Idol Chatter

Hallelujah! (And you don’t have to bleep that out!)

After watching the rude-and-crude MTV movie awards and readying to post a blog that would have leaked a bit too much anger and frustration at what television is still becoming, some good news arrived. The frustration came from the MTV movie awards; the inspiration came from a story in the Hollywood Reporter about family values on TV.

Our family has long enjoyed the Academy Awards, the Grammys, and occasionally the American Music awards as nights where the guys and girls young and old can gather together and enjoy a cultural celebration. But the family room just doesn’t seem like the place to gather when the MTV producers have to turn an awards show into shock-jock TV, replete with cussing, sexual innuendo–and then the more serious stuff.

I’m not prudishly saying a show shouldn’t spice things up a bit, but potty-mouth comedian Sarah Silverman and near-drunk-actors-on-display doesn’t fit my idea of what a show should be like when its target audience are the teens and tweens who make up MTV’s demographic. We knew what was coming and didn’t watch it with the kids, but an American celebration of movies, music, and culture should build us up, not drag us down.

Such was the reason for joy today as I read about some upcoming TV shows that have earned the seal of approval from the Family Friendly Programming Forum. Heck, I didn’t even know the FFPF existed.

NBC’s “Chuck” and “The Bionic Woman” and The CW’s “Life is Wild” are at the top of the FFPF’s list for the coming year. Other returning shows that were previously heralded are ABC’s “Ugly Betty,” “Brothers & Sisters” and “Notes From the Underbelly”; NBC’s “Friday Night Lights”; and The CW’s “Everybody Hates Chris.” According to the Hollywood Reporter, the FFPF “has secured at least one family-friendly programming option in primetime each night of the week” except for lowly-rated Saturday night.

That’s good news! I hope the organization earns more steam, gets more attention, gains more clout, and raises more funds for its Script Development Fund, which helps these family-friendly shows get the project development nursing they need.

“Life Is Wild” is scheduled to air at 8 p.m. Sundays, “Chuck” is set for 9 p.m. Tuesdays, and “Bionic Woman” will air at 9 p.m. Wednesdays. I hope the end products are as inspiring as the development ideas. It’s at least a start in the right direction.

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