'The Walking Dead' targeted by Parents Television Council watchdog group

The Walking Dead

After taking Seth MacFarlane and American Dad to task recently, the Parents Television Council has now taken aim at AMC's The Walking Dead with claims that the zombie drama's TV-14 rating is misleading.

A nonpartisan education organization advocating responsible entertainment, the PTC is requesting that the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board alter the show's "misrating," noting that the copious amounts of gore and violence render the show highly inappropriate for children. "Throughout its run, the AMC program The Walking Dead has featured some of the most graphic and brutally intense violence and gore imaginable," PTC president Tim Winter stated. "In the current season alone the show has depicted hundreds of scenes of grisly murder both of living and 'undead,' but human, characters. The intensely violent content has included depictions of the cleaving of human skulls with a machete, extreme gun violence including graphic depictions of blood and brains splattering after gunshot wounds, and the use of a sharpened human bone as a weapon to stab another character."

You may be asking yourself if he is lodging a complaint or promoting the show, because that description would make me tune in if I weren't already watching. Make no mistake, Mr. Winter is not a fan and wrote a The Walking Deadletter to chairman Gordon Smith asking that the PGMB review the television rating for the popular post-apocalyptic series. "Clearly, this is content appropriate to an adult-only audience, but AMC has rated every single episode of The Walking Dead as suitable for a 14 year old child," he wrote. "We call on you and the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board to immediately take any necessary steps to insure that this program is rated accurately, appropriately and for the audience for which the show is designed. For the TV Ratings system to work as it is designed, the board and you as its chairman can do no less."

Honestly, as a fan of the show, I have to admit the PTC is absolutely right. If this season of The Walking Dead were a film, it would be rated R. They aren't calling for the show to be taken off the air, they're just asking for a more appropriate TV-MA rating like FX's American Horror Story. That's not unreasonable. Do you think The Walking Dead is too violent for 14-year-olds?

- The Walking Dead
- amc

Written by: Chrononaut
Dec 13th, 2012, 2:17 pm


Message Posted On Sep 24th, 2013, 7:36 am
The show's called the WALKING DEAD and it's about flesh eating zombies. It isn't Family Ties. How much of a "head's up" is required?

Level 3 (9%)
Points: 1.5
Since: 03/Aug/12
Message Posted On Dec 17th, 2012, 2:12 pm

Anonypuss for the win.


Message Posted On Dec 14th, 2012, 10:31 am
Yes, the rating is astonishingly low -it ought to be nc17, etc.- but (and this everyone here appear to be missing), it is so low because there is no nudity or sexuality. *** The real issue is that content with no (or mild) violence are rated through the roof if the human flesh (and less so, sexuality itself) is involved, but absolutely horrific acts of violence are tween-rated without blinking (so long as these are sex-and flesh-less). *** That bizarre, puritanical set of priorities is rather conducive to desensitize violence and to repress sexual urges... Which is... bad, I argue. *** Great for a prison society, where people treat each other worse than they do animals, but to whom is that vision really a worthy goal?

Message Posted On Dec 14th, 2012, 7:20 am
I see this has already been said, but still, since when are 14-year-olds "children"? I never watched TWD so take my assessment with a grain of salt, but I hardly think an over-the-top zombie slasher is so dangerous to young minds. Think back to when you were that age, this is what at least boys soak up at that time, the more "shocking" to the grown-ups the better. So (1) I don't think it has any negative or positive effect on those who would watch it in the first place, (2) an 18+ rating would probably just make them want to watch it more, and (3) this is like THE age you're into that stuff, I don't think many people over the age of 18 find it terribly interesting.

Message Posted On Dec 14th, 2012, 5:35 am
Not sure if / how this applies, but wouldn't a TV-MA or TV-18+ rating limit the times that they could show TWD? That seems to be the most likely reason that AMC puts a TV-14 rating. I really like TWD. AMC builds their night around it and having to push it back to a later time slot would impact a lot of people that watch it on the first airing. I personally don't watch the Talking Dead, but again a later time slot would hurt that as well. I also think the TV-14 rating is wrong, but this sort of thing has happened for years and will probably continue to happen. Anyone remember the first few episodes of Millennium?

Message Posted On Dec 14th, 2012, 12:37 am
For starters, 14 (fourTEEN) year olds are not children they are young adults or teenagers if u will. and as such can decide for themselves if they want to watch it or not, i mean it is called 'the walking dead' so they should have a pretty good idea about what the show is about before deciding whether or not they want to watch it..

Level 2 (11%)
Since: 13/Apr/10
Message Posted On Dec 13th, 2012, 11:31 pm

Didnt know the show was rated for 14 year olds... I have to agree that this is wrong. Parents have to have a way to know what to allow and what to prohibit. They cant watch everything themselfes and I wouldnt want them to. If the kids like a show it doesnt mean the parents have to watch it even if they dont like it. And it shouldnt mean that they dont allow their kids to watch it just because they dont want to watch it. So a rating system is important and it has to be acurate. 14 for TWD is not right. There MAY be children out there at that age that can handle the show mentally, but there are definatly a lot out there that cannot. It should be rated 18. 16 year old will watch it anyway, but if it says 18 every parent regardless of their childs age may decide for themselves if their child is ready to watch stuff rated for 18+ and watch it anyway or not.


Level 3 (9%)
Points: 1.5
Since: 03/Aug/12
Message Posted On Dec 13th, 2012, 7:39 pm

I think the ratings are a tool for parents to help judge what to let their kids watch. You can't pre-watch every single program before they see it, so having an accurate ratings system will allow parents to theoretically make better choices. If nobody cares about the rating anyway, why not change it? For once, they're being reasonable and not demanding boycotts and government fines. Let's give this to them.



Level 39 (91%)
Points: 17879.2
Since: 08/Jul/10
Message Posted On Dec 13th, 2012, 7:06 pm

As another fan of TWD, I'd have zero problem with the series being labeled TV-MA. It's not like anyone who wants to watch it will stop just because the rating changes. Then again, I'm loathe to give these self-styled censors at the PTC any of what they ask for.


Level 1 (26%)
Since: 28/Oct/12
Message Posted On Dec 13th, 2012, 6:05 pm

No one looks at the ratings anyway.  How about these people just BE PARENTS and CHOOSE to not let THEIR kids watch it?  LOL JK, WON'T HAPPEN.

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