The FCC is going to review Stephen Colbert’s cock-holster joke and I’m actually kind of OK with that?

So, yep, the FCC will be reviewing whether Stephen Colbert’s joke about Trump’s mouth serving as Putin’s “cock-holster” was obscene or not. (I will type out that joke that as many times as I have an opportunity.)

And, honestly? there’s not anything exactly out of order here. While there is an uncomfortable whiff of official censorship — what with the boss of the head of the group investigating the joke being the person who was being joked about in the first place — the FCC has traditionally reviewed any incident that receives a large number of complaints from the public. And I’m guessing they received a large number of complaints about this one, thanks to people being whipped up on social media by the #FireColbert hashtag.

So here’s the deal: The FCC has two different sets of rules for primetime versus late night broadcasts: a show in primetime can be found to be in violation for being “indecent” but in late night, it is a higher standard of “obscene.” According to the Supreme Court, to be labeled “obscene,” content must: “appeal to an average person’s prurient interest; depict or describe sexual conduct in a ‘patently offensive’ way; and, taken as a whole, lack serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.” Seeing that this was joke rooted in sound political criticism, I suspect the FCC will have a difficult time proving that it was “obscene.” But we’ll see.

In the meantime, the controversy has brought Colbert his highest ratings since 2015, so who really has had the last laugh?

While we’re discussing the FCC, on Last Week Tonight, John Oliver was back trying to save Net Neutrality rules again because nothing is safe in Trumpoworld.

Over on Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher praised Jimmy Kimmel for bringing health care issues into people’s living rooms with his monologue about his son, but criticised him for seemingly suggesting that both sides are equally to blame for the disastrous GOP approach to the issue. Other people were also moved by Kimmel’s comments, and the donations have been rolling in.

Alec Baldwin had an epic Trump-off with Conan’s staff — including one familiar face — last week:

Meanwhile, Trump is the most mocked President by late night for some mysterious reason.

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2 thoughts on “The FCC is going to review Stephen Colbert’s cock-holster joke and I’m actually kind of OK with that?

  1. In the Colbert incident, the term “cock holster” is technically obscene, but it was “bleeped”. It never actually went out over the air. It would fall into the same category as a guest who drops an f-bomb, which has happened hundreds of times on the late night shows. They can’t easily justify levying a fine for a word not broadcast, and they have a seven second delay in operation to catch disallowed words, wardrobe malfunctions etc. The FCC can issue a “Don’t do that again” warning, and Colbert can say, “Okay, I won’t.” I don’t expect more.

    Liked by 1 person

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