“What the . . . (trailing off)?!?”

Ken AshfordGodstuff, Popular Culture, Sex/Morality/Family ValuesLeave a Comment

Plugged In is a magazine and website that reviews movies, television and music from a Christian perspective. It’s a James Dobson venture, and has been popularized recently when it reviewed the Spongebob Squarepants movie and suggested that Spongebob was gay.

On a curious lark, I wondered what Plugged In thought about the movie "Kinsey". Now, I haven’t seen this movie, but I know who Kinsey was, and what the subject matter of the movie is about (a sex researcher and the priggish tightwads who disliked him). Anyway, as you might expect, the reviewer at Plugged In didn’t care for "Kinsey" too much. In fact, his head exploded. I’m sure the irony of his review was lost on him.

I don’t have a problem with the service that Plugged In provides. I mean, if you are a parent, and your kid is going to some movie you never heard of, you might want to know what your child is going to see. And in that sense, Plugged In lets you know, and provides a service.

But is it necessary to be so dogmatic, and . . . well . . . persnickity? Yeah — I said it . . . "persnickity"!

For example, it seems that every movie review informs you of the number and content of dirty words. As in "this movie had four uses of the word ‘h—‘, two ‘d—‘s, and one rather loud use of the s-word."

Naturally, this led me to wonder: Do the Plugged In reviewers actually sit there in dark movie theaters and keep tally of dirty words? Maybe they had special writing pads made up so they can just put a tick mark next to a dirty word everytime it is uttered.

Here’s a real-life example regarding the language used in a recent blockbuster movie:

Startled, Mr. Incredible blurts, "What the …," then trails off before finishing. Interjections of "oh my god" and "jeez" pop out of characters’ mouths two or three times.

"What the . . . ?" (trailing off) is offensive to someone? Jeez, that’s going a bit overboard, ain’t it?

My advice to the Plugged In people is to keep on doing what you are doing, but come off your high horse just a little. You can inform your readers that there is, say, moderately foul language . . . without giving the box scores.