/// Parents Television Council Blasts Torture Scene in ABC’s Scandal

January 15, 2013  |  Media Week

ABC could have had better timing. On the same night the entertainment industry was meeting with VP Joe Biden to discuss media violence , the network aired an episode of Scandal that included a graphic, three-minute torture scene. The coincidence didn't get by the Parents Television Council, which pointed to the episode as another example of a “failed [TV] ratings system.” Although the ABC broadcast aired an advisory at the beginning of the program, the Scandal episode did not carry a TV-MA rating. PTC's president Tim Winter described the scene in Scandal as “intense, explicit and bloody. “This decision [to air an advisory at the beginning of the program] suggests the network understood that the show was inappropriate for children, and they should have rated it as TV-MA,” Winter said in a statement. “Unless and until the content rating system is accurate, consistent, transparent and accountable to the public, parents and families simply cannot rely on the industry to tell the truth, especially when the industry faces an inherent conflict of interest to rate programs accurately.” The PTC didn't stop with ABC, accusing all the TV networks of paying lip service to reforming the TV ratings system. “While ABC’s conduct in this instance is particularly outrageous, every network shares some level of culpability,” Winter said.

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