The Radio and Television Commission of the Republic of Lithuania, following a viewer’s complaint about two episodes of a popular TV show “The Simpsons” that are said to be degrading “family values”, is waiting for an explanation from a commercial TV channel “TV3”. After examining its arguments, the Commission will consider whether these episodes will be allowed to be broadcasted before 23.00 o’clock.
Having received complaints from the viewers regarding two episodes of “The Simpsons” that allegedly violate the infamous Law on the Protection of Minors against the Detrimental Effect of Public Information, the Commission has asked “TV3” to provide an explanation. After the Commission receives it, the decision will be reached. It might lead to some episodes not being shown at all or shown only at a late hour.
Sigitas Babilius, the Head of “TV3” news service, shared a letter received from the Commission on his “Facebook” account: “During the broadcasted episode, Homer died due to unhealthy lifestyle and a scientist cloned his body. Because of irresponsibility and unappreciation of life, Homer always died, and the scientist always cloned him until bodies eventually ran out and he became a digital father. Because Homer did not participate in childcare, Bart became an unhappy, uneducated, irresponsible man – living in an abandoned school class littered with beer bottles and cans. The duration of the scene is 40 seconds.”
The complainant says that the aforementioned episode of “The Simpsons” degrades “family values” and “promotes polygamy”, because it depicts “Bart’s relationships with many women” and shows that “ideal man’s life is to wake up every morning with a new woman”. It is also notes that, assessing the show as a whole, it often “shows alcohol use that, according to the cartoon’s storyline, is often a solution to stress and conflict situations”.
Mantas Martišius, the Chairman of the Commission, says that they have not taken any decisions yet, but, as it goes every time they receive a complaint, they have to examine it and reply to the complainant within 30 days.
“We have looked into it, people are complaining, but we have to listen to the other side as well. We turned to “TV3” and are waiting for their answer. When we have it, we will put all the facts on the table and we will decide what the effect was, etc. However, for now I cannot say if there were any violations or not,” said Martišius, noting that the letter included not their own conclusion, but a quotation from the complainant.
However, he did not rule out the possibility that some episodes of “The Simpsons” could be shown at a later hour or even not shown at all. Martišius stressed that he did not think that there could be something in all episodes of “The Simpsons” that could not be shown during daytime: “We understand that sarcasm exists, there are various other details that we need to evaluate.”