Sometimes, producers or distributors feel the need to warn the viewers of what they are about to see. This serves to help viewers who might not like what they're about to see stop looking at it before things get unpleasant; for others, it's an invitation to watch.
Content warnings are often given in conjunction with a ratings system as an explanation of why a given work has the rating it does. In most cases, these are selected from a list of stock warnings (e.g. "strong language", "violence", "imitable behavior", or the very general "viewer discretion advised") — these don't really provide much of an explanation. A warning specific to the work shows that the work itself is fairly controversial or otherwise unusual.
Like most other content rating systems, this only serves as an aid to the viewer's decision of whether or not to keep watching; what viewers actually decide is up to them. This hasn't stopped Moral Guardians from insisting on content warnings as a sort of deterrent from imitating harmful things, not realizing that most viewers tend to ignore such warnings or even consider them an indicator of the really good stuff. Works which try to capitalize on the latter phenomenon are often Rated M for Money.
- "The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the network's views", often done before programs expressing particularly controversial opinions.
- "The following is a paid commercial program; the network assumes no responsibility for its content" is commonly seen before infomercials.
- "All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law" is commonly seen on Cop Shows where real people are arrested on screen.
- "This program has been pre-recorded and does not reflect recent events" is a way to prevent Too Soon. If the program in question was recorded especially recently, the phrase "previously recorded" might be used instead.
- "The recipes contained here are to be followed exactly as written. The publisher is not responsible for your specific health or allergy needs that require medical supervision." Common in cookbooks, and even other books on food.
- Ingredient lists on food packaging may have a warning on the bottom saying that the product in question contains a common food allergen, like wheat, milk, or soy. Sometimes, set ingredients are simply printed in bold on the list. Likewise, some restaurant menus and food packaging labels warn consumers to be mindful of allergies and think carefully about the possibility that a food they want to might have come into contact with a food they're allergic to, even if they didn't order it themselves, e.g., don't assume a pizza crust is safe for people with celiac disease just because it's marked "gluten free", because it was almost certainly prepared in the same kitchen.
- One you might see in Australia from time to time: "This programme may contain the image and voice recordings of people who are now dead." Australian Aborigines consider it taboo to directly discuss the dead or mention them by name, so this warning is especially common for works that are marketed to them.
- In Japan, anime and toku broadcasts usually have this: "When watching this program, please make sure the room is well lit, and do not sit too close to the screen." This is largely a response to Pokémon's infamous episode "Electric Soldier Porygon", which had a strobe effect that triggered seizures in some viewers and giving rise to the Epileptic Flashing Lights trope. For similar reasons, other countries will include warnings for shows or news reports that contain flashing images or flash photography, and some video games will warn people not to play them if they have epilepsy because these games are likely to flash the screen.
- The Australian OFLC has a category for "Infrequent Coarse Language", which means the work contains no swearing apart from a Precision F-Strike or two.
- Some music CDs come with warnings about digital sound effects recorded at a very high level and recommend playback at lower levels to avoid damaging the speakers.
- CD-ROMs with Redbook music tracks often have labels warning you not to play Track 1 on an audio CD player, as this track contains program code rather than music. Some have the warning message read aloud at the beginning of the track itself.
- Some really Nintendo Hard games will warn you in advance how hard the highest difficulty setting is, telling you to "play at your own risk". Part of that is posturing, but it also has the effect of warning the player in advance to prevent Rage Quitting when they realize that it's Harder Than Hard.
- Pay cable channels such as HBO and Cinemax show screens before any films they air that show the film's MPAA rating and what it means (until at least 2006, on HBO, and 2000 on Cinemax, these content warnings were also read aloud by announcers). Notably, a slightly modified version preceded Excalibur, a film that was originally rated R but was cut into PG.
- By law, any programming in the Philippines not considered safe for young children must post a "PG" or "Parental Guidance" watermark on the screen while the program is running. For even stronger content, the watermark must show "SPG" or "Strong Parental Guidance." Both cases are bilingual and shown together (with the warning advisory airing before the start of a show or movie aired on TV), but for the latter rating, it will run like it's the equivalent of TV-14, with Themes, Language, Violence, Sex, Horror and Drugs content descriptors depending on what show or movie is aired on TV, and the content warning for it will show twice, the second time when a show is midway through the show (mostly after the CM break).
- New Zealand uses descriptive notes such as Contains Offensive Language, Contains Violence etc to ensure viewers that the warning is simple and easier to understand.
- The American television rating system is supplemented at certain levels by letter abbreviations which are meant to be widely known and thus similarly helpful, but aren't necessarily, such as L for coarse language and D for suggestive dialogue.
- "This program contains material that is representative of the views and attitudes of the time it was created...": This content warning addresses the Values Dissonance that "might be shocking to modern viewers" and often reccomends that one should "view these elements in a historical context". This is often seen when older shows or films are presented uncensored (or at all) for the first time in many years and may have been previously kept out of circulation due to said Values Dissonance. Many old classic cartoons that are now available on home video have this warning due to the widespread presence of content that is now considered politically incorrect or even outright offensive such as racist stereotypes. If or when Disney's Song of the South its released on home video, it will undoubtedly carry this form of content warning.
- Russian law requires any broadcaster to display "smoking kills" disclaimer before any program that contains smoking scenes. The disclaimer itself can be customized though, the appearence, text and length vary from channel to channel. Channel 2x2 had one for adult animation programs like The Simpsons reminding viewers that "animated characters can smoke uranium for all they care, unlike you". Nowadays it's more streamlined across channels with standard "Smoking is hazardous to your health" visibly displayed, although some still try to be creative, like this take on Soviet propaganda posters.
- Many manga published in the West in its original (unmirrored) format make sure to reserve the back page (what would be the front page for a traditional Western book) for a notice saying something like, "Start from the other end of the book/magazine." as a friendly notice to anyone unfamiliar with the format that Japanese literature is read right-to-left.
- Viz Media seems to make a habit of putting unusual content warnings on its English-language M-rated manga.
- The English version of the Black Lagoon manga has the following:
Black Lagoon is rated M for Mature and is recommended for mature readers. This volume contains graphic violence, strong language, nudity, adult situations, drinkin', smokin', ass-kickin', law breakin', gun-love, running with scissors and just about everything your mother ever told you not to do.
- Biomega contains "motorcycle violence, mind-blowing cinematic stunts, and extreme grizzly bear."
- After an extended period of using plain, straight-to-the-point warnings on their M-rated titles, Viz brought their humorous warnings back with Dead Dead Demon's Dededede Destruction:
Dead Dead Demon's Dededede Destruction is rated M for Mature and is recommended for mature readers. This volume contains an alien invasion.
- The English version of the Black Lagoon manga has the following:
- Daily Lives of High School Boys, despite being a plain Slice of Life work, has two examples of this:
"This might seem annoying, but please eat mochi slowly by carefully chewing small portions."
- In High School Boys and Mochi Soup, there is an on-screen advisory each time a character chokes on mochi. It happens often enough to annoy whoever's doing the advising:
- In High School Boys and UFO Catchers, this advisory appears when the main trio tries to shake a UFO Catcher machine to get a teddy bear plush which narrowly missed the hole, and again when Tadakuni's little sister succeeds in shaking it out:
- Mobile Suit Gundam 00 and Yo-Kai Watch are the only anime that have ever aired on Cartoon Network Philippines with a parental guidance warning. Gundam got it due to its violent nature (though some edits were still made), while Yo-Kai Watch got it due to innuendos being present in some of its' episodes. note
- Later episodes of the anime of Rainbow say "After careful consideration of the times, we feel that intense scenes in this show are important to the story." The show's violence is rarely gruesome and never exaggerated, but it's often committed by adults against minors.
- The second DVD of Last Exile is rated 12 by the BBFC for "a firebreathing scene".
- The anime adaptation of Minna Atsumare! Falcom Gakuen warns at the end of most episodes for, of all things, out of character moments (in red text no less) compared to the video games they hail from.
- Both original North American airings of the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex episode "Jungle Cruise" (The One with... the Serial Killer who skins his victims and plugs his eyes into them so they can watch themselves get killed) began with them:
- YTV in Canada initially skipped over the episode because of the violent content, but thanks to complaints from viewers, they were compelled to air it with a special disclaimer stating that the violence was above what the network would allow.
- [adult swim] introduced their "In case the last disclaimer wasn't enough..." warning (see below) when they premiered this episode. They've used it several times since then.
- A warning before certain features on Sci-Fi's former Saturday Anime block: "This film includes graphic special effects (or some violent content). Parental discretion is advised." Mostly this was due to violence, even after editing down.
- Many anime releases on videocassette feature warnings on the box to warn people of content in the program. If the content was particularly extreme (like any release on Central Park Media's Anime 18 label), then usually after the standard FBI warning a warning was displayed warning the viewer about the content they're about to see and to not watch the tape while minors are around.
- Puni Puni Poemi's North American DVD has Hitomi on the bottom of the back cover looking disturbed, with a text bubble in big letters reading "THIS PERVERSITY IS 17+." (This was kept and updated to "THIS PERVERSITY IS TV-MA-SL" in later pressings after ADV Films switched to the TV ratings system for their suggestions.)
- YTV's former Bionix block had a variety of content warnings that were used for different anime:
- "The following program is intended for an older youth audience. Viewer discretion is advised." (Perhaps the rarest of the disclaimers, which only appeared at random on some episodes of Naruto.)
- "The following program contains mature situations/themes and is intended for an older youth audience. Viewer discretion is advised." (Used for Bleach, Eureka Seven, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, InuYasha and Witch Hunter Robin, as well as some non-anime on the Bionix block such as Futurama; in general, the warning means the content is mature in both the sense of being potentially objectionable and that of likely being unrelatable to younger viewers.
- "The following program contains mature content, coarse language and is intended for an older youth audience. Viewer discretion is advised." (Used before .hack//SIGN and some episodes of Naruto.)
- "The following program contains scenes of violence and is intended for an older youth audience. Viewer discretion is advised." (Used before Fullmetal Alchemist.)
- "This program contains scenes of violence, coarse language and is intended for an older teen audience. Viewer discretion is advised." (Notably contains a harsher-sounding music track then the "older youth" disclaimer. Used before Death Note, Detective Conan and Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex.)
- The third movie of Berserk is about the Eclipse and contains 3 warnings on the DVD that it is rated for adults only. A typical TV-MA rating, stating that Parental Advisory is needed and a last one in small writing stating 18+. It's extremely necessary due to the portrayal of rape in the work.
- On the North American subtitled VHS release of Princess Minerva:
"WARNING: CONTAINS GRAPHIC VIOLENCE, NUDITY, AND EVEN SOME PROFANITY...GOLLY!"
- Crunchyroll added content warnings to Goblin Slayer after they accidentally mislabeled the first episode as PG-13 and received complaints. Only the first episode really needs it, since the sexual violence and gorn are significantly toned down (although still present) afterwards. Amusingly, it even shows up on Breather Episodes with little if any violence.
This show contains scenes that some viewers may find disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised.
- In a similar fashion, Crunchyroll also added a content warning for the 10th episode of the Sword Art Online anime's third season, showcasing the near rape experience of two female characters.
The following program contains scenes of violence and sexual assault, and is intended only for mature audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.
- Dining in the Void doesnt start giving content warnings at the top until episode 3.
The following episode contains loud screaming, kidnapping, torture, and minor character death. If you are sensitive to any of these, please listen at your own discretion.
- Greater Boston has a few content warnings at the end of their show notes, but not all of them are helpful.
- Teller was a guest on a podcast about Buster Keaton. Before getting into the interview, the host warned the audience that "there is some swearing."
- The Lavender Ladies begins each episode with a content warning.
We have quite a thrilling story to tell you, but before we get along too much further, a warning; this podcast contains swearing, and themes of violence, drugs, sex, organized crime, torture, and murder. Listener discretion is advised.
- What's The Frequency includes a list of content warnings at the end of their show notes.
- My Dad Wrote A Porno:
"The following podcast contains adult themes, sexual content, and strong language. Basically, all the good stuff."
- All issues of Viz bear the warning "not to be sold to children" due to the art styles of the covers and most strips being more associated with traditional British children's comics.
- My Immortal infamously opened one chapter with "WARNING: SUM OF DIS CHAPTA IS XTREMLY SCRAY. VIOWER EXCRETION ADVISD." (The use of the term "excretion" in this context is Hilarious in Hindsight, considering the nature of this fanfic.) It's often used intentionally by Monica Gilbey Bieber to warn his readers about mature content, as a form of Affectionate Parody. Parody Fic Xtremly Scray also takes its title from this warning.
- The Finale of the Ultimate Meta Mega Crossover began with the following warning:
Concepts contained in this story may cause SAN Checking in any mind not inherently stable at the third level of stress. Story may cause extreme existential confusion. Story is insane. The author recommends that anyone reading this story sign up with Alcor or the Cryonics Institute to have their brain preserved after death for later revival under controlled conditions. Readers not already familiar with this author should be warned that he is not bluffing.
- Alvan An The Chipmunks 3 The Second Squeakuel opens with the following:
WARNING: This is an ANTI-RAPE piece, speaking out against erotic rape scenes in fanfictions. In no way is this meant to be "hot" or anything, it's supposed to be disturbing to show how horrible an criminal rape is. But there are a buncha funny parts an it's not all depressing. I just wanna get a message across to my readers that RAPE IS NOT GOOD.
- The introduction for Wing Commander 4.123106: The Price of Entertainment has a warning about adult language, graphic violence, gratuitous nudity, sexual content, and "EWSH Extremely Warped Sense of Humor".
- Chapter 14 of Land Before Time: Revenge has this warning: "Warning: THIS SCENE CONTAINS SOME INTENSE VIOLENCE!"
- The disclaimer at the beginning of the W.I.T.C.H. fic Redemption's Flame reads: "This is a work of fan fiction. Any resemblance to actual persons living, dead, living dead, or un-dead is, like, totally on purpose."
- Parodied in Calvin and Hobbes: The Series, where a brief lecture on the mechanics of Minesweeper is headed with WARNING! EDUCATIONAL CONTENT!
- The version of Bait and Switch (STO) posted on the Star Trek Online forums has a warning of minor sexual content above chapter four. It's Eleya mentioning feeling her nipples hardening from seeing Gaarra working out.
- Yu-Gi-Oh: Tilting the Balance has a warning before the chapter "Hell's Own", informing the reader of the greatly increased gore compared to other chapters. This being the chapter where one of the main characters has a chain shot through her rib cage and out her back, it's not ill-used. A similar warning can be found before the chapters featuring Reston.
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: What Came After has one at the beginning of the April Fool's chapter A Chapter that is Very Legitimate, clarifying that the chapter is non-canon and has nothing to do with the main story's plot.
- Readers of the Skyhold Academy Yearbook series are accustomed to a complete lack of content warnings, owing to the T rating and Sweet Dreams Fuel nature of the stories. However, in Disorienuptials, they are advised to "Don't drink anything while reading." It's arguably one of the funniest installments in the series and the authors didn't want anyone to choke.
- The Simpsons Movie:
- If anyone wants conclusive proof that the MPAA are being paid off, the movie was rated PG-13 for "irreverent humor throughout." The producers and marketers likely wanted the inclusion of Bart's willie to stay a secret.
- From the beginning of the DVD:
The Environmental Protection Agency wishes to strenuously object to its depiction in this film. We are a competent, well-meaning government bureaucracy, and if we were ever granted any real power we would never, ever abuse it, we promise.
— Russ Cargill, Acting Head
- More MPAA evidence: On The Powerpuff Girls Movie, they warn of "non-stop frenetic animated action".
- In a similar vein, their rating reasons for Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse include, among other things, "frenetic sequences of animated action violence".
- Happy Feet Two is rated G in Australia, but they still saw fit to give it a particularly nonsensical content warning: "Very mild sense of threat", without which there is basically no plot.
- In a similar manner to their airings of Tiger Cruise, Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (mentioned below), Disney Channel's premiere of Inside Out had a warning at the beginning of the movie that said "The following film contains some scenes that deal with all kinds of emotions and may be intense for younger viewers. Parental guidance is recommended!" alongside clips of the emotions.
- Shrek the Third had a special MPAA content descriptor for "Swashbuckling Action".
- Incredibles 2 opens with a disclaimer stating that it contains scenes that may trigger those with photosensitive epilepsy. This is referring to the Screenslaver's mind-controlling tricks which border on Epileptic Flashing Lights.
- "Contains irresponsible behaviour" — Mr. Bean's Holiday UK poster
- "Contains strong action violence and sexualised posing" — The Fast and the Furious 4's UK content advisory.
- The video and DVD releases of Dogma start with a disclaimer that states that the movie is a work of comedy and not intended to offend or be taken seriously, before going off into a long meandering rant about the platypus representing the fact that God does, in fact, have a sense of humor, even if some viewers don't. What else could explain the platypus, really? He then makes a disclaimer apologizing to all lovers of platypuses.
- The BBFC caution that Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets contains "fantasy spiders", an oddly specific warning. At least it's a real fear, which Ron displays prominently in the film itself.
- Aliens in the Attic contains a specific content warning about misuse of fireworks, which can be a real safety concern.
- The Fight Club DVD has another warning after the FBI/copyright notices that only flashes up for 7 seconds before segueing into a freaky animated sequence. If you freeze it, it tells you you're wasting your life freeze-framing DVDs to read it.
- The first two The Lord of the Rings DVDs were rated PG-13 for "violence and scary images."
A capsule review for Fellowship of the Ring cautioned that it contained "epic battles, scary monsters, body-piercing swords, and smoking."
- The DVD case for xXx warns that it's rated PG-13 for, among other things, "Non-Stop Action Sequences". So, how much did the producers pay the MPAA to insert those first two words?
- Team America: World Police has the ever-amusing MPAA warning of "graphic crude and sexual humor, violent images and strong language — all involving puppets". The BBFC's warning is similar.
- After the credits of Cannibal! The Musical, there is a message reading: "Due to the graphic nature of this film, it should not have been watched by small children".
- At the end of the theatrical release of Borat, before the MPAA rating card at the end, the film announces its approval from the Kazakh board of censors. ("Just antisemitic enough," as noted by the title character on his The Daily Show appearance.)
- During the first several years of the 1930s, when The Hays Code was not yet being strictly enforced but still had to be taken seriously, movies would often be preceded by what many film historians have come to call an "exculpatory preface." This was basically a disclaimer that appeared at the beginning of, for example, gangster films, the sociopolitical melodrama Cabin in the Cotton, and (perhaps most famously of all) the horror film Freaks. Generally speaking, the basic message of the exculpatory preface was something like this: "This film depicts a political or sociological point of view that we, the filmmakers, do not endorse — or maybe we do endorse, but we're denying we're doing so in order to avoid controversy." The Hays Office generally tolerated these, but the prefaces weren't fooling anybody.
- James Whale's 1931 Frankenstein begins with a classic "friendly warning" by actor Edward Van Sloan:
We are about to unfold the story of Frankenstein, a man of science who sought to create a man after his own image without reckoning upon God. It is one of the strangest tales ever told. It deals with the two great mysteries of creation — life and death. I think it will thrill you. It may shock you. It might even... horrify you. So if any of you feel that you do not care to subject your nerves to such a strain, now's your chance to... uh, well, we warned you.
- Sequel Bride of Frankenstein opens with a rare, possibly unique in-universe example, with Frankenstein author Mary Shelley telling Percy Shelley and Lord Byron that while her tale was one of terror it was meant to instill a moral lesson.
- One of the reasons Twister was given a PG-13 by the MPAA was "intense depiction of very bad weather".
- Public Enemies has "Gangster Violence" as a descriptor.
- The film North was rated PG for "a few words". Yes, it's sounds hilarious as it's true.
- Prior to airing the infamous nuclear war film Threads, some Canadian broadcasters aired extended disclaimers telling viewers that the film is incredibly disturbing, but that the decision to air it was ultimately made due to the importance of its message.
- Superbad is rated R for: "Pervasive crude and sexual content, strong language, drinking, some drug use, and a fantasy/comic violent image — all involving teens."
- Disney added a disclaimer on old VHS boxes of Return to Oz, warning about the frightening content. They also added a warning on many advertisements for The Watcher in the Woods.
As proud as we are of The Watcher in the Woods, Walt Disney Productions strongly recommends that parents pre-screen this picture for pre-teens. It is not for small children!
- Original posters for the 1971 film The Andromeda Strain carried this warning: "Rated G but may be too intense for younger children."
- One of the reasons Naked Lunch is rated R by the MPAA is "bizarre eroticism".
- The 2012 version of The Three Stooges has an epilogue following the movie by the Farelly Brothers showing how the tools used by the stooges in the film were made out of rubber and the pokes in the eye just barely missed the eye poking the eyelid below, and that children who saw the film should not attempt any of the Stooges' antics themselves.
- Caligula had the warning printed in large letters directly under the title on the poster of the 20th Anniversary edition (not submitted to the MPAA to avoid the dreaded NC-17 rating):
"Consider yourself warned. Extremely graphic sex and violence."
- The Disney Channel original movies Tiger Cruise and Wendy Wu: Homecoming Warrior were the only two to have such warnings preceding them. The former (according to IMDb) also recommended "family viewing", so families could talk about its Darker and Edgier subject matter.
- Parodied before the opening credits of the rap Mockumentary Fear of a Black Hat:
ANNOUNCER: The producers of this film would like to express that they in no manner wish to support or condone the words, phrases and images — such as "ass", "booty", "yo bitch", "Bush is a dickhead", and "big-butt women in tiny bikinis" — which are used in this film. However, in an effort to maintain accuracy and journalistic integrity, words, phrases and images — such as [with more emphasis] "ass", "booty", "yo bitch", "Bush is a dickhead", and "big-butt women in tiny bikinis" — are necessary. [Louder] But rest assured, the words, phrases and images — such as "ASS!", "BOOTY!", "YO BITCH!", "BUSH IS A DICKHEAD!", and "BIG-BUTT WOMEN IN TINY BIKINIS!" — will not be used without warrant, or in any gratuitous manner."
- Sometime in The '90s, Disney Channel had Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory in their rotation. They showed it in its near-entirety — unlike modern airings, the boat scene was almost entirely left in (aside from a small cut). This alone might have spurred them to put a warning in front of it declaring that it might be too scary for kids, but they were also likely concerned about a few other minor things, namely the infamous "You get nothing!" scene (since Gene Wilder's uncharacteristic anger would catch kids off-guard) and Violet becoming a blueberry. In all, this was the only film Disney aired back then which included a warning for something not rated PG-13.
- A custom warning was shown before airings of The Bear.
The follows wildlife adventure had been edited for television. However, some scenes may be too graphic and intense for young children. Parental discretion is advised.
- A custom warning was shown before airings of The Bear.
- Godzilla vs. Biollante has quite possibly one of the coolest MPAA descriptions ever: rated PG "for traditional Godzilla violence."
- Dawn of the Dead was not eligible for any rating lower than X in the United States note in the cut that director George Romero had intended. Romero was unwilling to cut the movie down to an R (feeling that it compromised his vision for the film), but also didn't want to self-apply the X rating, as by the late '70s, the rating had become associated with pornography and films with the rating were already being subject to bans by movie theaters. Instead, he released the movie to theaters unrated, but with the following disclaimer on all advertising:
There is no explicit sex in this picture. However, there are scenes of violence which may be considered shocking. No one under 17 will be admitted.
- The ultra-obscure No Budget Canadian zombie film Corpse Eaters opens with the following disclaimer:
ANNOUNCER: Attention please: the motion picture you are about to see contains certain very stomach-upsetting scenes. The producers feel they have a moral obligation to warn each and every ticket buyer of this fact. Although most people have the ability to cope with the sudden nausea and shock, there are some people who cannot handle it. Test audiences, after watching this motion picture, suggested that a warning of some sort be included before each scene they found to be upsetting. Therefore, the producers have inserted a special warning buzzer and picture of a patron reacting to the scene. When you see the man turning green and the buzzer sounding, those of you who feel you cannot take it, please do not look at the screen. Here is what to look for: [cue shot of man gagging into handkerchief accompanied by the buzzer] It is your only warning of the scene coming up. Thank you for your co-operation.
- The 1976 Mexican exploitation film Survive!, based on the Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 disasternote , carried the following warning in advertisements and on the poster:
Caution: The re-creation of the plane crash and the survival scenes may be too intense for young teenagers.
- The poster for the 1967 Film of the Book of Reflections In A Golden Eye says "Suggested for Mature Audiences". At the end of the trailer, the announcer not only repeats this phrase, but sternly advises the viewers to "Leave the children home."
- The film adaptation of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? was released in 1966, two years before the MPAA created the film ratings system. The poster's Tag Line ("You are cordially invited to George and Martha's for an evening of fun and games*") was followed by this footnote: "*Important Exception: No one under 18 will be admitted unless accompanied by his parent." In short, it was the first film to be rated R by the MPAA, before their film rating system even existed. According to IMDb, the film has a rating equivalent to PG-13 or R in most countries.
- A 1984 NBC showing of Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior had the following disclaimer.
This film is set in the future. Although it has been edited for television, certain scenes of suspense and violence have been retained in order to preserve its artistic integrity. Parental guidance is suggested.
- C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America is presented as a documentary airing on on Confederate television. As it's produced by a rival country with some (for them) controversial views on slavery, it prefaces with this disclaimer:
The following program is of foreign origin. The content does not reflect the views of this station and may be unsuitable for children and servants. Viewer Discretion is advised.
- Before NBC's uncut, uninterrupted showing of Schindler's List (also the first ever program to be rated TV-MA), director Steven Spielberg introduced the film with a warning that the film is not recommended for very young children.
- ABC's premiere of Saving Private Ryan was preceded by a warning disclaimer, as well as abridged warnings whenever the film returned from a commercial break. In addition, the film was also preceded by an introduction by Bob Iger (then-President of The Walt Disney Company) recommending that children not see it, especially since the 9/11 attacks had occurred just two months earlier.
This film contains prolonged depictions of graphic, realistic World War II violence as well as intense adult language. The original content of the film has not been altered for this television broadcast. Parental and viewer discretion is strongly advised.
- Similar to Ryan above, FX aired the uncut version of Straight Outta Compton with the following disclaimer at the beginning, plus abridged disclaimers coming out of every break. Check out the warnings to see for yourself.
The following film is presented in its complete theatrical version. It was rated R by the MPAA and may not be appropriate for children under 17. It is rated TV-MA-LSV and contains strong language, sexual situations, violence and nudity. It is intended only for mature audiences. Viewer Discretion Advised.
- When The Godfather premiered on NBC in 1975, Francis Ford Coppola introduced the film with a warning recommending that children not watch it and that the story and characters are not meant to perpetuate any negative stereotypes. When it and Part II were repackaged and aired as a miniseries in 1977, his sister Talia Shire (who also played Connie in both films) introduced the first episode with a similar warning, with the subsequent episodes using a written warning.
THE GODFATHER is a fictional account of the activities of a small group of ruthless criminals. It would be erroneous and unfair to suggest that they are representative of any particular ethnic group. This motion picture classic is graphic in depicting the destructive effects of crime and violence. Although it has been edited for television, parental discretion is advised.
- Horror parody film Student Bodies is not at all graphic or explicit until a moment about 30 minutes in when it cuts to a man purporting to speak for the film's producers. He explains that, in order to achieve an R rating, a film "must contain full frontal nudity, graphic violence, or an explicit reference to the sex act." He intones that R-rated films are by far the most popular, so "the producers have asked me to take this opportunity to say, 'fuck you'." The MPAA slide showing the film's R rating immediately appears.
- The MPAA's rating descriptors for Suspiria (2018) are some of their most descriptive in recent years, warning of "disturbing content involving ritualistic violence, bloody images and graphic nudity, and for some language including sexual references."
- Before the advent of the 12A classification in the UK, which allows children under 12 to attend as long as an adult is present, the 12 category barred children under 12 from the theater. Therefore, there were several blockbusters that toed the line between PG and 12A, but the BBFC ultimately passed them at PG, on the grounds that their distributors give them strong and clear content warnings:
- Jurassic Park: Jurassic Park has been passed PG (Parental Guidance). Parents are warned that this film contains sequences which may be particularly disturbing to younger children or children of a sensitive disposition.
- The Lost World: Jurassic Park: Parental Guidance - Some scenes may be unsuitable for younger children or those under 8.
- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring: PG - battle violence and fantasy horror may not be suitable for under 8s
- When The Boy Who Could Fly was released in theaters and on VHS in the UK, they added a disclaimer.
- The Spitting Image parody of Margaret Thatcher's memoirs bore a sticker on the front that said "WARNING! This book carries a salacious warning on the front that is an OBSCENE attempt to sell more copies".
- Older Than Print: Geoffrey Chaucer uses a content warning in the "Miller's Prologue" from The Canterbury Tales.
- Dave Barry:
- Big Trouble comes with a warning at the beginning saying that the book contains bad words and is not for children. His next novel, Tricky Business, had a similar warning in a larger typeface, because apparently not enough readers of Big Trouble got the warning.
- "The Unkindest Cut of All" begins with a warning that the column's topic (circumcision) "involves an extremely mature subject matter that might offend your community standards, if your community has any."
- "Gobble, Gobble, Eeeeeeeeek!" interrupts the column for a "WARNING TO TASTEFUL READERS: You should NOT—I repeat, NOT—read the rest of this column if you are likely to be in any way offended by the term 'turkey rectums.'"
- Terry Pratchett's Nation has a couple of author's notes at the back where he explains some of the science used (with Don't Try This at Home warnings). He then subverts it with his final note:
ThinkingThis book contains some. Whether you try it at home is up to you.
- A Series of Unfortunate Events uses this often, to the point where such warnings have a page all to themselves.
- The first page of Helter Skelter, prosecutor Vincent Bugliosis recounting of the Manson Family murders, is blank save for the statement "The story you are about to read will SCARE THE HELL OUT OF YOU."
- Someone is Eating the Sun portrays various farm animals reacting to a solar eclipse, sometimes looking directly at the sun. At the beginning of the book, the author warns people not to do this.
- Eden Green begins with a warning that the novel contains everything from suicide attempts to spiders.
- Neil Gaiman released an audio book collection of short stories titled Warning: Contains Language, which caused considerable confusion to record stores and buyers who didn't get the joke.
Many of these stories end badly for at least one of the people in them. Consider yourself warned.
- Gaiman has another story collection called Trigger Warning. He explains himself in the introduction:
- Ravelling Wrath, a Web Serial Novel, has expandable content warnings of the beginning of each chapter.
- The World of Thedas encyclopedias for the Dragon Age video game series contain a rather hilarious example. Varric Tethras, who in-universe is a popular author, has had his body of work decried by the prominent religion of the setting (or at least by one very disgruntled nun); the faithful are warned that Tethras books basically consist of "smut, pulp, or occasionally, smutty pulp." This warning is then followed by an excerpt from his most popular story, Hard in Hightown.
- Roald Dahl included a warning in the beginning of Georges Marvellous Medicine, warning readers to not attempt making the titular medicine themselves, as the results could be dangerous.
- The series had a content warning for graphic violence, but hilariously in the first two seasons this was only used four times. This was pithily pointed out by one writer who stated, "Because the other episodes didn't have any violence in them, did they?"
- One episode from the final season of the original run was strong enough to bear two content warnings, the latter appearing right before one of Jack's more brutal torture sessions (and also one of the few where he failed to break the victim into talking).
- Parodied by The '90s Are All Thatnote which has this notice at the start of the block:
The following block may not be suitable for people who did not grow up on '90s Nick.
- The 700 Club always airs with a disclaimer that "the opinions expressed in this show do not reflect the views of ABC Family" (now known as Freeform). Notice that there is no "necessarily" — the network is outright stating that it disagrees with the show's viewpoint. It's essentially the personal show of Pat Robertson, a controversial fundamentalist Christian televangelist; he used to own the networknote , and the contract with Disney/ABC requires that the network airs his show.
- As of November 2017, a new disclaimer is airing before The 700 Club: "If you're looking for us, we'll be over at Freeform On Demand or the Freeform App for a little while." That's not a joke. Other similar disclaimers are now in rotation, including "The people at Freeform would like you to know we did not make the next program. We haven't even seen it." and "Freeform is not responsible for what you're about to see on your screen. Watch it or don't. We're okay either way." Another (at least according to one conservative Christian commenter on a YouTube upload of one of the disclaimers) read "We had to leave the room for the next hour. Try not to burn the place down". The gist of the disclaimers basically goes, "Due to circumstances beyond our control, we are forced to show this next program which is not ours. If you're not interested, find another channel for the next hour."
- And they've since replaced the old "The preceding CBN telecast does not reflect the views of this network" disclaimer with this.
- All in the Family had this before the first episode:
"The program you are about to see is All In The Family. It seeks to throw a humorous spotlight on our frailties, prejudices, and concerns. By making them a source of laughter we hope to show, in a mature fashion, just how absurd they are." [sound of toilet flushing]
- Angel normally didn't have warnings, but the season five episode "Hell Bound" involving serial killer Pavayne notably had one due to the unsettling torture scenes.
- Animal Cops usually has two viewer discretion warnings for graphic content, specifically animal abuse — one at the start and another somewhere in the middle of the episode.
- Are You Afraid of the Dark? was the first Nickelodeon series to receive this treatment when the TV rating system was introduced. The series was rated TV-Y7 due to its frightening content, explained by the disclaimer. Every other series at the time was rated TV-Y, with sitcom reruns on Nick @ Nite getting a TV-G rating.
- Arrow had this before the 14th episode of season 5, which depicted a mass shooting.
- Betty White's Off Their Rockers:
"The following contains senior citizens pranking real unsuspecting young people. If you find this offensive...too bad."
- This hilariousnote warning in the first season:
"The following contains graphic images of seniors pranking innocent youngsters. None of the names or identifying characteristics have been changed to protect the innocent, because their reactions are just too dang funny..."
- And in the second season:
- Both parts of The Blacklist episode "Anslo Garrick" aired with warnings about the violent content.
- The Animal Planet series The Vet Life begins thusly: "Due to the occasional graphic nature of veterinary surgical procedures featured in this series, viewer discretion is advised.
- Brain Games: "Parents should not watch this except at their children's discretion".
- On Brainiac, particularly dangerous experiments (or anything involving microwaves) are preceded by Richard Hammond popping up and saying "Do not try this at home." Then, a few seconds later, popping up again: "No, really. Don't." When Vic Reeves took over, he changed it to the more thoughtful "Do not try this at home...or indeed anywhere else."
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer was the first series on The WB to have such a content warning, due to its violence.
- The "Camp Kiki-slasher" and "Fog'd In" episode of Bunk'd had a warning that the episode would be scarier than usual and should be watched with an adult. The first episode involves, well, a slasher, and the second episode involves a brain altering neurotoxin though it ends up having been a prank.
- A Chef's Life had the opening scene of one episode preceded by a parental advisory. The scene in question depicts a seminar on trying to make the art of butchering as humane as possible, which manages to still include enough gore to bump the rating a bit higher up than usual.
- Comedy Central has two of these, in harmony with warnings from their other shows:
- "This program is rated TV-MA and is intended for mature audiences." - Reserved for programs that are predominantly mature in nature. South Park doesn't run with this intro, as they likely assume you know that, but acquired off-network programs such as Archer and Its Always Sunny In Philadelphia do.
- "This program is uncut, and contains strong language and adult situations. Viewer discretion is advised." - Reserved for uncensored showings of CC programs, uncut movies and comedy specials, and certain late-night programs such as The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail that are always shown uncensored. Most TV-MA programs that are aired after midnight, especially on Fridays and Saturdays, will carry this warning. Oddly, It's Always Sunny will often air in uncut form at later hours of the night despite having the first warning.
- Ever since Steve Irwin's wife and children returned to Animal Planet in 2018 hosting a documentary series without him, the network has begun rebroadcasting episodes of The Crocodile Hunter. At the beginning of each segment of a rebroadcast, the original airdate is given, presumably so viewers won't get the wrong impression and think, for example, that Steve is still alive or people can still have the kind of encounters at Sea World he describes.
- The Daily Show is often aired outside the United States on networks that may have real news reporting or other serious content, or in countries with legal requirements for the impartiality and moderation of all news broadcasts. As such, these airings get the following warning:
The show you are about to see is a News Parody. Its stories are not fact checked. Its reporters are not journalists. And its opinions are not fully thought through.
- The Cosby Show has a subversion. One early episode is about a Slumber Party, and mostly has to do with Cliff spending time with Rudy and some other kids of her age, so it opens with a voiceover from Rudy's actress telling us that the episode is especially for kids.
- A Different World had the following warning for two episodes: "Tonight's episode deals with a subject that is sensitive in nature. Viewer discretion is advised." One was for Freddie's Date Rape Averted episode, and the other was for the one where Tisha Campbell's character disclosed that she had AIDS.
- Doctor Who:
- The DVD of Series 5, Volume 1 warns that it contains "smoking scenes." Most of them involve Winston Churchill.
- "The Web of Fear" was originally broadcast with a warning from the Doctor, in character, talking to children at home to warn them that the Yeti is returning and that they're scarier than last time, so "if Mummy and Daddy are scared, you just get them to hold your hand." While the episode is unusually scary, this was also the child-friendly equivalent of Rated M for Money, since the Yeti were very popular monsters at the time. Only the audio has survived, but you can watch a fanmade reconstruction here.
- When Forensic Files still aired on Court TV, several different episodes had content warnings on them, which included references to or images of sexual assault, graphic violence or even the occasional decedent's body/autopsy photo. Unfortunately, these warnings do not appear on their current airings on HLN.
- On Ellen, from "The Puppy Episode" (when Ellen Degeneres came out as a lesbian) onwards, ABC placed warnings for "adult content" before each segment.
- The PBS series Frontline did a special episode on the porn industry entitled "American Porn", which began with a warning very uncommon to see on a PBS show. Not only that, but a red box with the words "Adult Material" appeared on-screen in the top left corner for the entire length of the program.
Tonight's program contains explicit sexual images, explicit descriptions of sexual acts, strong language, and violence. Viewer discretion is advised.
Tonight's program contains graphic language and graphic and sexually suggestive imagery. Viewer discretion is advised.
- The episode "The Merchants of Cool," which discusses how marketers appeal to teenagers, included some clips from MTV (notably The Tom Green Show, Jackass and Undressed), Dawsons Creek, Howard Stern's film Private Parts, Cruel Intentions, and even an unbleeped Cluster F-Bomb courtesy of the infamous Insane Clown Posse. Thus, it has a similarly unusual warning for a PBS show preceding it:
- "Goosebumps "is rated TV-Y7, because it may be too spooky for kids under seven."
- The Hogan Family: The second-season episode "Bad Timing," where a frank discussion between David and his girlfriend involves the use of the word "condom", was one of the first Dom Com episodes to address safe sex; as such, it had one of these read before the episode, as well as commercials for birth-control products and safe-sex PSAs that aired during the night. The pre-episode disclaimer was kept in syndicated airings of the episodenote . (And yes, David and his girlfriend decided to "wait.")
- Jackass originally had this:
Jackass features stunts performed by professionals and/or total idiots. In either case, MTV insists that neither you nor any of your dumb little buddies attempt the dangerous crap in this show.
Warning: The following show features stunts performed either by professionals or under the supervision of professionals. Accordingly, MTV and the producers must insist that no one attempt to recreate or re-enact any stunt or activity performed on this show.
- On the second season, after a couple of kids failed to get the hint, and thanks to complaints from people like Joe Lieberman, they switched to a straighter, narrated message:
- In a similar vein, "home video" shows tend to stipulate, essentially, "Don't do anything stupid" or the submission will be rejected.
- Jurassic Fight Club on The History Channel has this:
The following is a graphic depiction of a violent prehistoric battle. Viewer discretion is advised.
- Little House on the Prairie: Several episodes dealing with racism were not shy about using the word "nigger", and each of them had a discretionary message alerting viewers beforehand that characters were going to use the word. Michael Landon's scripts reflected the harsh realities of the 1800s, where men who hated African-Americans regularly used the word in reference to them.
- The DVD of Look Around You is rated 12 for, among other things, "dangerous experiments". While its experiments are of course completely nonsensical, some (such as fishing an egg out of boiling water with your bare hands, or connecting a big chunk of metal to the mains) would be legitimately dangerous if attempted in real life, and "dangerous if attempted in real life" has always been a massive red flag for the BBFC.
- Majisuka Gakuen:
Season 1: This show is an extension of a school drama, therefore the acting may be poor at times. We ask for the viewer's understanding.
Season 2: Like season 1, but adds "However, some of the acting have improved."
Season 3: Like season 1, but adds "As we enter the third season, some of the acting may be even worse."
- Parodied by Hugh Dennis on Mock the Week:
And now the Antiques Roadshow. This programme contains scenes of tedious dullness right from the start.
- Monty Python's Flying Circus made fun of this:
Eric Idle: There are scenes of violence, people's heads being ripped off, and their toenails being pulled out in slow motion. Then there's a scene where you can see everything, but my friend says it's just all in the way he's holding the spear.
- The Muppet Show had a segment that opened with Kermit warning the audience, "some scenes may not be suitable for adults".
- Mythbusters both parodies and plays this trope straight. At several intervals before and during the show, members of the Mythbusters team will appear and warn viewers not to try any of their experiments at home. However, they will also playfully put up a screen saying WARNING: SCIENCE CONTENT! before some of the more detailed explanations. Adam Savage has stated he hates the disclaimers, because there are a lot of things he does want people to try at home (as such, they do on occasion make it clear when an experiment is indeed safe to replicate, such as the Mentos-and-Diet-Coke trick... they just strongly urge that you do that one outside to avoid having a big sticky mess in your living room).
- Parodied in one episode of Night and Day with messages overlaid on-screen during scenes in which Natalie Harper behaves entirely out-of-character. They progress from "Warning: smoking kills", to "Warning: Drinking may cause a downward spiral into the abyss", to "Shagging your daughter's ex-boyfriend can seriously damage your health" (particularly fitting since the ex-boyfriend in question has apparently become possessed by a demon).
- The fifth-season NUMB3RS episode "Thirty-Six Hours" deals with a train derailment. It was written and filmed before the Chatsworth Metrolink crash but was shown after. At the start of the episode, David Krumholtz gives a content warning that establishes the episode was written and filmed before the tragedy and gives a warning so those who might find the story disturbing can make an informed decision.
- In 1977, an independent station that was rerunning The Outer Limits (1963) gave it this warning that the content might not be suitable for young children.
- Pulp Sport: At the beginning of the penultimate season, this content warning appeared.
Warning: The new series of Pulp Sport contains offensive language and full frontal nudity. And cross-dressing, male-assisted hand jobs, fat-o-grams, masturbating with scissors, mascot suicide, excessive homo-eroticism, bondage, bestiality, vandalism, theft, repeated vomiting, copyright infringement, drug use, rectal enemas, facial urination, exploitation of women, guy-on-guy porn, excessive violence, prostitution, Jordan Luck, swimming in other people's pools, Arabian goggles, more theft, animal masturbation, homophobic reference, binge drinking, and... Rodney Hide. You have been warned.
- Quatermass II: "Before we begin the fourth episode of Quatermass II, we'd like to say that in our opinion it is not suitable for children, or those of you who may have a nervous disposition." — Retraux content warnings, 1955 style.
- The Red Dwarf episode "Polymorph" has a "built-in" content warning at the beginning of the episode.
- The Revolution episode "The Stand" (which had lots of blood, gore, and graphic war scenes) used a menacing red splash-screen to display a content warning. Curiously, no episode since then has used the warning, not even "Children of Men", which also featured heavy war violence.
- At the end of each episode of Robot Wars (at least the Nick GAS airings), the announcer warns viewers at home that building a robot is extremely dangerous and should not be attempted without great care.
- An episode of Roundhouse had David Nicoll getting a painful wedgie. The scene is interrupted by Lisa informing viewers not to try it at home, and that Roundhouse does not condone wedgies, before resuming the show.
- Before early broadcasts of The WB's Savannah, the channel had their mascot Michigan J. Frog singing the advisory warning.
There's more comedy for the family Wednesday night noteStick around, you drama fans, Savannah's on tonightnote
- Scare Tactics: "You know how some shows say 'Don't Try This at Home'? Well, this is one of those." You have to hear it in Tracy Morgan's voice to get the full effect, though.
- The late-1980s CBC series Seeing Things had a respectful disclaimer when it was rebroadcast only a few years later, warning viewers that the depiction of women on television "was not always the same as it is now". However, after being ridiculed by Canadian media for presumably falling afoul of Political Correctness Gone Mad, the network abandoned the disclaimer.
- Sesame Street used to post its resource kit videos on subjects such as incarceration, long-term medical treatment, and the effects of military service on families on the Internet in wholesale form. Each such video opens with a recommendation that adults screen said video before entire families watch it together.
- Soap began each episode with a "parental discretion advised" warning, primarily because it was one of the first ongoing TV series to feature an openly gay character.
- Square One TV partly spoofed this at the beginning of its "Angle Dance" music video, which actually does have mildly suggestive lyrics:
The following song includes graphic descriptions of obtuse and acute angles. Viewers who might be offended by this subject matter should not view this program.
- Steve Coogan did a parody of this on one of his DVDs which warned that the show contained bad language, almost all of it in the warning itself.
- Too Cute has this:
- Top Gear parodied this with a sign warning live audiences that they don't have potentially seizure-inducing strobe lights, because they ran out of budget.
- PBS broadcasts of The Tunnel begin with this warning:
The following program contains content* which may not be suitable for all audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.
- When the UFC is broadcast on FOX, a rather boastful disclaimer airs reading
The following might be the most exciting live sporting event in the history of television, and it's our duty to say: VIEWER DISCRETION ADVISED.
- Parodied on Weird Warfare, which has a warning before each segment that describes the bizarre military concepts it will explore: "The following program features a Hitler sex change and exploding pancakes. Viewer discretion is advised."
- When Spooks aired in the United States on PBS as MI-5, it came with a warning for "content some viewers may find objectionable".
- "Tosh.0 features videos from the internet and is intended for a mature audience. Comedy Central does not condone the activities performed and discourages anyone from attempting them. Enjoy."
- From the original Unsolved Mysteries: "This program is about unsolved mysteries. Whenever possible, the actual family members and police officials have participated in recreating the events. What you are about to see is not a news broadcast." Cue that catchy yet terrifying theme tune and Robert Stack's "Join me! Perhaps you may be able to help solve a mystery."
- When ABC Family first picked up Whose Line Is It Anyway?, they placed it in a 10p.m. weeknight timeslot. When the time came, they used bumpers with stick figure animation and voiceover to humorously tell everyone that Whose Line? is for grownups, and the kids should go to bed.
- Wonder Showzen. Though the theme song claimed it to be a "kid's show, kid's show. Oh, Good Lord, it's a kid's show," viewers were warned in no uncertain terms by a disclaimer shown in the beginning and after commercials:
WARNING:WONDER SHOWZEN CONTAINS OFFENSIVE, DESPICABLE CONTENT THAT IS TOO CONTROVERSIAL AND TOO AWESOME FOR ACTUAL CHILDREN. THE STARK, UGLY, PROFOUND TRUTHS WONDER SHOWZEN EXPOSES MAY BE SOUL CRUSHING TO THE WEAK OF SPIRIT. IF YOU ALLOW A CHILD TO WATCH THIS SHOW, YOU ARE A BAD PARENT OR GUARDIAN.
- Showings on MTV2 had a yellow box defining the TV-MA rating in the lower lefthand corner of the screen while the theme song was playing.
- The DVD sets have a "Not for children" disclaimer on their covers.
- The X-Files: The episodes "Home" and "Via Negativa" were the only two episodes to be preceded by viewer discretion warnings.
- You Can't Do That on Television: The episode "Inequality" replaces its Couch Gag pre-emption bumper with one of these, that reads "The following program contains certain scenes which may not be suitable for mature audiences. Juvenile discretion is advised."
- Between the Lions on PBS had a promo for the show that warned "The following may not be appropriate for grown-ups. This program contains extreme silliness."
- World's Dumbest... parodied this at times, but most often played it straight, especially with regard to their Daredevils or Thrillseekers episodes - for those, every time the show came back from a commercial break, there would be a warning discouraging the audience from attempting to re-enact stunts featured on the show or performing new ones in the same vein. Other times, the warnings were more comedic, and only came up whenever a dangerous stunt was featured in an episode whose topic generally did not include dangerous stunts. Specifically, one stunt was labeled, "DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME! UNLESS YOU'RE DANNY BONADUCE".
- Power Rangers has this in the UK on the request of Saban and Toei (the studio that created footage from Super Sentai).
- The Without a Trace episode "Sons And Daughters" featured this, due to several explicit scenes of teenagers participating in orgies.
- PARENTAL ADVISORY stickers were the controversial brainchild of Tipper Gore (hence the nickname, "Tipper Sticker") and her Parents Music Resource Center, spurred mostly by Tipper catching one of her daughters listening to a Prince album that mentioned the word "masturbation". The 1985 Senate Labor and Commerce Committee hearings saw Frank Zappa, Dee Snyder of Twisted Sister and John Denver testify about their responsibilities as musicians and the fact that the stickers, a seemingly innocuous choice-enabling tool, were a form of censorship. But since There Is No Such Thing As Bad Publicity, musicians deemed controversial saw their record sales skyrocket, and by the 90's, Parental Advisory stickers became a badge of honor for artists proving how hardcore they were. In many cases, the sticker would be comically oversized to drive home that yes, the artist is that risque.
- Perhaps owing to internet streaming making the whole thing somewhat moot, it's become more common for albums to lack an "explicit lyrics" sticker despite containing profanity, such as Lorde's Melodrama.
- The Danzig song "Mother" is written from the perspective of the Parental Advisory sticker ("Mother, tell your children not to walk my way"), though the album itself does not carry one.
- A sticker on the cover of some Guns N' Roses albums reads, "This album contains language which some listeners may find objectionable. They can F?!* OFF and buy something from the New Age section."
- From the back cover of Liquid Tension Experiment's first album:
Caution: "Three Minute Warning" is not for the musically faint-hearted, impatient, or critics of extreme self-indulgence. If you fall into any of the above categories, please hit the stop button on your CD player after track #8.
- Queens of the Stone Age's Era Vulgaris has a sticker that reads: "Rental Advisory: Freedom Not for Purchase".
- The cover for the P.D.Q. Bach album Oedipus Tex & Other Choral Calamities bears this humorous sticker:
Warning! Contains "Classical Rap"
Pathetic Advisory: Inane Lyrics
- Metallica's Master of Puppets
The only track you probably won't want to play is "Damage, Inc." due to the multiple use of the infamous "F" word. Otherwise, there aren't any "Shits", "Fucks", "Pisses", "Cunts", "Motherfuckers" or "Cocksuckers" anywhere on this record.
- In the music video for "Inside the Fire" by Disturbed, just before the video starts, the lead singer warns the audience that the following song contains themes of suicide, advertising the national suicide prevention hotline as well. He probably did this by choice, especially considering that his girlfriend did kill herself.
- Capitol Steps recordings: "Warning: this CD contains parodies!"
- The Offspring has a long content warning on its Ixnay on the Hombre album which is better suited to the Quotes Wiki, so you can read it there.
- Mindless Self Indulgence had an inversion. The radio-friendly version of "Frankenstein Girls Will Seem Strangely Sexy" had a sticker with the following disclaimer: "This recording has been carefully wiped clean and has absolutely no filthy words like FUCK so that you can play it at your radio facility. Now hurry the fuck up and play the fucking thing." Also, all vowels in the song titles on the back cover were *'d out.
- Steel Panther, an Affectionate Parody of the hair metal genre, has two warning stickers on its album Feel The Steel. The one on the front is a standard Parental Advisory label, while the one on the back has this to say:
"The CD/LP you are about to listen to contains parodies that feature foul language, adult content, satanic imagery and depictions of sexually deviant fantasies that may offend the religious right, the unreligious left, fat girls, skinny girls, metrosexuals, animal lovers, animal haters, hippies, skinheads, the current presidential administration and people with ears. The record label and its parent companies do not endorse or support the opinions of Steel Panther. They just think they f—king rock."
- Iggy Pop's American Caesar bears the sticker "Parental Advisory: THIS IS AN IGGY POP RECORD."
- The cover of Running Wild's Under Jolly Roger features a sticker that warns about loud effects that might damage the stereo, which refers to the cannon fire in the opening track.
- While the uncensored version of Bloodhound Gang's Hooray For Boobies carried a sticker warning about "Extremely Offensive Material," the notoriously bastardized edited version (retitled Hooray) revises this to the odd "WARNING: Extremely Funny Material." Very few of the tracks are meant to be laugh-out-loud funny, just cleverly written; and others ("Along Comes Mary" in particular) aren't meant to be funny at all. The only big laugh-out-loud moment, really, is the hidden track — which, of course, is butchered.
- Elvis Costello, an artist who even in the early 1980s was known for Genre Adultery, infamously placed a parody warning sticker on the front of his 1981 Almost Blue album reading, "WARNING: This album contains country & western music and may cause offence to narrow minded listeners."
- Neil Young wrote and recorded a song called "Fuckin' Up" (actually written "F*!#in' Up") so that he could get a warning sticker. He didn't.
- Sire Records' Just Say... compilation series had an album entitled Just Say Anything which carried a parental advisory sticker. It also opens with the song "Warning Parental Advisory" by John Wesley Harding and Steve Wynn, which pretty much deconstructs the trope through and through.
Warning, this is a parental advisory
The words on this disc are in no way offensive
They're just going to say what you already know
- The somewhat erratic liner notes for Lou Reed's Sensory Abuse album Metal Machine Music end with this:
As way of disclaimer, I am forced to say that, due to stimulation of various centers (remember OOOHHHMMM, etc.), the possible negative contraindications must be pointed out. A record has to, of all things. Anyway, hypertense people, etc., possibility of epilepsy (petite mal) psychic motor disorder etc., etc., etc. My week beats your year. — Lou Reed
- Frank Zappa
- He stuck a disclaimer sticker on his album Frank Zappa Meets the Mothers of Prevention:
WARNING/GUARANTEE: This album contains material which a truly free society would neither fear nor suppress. In some socially retarded areas, religious fanatics and ultra-conservative political organizations violate your First Amendment Rights by attempting to censor rock & roll albums. We feel that this is un-Constitutional and un-American. As an alternative to these government-supported programs (designed to keep you docile and ignorant). Barking Pumpkin is pleased to provide stimulating digital audio entertainment for those of you who have outgrown the ordinary. The language and concepts contained herein are GUARANTEED NOT TO CAUSE ETERNAL TORMENT IN THE PLACE WHERE THE GUY WITH THE HORNS AND POINTED STICK CONDUCTS HIS BUSINESS. This guarantee is as real as the threats of the video fundamentalists who use attacks on rock music in their attempt to transform America into a nation of check-mailing nincompoops (in the name of Jesus Christ). If there is a hell, its fires wait for them, not us.
- Zappa has an album called Jazz from Hell, which was the only instrumental album to ever warrant a Parental Advisory sticker. Why? Because one of the songs is called "G Spot Tornado".
- He stuck a disclaimer sticker on his album Frank Zappa Meets the Mothers of Prevention:
- The Styx album Kilroy Was Here was originally issued with a sticker whose text began: "By order of the Majority for Musical Morality, this album contains secret backwards messages and the songs..."
- Dos Gringos fourth album, rather obviously titled "El Cuatro", had the entire cover given over to one.
Contents: Wildly varying musical styles, simple melodies, kick-ass guitar solos, off-key singing, foul language, extreme sarcasm, total defilement of the Queen's English, bathroom humor, political incorrectness, disregard for authority, juvenile behavior, excessive references to genitalia, occasional wit.Contains 1% or less of the following: Intelligence, class, subtlety, good judgment, concern.Warning: Produced in places that routinely process pure filth and garbage.
- The Aristocrats' first album (not unlike Zappa's Jazz from Hell listed above) gained them a parental advisory sticker... for an instrumental. Its title? Blues Fuckers.
- Some copies of The Beautiful Souths album Blue is the Colour carry a sticker on the front cover reading "WARNING - Track one contains some possibly offensive blue language". This is referring to the song "Dont Marry Her", which drops an F-bomb in the chorus.
- George Michael, before MTV airings of his controversial video for I Want Your Sex, stated the following warning:
George: In the past, there were arguments for and against casual sex. Then, it became a question of morality. These days, it can be a question of life or death. It's as simple as that. And this song is not about casual sex.
- Calvin: The TV listings say this movie has "adult situations." What are adult situations?
Hobbes: Probably things like going to work, paying bills and taxes, taking responsibilities...
Calvin: Wow, they don't kid around when they say "for mature audiences."
- WWE's programs in the late '90s Attitude Era often had a content warning about violence and sexual situations — delivered by one of the resident Divas, who would vamp it up through the entire announcement.
- On WWE DVDs, all of the trailers before the main menu are skippable — except for the mildly graphic one that shows the end result of any number of in-ring injuries, with the stern request to "Please do not try this at home".
- After his double murder-suicide, Chris Benoit matches on the WWE Network are preceded by the following: "The following program is presented in its original form. It may contain some content that does not reflect WWE's corporate views and may not be suitable for all viewers. WWE characters are fictitious and do not reflect the personal lives of the actors portraying them. Viewer discretion is advised." To avoid further "promotion" of Benoit, none of the events — even the ones he headlined — mention him in the program descriptors, and his matches lack a chapter select on every show. This warning now also follows any archived or content programming that is rated TV-14 or TV-MA, as it runs counter to the current company image of "family-friendly sports-entertainment".
- TV-MA programming in general gets an extra content warning screen◊, narrated, with "TV-MA" in massive red letters.
- Briscoe Brothers promos are occasionally preceded by "a mature audiences only" warning, especially in Ring of Honor, who tried and failed to "tune them down" across two television deals. As time went on ROH had to add more and more words to the disclaimers and once had "trained professionals" in quotes on the disclaimer itself in relation to the "stunts" being performed.
- When Truth Martini took over a bar in Chicago and used it run an unauthorized "Night of Hoopla", it was preceded by the disclaimer: "The views of Truth Martini do not represent the views of ROH Wrestling, its management, or its subsidiaries."
- Before Vendetta Pro Wrestling 2014 anniversary show, Sunami read the "the view expressed may not reflect" disclaimer himself before he and Kadin Anthony explained their four-year feud with the Ballard brothers and their intention to end the Ballards' careers for good.
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:
- One episode of the third series finishes with the warning: "The preceding program contains scenes of extreme violence which may be disturbing to some viewers. Time travellers of a nervous disposition may wish to consider listening to something else for the previous half-hour."
- A straight example was when the episode featuring the destruction of the Guide offices was broadcast on Radio 4 shortly after 9/11.
- The Archers: An episode where Owen rapes Kathy was preceded by such a warning, and immediately followed by a hotline number.
- The 1940s horror series Lights Out routinely opened with one of these:
"Lights Out brings you stories of the supernatural and the supernormal, dramatizing the fantasies and mysteries of the unknown. We tell you this frankly, so if you wish to avoid the excitement and tension of these imaginative plays, we urge you calmly — but sincerely — to turn off your radio now."
- Comically exaggerated in an episode of Hello Cheeky:
"Is it suitable for children?
"It's not even suitable for people!"
- Parodied at the top of each hour of Michael Savage's Savage Nation talk show as such.
"Warning: The Michael Savage Show contains adult language, adult content, psychological nudity. Listener discretion is advised."
- Monty Python spoofed this in the "executive intro" for one of their records:
There is little or no offensive material [on this record] apart from four cunts, one clitoris, and a foreskin. And, as they only occur in this opening introduction, you're past them now.
- Ken Hamblin's show would sometimes go into a commercial break with this parody warning:
"Caution! This radio show could prove hazardous to your victimizations and should be avoided at all costs if you are a white liberal, a quota black or brown, and trust in the merits of affirmative action forever. Should you fit into the above categories, the host and your radio station assume no responsibility for your predictable discomfort."
- The box for Chez Geek, as well as its spinoffs, contains the tongue-in-cheek warning "For adult audiences only. Actual maturity not required."
- Dungeons & Dragons' Book of Vile Darkness, a splatbook devoted to evil-aligned abilities, got a mature content warning that was somewhat out of proportion to the level of sex and violence actually present in it. Then Book of Exalted Deeds, a good-themed splatbook, got one too — but it contained things like saints, martyrs, and a feat that gave the character stigmata, and thus could conceivably offend certain groups. According to the designers, though, the warnings were there to deter the temptation to abuse the overpowered abilities present in both books.
- All Palladium Books products feature some form of warning on their first page (most infamously Rifts's "WARNING: Violence and the supernatural"), along with a blurb about "parental discretion" and the company and writers not condoning magic, drug use, or violence in Real Life.
- Avenue Q has warnings such as "PARENTAL ADVISORY: 60% adult situations and 40% foam rubber" and "Not appropriate for children due to language and adult content such as full puppet nudity".
- Jersey Boys has this disclaimer: "This musical contains smoke, loud gunshots, strobe lights, and authentic, offensive Jersey vocabulary".
- Games which allow players to send each other content were given the ESRB warning "Game experience may change during online play". This is even true for certain games outside the ESRB's region. It was later replaced by "Online interactions not rated by the ESRB". There is a similar one for music games with downloadable songs: "Music downloads not rated by the ESRB".
- Racing Games with licensed or realistic vehicles, such as the Gran Turismo and Forza Motorsport series, will have a disclaimer that the cars featured in the game may differ from their real-life counterparts in design or performance (and also to be a safe driver). This is partly because Our Lawyers Advised This Trope; although these games use authenticity as a selling point, they could open themselves up to lawsuits if a car behaves worse in the game than it does in real life. Tokyo Xtreme Racer Drift 2 went further and added that some cars included in the game may "not be available in certain parts of the world".
- In recent times, one content warning or Trigger for certain games mentions "Allusions to sexual violence" where it may hint at or depict rape. Older games (such as Dragon Age: Origins) which had depictions of rape, allusions to it, and the game addressing it as such have not been reclassified, and this has only thus affected several recent games.
- Metro: Last Light contains a scene where two soldiers attempt to rape a woman, before she dies.
- One scene in Beyond: Two Souls again has the Attempted Rape of the main character, this time by two bar flies, before her ghost guardian intervenes violently.
- For Watch_Dogs one of the big missions involves shutting down a sex slave operation, and instead of a simple allusion like, say, The Punisher it goes into enough detail to provide context that this is abuse, rape, sexual violence.
- Sega created a special "Deep Water" rating for games with a definitive adult theme. Only three games ever got this rating, in addition to the normal ESRB rating: Eternal Champions: Challenge from the Dark Side, X-Perts, and the Sega Saturn port of Duke Nukem 3D.
- When you boot up Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning:
WARNING! In case you haven't figure [sic] it out yet, this game is intended to be a horror game. As such, it has loud noises, flashing images, and is overall pretty spoopy. (Well, at least it's supposed to be...) If you downloaded this thinking it would be great edutainment for your kid or something, don't let them play it! Unless, of course, they enjoy horror games. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED
- Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden has "/!\\WARNING/!\\ May be erotic for child" spin onto the screen at the start of the Dating Sim minigame (see the start of this video). The minigame contains absolutely nothing erotic beyond a full-screen image of Cyberdwarf and Ivory Latta kissing (not show in the linked video).
- Conker's Bad Fur Day includes a warning on the game's box (and it also has the ESRB rating of M much bigger than normal), on the Instruction Booklet, at the start of the game, and when launching the game in Rare Replay. note But it's all justified because of the strong language, sexual references, gory violence, use of alcohol and tobacco, Toilet Humor, and the in-game elements of war, survival horror, and bank theft — all in a kid-friendly art style.
- In Cookie Clicker, the flavor text for the One Mind upgrade gives you red warning text, and attempting to purchase it gives you a dialog box warning you of potentially unexpected and undesirable results and asking if you really want to purchase it. Because if you click OK, you trigger the Grandmapocalypse.
- The Crooked Man says right after the start "This game contains sudden surprises and harsh images. The weak of heart and those poor with horror should not play. The author takes no responsibility for any trouble that arises from playing the game."
- Tecmo's Deception has this little blurb on the back of the jewel case:
"WARNING: This game contains satanic references and may be inappropriate for some individuals."
- Devil May Cry always opens with a warning about the violence in the game.
- DoDonPachi Daifukkatsu Black Label comes with descriptions of Bomb Style, Power Style, and Strong Style on the Style select screen. Strong Style's description is juxtaposed with a difficulty warning every few seconds:
"DANGER — This style is customized for advanced players. Proceed only if you have prepared yourself."
- When you launch Doki Doki Literature Club!, the game opens with a warning that it contains disturbing content and is not suitable for children or those not good with such material. It even provides a link to a webpage that elaborates that the game is not what it seems, and contains themes like depression, suicide, self harm, and abuse. It doesn't just go straight to the main menu, either, but instead requires you to press a button to say you understand. The content warning turns out to be a sort-of Bait-and-Switch; it's a genuine content warning, but the game leads you to believe it's only to do with the rather heavy issues the Dysfunction Junction cast of girls are facing, rather than the metafictional existential horror that eventually ensues.
- Dreaming Mary has the radio voice during the sound test say that some areas of the dream "may not be suitable for children or those of a nervous disposition." And they mean it.
- Europa Universalis III has "alcohol and tobacco references" (i.e. the presence of wine and tobacco as tradable goods) contributing to its 12+ rating, alongside (very) "mild violence" consisting of sprites bloodlessly shooting at each other.
- Eversion contains the following: "Not suitable for children or those of a nervous disposition." It's on the screen right before the title screen — right underneath an H. P. Lovecraft quote. The warning is quite appropriate, as the game is noted for making nervous players slightly paranoid.
- Despite being entirely bloodless and its violence nearly entirely slapstick, God Hand gets a violence warning in the US (over a picture of Gene nailing someone in the crotch) — just because of the "Head Slicer" God Reel.
- Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice opens with a content warning about the game's depiction of psychosis (which by most accounts is very accurate), along with a URL leading to a website with help and information about mental health issues. A more run-of-the-mill violence warning gets relegated to the bottom, after the mental health information.
- In Hyperdimension Neptunia mk2, Meijin Takahashi (famous for Adventure Island) will warn players personally to not play the game in a dark room.
- The Irritating Maze warns that "persons with cardiac disorder and/or pregnancy" should not attempt to play the game, though it doesn't give players actual electric shocks like the Game Show it was based on.
- The Jet Set Radio series features this example:
"Graffiti is art. However, graffiti as an act of vandalism is a crime. Every state/province has vandalism laws that apply to graffiti, and local entities such as cities and counties have anti-graffiti ordinances. Violation of these laws can result in a fine, probation and a jail sentence. SEGA, this document, and its author do not condone the act of real life vandalism in any form."
- Interplay's release of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring PC game included a content disclaimer in the manual regarding some dated tropes in Tolkein's works. Notably the depiction of wolves, smoking, and the usage of the term "black". The disclaimer mentioned that the game was simply being faithful to the era in which the source material was written when wolves were misunderstood animals, smoking wasn't seen as a harmful addiction, and to describe someone or something as "dark" or "black" simply meant evil as opposed to a racial description.
- Mafia III has one, explaining its use of Deliberate Values Dissonance:
"Mafia 3 takes place in a fictionalised version of the American South in 1968. We sought to create an authentic and immersive experience that captures this very turbulent time and place, including depictions of racism. We find the racist beliefs, language, and behaviours of some characters in the game abhorrent, but believe it is vital to include these depictions in order to tell Lincoln Clay's story. Most importantly, we felt that to not include this very real and shameful part of our past would have been offensive to the millions who faced - and still face - bigotry, discrimination, prejudice, and racism in all its forms."
- Modern Warfare 2 goes beyond having a content warning; it allows you to skip the "No Russian" level, which it warns might be considered offensive. The warning is entirely justified, as the level has you participating in a simulated terrorist attack, striding through an airport and gunning down civilians. This level was the sole reason for the game getting an 18 rating from the BBFC in the UK - without it, the game would have been a 15.
- Mushihimesama asks the player for confirmation with an ominous red "DANGER" screen if they attempt to play Ultra Mode. Its sequel Mushihimesama Futari does the same.
- The Mystery Case Files series installment Escape From Ravenhearst marked the first time that distribution site Big Fish Games ever felt the need to include such a warning on a game's download page. They advised (in bold, red, underlined letters) that the game was a "deep psychological thriller" which might "reveal deep-seated fears." They've since released other games with similar warnings, including in that same series; however, Big Fish specializes in a lot of lighthearted fare, making these warnings very unusual.
- NieR: Automata has a more lighthearted example that pops up when you're about to face the Bonus Boss of its DLC, warning you that the coming fight may "destroy your sense of immersion" - the bosses are Yosuke Matsuda and Kenichi Sato, the CEOs of Square Enix and Platinum respectively.
- Outlast has this message when you start the game:
Outlast contains intense violence, gore, graphic sexual content, and strong language. Please enjoy.
- Pokémon GO has a safety warning that displays each time you launch the game: "Remember to be alert at all times. Stay aware of your surroundings." This is usually accompanied by a humorous picture of a trainer walking with their cell phone out while a dangerous Pokemon is right in front of them (such as a Gyarados, Gengar, or Steelix). Since the game involves walking around while looking at your phone, the safety warning is definitely needed.
- The classic warning from Resident Evil: "This game contains scenes of explicit violence and gore". Strong language was added in Resident Evil 4.
- "Some parts of this game may be considered violent or cruel", from the Silent Hill series, usually shown over a picture of the protagonist beating the snot out of a monster. (These warnings are not included in the HD re-releases.) Beating the snot out of monsters is rarely the most disturbing, violent, or cruel things about the games.
- Silent Hill: Origins has a screen which says that parts of the game may be "disturbing". The idea that someone could buy a video game with disturbing images plastered all over the back cover without knowing that it could disturbing is disturbing in and of itself.
- Silent Hill: Shattered Memories starts with a warning that the game uses psychological profiling to gather information about the player, that the game world changes in response to the player's choices to make it more personally terrifying, and concludes that the game plays you as much as you play it.
- Soul Bubbles has an amusing one, warning the player of the absence of orcs, wizards, and soldiers, and assures that "everything will be hunky-dory".
- Star Soldier R has an unusual warning concerning its length — its longest game mode can be finished in five minutes, and the point of the game is to beat your best score. Lest people complain that It's Short, So It Sucks!, the Wii Shop Channel has a warning (in red text no less) about how short the game is.
- StepMania has a typical warning not to play the game in a small room, although this announcer pack includes the girl saying, "Who reads this crap anyway?"
- Typing of the Dead actually integrates the content warning into the game, by making it one of the paragraphs the player has to type during the boss fight with Strength.
Warning: This game contains depictions of gore and violence. If you are of 17 years or younger, please play with your eyes closed.
- Vegetable Game opens with an ominous screen which cryptically states: "WARNING — Do not play Vegetable Game."
- Wolfenstein: The New Order has a pre-menu disclaimer saying that the depiction of the 'Crapsack World' as run by the Nazis in the 'Alternate History' setting is in no way supportive of their actions, as it goes:
"Wolfenstein® : The New Order is a fictional story set in an alternate universe in the 1960s. Names, characters, organisations, locations and events are either imaginary or depicted in a fictionalised manner. The story and contents of this game are not intended to and should not be construed in any way to condone, glorify or endorse the beliefs, ideologies, events, actions, persons or behaviour of the Nazi regime or to trivialise its war crimes, genocide, and other crimes against humanity."
- Yandere Simulator had a more humorous one for its debug builds for some while, though it was eventually removed for being a bit too narmy.
"WARNING: This game contains bullying, kidnapping, torture, murder, suicide, graphic violence, partial nudity, kittens, raw sewage, cooked sewage, microwave-ready sewage, true nightmares, eldritch monstrosities, bald assassins, DK Mode, fake tans, Titans, murderous ice fairies, impossibly-strong punches, genocide crusades, spooky scary skeletons, STANDING ON THE EDGE, zombies, vampires, succubi, lewd manga, busty pink-haired schoolgirls, game-breaking bugs, an over-worked programmer, and much worse."
- Parodied at the beginning of "Siblings Untitled 01".
"WARNING! The clip you are about to see is FAKE. All the places, characters, and events are more or less fictitious in their presentation and you are expected to know it never happened. It ain't a biography, people, it's an internet cartoon. Expect nothing but lies. LIES! P.S. You cannot refund time, so if I end up wasting yours, then do us both a favor and get over it. Using levitation! Using levitation! P.S. You cannot refund time, so if I end up wasting yours, then do us both of a favor...then do us both a favor and get over it. Using levitation! Using LEVITATION!...PSYoucannotrefundtimesoifIendupwastingyoursthendousbothafavorandgetoverit Using LEVITATION! LEVITATION! LEVITATION! Using LEVITATION! Ti revo teg dna rovaf a htob su od neht, sruoy gnitsaw pu dne I fi os, emit dnufer tonnac uoy S.P. P.S. You cannot refund time, so if I end up wasting yours, then do us both a favor and get over it. Using levitation! Peeeeeeeee.Eeessssssssss. Yooooouuuuuuu canooooooooott refuuuuuuuuuuuuund tiiiiiiiiiiime soooooo, if Iiiiiiiiiiii eeeeeeennd uuuuuup waaaaaaaaaasting yoooooooooouuuuuuuurs, theeeen doooo uuuusssssss booooooooth a favooooor annnnnnd get ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooveeeeeer iiiiiit."
- The beginning of AMV Hell 0 (which is made almost entirely of Hentai clips) warns the viewer that the contents should not be viewed by anyone and that they should close their browser window right now.
- RWBY: Rooster Teeth preceded episode 7 of Volume 3 with a warning to the Periphery Demographic of little kids, stating that the show would get darker from here on out. And they weren't kidding: a main character gets shot in the chest by an arrow and whimpers desperately before being burned to ash by the end of the Volume. A second is bisected just a few episodes prior.
- The first episode of Go Go Parody Rangers contains the following warning.
Warning: The following flash cartoon contains coarse language, sexual references, bleeding, retarded stereotypes, stolen human, bad 90's synth music, monsters, orgasming robots and may cause seizures and the death of your childhood memories. Enjoy.
- The orgasming robots reference refers to how the robots "come" together to make a bigger robot. Lampshaded in a future episode where the later robots don't make orgasm noises, the Red Ranger lampshades that "It's not the same as season one."
- The Strong Bad Email "Too Cool" ends with an ad for Senor Cardgage's character video (which consists of a close-up of skin folds with a face drawn on them, referred to as "The Family Might/Could"), which contains the following disclaimer, read by Homestar:
Rated F for Folds. May contain graphic images of vague skin folds, references to Family Might/Coulds, and scenes of strong foldulence.
- "Venus Envy is Rated WEB-14 and probably isn't suitable for younger viewers or those who find the following things offensive: Homosexuality, Bisexuality, Transsexuality, Jews, Slapstick, Mixed-Religion Marriages, Women in the Workplace, Women in Pants, Plot, Girls' Soccer, or Chickens teaching Hard Science. If you find any of the above offensive, please go here."
- xkcd has the message "Warning: this comic occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors)."
- Sluggy Freelance has this warning at the start of the "K I T T E N I I" arc:
The following story contains graphic violence not suitable for anyone. Parental guidance is suggested. Or you can just staple the kid's eyelids shut. That's not suggested, the parental guidance thingy is suggested, but we can't deny that staples are a timesaver.
- They also had a number of similar labels at the bottom of particularly gory strips during the original "K I T T E N". These started out as fairly straight warning labels and grew increasingly satirical throughout.
- Referenced and parodied in Least I Could Do, when the main character is asked what he hears when the MythBusters give their famous warning "Don't try what you're about to see at Home." "Ever.". The answer?
"Do it. Do it at home." "Do it bigger."
- Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures
- Brawl in the Family makes sure to warn you, at great length, that its "Nasty" strip contains "excess gore, racism, foul language, public indecency, [and] frightening imagery" before you get to the actual comic. Which it does — in the form of several work-safe VisualPuns.
- Khaos Komix:
This is an LGBTWTFBBQ comic about "the gays". It comes with all the trigger warnings and nothing is safe for work. This comic may upset you, anger you, or cause you to become hopelessly addicted to my updates.
- The footer of El Goonish Shive states that it "is a comic about a group of teenagers who face both real life and bizarre, supernatural situations. It is a comedy mixed with drama and is recommended for audiences thirteen and older."
- There's an in-story example in Alien Hand Syndrome that may double as "Blind Idiot" Translation. A porn comic has a tiny warning label reading "For exciting adult only!"
- The Dumbing of Age strip for May 25th, 2016 came with a content warning bigger than the strip itself. It involved a flashback to Becky finding out her mother had committed suicide.
- Due to the focus of Forest Hill becoming increasingly about child sexual abuse and getting more explicit, the author has added a warning to the website that the comic should not be read by children without permission from a parent.
- The Bongcheon-Dong Ghost opens with a warning that "reader discretion is advised for pregnant women, the elderly, and those suffering from serious medical conditions." Not surprising, given the jump-scares...
- Homestuck's physical (re)release has the following: "HOMESTUCK is rated T+ for Older Teen and is recommended for ages 16 and up. This volume contains rude words, harlequin abuse, dead cats, plush puppet rumps, shitty anime swords, obscure game mechanics, and incredible silliness."
- In Survival of the Fittest, topics containing either extreme violence or graphic sex are expected to be given content warnings. This usually just results in more people reading it.
- This Chromagic post contains a parody of this at the very start.
- SF Debris threw one of these into his review of the Voyager episode "Elogim", mainly to warn viewers that he's going to be using a lot of profanity to describe how terrible the episode is.
- Markiplier's Brutal Doom Let's Play has this at the start of the video. "Warning: this video contains scenes of extreme violence WHICH IS AWESOME!!!" 
- Dragon Ball Abridged:
- Team Four Star parodies content warnings on their bloopers or alternate ideas videos. Most notably, the first one opens with one of the members warning that the video will contain strong language not suitable for minors. He then adds "So if you're under the age of 18 and have never heard the word "fuck" before... well, you have now!"
- In episode 54, Cell uses this trope as a Pre-Mortem One-Liner before he performs a Neck Snap on a newscaster.
- The Cinema Snob opened his review of Gross Out (a movie made to be as disgusting and offensive as humanly possible) by warning the viewer to turn the episode off immediately. He gave this warning for good reason.
- Oddity Archive:
- Ben Minnotte warns male viewers with girlfriends on the episode "American EXXXtacy (and Other C-Band Nastiness)" not to watch it, before noting that his viewers don't have girlfriends and saying there will be eye candy to female viewers.
- Ben issues a more serious one at the beginning of the "Protect and Survive" episode due to its discussion of nuclear war and its use of Gallows Humor. Warnings are also occasionally inserted into the middle of episodes to advise viewers with sensitivities to certain topics to skip a particular segment.
- The Rooster Teeth show Immersion had a content warning before some of their more dangerous experiments. They were serious, although some ended in a joke.
Jack: And you would be forever known as the person who died trying to imitate something from the internet. Don't Try This at Home.
- The Death Battle between Justin Bieber and Rebecca Black opens with the following disclaimer (which may or may not have been inspired by the one from South Park):
"The following is made for satirical, parody, and entertainment purposes. All characters and events, even those based on real people, are fictional. This is meant to be enjoyed and not promote direspect. The opinions expressed in this program do not reflect those of Revision3 or ScrewAttack Entertainment LLC. The following program contains crude language and jokes. Due to its content it should not be viewed by anyone who may take an offense to anything."
- Several YouTube Poop collabs immediately start with this trope, warning viewers that some of the entries contain flashing colors and ear-rape (and occasionally cartoon horses).
- Several reviews by TheNSCL feature these, though they do seem a bit strict at times. For example, the One-Punch Man review opens on a large 18+ advisory for violence, despite the show itself carrying a TV-PG rating.
- One Youtuber, Retro Challenge Gamer, even puts up the actual ESRB rating logos for any games with a T rating or higher as a warning to potentially family unfriendly content contained within the video.
- Cinematic Excrement's videos begin with this warning:
"Warning: The following video may contain language that some people may find crude, vulgar, or objectionable. The author makes no apologies for this. In fact, he is quite proud of it. This video is intended for mature audiences only. If you are uptight, puritanical, easily offended, or lacking a sense of humor, please stop reading and leave the Internet. Now."
- Parodied in this walkthrough for Don Doko Don:
Don Doko Don is rated "C" for "Cow King." It contains scenes of giant pumpkins and chef bears getting hit with hammers. Player discretion is advised.
- Jonathan Pie gets one on this environmentally-themed video.
CAUTION! This video contains explicit language and dangerous doses of truth!
- While Cinema Wins is usually an all-ages channel that'll censor swearing, there is no getting around some of the more violent content in certain movies, so the video for such movies will open with a warning about the violence.
- CinemaSins opened their Basic Instinct and Showgirls videos with warnings about the sexual content in both films.
- The Mysterious Mr. Enter: For the Animated Atrocities series, reviews for episodes that contain graphic or psychologically messed-up content would open with a British voice announcing "Some viewers may find this disturbing, viewer discretion is advised."
Announcer: Some viewers may find this disturbing.Mr. Enter: Stop! Right..."some viewers". I want you all to listen to me very carefully. First of all, if you don't know what a placenta is, you're too young to watch the review of this episode. As for the episode itself, I don't think that I'm old enough to watch the actual episode. But, here we are.
- The review for "Ren Seeks Help" has a more severe warning, which really sells how messed up the episode is.
- Aside from the usual "Spoilers Ahead" in every Wisecrack Edition video, Jared did a particular trigger warning in The Philosophy of Attack on Titan, stating that while they would be analyzing the anime through the intellectual lens of infamous Nazi jurist and political theorist Carl Schmitt, neither the anime, nor the various collaborators of Wisecrack condone Carl Schmitt's war crimes and fascist ideology, flat-out referring to him as "a piece of shit," and simply seeing the anime as a hypothetical to his political philosophy.
- Local 58 has a video titled "Show For Children", which is a grim and nihilistic parody of one of the more macabre '30s cartoons. The entirety of the video's descrption on YouTube is "Not For Children", quite possibly Sincerity Mode to make it clear to parents who may have visited the video on the basis of the title alone that the video is not kid-friendly.
- The Editing Room's script for Alpha (2018) has a comical one in the Alt Text:
The script you are about to enjoy was written by an author who is weeks away from getting a puppy, and may include scenes of cooing, squeeing, and gushy language. Reader discretion is advised.
- TV Tropes implemented its own content warnings after The Google Incident, placing potentially NSFG (Not Safe For Google) content behind a curtain warning users "you are going into a section of the wiki that may be less family friendly" and requiring them to manually click "yes" to see the page. These pages had advertisements provided by a different ad server. These warnings were removed after The Second Google Incident, when The Content Policy and the 5P Circuit was implemented and the most NSFW trope and work pages were deleted.
- Archive of Our Own has four primary content warning flags: "Graphic depictions of violence", "Rape/non-con", "Major character death", and "Underage". Authors can also choose to select "None of these warnings apply", indicating the story has no major content warnings, or "Choose not to use Archive warnings", indicating that they have chosen not to forewarn readers as to the content. Additional content warnings may also be provided in the tags.
- South Park gives us the following: "All characters and events in this show — even those based on real people — are entirely fictional. All celebrity voices are impersonated... poorly. The following program contains coarse language and due to its content it should not be viewed by anyone."
- [adult swim] has a general disclaimer that it has "content that some viewers may not find suitable", covering not only children, but more sensitive older viewers. For the really bloody episodes, it adds: "Just in case that last disclaimer wasn't enough, this episode contains extreme violence. We would rather run this than cut the violence from the episode because we are American Cowboys." They started doing this after the particularly graphic Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex episode "Jungle Cruise".
- Code Monkeys contains a different gag disclaimer at the beginning of each episode, such as this one from "Super Prison Breakout":
A) Contains content that may not be suitable for all audiences.
B) Might use the word (beep) a lot.
Viewer Discretion is advised.
- There was also an episode of the show which focused on this. "The Story of 420" poked fun at this backfiring with video games. First Lady Nancy Reagan forces Game-a-Vision to put warning labels on all of their games stating "Playing this game increases the likelihood that you will engage in drug use and deviant sex". While Larrity objects at first, he's happy to discover that the labels cause their game sales to skyrocket to the point where Reagan then has to ban them from having the labels on their games.
- In the Beany and Cecil episode So What, And The Seven WhatKnots, Liverache (a parody of Liberace) uses his blow torch to burn Dishonest John's butt. He gets electrocuted on search lights, then pauses the pain to tell kids that they've been watching too much violence on television. Then he continues the pain.
- Beavis And Butthead had, not one, but two different Content Warnings during its run; apparently the first one wasn't quite serious enough, so they changed it up a bit without sacrificing the funny:
- Beavis and Butt-head are not real. They are stupid cartoon people completely made up by this Texas guy who we hardly even know. Beavis and Butt-Head are dumb, crude, ugly, thoughtless, sexist, self-destructive fools. Some of the things they do will cause a person to get hurt, expelled, arrested...possibly deported. But for some reason the little wiener heads make us laugh.
- Beavis and Butt-head are not role models. They're not even human; they're cartoons. Some of the things they do could cause a person to get hurt, expelled, arrested... possibly deported. To put it another way, Don't Try This at Home.
- They even had to put in content warnings during the episodes "Stewart's House" (the gas stove sniffing one) and "Way Down Mexico Way" (the drug-filled condom swallowing one). Sadly, not even this bold act saved those episodes from being removed from circulation, then returning to the airwaves with edits.
- The DVDs of Futurama has content and copyright warnings in several languages, including alien script.
- On Comedy Central, season five airs with a content warning bumper and a "viewer discretion advised" voiceover from any of various characters; those episodes are cut from direct-to-video films with more mature content which garnered TV-14 ratings, rather than Futurama's usual TV-PG.
- In "Bender Should Not Be Allowed on Television," a scene of Bender setting himself on fire was given the disclaimer "Don't try this, kids at home", while Bender himself said "Try this, kids at home!" Later, when Dwight says that watching TV gave him the idea to rob Bender, there's a Futurama screen with Bender announcing: "You're watching Futurama, the show that does not promote the cool crime of robbery!"
- Batman Beyond:
TV announcer: We'd like to warn our viewers that the following footage may be disturbing to young children.
Young boy: Turn it up!
- Rob Zombie's The Haunted World of El Superbeasto begins with a very straight-faced rendition of the Frankenstein "friendly warning."
- The Simpsons' first few Treehouse of Horror Halloween Episodes had these. The first one was a direct parody of the Frankenstein warning.
- In 1997, when the TV ratings were introduced, Nickelodeon put a special content warning at the beginning of KaBlam!, as it was the first Nicktoon to be given a TV-Y7 rating:
Nickelodeon announcer: Sometimes on KaBlam!, things go Kablam!, And that's why it's rated Y7 (cue to Henry holding up a (heavy) TV-Y7 logo)
- While KaBlam! was the first Nicktoon to get the rating, it wasn't the oldest. That honor belongs to Ren & Stimpy, but by 1997 the show was off the air and it wasn't officially rated until later, when it was rerun On Demand.
- When Action League Now had its own short-lived spin-off, it had an example that was Played for Laughs at the beginning of the episode, "In the Whine of Fire":
- The Boondocks occasionally features a disclaimer, most notably before its episode focusing on closeted rapper Gangstalicious, assuring its audience that no, Gangstalicious was not based on any real artists, no, not even the one you're thinking of, and we'd really prefer to avoid the requisite hate mail and death threats, thank you.
- When Total Drama and 6teen first started airing on Cartoon Network they had a warning message before each episode that stated they were rated TV-PG (at the time, shows with that rating usually aired on Adult Swim). As TV-PG programming became the norm for CN, the warnings became utterly pointless, so they were dropped. Many episodes of Total Drama also had the following built-in warning or some variation, read by Chris: "This episode of Total Drama contains scenes of extreme stunts performed by animated teens. Do not try any of what you see here at home. Seriously, you could get really messed up."
- Clerks: The Animated Series has some great ones, especially when the narrator (Kevin Michael Richardson) wonders aloud "Is anyone still watching after all that?" or talks about how the first episode is supposedly awful: "Tune in next week for a much better episode! For now, though — courage."
- Parodied in Family Guy at the beginning of Homicide: Life on the Street: "This show contains adult content and is brought to you by the letter H."
- The Phineas and Ferb episode "The Monster of Doctor Phineasnferbenstein" opens with one, as a parody of the Frankenstein example above.
- When TNN/Spike TV had its short-lived adult animation block (including Gary the Rat, Stripperella and Ren & Stimpy "Adult Party Cartoon"), a fake rating screen would come up before the show with the announcement, "The following program is rated CFFA: Cartoons for f(bleep)kin' adults. Hide the kids."
- Ruff Ruffman: Humble Media Genius, a spinoff of FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman, is rated "HMG: Humble Media Genius - Humor featuring cats, dogs, mice, selfies and some cheese. Strong media literacy throughout."
- Parodied by one of the Couch Gags in Garfield and Friends:
Garfield: This program is "K" rated: no adults unless accompanied by a kid.
- Also parodied in Tiny Toon Adventures: How I Spent My Vacation when Fowlmouth and Fifi la Fume are watching a movie, which is advertised as being rated "F" (Not suitable for Fowlmouth).
- Parodied in the second Scary Godmother movie, The Revenge of Jimmy. Harry, serving as narrator, warns that "those watching of a more sensitive nature may wish to turn away for this next graphic scene of horticultural violence." Cut to Jimmy smashing the pumpkins in an attempt to ruin Halloween.
- In some countries where they aired Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!, Jetix add a disclaimer not to imitate the action sequences.
- Whenever Disney Junior airs a show, movie, or special with scary scenes in it, they air this disclaimer saying that the following program might be scary for some of the younger viewers and that watching with an adult is recommended. For example, they aired the disclaimer in front of Toy Story of Terror!. Considering that Disney Junior is a preschool network, and no parent wants to be woken up in the middle of the night by their child crying about something scary they saw on TV, this is justified.
- The Anime Boston Fan Convention has an extended warning segment before the AMV contest with clips from anime series showing what the warning represents, usually humorously. One year, the Fanservice warning featured a clip from Golden Boy and a character in a Stripperiffic costume that had the audience rolling on the floor laughing.
- For many years the British Columbia Film Classification Office used a cougar to signify films that were not for kids. It became so beloved that even after the cougar was retired in 1997 in favor of a generic "18A" rating, the BCFCO resurrected it in The New '10s to classify indie films that would have gotten an NC-17 rating from the MPAA. Platypus Comix has the whole story. You can also check out the BCFCO's official page on the "Restricted Cougar".
- Back in 1999, when Animax Latin America was still called Locomotion, the series would start with a content warning featuring Playmobil-like figures doing a slapstick version of what the warning was about. Shortly before the name change, the figures were replaced with actual footage from anime series (for example, Neon Genesis Evangelion for violence or Agent Aika for sexual content) representing the warning.
- In the early days of the UK's Channel 4, programmes of a sexual nature were marked with a 'red triangle'. This was dropped after realizing that this essentially marked out the good bits for everyone to find.
- Certain channels in Britain may have a content warning prior to a show with mature content such as nudity or violence. If the show is really bad about it or has at least one scene that cranks it Up to Eleven there will be a content warning after the commercial break.
- For many years Mexican TV networks would superimpose a capital "A" (for "adultos") in the corner of the screen on more mature shows.
- While it is very rare, if NBC feels the need to preface its shows with such a warning, it does so with a blood-red splash-screen and the deep-voiced NBC announcer reading the caption, "Due to violent content, viewer discretion advised." If it is especially violent (for example, every episode of Hannibal), a tiny "Viewer Discretion Advised" caption pops up on the bottom of the screen at the start of each and every act.
- Fox has a tendency to pick up the more risqué shows on American broadcast TV. As a result, much of its library is rated TV-14 and up, and gets a content warning bumper just before the beginning of each broadcast.
- PBS has its own generic warning screen which mainly appears on British programs (particularly Call the Midwife, with the exception of the Christmas specials), though POV has used a silent (read: without voiceover) variant before at least one episode:
Female British Announcer: The following program contains mature content which may not be suitable for all audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.
- In Argentina (and some other South American countries), any program (or block of programs) meant for older audiences would typically begin with this (or a variation of it):
"A partir de este momento / Aquí finaliza el horario de protección al menor. La permanencia de los niños frente al televisor queda la exclusiva / sola responsibilidad de los (señores) padres."[[note]]Very loosely: "The child protection block will now end at this time / here. Any children still watching the television remain the sole responsibility of their parents."
- It's not uncommon to see posts on social networking sites with frightening subject matter, such as rape, abuse, murder, be prefaced with either CW ("content warning") or TW ("trigger warning").
- When they were a pay cable channel, Disney Channel had this before any PG-13 films and anything that could potentially frighten young children. They notably ran it in front of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (see the Film tab), almost entirely on the strength of the infamous boat scene (which was included in its near-entirety in Disney's showings) - other than that, the rest of the film is rather tame.
- If Disney Junior is running a movie or special that has scenes that could potentially scare or upset their target audience, they will precede it with a warning which has the channel's narrator stating that "some scenes[...] may be a little bit scary for some of our younger Disney Junior viewers" and recommending that said viewers watch with a grownup, closing with a transition of pixie dust into the feature program. Examples of programs that have done this include certain Disney Animated Canon or Pixar films, and Toy Story of Terror!.
- The two Zoom specials dealing with the September 11th attacks and their aftermath began with a warning about the intensity of the subject matter and a suggestion that their young viewers find a grownup to watch it with them.
- French television used to warn viewers about possibly-inappropriate content with a white square in the corner of the screen. These days a circle with the minimum age is used instead.
- In Australia, a disclaimer was aired to warn its Aboriginal population and its Torres Strait Islanders that the show contains names, voices and images of dead people.