Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Sods and bastards!

Image: morguefile.com
Did that take you by surprise? Was it not what you expected from my usually dignified blog?

I switched on Radio 4 at about 2.40 this afternoon to keep me company while I got changed for yoga and there was a drama on. Within seconds we'd had the above words, plus a couple of bollocks and a piss off. Well, really! I don't know what Jill Archer would say.

I'm not offended, actually. I'm quite partial to the occasional expletive when the need arises and there's nothing wrong with swearing in context. I mean, I don't think Trainspotting would be the same if Sick Boy started a conversation with:

 'I say, old chap, d'you happen to have anything about your person in the narcotic line, please?'

But it made me wonder if there is a watershed on radio. Are programmes allowed to contain any old words and themes, or is there consideration for the fact that there might be children listening? I know Radio 4 is aimed primarily at an adult audience, but if we can't turn on an afternoon play when there is a toddler in the room just in case there's something unsavoury going on - well, I think that's a shame.

Mind you, Father Brown on BBC 1 in the early afternoon was a bit cheeky last week, too, so maybe I'm out of step with what's acceptable. One of my mum's pet hates is that TV announcement: 'The following programme contains adult language.'

'No,' she says. 'What they mean is bad language.'

What do you think?

11 comments:

  1. I agree with you on that watershed. I find the F word being too frequently used in many Hollywood movies.
    Like what your mom said is right, its not adult language, its bad language.

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    1. I work in a girls' senior school occasionally and the F word seems to be common parlance even among the year 7 girls (11-12 years old). Monkey see (or hear), monkey do (or say).

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  2. I see no need to use the language of the gutter, it shows a poverty of vocabulary.

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  3. I am guilty of having severe potty mouth when I lose my temper, so I don't mind when foul language pops up in books and movies. I'm not a big fan of foul language coming out of children though. I've told my girls they are not allowed to use such language until they are 18. We'll see if they make it that long. I sure didn't.

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    1. It's all about context, Tamara. Good luck with that rule - although my 'boys' still apologise if a naughty word slips out in front of me, and they're both in ther 20s! Perhaps there's hope yet.

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  4. I think if the situation calls for a buggery bollocks or whatever suits, then it's fine. Otherwise it's lack of vocabulary.

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    1. Thanks for the colourful comment, Susan.

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  5. Your mum is hilarious - and so right. I've been horrified by the themes on US TV for the last 10 years. What happened to the days of Friends, Frasier, Buffy, and Angel? Now the series are about promiscuity in the White House, a teacher becoming a drug dealer, a prison break, and a suburban wife who thinks it's better to become a hooker than to lose her fancy house and take her kids out of private school (and she was Ghost Whisperer and used to be so good in that!) I give up.

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    1. There doesn't seem to be any topic off limits these days, Lexa. You would think that when the world is in such a state we would want gentle, comforting shows, but the reverse seems to be the case. The more turmoil in the world, the bleaker the entertainment we are offered.

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  6. Don't think it should be broadcast in the afternoon with foul language, Julia, for the reason you said. Many a mum might enjoy listening to a drama while a child plays alongside. Funnily enough, I said exactly the same thing to my husband when I watched the (taped) Father Brown from the other day - couldn't believe how risque it was for an afternoon show!

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