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    Monday, May 19, 2008

    The BBFC – Down Wit’ Da Kidz

    The next time it’s on, watch “This Film Is Not Yet Rated”. It’s a documentary about censorship, specifically about how films in the US are rated. The director hires a couple of lesbian private detectives to track down the classifiers, and then route through their rubbish to take a look at the forms they fill in when rating films. The upshot of it all is that the raters are a bunch of clueless fuckwits that are more concerned about illicit connections to certain studios and their obsessions with box office takings than the actual content of the films.

    In the UK, we have the British Board of Film Classification. That silly so-called “TV psychologist” (why hire a proper psychologist when you can get a headline hunter instead?) Tanya Byron recommended a considerably more hands-on role for the BBFC when it comes to classifying games, although they already have a fairly major part to play.

    We know what you’re thinking: aren’t the BBFC a bunch of old farts who don’t know the difference between a game and a hand job? The BBFC know that’s what you’re thinking, as they sought to dispel that “myth” when BBC News interviewed them for their technology programme Click.

    Here’s what the BBFC guy had to say about rating games:

    “It will be a team of two examiners. These are people typically in their early 30s, not the kind of blokes in suits with bowler hats. And they’re people who in some cases actually come from the games industry.”

    Just as the guy said that, the camera cut to an apparent demonstration of two examiners rating a game. Here they are:

    Just to remind you: “early 30s… not…blokes in suits.” For a guy in his early 30s, the guy on the right must have lived a full and unrelenting life.

    As if to mock this statement further, the cameraman then zooms in on his liver spots:

    And here they are trying to work out what the fuck Bioshock is:

    Shortly afterwards, they were shown playing The Golden Compass. Just as Iorek Byrnison says, “I enjoy fighting as you enjoy breathing,” the following exchange takes place:

    BALDY LIVER SPOT: Now what kind of message is that sending?

    PINK SHIRTED MR BEAN: Encouragement of violence. Erm, that might be ambiguous. He is a polar bear.

    WE’RE NOT MAKING THIS UP. You can watch it here
    to confirm it wasn't the product of a psychotic break.


    1. Anonymous3:50 pm


    2. Anonymous5:31 pm

      what are the odds those are the two youngest people they could find given a week's notice, so they could be filmed playing their "nintendo gamestation".

    3. the guy on the right looks like one of the masterchef judges

    4. I thought it was Karl Howman of Brush Strokes fame.