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Jul 23 2007

It’s hard out there for a pig


Has “banned in Pittsburgh” replaced “banned in Boston” as the new mark of pop-culture prudery?

Maybe not, but executives at Pittsburgh’s “Big 3” network affiliates did reject a series of ads from the Trojan condom people that depicts literal “male chauvinist pigs” trying to pick up women in a bar. (When one of the pigs buys a condom, he instantly turns into a human being.)

“WTAE will not accept or air advertising for Trojan or any other advertiser in the category,” said Channel 4 in a written response to Trojan’s parent company, Arm & Hammer (!) maker Church & Dwight. WPXI executives “don’t feel comfortable” with the spot, says the VP and general manager of Channel 11. KDKA-TV (2) and its owners, CBS Corp., both rejected the ad. WPGH-TV (53) wasn’t approached.

According to the New York Times, Pittsburgh and Seattle were the two local “test markets” for the commercials. All of the stations in Seattle that were approached have agreed to run the ads, which would seem to indicate that Pittsburgh failed the “test.”

The ads will run nationally in prime-time on ABC and NBC, but not on CBS. Fox also rejected the ad, according to the New York Times, saying that it “objected to the message that condoms can prevent pregnancy.” (Fox executives are found under cabbage leaves, which is why they have no idea where babies come from.)

The Fox network and its subsidiaries then returned to their regularly scheduled broadcasts of quality family-friendly entertainment, like

Sexy Cam, Trading Spouses, Shocking Behavior Caught On Tape, Strip Search, The Last Resort, Treasure Island, Looking For Love: Bachelorettes In Alaska, The Ultimate Love Test, Love Cruise, America’s Trashiest Weddings, Extreme Dating, and For Love or Money.

Luckily, the contestants in those shows never engage in anything but good, clean fun. Also thankfully, no local stations have expressed any interest in rejecting ads for cosmetic enhancement surgery, get-rich-quick and get-thin-fast schemes, or late-night “chat” lines and “dating” services.

Pittsburgh is fortunate to have such thoughtful, caring TV executives watching out for our moral well-being!