Zach and Miri — which makes it sound about as comical as Harold and Maude or Hannah and Her Sisters. Hardly films that come to mind when I think of uproarious laugh-fests.

Since when has the word “porno” been deemed obscene? It’s an abbreviated form of the word “pornography,” a word bandied about on news shows and the wildly popular To Catch a Predator. It’s not like the film is called “Zack and Miri Make a Beaver Picture” (to use the parlance of our time). “Porno” is a pretty plebian term that isn’t nearly as flinch-worthy as “shit,” “fuck,” “dirty cunt,” or “stink-fingered slam-hole.”

As a purely grammatical aside, I notice that the older you get, the more likely you are to refer to a pornographic film as a “porno.” If you pause for a moment to ponder linguistics, usually, uptight people or persons in an academic setting refer to it as “pornography.” As for people who say “porn,” a much more erotic connotation applies. Those who favor the word “porn” are still young enough to have not had enough hilariously bad experiences in the bedroom as to have had their perception colored and can still find some sort of eroticism in the term. When you reach a certain age or are possessed of a certain warped, twisted mindset, you refer to blue movies as a “pornos.” That’s just the way it is.

In the spirit of anti-censorship, I would like to add Part Two of my fabulous fiesta of fake fuck-flick titles that I have come up with for your entertainment pleasure. While the last round included a pornucopia of movie parody titles, these are take-offs on television shows. Enjoy, and my humble apologies if I have included anything that has already been produced!

Television Porno Parody Titles
That ’70s Ho
The Cockford Files
The Golden Shower Girls
Ballin’ the Family
The Mary Tyler Whore Show
Third Cock from the Sun
The gAy-Team
Hershey Highway to Heaven
Snatchy Days
Groanie Loves Chachi
Hairy and the Bendoversons
How I Wet Your Mother
Barney Fill-her
Mr. Belvequeer
Welcome Back, Twatter
Quimcy
The New Anal Adventures of Spoogy Goo and Shaggy
Everybody Sucks Raymond
Gilligan’s Brown-Eye Land
I Love Juicy
Shaved by the Bell
Viva la Cram
Cram-ily Thighs
Bangin’ With Mr. Cooper
Hogan’s Dildos
Leave it to My Beaver
The Cracks of Life
Groin Pains
Punky Screw-ster
Boner-nanza
Bungsmoke
Little Whorehouse on the Prairie
The Beverly Buttbuddies
Cream Acres
Three’s Hump-any
Dr. Quim: Medicine Whore
G.A.S.H.


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