Isn't Showtime a piece of work? This junkyard of "edgy" programming was the final resting place of "The Reagans," the canceled CBS TV-movie making up vile charges against a man on his deathbed. It has two regular dramatic series celebrating the gay lifestyle, "Queer as Folk" for the men, and "The L Word" for the women. It recently began airing the original movie "Our Fathers," a movie on the Boston pedophile-priest scandals, which even the Washington Post called "Showtime's Unholy Mess." Four years ago at this time, Showtime was airing the original film "Sister Mary Explains It All," starring Diane Keaton as a vicious nun who ruined the lives of schoolchildren.
Now it has the two smart-aleck magicians reviling, with F bombs, the holiest women walking the face of the Earth while attacking the entire concept of holiness as a racket for "whack jobs and fuzzy thinkers."
The Catholic League protested outside this year's shareholders meeting of Viacom in New York, but tight-lipped Showtime could only remark on this inflammatory show by patting itself on the back as a haven for free speech. They claim they're "in the unique position to give artists the creative freedom to express their views," unlike other broadcast and cable networks who avoid "controversial subject matter." Sadly, and predictably, the TV writers who've happened upon the Penn and Teller show haven't exactly criticized their shtick. Associated Press reporter Frazier Moore praised the duo as "sassy secularists in a priesthood of knaves."
Didn't anyone involved in the making of this trash -- the writers, director, producers and the like -- see the wretched ugliness of the product? What of the Showtime front office -- the programming executives, the public relations/marketing staff? In fact, they all saw it and approved it. What of the Viacom leadership, the board of directors? One presumes they didn't see it, so busy are they giving speeches about corporate commitments to diversity and tolerance.