© Yusei Matsui / SHUEISHA, ASSASSINATION CLASSROOM Committee

If you have been following opinion posts on Anime Pilipinas, you can probably say that we are definitely critical of the actions of a couple of Pinoy anime fans, but for a reason.

I’m not saying that we are totally knowledgeable of everything about anime, but it is absolutely irritating that some random guy that has a Facebook page would spew some bullcrap about something that they actually don’t know, and some of those jejetaku followers are just eating it all up.

And one of those things is the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board, better known as the MTRCB. Yes, it is a recurring theme in our opinion posts, but why do I have to talk about them again?

 

MTRCB Chairman Eugenio "Toto" Villareal (Photo from Interaksyon.com)Anime Pilipinas contributor Marlo Magtibay has informed me a few days ago that an anime program has made a cameo on the program “A Day in the Life of…” on terrestrial broadcaster UnTV, which featured the MTRCB Chief Eugenio “Toto” Villareal.

You can see the full video on their Official YouTube channel, but you can click here if you just want to see the specific part I’m talking about.

That specific part of the program shows that the MTRCB chairman himself is reviewing the popular action anime series Assassination Classroom, with the chairman and his staff reacting that the show’s content is R-13 and there are themes & violent scenes that is not appropriate for television broadcast. Fair point, but we will discuss that later.

 

If you ask me, I don’t want to pass instant judgement and look at the whole perspective, but understandably, my colleague posted it on his Facebook account.

As expected, the jejetakus crawl out of the woodwork, spewing illogical posts like “Bakit ninyo ise-censor ang Assassination Classroom? Eh ang mga teledrama sa primetime puno ng mga kidnapping, third-party relationships…” and some others that also have derogatory remarks.

I’m pretty sure that the answer to that question is simple common sense. Primetime teledramas are specifically focused on adults because of the themes & scenes being portrayed, while animated shows mostly attract the younger audiences.

But of course, we have to recognize that the line between animation for kids & animation for adults is getting blurry these past couple of years, with the new animated shows that are being made specifically for adults like Family Guy. Still, animated shows still mostly attract the younger audience.

 

Back to the topic. As expected, when they heard them on the video saying Assassination Classroom is “not suitable for TV”, the jejetakus already assumed that the anime is as good as banned. Wrong.

As we have explained before, the MTRCB’s job is to regulate the content of the show and assign a content rating for airing, not to ban the program outright except in extra-ordinary circumstances. They could give recommendations, but the broadcaster has the right to self-censor themselves.

That’s what happened on the video… They review the content, give their initial assessment, then give recommendations on what is appropriate for broadcast, but the networks are the ones that are doing their self-censorship.

The censorship will depend on classification they want on the program, either Parental Guidance (PG) or Strong Parental Guidance (SPG)… although most of the anime shows are being trimmed by the networks for time constraints. Bang for their buck, so to speak.

 

In case you don’t remember, Assassination Classroom is supposed to involve Junior High School students, but there are guns, violence and, wait for it… Assassination Attempts.

 

Yes, it may be complicated or may involve some other government bureaucracies, but I believe that’s how the MTRCB works.

Which is why it’s absolutely funny that the jejetaku bunch create convoluted theories saying that possibly the MTRCB, businessman Manny V. Pangilinan, the broadcasters and even Fmr. Presidental Candidate Grace Poe-Llamanzares are involved in a crazy conspiracy to remove Japanese anime on Philippine TV!

It was creative, but absolutely crazy. Seriously, I want to looks deep into the space between their ears and check if there are still any brain cells left.

 

In all seriousness, the MTRCB is just doing their sworn duty to the public to protect people from seeing inappropriate content… but yes, they get a bit overboard sometimes.

The networks also have the right to support their own local content, but the people has the right to see diverse programming of any kind. If people see the same kind of programming everywhere, then it just shows that they lack innovation and creativity. I’m pretty sure it’s an insult to be called bland or boring. To be frank, that is what it is right now.

The television is still as popular as ever in the Philippines, but we have to understand that they are catering to everyone, regardless of their interests, beliefs or geographical location. It is still understandable why there is a need for some kind of regulation, but if you crave of something more then it is better to look beyond the mass media.

 

I have one question, though. From what I recall, Cable TV channels are mostly exempted from MTRCB, since they are already facing strict regulation from Malaysian and Singaporean governments, which is why their Animax Asia airing is probably out of the picture.

If they are reviewing it, does that mean any of the big networks acquired the anime? Damn.

 

Let me hear from you. If you have reactions about the topic, you can email me at [email protected].


The views and opinions expressed by the writer do not necessarily reflect the views of Anime Pilipinas, its members, partners, and colleagues. If you have comments or reactions, please email at [email protected].

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Executive Editor of Anime Pilipinas, also in charge of News writing. A Life-long Anime fan who would try to watch any show, but has preference comedy, moe and cute girls.   I'm also a News junkie that has a lot of opinion on politics that doesn't really matter, as well as a struggling university student.   You may follow me on Twitter or Tumblr.