he video: On December 11, a pair of pop stars appearing on England's hit reality series, "The X Factor," upped the provocation factor too high for many viewers. Christina Aguilera and her dancers, performing "Burlesque," squirmed "suggestively" while wearing little; for her part, Rihanna engineered a striptease while singing "What's My Name?" revealing a problematically "tiny skirt." (View the respective clips below.) Together, the ladies generated 2,750 complaints to Ofcom, the British media regulator, many pointing out that the show aired before 9 p.m., when programming is supposed to be relatively free of adult content. OfCom has since launched an investigation into the so-called "sex scandal," and may levy a fine against "The X Factor."
The reaction: "It is not just that the crotch flashing and pseudo sexual grinding... was out of place," says Jan Moir at The Daily Mail, it's that the message the performers sent was so very depressing. "Heaven bless the Mail and its profound sense of public duty," says Peter Preston at The Guardian. "And heaven bless the odd thousand or two of tender, sheltered Mail readers (out of 18 million viewers) who've obviously never tuned into MTV at any time of the day or night." Watch the controversial performances here:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The world's dumbest idea: Taxing solar energy
- Attack of the invasive species
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- 14 wonderful words with no English equivalent
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Why I'm a pro-life liberal
- Why would a young person today be religious?
- Which states get screwed worst by the Electoral College?
Subscribe to the Week