There’s nothing like beating a topic into oblivion to send the “who gives a shit meter” into the red. So, I’m sorry and thanks for reading.
Amidst all the recent ratings fuss, ex MPAA head and current advocate of the silver haired blackened brow club, Jack Valenti has jumped to the defense the ratings system he initiated in the fateful summer of ’69, saying the new changes are simply “OK”. On that point we agree. But we, and most folks, are on opposite sides of the same polar.
"The fact is that 80% of parents with children under 13 say the system is either fairly useful or very useful in making decisions about which movies their kids should see."
Right. But see, I’ve taken statistics, Jack. What percentage of that 80 is “fairly”? What percentage of that 80 simply picked that for lack of a better answer or understanding? Don’t get me wrong, I really believe the ratings system means well. I really do. There’s no doubt it’s a broad baseline that may be a useful reference point for parents. R? Ok, most parents know they’re not taking l’il guy. That’s simple logic. But in the 80s, PG was far different than the PG of the 2000s and PG-13 is currently far more ambiguous than it ever was.
The real catch, however is this quote: "It [the ratings system] was designed for parents, and it has worked for 38 years for the people it was intended for. Nothing lasts that long in this competitive and venomous marketplace unless it’s doing something right."
Horseshit, Jack. It “works” because it’s the only game in town. In other competitive and venomous marketplaces, products fail and succeed based on competition– that’s why monopolies are illegal. Simply put, people have taken and made do with the product they’ve been given. The fact the ratings system exists to you as a career cornerstone and sacred cow doesn’t mean it’s a flawless system.
And thus, the tired debate rolls on.