Gratuitous Acts of Censorship

I watched the Fox presentation of “Austin Powers”, and I just couldn’t believe some of what they altered to supposedly make it fit for croadcast:

Original: “Do I make you horny, baby?”
Fox presentation: “Do I make you randy, baby?”

Excuse me? The network that brought us “Family Guy” finds the word “horny” too offensive?

And then there was the network presentation of “Problem Child 2”(this was years ago):

Junior expressing his not wanting to go to school:
Original: “I’d rather eat a turd”
TV presentation: “I’d rather jump off a cliff”

In the principal’s office, the scene where Junior farts is altered to show him simply burping instead, which caused the principal’s reaction to make no sense whatsoever.

They also cut out the scene at the carnival where everyone started vomiting.
What will they do next, show “Debbie Does Dallas” with the sex cut out?
Listen, you donkey-raping shit-eaters - If you can’t show the good parts, “Edited for content” isn’t enough. There should be a warning, “This presentation contains severely edited scenes which may be objectionable to people who saw the movie in its original glory.”

I would agree with you completely, but I don’t know if I want to be associated with someone that thinks that “Problem Child 2” had any “original glory.”

I heard Fox was going to show Star Wars until Lucasarts found out they wanted to edit out the word “Wookiee” and replace it with “Underpants”.

Yeah, and I heard that there was a museum that decided to refer to the Enola Gay as the “Enola Homosexual”. Both sound like UL to me.

You ever see Glengarry Glenn Ross? If you have and you enjoyed it, steer completely clear of the Bravo version.

For those of you who don’t know this gem of a movie, it’s a brilliantly acted movie with a legendary cast, great cinematography, and witty, fast-paced dialogue. Oh and it has a few curses in it. The word “fuck” and its derivatives are uttered 137 times. The word “shit” and its derivatives are uttered 50 times. During the production, the actors referred to this film as “Death of a Fuckin’ Salesman.”

Bravo sugar-coats every single curse. “Kiss my ass” becomes “kiss my act”. “Fuck Mitch & Murray” becomes “Forget Mitch & Murray”. Entire profanity-laden yet crucial exchanges are deleted. Bravo likes to think they respect the integrity of film makers yet have no problem massacring this masterpiece. We’d almost be better served if they just rewrote David Mamet’s screenplay, removed all the curses and gave roles to Bob Saget and the Olsen twins.

OK, so as a basic cable channel, you have to meet some standards. Fine. Then don’t show GGGR. Sell the rights to a network that isn’t afraid to use bad words.


How about Robocop when the guy is in the bathroom and says “Once I even called him ‘Asshole’.”

On the tv version is went more like:

"Once I even called him A…scratch brrrZxcxzvp :stop the tape! rewind!: berowrzip! AIRHEAD!

But I think that was CBS. Nevermind.

Oh, I don’t know, I thought one of the funniest things about watching “Repo Man” on USA a few years ago was seeing everybody saying “Flip you” to everybody else. That was a great movie anyway, but the incongruity of the dialogue used by these characters actually cracked me up even more!

I completely agree with you on the censorship angle, here. However, I must say than any film that depends so heavily on “fuck” must be a trifle lacking in the original wit department. I mean- “fuck” certainly has its place- but I can’t image that place being found with any validity 137 times in some hour & a half. That would seem to be a “fuck” every minute of the film. Hell, porn films, even the cheap compilation tapes, can’t manage a fuck a minute. :smiley:

However- cutting out the 'fart" noises in Blazing Saddles has to take the (fucking) cake.

Having seen GGGR, I will vouch for the necessity of the dialogue. Hell, Jack Lemmon was willing to swear quite profusely, which he normally doesn’t, simply because it was essential to the movie. Yeah, it’s hard to believe that so much could be appropriate, but if you see the movie, you’ll understand what I’m talking about. It’s worth watching just for the cast: Kevin Spacey, Al Pacino, Ed Harris, Jack Lemmon, Alec Baldwin, Alan Arkin, and Jonathan Pryce.

My favorite bowdlerization of a movie for network television was the WB version of Pulp Fiction. They completely skipped the gimp. Can’t remember much else about it.

I haven’t seen the Bravo version of GGGR, but any version that edits or deletes Alec Baldwin’s speech at the beginning of the movie (“What’s my name? Fuck you! That’s my name!”) is to be avoided at all costs.

I used to love watching the TBS/TNT version of Smokey and the Bandit. Seeing every utterance of “sumbitch” changed to “scumbum” was hilarious, although probably not in the manner that the censors intended.

The version I saw replaced “motherfucker” with “melon farmer”. Classic!

When the Paul Newman/Ed Asner movie “Fort Apache, The Bronx” some years ago on network TV, “motherfucker” was edited to–I’m not making this up–“mothergrabber.”

water said something already but I will too. GGGR certainly does not depend on swear word in the sense of using them for shock value. It is valid all of the 137 times. Is the language ugly? Yup. Ugly language reflecting ugly lives. That’s the point.

(that said I think, judiciously used, “fuck” is a beautiful word. Good honest Anglo-saxon word, that. :))
What really drives me crazy is when they cut Lily von Schtupp’s song:

"And the men alway coming and going
and going
and coming- and always too soon. "

For some reason they alway cut off the last four words.

My favorite is from a bad Bette Midler movie, that I can’t even remember the name of, but the original line was kind of funny: Other Person: “Let me do the talking; you swear too much.” Bette: “That’s a fucking lie!”

They bleeped out the “fucking” so it just said “Let me do the talking; you swear too much.” “That’s a lie!” . . . which goes beyond not being funny to being a totally pointless exchange.

I can’t imagine Pulp Fiction without the profanity; it wouldn’t be the same movie.

And the award for Most Ludicrous Overdub in Lieu of Profanity on Network TV goes to…

Do the Right Thing, for replacing “mother fucker” with “mickey fickey”.

I’ve seen about four different variously censored versions of Blazing Saddles (certainly one of the top ten American comedies ever made, IMO). The first thing to go always seems to be the farts at the campfire, although they don’t cut the part where Taggart shows up and starts cursing and fanning the air (I guess implied farts are OK). I saw one memorable version on The Family Channel (of all places) where they massacred almost every remotely objectionable word except “nigger”. I guess they realized that if you bleep out “nigger”, there’s not much point in showing Blazing Saddles.

The most heavily censored versions even snip out Lili von Shtupp’s name (I guess “schtup” means “to have intercourse” in Yiddish). They say something like “Lili von Sh-”. Oddly, you can still read her full name on the poster outside the saloon where she sings.

The censors even get slightly creative when Sheriff Bart asks the Waco Kid what he likes to do:

Original version: “Play chess…screw.”

Censored version: “Play chess…saloon.”

(The Waco Kid is in jail for public drunkenness).

The rest of the censoring is, of course, bullstuff.

I’d really like to get the guidebook that surely must exist for the censors, listing words they must cut, and suggested replacements. That’s gotta be some droll reading.

I love watching stand-up comedians on Comedy Central. They can let loose with “Fuck.” They can “Bitch” up and down. But it’s always God****! :smiley:

Amen to that, Alpha. I was coming in to mention GGGR, but you beat me to it. Although it’s terrible, it’s also EXTREMELY funny for this movie, in particular.

I’ve seen that.

My nomination for ludicrous overdub goes to TNT’s airing of “Fargo” in which “fucking” became “fruity,” as in, “I’ll kill your fruity wife, I’ll kill your fruity kids…” Took the tension factor down to about a minus-42.

Of all the censoring jobs ever, the one that pisses me off is still Spaceballs.

“I knew it, I’m surrounded by assholes!” becomes “I knew it, I’m surrounded by morons!”

It’s… just… not… the same!