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The Savage Eye's 'foul mouthed children' did not break broadcasting rules

One complainant said the series should be called ‘The Savage Mouth’.

The Savage Eye
The Savage Eye
Image: The Savage Eye/Facebook

THE BROADCASTING AUTHORITY of Ireland has rejected three complaints made against RTÉ’s The Savage Eye.

Another complaint made against the programme was also resolved.

Three complainants took issue with the use of “foul mouthed language” by children featured in the programme, and said that they should delete all child sketches from the programme.

Each were critical of children being included, stating that they are involved in “sexualised dancing” and in another scene a young person is talking about cutting off a person’s genitals and stuffing them in his mouth.

‘The Savage Mouth’

One complainant said the series should be called ‘The Savage Mouth’.

All complaints also cited the use of an anti-Protestant sketch, while another makes reference to an anti-Catholic element in one episode.

RTÉ defended the content in each episode.

The BAI rejected the complaints stating that a warning was broadcast on RTÉ Two after the Watershed and that the “content was satirical”.

The Committee also noted that the programme chose to lampoon those who hold
prejudicial views against other members of society. The BAI stated:

In the case of the content that was the subject of the complaint, the character in the sketch was playing a Catholic priest who was inculcating children in his classroom with sectarian beliefs in respect of members of the Protestant faith.

Children

They also stated that the parents of the children who were in the show had consented to their inclusion in the programme and that RTÉ had in place a range of measures to protect the interests of the children.

While the Committee acknowledges that satirical content can often “walk a tight rope”.
The said that “facets of society are open to scrutiny and are regularly challenged through the medium of comedy, which can be hard-hitting”.

The Committee is of the view that a significant majority of the audience would have understood the sketches in this context…

One complaint was resolved by the Executive Complaints Forum. This complaint was in relation to a programme broadcast on 19 August.

The complainant objected to the sketch in which, he said the actors “insulted, demeaned and sneered at the most sacred doctrine of the Catholic Church - The Eucharist”.

The Committee stated that they listened to both sides, but decided that the complaint “required no further consideration and is resolved” and did not cause undue offence in the treatment of religious views, and that the segment was contextualised.

Read: Another complaint about the same-sex marriage debate has been upheld>

Read: ‘Exaggerated and inaccurate’: RTÉ denies bias in election coverage as complaint is rejected>

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