Slapstick vs. Realistic Violence:

Total posts: [22]
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1 shimaspawn17th Sep 2012 05:05:21 PM from Here and Now , Relationship Status: In your bunk
There's a trend in media to market slapstick to small children and realistic violence towards adults. This leads to children seeing violence without knowing the actual consequences of violence.

The question is, what is the effect of this on children and society? What is the end result of removing violence from it's consequences?
Reality is that, which when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.

-Philip K. Dick
2 drunkscriblerian17th Sep 2012 06:27:46 PM from Castle Geekhaven , Relationship Status: In season
Street Writing Man
I've always been sort of against slapstick violence in children's media. Not sure how to articulate it exactly, but it always feels like the wrong venue for such a thing.

Adults can grasp that slapstick violence is unrealistic, but children -lacking a frame of reference, at least hopefully- cannot.

I guess you could say my discomfort grows when I look at censorship in children's media...which basically seems to say "you can show someone beating someone else up, but no blood or crying or anything". Isn't that showing behavior without consequence?
If I were to write some of the strange things that come under my eyes they would not be believed.

~Cora M. Strayer~
Aussie Tolkien freak
I remember watching an old Three Stooges comedy routine on TV (one of those classic comedy specials) and my dad explaining to me and my brother how poking someone's eye could really hurt IRL.
The road goes ever on. -Tolkien
4 shimaspawn17th Sep 2012 07:06:45 PM from Here and Now , Relationship Status: In your bunk
DS: That's exactly my view on it. I'd rather have realistic violence in children's shows, but minimize the amount of it and have slapstick limited to adults that can handle the idea that violence hurts.
Reality is that, which when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.

-Philip K. Dick
The Default Mood
This leads to children seeing violence without knowing the actual consequences of violence.

What is the end result of removing violence from it's consequences?

Wow, I never thought about this. This is some good question you are raising, shimaspawn. This is actually quite troubling.
6 Euodiachloris17th Sep 2012 10:02:51 PM from England (Oop North) , Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
Euo will do!
[up]You can double the troubling up, mate... Consider the fact that a lot of kids before the ages up to about 12 - 16 (depending on individual development, and, to some extend, gender) can actually have an interest in guts and gore that turns adult's stomachs. :P Seeing the consequences of violence in cartoons wouldn't resonate in precisely the way most adults expect... but still carry the message "bad things happen and it's not good or funny in every way".

I've seen kids watch Princess Mononoke with mouths agape at the flying limbs, etc... and taking the message on board that's it's fairly cool, but also horrible and scary (but safe, as it's not happening to you: thank goodness). Whereas, a couple of the adults were squirming.

Contrast with the hyperactive bouncing you get in front of the more bloodless cartoons... and... well... tongue

edited 17th Sep '12 10:04:09 PM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
Raven Wilder
Kids know what it's like to get hurt, though. They've fallen down, bumped their heads, skinned their knees, stubbed their toes. They've gotten soap in their eyes, sunburns on their skin, splinters in their fingers. And, if they have siblings, they've probably been pinched, poked, shoved, slapped, and manhandled quite a bit, too.

So when people say children don't understand any of the consequences of violence, I think they're giving children nowhere near enough credit.

edited 18th Sep '12 1:10:56 AM by RavenWilder

"It takes an idiot to do cool things, that's why it's cool" - Haruhara Haruko
8 Euodiachloris18th Sep 2012 01:21:08 AM from England (Oop North) , Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
Euo will do!
[up]But, there's the slight issue about detachment that younger stages of development have. It takes years to gain empathy for others, even if you are well aware how anything might feel yourself. smile The blood helps. wink

edited 18th Sep '12 1:21:49 AM by Euodiachloris

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable." ~ Pratchett, Johnny and the Bomb
I want Kat's glasses!
What exactly counts as slapstick? Are cartoon Non-Fatal Explosions slapstick, or are they their own category?
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10 pagad18th Sep 2012 11:19:29 AM from perfidious Albion , Relationship Status: Having tea with Cthulhu
Sneering Imperialist
This isn't quite related to "slapstick" violence per se, but I will note that as a child, Star Wars made me think that war was a rather fun thing as faceless stormtroopers collapsed bloodlessly at the hands of the good guys. When I was twelve or thirteen, I saw Saving Private Ryan and its infamous opening twenty minutes was far more effective at showing me what a brutal and stupid thing war really is. So I'm not entirely convinced that showing young people horrific stuff is always such a bad thing, especially if they're raised on sanitised versions of such stuff.
Typhoid and swans - it all comes from the same place.
11 0dd118th Sep 2012 09:52:42 PM from Nowhere Land
Just awesome like that
Granted, that doesn't necessarily mean we should take all children of a certain age, plop them down in front of Saving Private Ryan or Gunner Palace or whatever and tell them "LEARN SOMETHING."
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12 pagad19th Sep 2012 04:21:59 AM from perfidious Albion , Relationship Status: Having tea with Cthulhu
Sneering Imperialist
Well, no. But I hope my point is clear. tongue
Typhoid and swans - it all comes from the same place.
13 Barkey19th Sep 2012 08:18:55 AM from Bunker 051 , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
War Profiteer
I don't know, I grew up watching a mix of both the slapstick and the realistic violence, especially as a product of videogames like Fallout as a child. So I always grew up thinking war is cool, and everything about it is awesome. Then I joined the military, went to a war, and my perspective changed considerably.

If I were a civilian I'd probably still have the same nonchalant view of violence and war with no thought put into it. Honestly, I still hold similar views, it's just that I've put a lot of thought into it and understand the impact.
The AR-15 is responsible for 95% of all deaths each year. The rest of the deaths are from obesity and drone strikes.
14 InverurieJones19th Sep 2012 11:27:10 AM from North of the Wall. , Relationship Status: And they all lived happily ever after <3
'80s TV Action Hero
Any child that can't tell that slapstick violence isn't like real life probably has existing problems that need checked out.
Life before death. Strength before weakness. Journey before destination.
15 0dd119th Sep 2012 12:39:28 PM from Nowhere Land
Just awesome like that
That also depends on the age, though.
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16 Gabrael20th Sep 2012 07:21:38 PM from My musings , Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
I would further that by saying it depends on the child and their family.

I am the daughter of a now retired cop. He taught me how to clean my own rifle and shoot at 2 years. We had extensive gun safety and care training, especially me, because I was curious enough to probably find one hidden in the house. We were too poor for a gun safe at the time, so us kids just learned better.

Now I wasn't taught any fighting or holds because my dad was afraid we would use them on each other. I remember my brother jumping on my back in immitation of a cartoon. I just slammed him against the wall of the hallway, got my feet propped on the other wall, and pushed until he tapped out. My older sister wasn't so smart.

My boyfriend wrestled with his brother sure. They were allowed to watch many things they probably shouldn't have and imitated wrestling moves on each other. But they never hurt each other the way my siblings and I did even though we were very sheltered in our media exposure.

When it comes to my son, violence of any kind is a lesson. Batman gets to drop bad guys because he's freaking Batman. I've promised he can study martial arts if he is older and keeps his grades and chores together. He sees me shoot and box, but he knows these are responsibilities that are earned, not just games.

I hate the slapstick in most cartoons because it trivializes violence, removes a context, and makes it all fun and games.
"Psssh. Even if you could catch a miracle on a picture any person would probably delete it to make space for more porn." - Aszur
17 drunkscriblerian21st Sep 2012 07:29:52 PM from Castle Geekhaven , Relationship Status: In season
Street Writing Man
I hate the slapstick in most cartoons because it trivializes violence, removes a context, and makes it all fun and games.

This. Especially when you stack it against the egregious (and often irrational) attempts to remove all sexual content from young children's media. I mean, children are eventually going to grow a sex drive...but they are not automatically going to be violent. Which is more important for them to be exposed to and which should they be sheltered from, really?

edited 21st Sep '12 7:30:27 PM by drunkscriblerian

If I were to write some of the strange things that come under my eyes they would not be believed.

~Cora M. Strayer~
18 Gabrael21st Sep 2012 08:31:37 PM from My musings , Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
My boyfriend was telling me about an anime that made a point about how often girls abuse boys (mainly jr/high school level) by making the character have to go to a hospital from a girl kicking him between the legs.

It sets up confusing standards, which I know are supposed to lend to the comedic effect, but if some girl whacked my son for no real reason, I'll be damned if I'm going to be laughing since "he can't hit back".
"Psssh. Even if you could catch a miracle on a picture any person would probably delete it to make space for more porn." - Aszur
Raven Wilder
[up][up] The thing is, children are fully capable of experiencing and inflicting pain, and most will do so, even if just in small ways like pinching. However, they won't develop sexual urges until later, and while we consider a few scrapes and bruises and acceptable part of a child growing up, the same can't be said for sexual contact.
"It takes an idiot to do cool things, that's why it's cool" - Haruhara Haruko
20 LoniJay21st Sep 2012 10:29:17 PM from Australia , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Maybe it's also because violence and the negative consequences of it are relatively easy to explain to a child, while sex isn't.
Be not afraid...
21 tsstevens21st Sep 2012 11:28:03 PM from Internet, Tasmania , Relationship Status: She's holding a very large knife
Researcher
That's a really good question. Dirty Harry for example is nowhere near as violent as say The Terminator, yet the former was and still is rated R. I think this is because the film is more realistic.
The mark of a good story means not feeling like The Angry Video Game Nerd hearing it.
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22 Gabrael22nd Sep 2012 12:05:06 AM from My musings , Relationship Status: Is that a kind of food?
It's easy to be violent towards things that aren't human.

Children's cartoons are very easy to notice this in: Black/White Morality, good is pretty, bad is ugly, the other is dangerous...

I am very lucky not to own a television. So anything my son watches is handpicked by me at least at our house.
"Psssh. Even if you could catch a miracle on a picture any person would probably delete it to make space for more porn." - Aszur
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Total posts: 22
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