PTC gives 'American Idol' the thumbs up; 'CSI', 'Desperate Housewives' win criticism

MUMBAI: They are hugely popular shows in the US. However conservative American oprganisation Parents Television Council (PTC) which acts as a watchdog has criticised CSI and Desperate Housewives as being the worst for family audiences.

PTC announced its choices for the Top Ten Best and Worst Shows for family viewing on prime time broadcast television for the 2005-2006 season. It found that the top three worst shows for families – The War at Home, The Family Guy and American Dad are packaged as family shows. On a more positive note the music based reality show American Idol was ranked as one of the best shows for family viewing.

PTC president L. Brent Bozell says, “We provide this analysis as a guide for parents because it’s very difficult to monitor all the shows that are appropriate for family viewing and those that are not. We were alarmed to find that the three worst shows on prime time broadcast television are being marketed as family-friendly when, in fact, these shows are none other than wolves in sheep’s clothing.

“Families should not be deceived. The top three worst shows all contain crude and raunchy dialogue with sex-themed jokes and foul language. Even worse is the fact that Hollywood is peddling its filth to families with cartoons like The Family Guy and American Dad. These two shows have contained scenes in which characters are shown having sex and topics such as masturbation, incest, bestiality, and necrophilia are routinely discussed.

“There are several high quality shows on this list that families can watch together and not be caught by surprise over filthy dialogue or graphic sex and violence. However, it is clear that Hollywood does not care about families as evidenced by the fact that we could only cite nine shows on prime time that were deemed safe for family viewing. That is outrageous. Network executives should be ashamed and millions of families should be offended at their actions.”

Fox's The War at Home is a sitcom about a married couple raising three teenagers.

This analysis is the PTC’s ninth ranking of the best and worst series on broadcast television from the perspective of family audiences. The lists are ranked based on the content of the program and the appropriateness of the show for children. The criterion for this annual ranking includes not only the frequency of foul language, sexual content and violence but also the time slot, target audience, themes and plotlines of the programmes.

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