Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Mixed Messages

Hmmm...should a show that's been rated TV-14 have a toy line for children 10 years-old and up? Apparently, CSI has released a new line of toys. Click the link to see the CSI: Facial Reconstruction Kit, among others. The work of real-life lab technicians isn't necessarily more gruesome than that of police officers, doctors, and firefighters. And kids have emulated those occupations, well, since the jobs existed.

Stop to consider this, though: those occupations are also involved with prevention. My guess is a kid pretending to be a doctor is listening to a playmate's chest and telling them to breathe. Or asking them to drop trou in an effort to see what's happenin' down below. Not yelling, "GSW to the chest! Fire up the crash cart!"

CSI stands for Crime Scene Investigation, yeah? If an eleven-year-old is happily squishing clay around a plastic skull, trying to solve the make-believe mystery of who died and why, we're desensitizing the idea of murder. I'm not getting all Tipper Gore or put kids in an incubator to protect them from outside influences. The dissonance rankles me a little, is all.

If a kid under 14 shouldn't watch a show, he probably shouldn't play with the toy affiliated with it. So acknowledge they can handle the yick and let them watch the show, or don't market to the tweens if we think it's too much for them. My bias is for the latter, but I've been accused of being too strict with that stuff.

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