I feel for the countless sex and violence starved 14 year-olds destined to be disappointed on Christmas Day when they discover that the present under the tree they’ve been secretly wet dreaming over isn’t the new, next-generation version of Grand Theft Auto but is in fact a bumper DVD of E4 and Alex Zane’s Rude Tube. A frantic, scrambling, undemocratic unwrapping of Russell Brand’s Revolution, a Gap sweater in salmon pink and a box of ethically questionable Nestle chocolate renders this year’s hoard a ‘hopeless, irrevocable, fucking disaster’. It’s The Time of Year when grossly hypocritical, ITV parents encourage their teenage boys to ‘read more’ and deny from them ‘glamorised’ violence and their raison d’être: drinking low percentage alcohol and finding creative and debauched ways to dispatch of digital prostitutes – whilst masturbating.
If the UK’s parents stopped ‘liking selfies’ on Facebook and paid attention to the real world they’d soon realise that print can be much more violent and dangerous to a child’s social development than a satirical computer game ever could. Weekly, it seems, the front-page of any given newspaper reads: American (plus Others) beheaded by so-called IS in video on Youtube. The Mail Online is even kind enough to share the link. This is pure, unadulterated, hateful violence freely and encouragingly available without an age restriction - and without a critically acclaimed, in-game radio soundtrack featuring multiple stations and unreleased content from the likes of Flying Lotus and Gilles Peterson. Not only is the mass media forcing violence upon us, with the use of cleverly alliterated, media friendly nicknames it’s glamorising it too. Guaranteed 70% of teenagers will find the clip online. 0.07% will search Skyscanner for the cheapest route to the Caliphate.
Witnessing an old school pal beheading real-life humans in a Mad Max style desert showdown because they’ve seriously misconstrued some ancient PRINT is enough to disturb even the most socially damaged of British kids. It makes spending the anniversary of Christ’s birth getting pissed on Buck’s Fizz, curb surfing a Bugatti and knifing animated hookers in ultra high-definition seem positively and cathartically utopian.