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Film and Video Censorship in Contemporary Britain$
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Julian Petley

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780748625383

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748625383.001.0001

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Vicious Drivel and Lazy Sluts

Vicious Drivel and Lazy Sluts

(p.102) Chapter 8 Vicious Drivel and Lazy Sluts
Film and Video Censorship in Contemporary Britain

Julian Petley

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter demonstrates how difficult the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC)'s job was made by a press which repeatedly and shrilly insisted that videos somehow ‘caused’ crimes such as the murders of James Bulger, Suzanne Capper and Les Read, and by politicians who were all too easily panicked by such hysterical nonsense into a ‘something must be done’ mode. No causal links between Child's Play 3 and the Bulger and Capper murders were made. Most of the press simply recurred on repeating ad nauseam that there must be a link because ‘common sense’ demands it. The problem is all the more tricky when those ‘common sense’ assumptions concern the media. It is noted that when it comes to law-making in Britain today, it is not reason that prevails but the saloon bar pundits of the populist press and the braying mob on the floor of annual Tory Party conferences.

Keywords:   common sense, British Board of Film Classification, James Bulger, Suzanne Capper, Les Read, Child's Play 3, Britain

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