The Real Value in MTV's Skins

MTV launched a new show in January – based on the UK teen series “Skins”. Since then the webworld has gone nuts – opinions and criticisms flying every which way. My take?

I love Tea.

Tags: Skins, MTV Shows

 Sofia Black-D’Elia plays a bad-ass, supremely confident and yet perfectly vulnerable teen – who is a totally out lesbian (well, at least at school – home is a different story). 16&Queer? Now that’s actually something new – and ABOUT TIME! We’ve all seen pregnant teens, teen moms, straight teens in just about every situation and context that the media could come up with, but this is finally a straight-up pop culture representation of a gay teen girl. I’m sure there are millions of ways we could critique her character, and talk about what the writers/directors/actors etc… are doing wrong, but in the end, it’s still pretty sweet that she’s on MTV.

Other than that, I’m pretty much in agreement with the general consensus out there:

  1. The UK version is a lil’ better
  2. Dialogue? What dialogue?
  3. Ratio of drugs and sex (high) to school time (low) = not realistic

But hey, to counter:

  1. Unlike The Hills and Gossip Girl, they aren’t all uber-rich. In fact they have messy, middle class or screwed up families just like the rest of us.
  2. Believe it or not, lots of teens DO have to deal with drugs and sex on a pretty regular basis
  3. Sometimes sex ed REALLY is that bad (a.k.a. the “Things to Avoid” presentation – what?!)

In the end, I’d say it’s better to talk about this stuff and get it out in the open, than pretend it isn’t happening. More information = better protection against unplanned pregnancy and STIs. But hey, watch an episode for yourself and let us know what you think! And if your life is at ALL like theirs, get into a teen clinic ASAP and get protected… and I hope the next episode features Tony and Michelle in a clinic picking up a bag of condoms togetherwink