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Arts and Entertainment

TV Junkie: The PTC Targets Adult Swim

If you love baseball then you should love "The Franchise" on Showtime, even if it is about the Giants
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The Parents Television Council (PTC) has again proven that it is a vehicle for censorship and not a resource for parents with the release of its report, Cartoons Are No Laughing Matter, which decried the content in most animated TV-G and TV-14 programs. Specifically targeted were the Turner Broadcasting System's Cartoon Network and Adult Swim. Granted, some of Adult Swim's content has now started running at the earlier hour of 9pm but the types of material that could be considered offensive are meticulously described before each program begins so that if you, as a parent, are viewing on the fly instead of in advance as you should if you consider yourself a good parent, have a chance to say "yes" or "no" before proceeding to let your kids view the show. The PTC said that such warnings were missing 100% of the time which I find to be a patently false statement.

Also, there's the point that the actual name of the network is Adult Swim, and should be off-limits to your kids as should all programming after 9pm, as a rule. Let's also not forget the incredible amount of control parents have over what gets viewed in their home through the tools available in every cable box, DVR, and computer. One can block out entire networks, specific programs, or all programs that have specific rating (TV-14, etc.). While I agree with the PTC that the ability to subscribe to cable channels on a network by network basis should be provided, I disagree with the tone of their report which implies that parents are helpless victims being mowed down by purveyors of relentless filth. The PTC also doesn't seem to hold much stake in the idea of actually parenting your children - telling them what they can and can't watch and why. There is nothing "liberal," "progressive," or "PC" about the PTC, they have a conservative agenda aimed at removing content they don't agree with. They are censors, not a resource.
True baseball fans are loving "The Franchise: A Season With the San Francisco Giants" (Showtime @ 8pm) and so should you, even if you are a Dodger fan. The near-realtime series is a behind-the-scenes look at a MLB team as it progresses through a season. You gain a much better understanding of how these athletes function together as a team in what is very much a multi-million dollar business environment. Whether or not you like these guys as characters, it's fascinating to watch how they have to adjust to new team acquisitions, injuries, and other events. I don't know how Showtime pulled this off but I hope to speak to a producer to get the details, stay tuned.
Yesterday we mentioned that Greg Proops' live podcast "The Smartest Man In The World" happens tonight at 7pm at Bar Lubitsch in WeHo. If you go to that you will still have plenty of time to make it home to catch him on "Chelsea Lately" on E! at 11pm, thus making your day truly Prooptastic.
The TV Junkie Must-Watch Plan: "The Franchise: A Season With the San Francisco Giants," "Royal Pains," "Rescue Me," "Chelsea Lately," "The Colbert Report," "Jimmy Kimmel Live"

8:00pm The Franchise: A Season With the San Francisco Giants Showtime - New episode following the Giants' season. Still, no one has called me out on this - hilarious!

9:00pm Royal Pains USA - Run, Hank, Run A runner struggles to regulate body temperature while training; Boris' decline may not be related to the disease.

10:00pm Rescue Me FX - 344 Tommy gets inspired to write letters to his loved ones; Tommy returns to ground zero with an old friend.

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11:00pm Chelsea Lately E! - Actress Anne Hathaway; actor Greg Proops; comic Heather McDonald; TV personality Ross Mathews.

11:00pm Conan TBS - Actor Paul Rudd; actress Jessica Chastain; Vanessa Carlton performs.

11:30pm The Colbert Report Comedy Central - Interview guest Jeff Bridges

12:05am Jimmy Kimmel Live ABC - Actor Joel McHale; actor Joe Mantegna; The Band Perry performs.