Cable network HBO has often portrayed programming too “mature” for the broadcast airwaves, but its latest offering has some critics complaining the company has gone too far.
HBO’s irreverent mockumentary “Angry Boys” is under fire for combining child actors and phallic humor, including one scene in the series’ 12th episode, where a little girl drinks from a water bottle shaped like a giant, pink penis.
“The incident is meant to be comedic,” writes Joe Wilson of the Media Research Center’s Culture and Media Institute, or MRC. “But showing a young girl sucking on a penis in a comedic fashion is akin to showing child pornography.”
He continues in an MRC article on the show, “Penis humor is a major premise of ‘Angry Boys.’ Out Magazine reported that the show features a Japanese mother exploiting her teenage son ‘to create a merchandising empire of cock-shaped products.’ In one episode, according to Out Magazine, the mother (played by a male, the creator and director of the show, Chris Lilley) unscrewed a pink plastic penis and shook it [for] parmesan cheese.”
“It’s difficult to imagine that HBO would go any lower,” the MRC’s Dan Gainor told RadarOnline.com. “Oral sex ‘humor’ involving a young child shows precisely where the left’s mind is really at.”
Gainor links the network to “the left,” in part, because of the network’s only talk show, “Real Time with Bill Maher.”
“After all, it’s already the Bill Maher network,” Gainor said, “with all his sleaze and hatred of conservatives.”
“Angry Boys” is a co-production between HBO, the BBC and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, the brainchild of Australian writer, performer and star of the show Chris Lilley.
The Los Angeles Times describes the show this way: “Even in the era of ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ and ‘South Park,’ ‘Angry Boys’ manages to shock. Between S.mouse, a role that Lilley portrays while wearing a thick layer of brown makeup and a kinky black wig, and Jen Okazaki, a sort of Tiger Mother on crack, Lilley clearly gets a kick out of breaking racial taboos.”
“It’s barely OK for me to be dressed up as a black guy,” Lilley admitted to the Times. “But part of me kind of enjoys provoking people.”
“I think people are too confused to know whether it’s offensive or not,” Lilley told the homosexual Out Magazine. “I wanted to do the nastiest character I’ve ever done.”
Regardless of whether its provocative or “nasty,” the MRC is arguing there’s no place for children cast amid such adult content.
“Promoting child pornography is a comedic way is much more shocking and outrageous than funny,” Wilson concludes.
The “Angry Boys” U.S. debut was on Jan. 1, 2012, and the series resumes in May on the HBO Comedy channels.
The network can be contacted through its website.