Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Half-dressed at half-time

We missed the Super Bowl on Sunday -- I only ever watch it for the commercials, anyway -- and therefore my kids were spared the sight of Janet Jackson's overexposure. I've only seen replays of it with the bared body part blurred by computer, but she can't have showed very much more than half the actresses at the Golden Globes were in their chest-baring frocks. It's the Year of the Breast, apparently, and it's a good thing I'm not a famous person because I would either have to get some major implants or sit the year out.

I'm sure all the people who think TV is evil will use this as an excuse to bemoan the perversion of a beloved family tradition into an MTV freak show. And I'll agree that if the folks at CBS arranged for MTV to do the halftime show and didn't expect it to be provocative and risque, they really haven't been watching enough music videos. But I guess I have trouble seeing an event in which men plow into each other with injury-causing force, interspersed with ads for alcohol, as wholesome family viewing in and of itself. Of the three things that disturb me there -- the violence of sports, the marketing of alcohol when kids will be watching, and the fleeting nudity of a pop star -- the latter bothers me the least. But I'm sure the youth of our nation will learn an important lesson from all this outrage, and that is: If you want to get your name in the paper, take your clothes off.

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