If you haven’t heard as of yet, the hit teen drama show “Skins” has made it over the Atlantic from the UK’s E4 network and has landed itself an American adaptation on MTV. It’s too bad for the show that two episodes into the series, advertisers are already jumping ship because they believe that the content is offensive to consumers. This includes explicit sexual themes along with substantial amounts of drug use.
One of the greatest things about the UK version (the real version as some now call it) of “Skins” was that while it placed its characters in exaggerated explicit situations, it maintained conflicts that are in fact quite real: being in debt, facing an eating disorder, questioning one’s faith, and even unexpected pregnancy. The characters are teenagers because the teenage years are when these issues really do begin to manifest in everyday life, whether we want to accept this or not. One current McDaniel junior observes that “people are startled to see issues being played out by teenagers that may or may not have any solution. But sometimes, that’s life.”
What people fail to realize is that “Skins” addresses these issues, and allows the characters to learn from their interactions and mistakes in order to grow into fully fledged human beings. Is this not how the world really works? I don’t remember magically becoming a college student without having some issues to face.
In censoring the content of the show, the US is censoring the message that the show presents. While this keeps our population innocent, it doesn’t teach anyone how to handle situations similar to ones they may one day have to come to terms with themselves. And if we aren’t allowed to learn how to grow up in our teenaged years, where does that leave us as adults?
Maybe at that nice bar with the cast members from Jersey Shore…