R-rated episode of Girls trimmed to MA15+

Foxtel was forced to edit an episode of Girls this week due to its R classification.

The episode included the use of a prosthetic penis which guest actor Matthew Rhys describes as a “three-quarters-erect penis.”

The ASTRA Code of Practice gives Subscription TV more leeway with nudity and adult themes than Free to Air due to its “opt-in” basis, but there are still limits to what each channel can screen without content shifting to its Adults Only channel. So while Game of Thrones has shows full frontal male nudity on Showcase, that falls under the MA15+ classification without issue.

A Foxtel spokesperson told TV Tonight, “Programming shown on Showcase is rated maximum MA15+. Sometimes content needs to be edited for it to conform to the MA15+ classification.”

Hollywood has been wound up over gender imbalance in nudity of late, with complaints that female performers are heavily featured over males.

Meanwhile the Showcase edit comes despite no changes needed for a startling scene last year on HBO’s Silicon Valley depicting two horses copulated, an erect horse penis and excess fluid…. you just can’t unsee that stuff.

10 Comments:

  1. Network classifiers are meant to be able to tell the difference between R content and MA content, even when there’s no DVD release for a TV show yet.

    If they can’t (e.g.) Game of Thrones, then they’re not very good at their job.

    Ten do it well in this instance (e.g.) American Horror Story

  2. Don’t understand this. World Movies can screen R18+ content. Why not showcase or other opt-in channels/packs? World Movies is not pay per view or on demand, the same as showcase.

    • As noted, Showcase doesn’t show R programming, just as Disney doesn’t show MA. Whether they need to go through formalities with ACMA if they want to up their rating I can’t say.

      • I noticed that Fox prohibited screening R18+ due to massive concerns. But does Fox allowed to screen AV15+ or has this been abolished?

      • “Showcase show R rated programming”. Except that it shows Game of Thrones, which upon DVD release subsequently gets rated R by the classification board. Just shows the nonsensicality of our classification and censorship scheme. There’s no reason pay TV shouldn’t be allowed to show R content when services like Netflix can do it without any public outrage ensuing.

    • World Movies is classed as a narrowcast channel. That means they can play R rated content. Plus you need a pin code to get into it.

      • World Movies still has inconsistencies, some real sex content is graphic but movies such as ‘Deep Throat’ are still heavily edited because it is a recognised Hard Core Porn genre. As content is the choice of the viewer to see especially on pay TV some censorship clarity needs to be made, it’s not FTA after all.

  3. Bit of a shame really. I’ve seen the un-edited version and the scene that was cut kinda rounds up the whole episode. The tone was set from the beginning and this scene gives the comic relief that Girls does so well. It was an obvious prosthetic penis too. And when Hannah grabbed, the look on her face was priceless!

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