Censored Title


(permanent link) added: 2010-05-31 13:38:36 sponsor: Mischlings (last reply: 2010-05-31 13:38:36)

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Do We Have This One?? Needs More Examples

Sometimes, True Art Is Offensive. Other times, creators take Refuge in Vulgarity, and the Moral Guardians just cannot let anyone say that word. Not here where everyone can see it.

So what to do? The creator can't just change everything. The movie is done, all the dialogue has been recorded, or the song is in the mixing process. At this point, there's just one thing you can do: censor the title. Don't advertise using the word "shit" -- say "crap" or "stuff", depending on how you mean the word. Use acronyms or anything else to cover up the real title. Sure, the work itself is still as offensive as it was before, you just need to pay a little more attention to realize that.

This trope is when the title of a work is censored so that it can be advertised. As noted above, there can be various reasons for this, either creator decides to use the title or executives or distributors refuse to use the uncensored title.

Note that this only applies to the title being censored while the rest of the work isn't changed.

Not to be confused with [[Bowdlerization]], as the work only seems less offensive on the surface. Related to Gosh Dang It to Heck! and Sound Effect Bleep.

Examples:

Film
  • The second Austin Powers film was advertised as The Spy Who... on most poster sites, leaving off the "Shagged Me" from the end of the title.
    • Averted by the Norwegians, who called it The Spy Who Ejaculated On Me (or words to that effect).
  • Zack and Miri Make a Porno was often listed as simply Zack And Miri, and one poster didn't have the title at all, just reading "Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Banks made a movie so outrageous that we can't even tell you the title."
  • Occurred with the DV Ds of Knocked Up, in which the "ed Up" part was covered by a huge, orange sticker listing the price at a Wal-Mart.
  • The Pope Must Die, in which Robbie Coltrane plays a chubby priest accidentally raised to the papacy (who faces an assasination plot as a result). In some markets, retitled The Pope Must Diet.
  • TV ads for Inglourious Basterds (at least in the UK before the Watershed) just called it Inglourious.
    • Some of them, mysteriously, showed the full title onscreen while the voiceover announced the censored version. Maybe the rules about written swearwords are different...
  • Meet the Fockers had parts of the last word replaced by asterisks in some published reviews.
  • Gregg Araki's early independent movie Totally F***ed Up.
  • S.F.W., a movie from The Nineties featuring Stephen Dorff and Reese Witherspoon, is normally known by its acronym. The full title is So Fucking What.
  • Some posters for the movie Kick-Ass called the movie "Kick-A*$"
  • Fucking Amal was released under various alternate titles, in the USA it is known as Show Me Love
  • The James Bond film Octopussy has occasionally been advertised as Octocat.
  • The Ken Russell film Whore, aka If You're Afraid to Say It... Just See It in video release.

Literature

Live-Action TV
  • Penn And Teller's Bullshit - the DV Ds say "Bullsh*t", or sometimes just "BS".
    • When Penn had his own (FCC-regulated broadcast) radio show, he would often discuss the show, which he would refer to as "Bulls..." [beat] [beat] "...HIT!"

Music
  • Stuff is Messed Up by The Offspring -- the chorus uses the phrase "Shit is fucked up", but the band made the title different so it could be printed on the CD case.
  • Waif Me is an alternate title for Rape Me by Nirvana, changed so that the album In Utero could be sold in K-mart and other stores with CD censorship policies.
  • Star Me Kitten by R.E.M. In the actual song the F-word is used.
  • The song "I'm in Miami, Bitch" by LMFAO is called "I'm in Miami, Trick" (and also censored in the same way in the song, in versions which are censored).
  • On Warren Zevon's album Life'll Kill Ya the song "My Shit's Fucked Up" was left off the song list on the outer casing.
  • Rap group NWA (the full name, "Niggaz With Attitude", not generally being printed on the albums or posters). Likewise their 1991 album, whose title "Niggaz4life" was printed reversed (mirror-image) on the album--the album is often referred to as "Efil4zaggin".
  • The Liz Phair song titled "H.W.C." (abbreviation for "hot white cum", the phrase used in the song).
  • "Star Star" by the Rolling Stones was originally "Starfucker" but changed at the insistence of the record label.
  • The Ween song "L.M.L.Y.P." (Let Me Lick Your Pussy).

Theater
  • The Musical F#@king Up Everything.
  • The play Shopping and Fucking was usually listed as Shopping and F***king in ads.
  • The well known theatre production The Vagina Monologues was retitled The Hoohah Monologues when locals in Atlantic Beach, Florida complained.

Western Animation
  • South Park episode "Chicken Lover," in which the eponymous criminal is actually dubbed 'Chicken Fucker.'

Rolling Updates, maybe Needs a Better Title.
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