More than a week after “Skins” premiered to outrage from TV watchdog groups and several of MTV’s advertisers, the British creator of the series has defended the teen drama in a statement, calling it “simple” and “old fashioned.”
”‘Skins’ is a very simple and in fact rather old fashioned television series. It’s about the lives and loves of teenagers, how they get through high school, how they deal with their friends, and also how they circumnavigate some of the complications of sex, relationships, educations, parents, drugs and alcohol,” creator Bryan Elsley said in a lengthy statement, posted on MTV’s website on Monday night. “The show is written from the perspective of teenagers, reflects their world view, and this has caused a degree of controversy both in the UK and the USA.”
Elsley said the show, which has so far, in its brief run, featured teens engaging in sexual behaviors, dabbling with drugs, stealing from houses and smoking in school, has a “straightforward approach.”
“It tries to tell the truth. Sometimes that truth can be a little painful to adults and parents,” Elsley’s statement continued.
The series creator suggested that viewers may not be as critical of the show if they were to give it a chance.
“When viewers have taken the time to watch the show in a little more depth, they are less concerned about the behavior of the characters. Teenagers can be loyal, supportive, dedicated, focused, and capable of making informed value judgments about their lives,” he said in his statement.
Elsley went on to point out that the show has won “international awards and gained a world wide audience for stories about the joy, misery and challenges of being a teenager.”
“The show has been used in anti-drug campaigns, has drawn praise for its portrayal of mental health issues and explorations of bereavement, sexuality, bullying and gender stereotyping,” Elsley’s statement continued.
Elsley’s statement comes just as four advertisers – Taco Bell, Wrigley, Subway and General Motors — pulled their ads from the show.
Additionally, H&R Block also distanced themselves from the program, telling TMZ that their commercial wasn’t supposed to run during “Skins,” but when they found out it had, they “immediately took steps to ensure it didn’t happen again.”