Twins David and Jason Benham were working on a pilot for a series to be called Flip It Forward in which they would assist families in building dream homes and fixing up run-down houses when the Home & Garden Television cable channel abruptly canceled the project when the producers learned that the brothers have a history of preaching against homosexuality, abortion and divorce.
As you might expect, gay organizations hailed HGTV's decision while the brothers – sons of evangelical minister Flip Benham – released a statement that said: “If our faith costs us a television show, then so be it.”
Less than a week after Phil Robertson was suspended by A&E from the hit show Duck Dynasty, the hunting equipment mogul and his family are pushing back. Speaking with the British Daily Mail newspaper, a “source close to the family” said that the network was aware of the controversial things that Robertson had said in an interview but declined to suppress them even though it could have.
“It is our belief that they knew what was going to happen and then used the situation to exercise control over Phil,” the newspaper’s source said.
Following the suspension of Phil Robertson from A&E’s hit show Duck Dynasty, his family appears to be reevaluating their relationship with the cable channel.
In a statement released on their Duck Commander company website, the family said it “cannot imagine the show going forward without our patriarch at the helm” and is currently in discussions with A&E about what that means for the future of Duck Dynasty.”
Sawed off limbs, gouged out eyes, slashed throats, decapitation, disembowelment, cannibalism, human corpses used as fertilizer, graphic rape and blood splattering stabbings – just another day’s work for TV’s new favorite characters.
Serial killers area hot trend on TV these days. You can even watch your favorite serial killer hero doing all the above, 5 out of 7 days of the week – and then go out and emulate him. Currently there are 20 shows revolving around serial killers, seven of which premiered in the beginning of 2013.
The Media Research Center’s Culture and Media Institute, along with the Parent’s Television Council, slammed A&E this week for its gruesome new show “Bates Motel,” which premiered this past Monday. The very first episode contained a graphic rape scene and implied incest. And A&E’s rating board thinks this is appropriate and healthy for 14-year-olds to watch.
The PTC has condemned “Bates Motel” for its sympathetic portrayal of a psychopath and its graphic violence in a show rated safe for kids to watch. CMI also wrote about the violence and attempted to get a statement from the network defending the TV-14 rating. A&E not respond, perhaps too busy preparing a press release in which network President Bob DeBitetto boasted of the 4.6 million viewers the premiere received and applauded it as, “the very best of quality storytelling” while being “edgy and provocative.” It’s disturbing to find out that obscene rape scenes are “quality” entertainment and cool and “edgy” to A&E.
Alfred Hitchcock’s film masterpieces thrilled audiences with imagination and suspense, but if Hitchcock focused the cameras instead on graphic violence and rape, “Psycho” might resemble today’s “Bates Motel” series. And throw in some implied incest just because it’s TV.
The A&E show provided a modern-day prequel to Hitchcock’s horror film, “Psycho.” The “Bates Motel” series illuminated the twisted relationship between 17-year-old Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother Norma Bates (Vera Farmiga), which later transformed Norman into the infamous “Psycho” killer.