"It is absolutely not the place for nipples on national TV"
March 21, 2019 5:14 PM   Subscribe

Deadspin's Barry Petchesky FOIA'd viewer complaints about the Super Bowl halftime show.
The FCC received 94 complaints regarding last month’s CBS broadcast, and 58 of those took issue with Maroon 5's halftime show—specifically, lead singer Adam Levine’s bare chest. America still has a very complicated relationship with nipples.
posted by Johnny Wallflower (28 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
 
We're sensitive in that area.
posted by bleep at 5:28 PM on March 21 [32 favorites]


I still can't understand how folks look back on the Jackson/Timberlake controversy and think, "Oh no! A nipple!" Instead of looking back at that choreographed event and thinking, "Oh no! Sexual assault, as part of a cute performance!"
posted by es_de_bah at 5:28 PM on March 21 [25 favorites]


I’ve seen the poison letters of the horrible hacks
About the yellow peril and the reds and the blacks
And the TUC and its treacherous acts
Kremlin money – All right Jack
I’ve seen how democracy is under duress
But I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

I’ve seen the suede jack boot the verbal cosh
Whitehouse Whitelaw whitewash
Blood uptown where the vandals rule
Classroom mafia scandal school
They accuse – I confess
I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

Angry columns scream in pain
Love in vain domestic strain
Divorce disease it eats away
The family structure day by day
In the grim pursuit of happiness
I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

This paper’s boring mindless mean
Full of pornography the kind that’s clean
Where William Hickey meets Michael Caine
Again and again and again and again
I’ve seen millionaires on the DHSS
But I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express
posted by phunniemee at 5:29 PM on March 21 [18 favorites]


Also I'm getting lots of ads for underpants on this article.
posted by phunniemee at 5:33 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


"I like nipples," Zappa told the committee, deadpan. "I think they look good. If you are going to look at a woman's breast, if you take the nipple off, which is the characterizing, determining factor, what you've got is a blob of fat there. And I think that when you're a baby, one of the first things you get interested in is that nozzle right there, and you get to have it right in front of your face. You grow up with it, so to speak. And then you grow up in the state of Maryland and they won't let you see that little brown thing any more."

The crowd in the hearing room roared.

The bill died in committee.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:57 PM on March 21 [13 favorites]


The Maroon 2
posted by duffell at 6:10 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


City/State/Zip: Barrington, Illinois 60090

Description

I am offended and troubled by the actions taken during the Super Bowl half time show. I am stunned that I was forced to see a topless man gyrating and gesticulating during the show.


"So stunned, in fact, that I spent the next several minutes roughing the kicker."
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 6:20 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


These people must have a lot of difficulty getting through the Summer Olympics broadcasts.
posted by ardgedee at 6:28 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


"It is absolutely not the place for nipples on national TV"

Now I'm curious where the commenter thinks is the place for nipples on national TV?
posted by Greg_Ace at 6:33 PM on March 21 [2 favorites]




This is what's going to move you to civic engagement? These are the vital, pressing issues of our day, about which the powers that be will finally hear your voice? Nipples. Are you fucking serious. I mean, this is like being in a car that's going over a cliff, and getting upset about what's playing on the radio.
posted by Sing Or Swim at 6:50 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


But hey though, in a crucial moment like that you want Just The Right Tune, y'know?
posted by Greg_Ace at 6:55 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


Now I'm curious where the commenter thinks is the place for nipples on national TV?
Or on local tv.
posted by doctornemo at 7:03 PM on March 21


Are all of these people Mennonites? Don't they get to the pool or the beach ever?
posted by Inkoate at 7:05 PM on March 21


I hope that Janet Jackson sees this article and bellows with laughter.
posted by Halloween Jack at 7:12 PM on March 21 [10 favorites]


So 58 out of nearly 100 million viewers felt compelled to complain about this. This just seems like the fringe noise you'd get if you put damn near anything on TV. Complainers gonna complain regardless. It would be interesting to see the numbers across a wide range of programming.
posted by calamari kid at 7:16 PM on March 21 [6 favorites]


I propose we all call in and demand more nipples!
posted by turbid dahlia at 8:49 PM on March 21 [3 favorites]


I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say that the nipples weren't the worst part of that performance.
posted by yhbc at 9:39 PM on March 21 [8 favorites]


I'm gonna go out on a limb here

That's no place for nipples.
posted by Greg_Ace at 9:51 PM on March 21 [5 favorites]


Good God, I hope this is all just trolling. The timeline is too polluted for any of these people to be serious.
posted by bryon at 9:53 PM on March 21 [1 favorite]


To me, this reads as 58 people making a satirical contrast between the reaction to Janet Jackson and the lack of public controversy over bare-chested men. It doesn't take a lot of effort to submit a complaint, and I can imagine 50 people in the US feeling like they're clever and sticking it to The Man by dropping an email or postcard.
posted by mattwan at 10:15 PM on March 21 [23 favorites]


I didn't RTFA but I was under the distinct impression, from following social media during that terrible performance, that people were sending in complaints precisely to highlight the hypocrisy of the Janet Jackson Nipplegate. (And indeed, some on Black Twitter still refer to Superbowl Sunday as "Janet Jackson Appreciation Day" instead).
posted by TwoStride at 10:18 PM on March 21 [20 favorites]


"Janet Jackson Appreciation Day"

Ms. Jackson if you're nasty.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:29 PM on March 21 [13 favorites]


I think we need to start a write-in campaign for Iggy Pop.
posted by Capt. Renault at 6:30 AM on March 22 [1 favorite]


I think we need to start a write-in campaign for Iggy Pop.

In this timeline, I think a halftime performance by Papa Roach, Puddle of Mudd, and Nickelback is at least as likely.
posted by duffell at 6:54 AM on March 22 [2 favorites]


If a performer has to be sensored during THE SUPER BOWL ...

tricorder detecting a high level of debauchery
posted by exogenous at 7:15 AM on March 22 [1 favorite]


"So 58 out of nearly 100 million viewers felt compelled to complain about this."

So what was this story about in the first place? It was about the media being able to talk about nipples on TV non-stop; something they knew would draw eyeballs. It was a manufactured controversy. How many of those 58 people do we all think actually saw the nipples in question?

I'd be willing to bet that there were more people upset at the *lack* of nipples in the broadcast, given the press the matter had received. I mean, they weren't motivated enough to write a pointless postcard or anything.

The 'news' stopped being news long before Fox News started to dominate the airwaves.
posted by el io at 10:08 AM on March 22 [1 favorite]




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