New age: sci-fi & fantasy movies


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This article is the third in a three-part study of New Age children’s and ‘family’ infotainment.
It commenced with the examination of ROLE-PLAYING GAMES- Pokémon, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Yu-Gi-Oh !, Dungeons & Dragons, Magic: The Gathering, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Vampire: The Masquerade, The Sims, Digimon, etc. -- THE HIDDEN DANGERS IN VIDEO GAMING, COLLECTIBLE CARD GAMES, AND RELATED ‘MANGA’ COMICS, ANIME CARTOONS AND ‘TOYS’.
The study was carried forward into TOYS R NOT US, which includes He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, G.I. Joe, The Transformers, The Smurfs, My Little Pony, Care Bears, Garbage Pail Kids, Rainbow Brite, and the Barbie doll.
In this third and final part, we examine the leading movies related to the phenomena discussed in the earlier two parts- the Star Wars series, the Star Trek series, E. T., Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and The Matrix. The Harry Potter phenomenon is treated only in passing, and detailed references to it are avoided in this study as it is the subject of an article written in 2002, and presently available [on request] only in hardcopy.
Also avoided in detail is a discussion on the pros and cons of two much debated subjects- pornography in the media and entertainment, and the effect of the Internet and television-watching on children.
However, to reinforce some of the conclusions of the three studies, a few selected news items, mainly from the Indian press, are included here below in the context of the already discussed related issues of children’s fantasy toys, online gaming, comics, cartoons and films, in the following sequence:
1. Comics, cartoons and TV 2. Toys 3. Board, video, and online games 4. The Matrix trilogy
A couple of notes from Christian sources are included at the start, and at the end.

[The reader is directed to note that these two Christian monthlies carried these warnings 25 YEARS AGO!]

TV Violence Imitated - Research finds TV and movies cause aggressive actions “Charisma” magazine, April 1982

A research branch of the National Institute of Mental Health has found a relationship between televised violence and later aggressive behaviour. Dr. David Pearl, chief of the research branch said that experiments indicate that aggressive behaviours are more likely to be influenced and expressed when the television-depicted aggression or violence has any of these characteristics- it pays off, is not punished, is shown in a justifying context, is socially acceptable, or appears realistic rather than fictitious.

Pearl gave his views in a testimony before the [U.S.] House Energy subcommittee on telecommunications… Representative W.J. Billy Tauzin of Louisiana related how his three-year-old son watched Pluto smash through a plate glass window in a Popeye cartoon. Later the boy bloodied himself by trying to do the same thing he had watched the cartoon character do.

Meanwhile, evidence of television and movie violence being responsible for some of the crime committed today is mounting much to the discomfort of executives of these types of entertainment. Some claim they are trying to cut violence but cannot eliminate all violence because it would paint an untrue and unrealistic picture of the world today. [EXTRACT]
Video Game action pushes stress line

“Bread for Children” magazine, May 1982 [copied by BFC from the Sarasota Herald Tribune]

Washington (UPI): Video games, the seemingly innocuous battles of human responses against electronic wizardry, could zap you. At least, that is the theory of Dr. Robert S. Eliot of the University of Nebraska Medical Center, who warns the stress of fighting off Space Invaders or devouring the ghosts on a PacMan screen can mean dangerous pressure on the heart. After monitoring the reactions of more than 1,000 men and women pitted against video demons, Eliot reports that ‘hot reactors’ may have more to worry about than winning a free game.

An article in the May-June issue of American Health describes what happens to the one-third of the population Eliot believes have an unsuspected physiological reaction to mental stress, which makes them particularly susceptible to heart disease.

(It) is like drag-racing a car with the brakes on. Your heart is pumping against dramatically increased pressure. There is a limit to what an organ can do,” he said. While his test subjects were concentrating on zapping their video opponents, Eliot brought other gadgetry to bear- computerized equipment that automatically monitors blood pressure, heart rate, and other stress on the cardio-vascular system. One of Eliot’s patients, a middle-aged office worker had a base-line blood pressure of 134-89, but within seconds of settling down for video combat, his systolic pressure soared to 207, while his diastolic pressure fell to 66. The man’s pulse rate jumped from 80 to 109 beats per minute, and his cardiac output nearly doubled, from 4.4 liters of blood per minute to 8.4. To achieve the same elevated heart rate and blood pressure by running on a treadmill- or track- would take eight or nine minutes rather than the same number of seconds,” Eliot wrote.

1A. The Hindu newspaper invited readers’ responses to the subject of “Horror Shows on Television”.

In the Voice Your Views column of the February 22, 2006 issue, twenty-five letters were reproduced. Out of 25, 18 letters – that is 72% were against the screening of such films, or for exercising parental control on viewing. Significantly, while the selected subject was horror, several readers objected to the screening of violence, black magic, and superstition.

Wrote C. Shailendra Babu, Joint Commissioner of Police, Chennai, “We have strong evidence to prove that adolescents are influenced by whatever is shown on screen. Besides, children also tend to believe that the supernatural characters exist in reality, which is not safe.”

1B. Blame it on the TV Dr. Hiramalini Seshadri in the New Indian Express, February 15, 2005 EXTRACT:

Partha, one of the children who die tragically while mimicking the hanging of Dhananjay Chatterjee in Kolkata would definitely have been alive [today] had there been no TV at home to show the gruesome punishment…

“What do TV, videogames, computers, videos and the internet do to our children?” she asks. “Since the visual is combined with audio, the child’s own right brain is bypassed as it were, and the images go straight into the memory. The faculties of imagination and creativity are the natural casualties. Such a child does not know how to amuse himself,” says the doctor.

1C. Shaktiman could not save these two little girls Chandra Naik, New Indian Express, December 17, 1998 EXTRACT:

The correspondent reports the story of Varsha Kulkarni, 10, and her friend Asma Lattiappanavar, both of Sattur village near Hubli in Karnataka who “set themselves on fire believing that the TV serial character Shaktiman would save them…

They went out to play in the fields adjoining their houses in the village. They remembered the serial Shaktiman which they had just seen, and took it into their heads to try it out for real. They also firmly believed that Shaktiman would come to save them. Apparently, there was an episode in which this character was seen to save children who were caught in a fire.”

1D. Kids go to bed with gore and Goosebumps Devi Yesodharan, Economic Times, December 15, 2003 EXTRACT:

What the average Indian kid is reading… would make the much-discussed dark and scary turns of the latest Potters look like a stroll in the woods. The squeaky-clean-behind-the-ears cops and robbers of Enid Blyton and Nancy Drew have given way to Artemis Fowl, a hugely popular series about a 12-year-old criminal mastermind , which is described by the author Eoin Colfer as ‘Die Hard with fairies’ and comes armed with enough violence to do any Ninja Turtle proud.

If that’s not enough, the even more popular Goosebumps series is unadulterated horror, with large dollops of wholesome blood and gore. Kids 12 and above love it.

Blame it on Buffy [the Vampire Slayer] and Xena if you like, but fantasy and SF [science fiction] tinged with horror has replaced the adventure genre on top of the children’s bookshelf.

The latest hit with children is Eragon, the first in a series of three books about a dragon, authored by a 17-year-old, Christopher Paolini… Then there’s Animorphs- it’s about some kids who mutate into animals, part SF, part fantasy.

Beyond explaining the meaning of ‘chitinous’ or ‘tentacular’ you really don’t want to know what’s in those books…

According to Strand Book Stall in Mumbai, the best-selling series continues to be Harry Potter.
1E. The cover story in the November 1996 issue of TV and Video World [published by the Indian Express group] was Can Cartoons Kill? “There was a time when cartoons could, at worst, be accused of spoiling one’s language. However, psychiatrists now tell us that watching cartoons can even lead to crime. An analysis.”
1F. In Kiddy, Kiddy, Bang, Bang Indian Express, June 20, 1999, Anupreeta Das looks at the variety of toy guns that doubles as entertainment for children. EXTRACT:

Consider this: every evening when Vidur Monga’s dad gets home from work, the four-year-old runs to the door, toy gun in hand, and ‘fires’ foam discs until his dad drops ‘dead’ (which he willingly does). On the surface, the game is innocuous enough, but if you think a little harder you might wonder: where does the child get the idea from? He’s obviously imitating the gun-toting hero from Bollywood… or perhaps it’s his version of Star Wars.

Television, no doubt, feeds the imagination of the ‘90s child growing up in urban India. Even if he’s watching Cartoon Network, the eternal battle between good and evil gets a new twist- the good guys have to be armed with an array of contemporary, super-sophisticated weapons to liberate the world from evil.

Super-heroes of the G.I. Joe variety today detonate bombs and fire laser artillery… Add to that the incredible variety of guns sold across toy stores… and the question leaps up: are we raising a trigger-happy, militant generation?

Toys, really, are us. Step into any toy store today, and what you see lining the shop shelves, more often than not, are symbols of aggression and destruction. Or if you enter… a video-game parlour, you’ll know that your success depends on how many you kill, and how fast… Of course you could look at toys as toys, and no more, but how then do you explain the horrific shootouts across junior high schools in the US, by kids barely out of their grubby-knee stage?

Take, for example, the culture of competitiveness that exists today. From the moment the kid enters school, it’s an endless rigmarole of training classes, sports lessons and grooming lessons, all geared to prepare him for the day he enters the mad race for success (defined mainly in mercenary terms). Coming first never mattered so much. He is schooled to believe that the only way to get on top is to step on everyone else… When he’s a little older, it’s another switch to video games- Nintendo, Doom, - where once again he has to shoot down the threatening elements to get ahead. If you superimpose that equation onto real life, the resulting images are rather scary.

1G. Mummy vs. Masters of the Universe Kamala Valliappan, Expressweek, Indian Express, March 7, 1998 EXTRACT:

The ’toons are one up in the battle for the soul of your child, but the next round could still be in your favour.

There have been rumours of remote controls rusting in many Chennai homes that are the abode of children below the age of twelve. This condition is the direct result of television sets being permanently tuned to TNT’s Cartoon Network

So, is this… sapping children’s inherent ability to live in a world of imagination, or is it actually providing them with more food for thought? A survey conducted by Expressweek focused on a cross-section of the pre-teen society and attempted to discover the effect of this tremendously popular channel on growing grey cells. The cartoons are on every day of the week. Starting 5:00 a.m. they finally come to a close at 8:30 p.m… Statistics reveal that 66% of the children interviewed switch on their TV sets the minute they return from school, and 82% watch the channel for 4 to 5 hours each day- a ritual that occurs regardless of interruption. Out of the total, 64% claimed to enjoy only the cartoons which feature fights and action-packed humour… [Included here are observations and recommendations to adults on TV addiction among children by Dr. Sundari Krishnamurthy, head of the Department of Sociology, Stella Maris College, Chennai.] A recent study in Singapore conducted by the Asian Institute of Management revealed that in cartoon programmes, the distinction between reel life and real life is practically non-existent. When the first episode of the Ninja Turtles was broadcast in Australia, several children died while seeking out these fictitional characters in dingy sewers. When Superman first made an appearance in the U.S. way back in the 70s, a child jumped off the twenty-fourth floor of a building hoping that the superhero would rescue him…

Many adverse results have been predicted due to the cartoon craze, among them being hero worship, and the eroding of tradition. In a Ph.D. thesis on television viewership, Susan Sridhar, head of the Department of Commerce at M.O.P. College revealed that cartoons, which are generally considered to be an ideal children’s programme, have been proved to be one of the most harmful elements on television. Dr. Tina Harbarino, a child psychologist at the Pennsylvania State University, USA, stated that cartoons and police shows are the worst culprits among violent programmes. This is mainly because the intensity of a dangerous situation, pain and suffering are always toned down when a programme is animated, and everything seems so easy to accomplish. “My kids are beginning to sound like cartoon clones. I am also apprehensive about the kind of culture they are being exposed to. Nearly every superhero has a girlfriend, especially in shows like SwatCats… In addition to teen trouble, we are now facing toon trouble,” grumbles Vijayalakshmi, a housewife.

Explosions are the highlights of cartoons like Johnny Quest, The Centurions, and Ninja Robots. A lot of scientific jargon and technical garbage that appears with unfailing regularity on Cartoon Network has made this channel a total waste of time,” says Meenakshi, prinicipal of Sharadha Vidhyalaya, an elementary school for children in Vellore…

The following news report needs to be read in the context of pages 3/4 [Fantasy and Reality] and pages 5/6 [The Barbie Doll] of the TOYS R NOT US article.

2. The Baby Cried in her Class! Edward Glad [Asia Features] in The Times of India, Pune, March 12, 2000 EXTRACT:

Looking after an electronic baby doll is convincing some teenagers that motherhood can wait- it’s just too stressful.

The freshman class of North Greene High School in the USA is being given hands-on training in the esteemed profession of parenting. Many are finding out that it isn’t always as much a bundle of joy as it appears. “Without a doubt the worst part about it was getting woken up two or three times in the night because it was crying,” says Cara Pratt, 14. She and other girls were issued a baby for 24 hours. Not a real-life, cooing, diapered baby, but rather the virtual kind, a doll fitted with a computer chip. On the outside, the babies used in the project look like the normal baby doll you’d buy in a discount store. However, if the students drop them, rough them up, or, just like the real things, sometimes for no reason at all, they cry.

It got to be a real pain carrying it around all day. After a while, the baby seat and diaper bag got really heavy,” says Carrie Steelman, 15. Unfortunately the girls weren’t able to soothe the babies by rocking them, sticking a pacifier in their mouths, or the usual tactics. Instead they had to place a key… in the doll’s back, turn the key and hold it until the crying subsided. “They seem to not like the babies as much as they say they thought they would. They bring them back and talk about how stressful it was for them,” says Dawn Ballard, a registered nurse.

The infant simulation project is called the Baby Think It Over Program, and is used in conjunction with the Life In The Real World career activity. Both are co-sponsored by the University of Illinois Extension Office and the Greene County Health Department. These two projects are part of the teen health curriculum that is designed to take a more pro-active approach to teaching sexual education to Greene county students. In 1986, Greene County had the third highest rate of teenage pregnancy in the State, with 23.2 %, which is nearly double the State average.

If the students thought handling the infant simulators was bad, they find out that harsh reality is much worse on a person’s finances… The students are also able to figure out other ‘grown-up’ costs to weigh against a fictional salary they receive from a make-believe job. Most of the students were surprised how hard it is to make ends meet. “I can’t believe how much in the hole I am. I’m going to go bankrupt,” says Pratt. Steelman says that, as a result of being a mother for 24 hours, she had a better idea of what having a child entails. “I will definitely be waiting a while to have children – a long while,” she says.

Angie Ford of the extension office says that the course is meant to show the students that, although certain rewards of being a parent might look appealing, there are also certain consequences. “We just want the students to understand a little bit better about parenting and sex in general,” she says. “We are educating them… so they can make informed choices.”

The infant simulator exercise certainly changed the minds of some students. “I used to think babies were all cute and cuddly,” says Pratt. “Not anymore. Now I think they are a pain.”

MY COMMENTS: The above is a sad example of the secularisation of our little girls in the classroom in the guise of sex education and preparation for motherhood and other adult responsibilities. One could write an essay on the evils of the above programmes. But to be brief, the programme promotes hedonism- my
pleasure and my financial prosperity come first. Marriage is never discussed. The concern is about reducing teenage pregnancy, not the immorality of pre-marital sex.

Girls hardly into their teens are made to believe that a baby that needs maternal attention and comforts is a strain on the mother’s emotional and financial resources. Children are not seen as a gift from God but as a burden, unless all the other needs of the mother, unwed or not, are first fully met. The conclusions of little Cara and Carrie are revelatory: BOTH girls decided that babies are “a pain”.

And who says that the West’s most popular violent, occult and pornographic board and video games are unknown or uncommon in India? The first of these news reports, reproduced chronologically, is as much as TEN years old.

3A. The Monsters are here The Indian Express, August 25, 1996 EXTRACT: A popular video game that glorifies the art of smashing people to bits, points to a future in which muscles and machines will get to rule the world. By Pamela Philipose

They come breathlessly running all the way from school, clutching shiny one-rupee coins in ink-stained fingers. Each coin is exchanged for a tiny token that when dropped into the belly of a machine unleashes a clutch of monsters- gremlins, robots, morphs, aliens, sorceresses, slashers, zombies, kung-fu fighters- and HHH or Half Hour of Happiness. A token gets a game, and a game lasts till you are dead. The idea is to slash your opponents, burn them, pulverise them, shoot them, level by level. These are no fat cat kids from the plush enclaves of our cities… They are Nainital’s municipal school children who find the two little game parlours that straddle the lake and offer video games of every description. The sounds that emanate from these two parlours housed in a rundown building recall the night skies of Damascus at the height of the Gulf War. This is the post-WWF planet. In the World Wrestling Federation scheme of things, you watched Bert Hitman Hart, Undertaker, Randy Savage et al smash each other to smithereens. Here, in a neat twist of virtual reality, you get to do it yourself.

Unwrap the video game Mortal Kombat-3 …with its exotic dragon insignia… The blurb on the cover invites you to “plunge into the darkness”. It promises you “intense, live action, fully digitalized fight sequences for the most realistic action you’ve ever encountered”. It warns you “to get ready for the fight of your life”… As you get better, you learn all about strange concepts like fatalities, animalities, and babalities, which celebrate different ways of dying…

Children playing the game revel in the fact that it’s next only to the real thing. “The graphics are great. You can see every muscle- even the veins in the fighters’ bodies. When you hit them, they bleed- you can see red-red coming out of them!” they chorus. Indeed, according to the blurb on the lid of the game, image memory has been increased by 33% for awesome graphic resolution… The game has 12 new 3-dimensional moving zones to “keep you jumping”. They include… pits, acid pools, wastelands, the works.

There’s an entire stable of thoroughbred toughies at your finger-tips… They include Shang Tsung, a sorcerer who can morph… into anybody; Liu Kang, a Shaolin champion; …the Unmasked Ninja, Sub-Zero who has the ability to freeze his opponents; Cyrax and Sector who are robots; Kabal who has this special talent with knives; and Night Wolf… whose shaman powers cause bows and arrows to appear from nowhere… Robots make great fighters because they go about their job of destruction with a machine-like efficiency. Besides, they do not bleed. When they are beaten, only oil, great blotches of it, fall out. So you can beat them up right good, and feel quite clean about it…

Since the world of Mortal Kombat has little time or use for genteel conduct, how are the women portrayed? …The women are hard as nails, recalling all the hateful witches of classical and popular western mythology- the Medusas and the Catwomen. They are as tough as their male counterparts, and built to match, with bulging biceps and triceps. And like the robots, you can smash them without a qualm. Of the 14 characters in this game, three are women: there is purple-clad Sindel; Sonya, an all-American girl as close as it is possible for a female Schwarzenegger to be; and Sheeva, a huge ogress, a total beast who has green blood spewing out of her to prove it. So go on, “finish her” urges the legend that appears when she is being done to death… In this world, the women get as good as they give. Interestingly, women can only be treated like this if the feminine aspects of love, tenderness, caring are banished from the virtual world, and women become men by proxy.

Like numerous other video games of this kind, Mortal Kombat reflects the times, and provides clues to the future. For one, it is essentially an amoral world. Much like its treatment of women, it has little patience with concepts like good and evil… You could be a good guy or a bad one, the only thing that really matters is the win. Watch an 11-year-old at play, and you can see the desperation on his face to get on top of his opponent. Says one, “When he is under my control, I feel okay. I hate it when I can’t kill him…” Ah, the thrill and skill of the kill. It’s a familiar enough leit motif in human civilisation, but now it’s given a further refinement and brought home right into the heart of the future- the mind of the child.

In 1994, Marina Warner, in the Reith Lectures on the myths of our times, tried to lay a finger on the fatal flaw of this enterprise. Her point is simple: this entire project of selling mythic figures in the arenas of contemporary culture- the TV channel, the computer game, the toy shop- play on vulnerability and rivalry of and between people…

This is the winning icon of the age: the psyched up, muscular Mega Man. And, not quite surprisingly, the Atlanta mascot reflected the change. For years, Olympic mascots were cute, cuddly tigers, bears and ducks. For the first time you had a “nothing” to represent the spirit of the Games. True, Izzy or Whatizit, the official mascot of Atlanta, was commercially very successful, accounting for an estimated quarter of retail sales goods licensed by the Olympic Committee. There were Izzy stuffed toys and Izzy warm-up jackets… but ultimately what was it? An image generated on the computer screen of senior animation director of Designfx, John R. Ryan. As Kevin Sack commented in The New York Times, “Nothing seems to reflect Atlanta’s tendencies toward soulless design and hyper commercialism than this computer-generated morph.”

Atlanta may seem a good way away from Alleppey, but no longer. What happens out there is here in a cyber-second. Consequently, the paranoia of the West becomes ours, just as their monsters become ours. It is a bleak vision generated by a capitalist society past its prime. And as it brings forth its demons, its desperadoes and its despair, all of which suitably marketed and given a dollar value of course, it also perpetuates itself…
3B. Virtual Play India Today magazine, December 12, 2003 EXTRACT:

Interactive games are pushing the limits of experience as hardcore gamers get into the skin of super heroes to become part of the story line and action, often borrowing their attitudes in real life. By Sheela Raval

Picture this. A group of young Mumbaikars land up in an ancient house and decide to throw a rave party only to find them-selves being hunted by killer zombies. What follows is a lot of shooting, explosions and blood and gore. Outside, the rain is belting down, the perfect setting for The House of the Dead. For the uninitiated, this is not a scene from a Bollywood rip-off of Harry Potter. It’s just another LAN (Local Area Network) party in Mumbai suburbia involving hardcore computer gamers.

LAN parties are the hottest fad among Indian gamers. A group gets together at a house, carrying loaded state-of-the-art computers, consoles- video game systems consisting of the xbox and PlayStation- and plug and play-game devices to play out their fantasies. As did the host of The House of the Dead party, Hritul Gandhi, who played cult icon Clint Howard in the film… Says Gandhi, “It’s a great kick to live the screen life of my favourite Hollywood action men.”

Gandhi is part of the growing and fanatical world of interactive gaming community in India. Superheroes from comics, books, and Hollywood movies have been turned into virtual reality computer games, and gamers can literally get into the skin of the characters and become part of the storyline and action. Adam Malvi has just turned nine, but he is already hooked on video games. Each day, he cannot wait to get back from school and settle down at his PlayStation 2 console, and transform himself into Spiderman, Superman, or his favourite Harry Potter. “I can perform even better stunts,” boasts Malvi.

Today’s games are a huge technological leap with different mediums of entertainment merging as never before. From books (Splinter Cell
and Harry Potter), comic strips (Spiderman, Batman, Hulk), to the latest movies (James Bond, Matrix, Black Hawk Dawn, Charlie’s Angels), there is a high-tech game for everything. What’s more, the trend is now in reverse, with games being adapted into movies (Tomb Raiders, The House of the Dead, Devil May Cry). Says Jayant Sharma, chairman of Milestone Interactive Software Ltd., a pioneer in video games distribution and marketing in India, “Genre crossovers, particularly from movies to games and from games to movies are the most happening and lucrative thing.” The latest market survey on the gaming industry conducted by a private game developer in India reveals that computer games are no more just software that entertain, but, like movies, evoke emotions. A case in point is Manan Bhanushali, 21, who started playing games at the age of 12 and has some 2, 000 games with the latest consoles. His latest obsession is Matrix Reloaded where he performs mind-bending martial arts and insane driving stunts. For Bhanushali, the experience becomes so realistic and compelling that he often adapts the attitude and tendencies of the characters in real life without realizing it.

The popularity of movie games was evident when Delhi-based Cyber Multimedia Ltd. launched the first Spiderman CD in India before the release of the film and sold 1,000 units. Post-release it sold over 10,000 units. So was the case with the second Harry Potter movie where they sold 1,000 units before and 5,000 units within two months of its release.

3C. Matrix Reloaded Nischintha in The Hindu, December 31, 2003 EXTRACT:

Once upon a time, an ingenious young engineer, who was an employee of the Sanders Association, (a company that manufactured military and airborne electrical equipment), undertook an assignment that involved constructing a TV set and manning its composite works. He often dreamed of fabricating a TV set that was singularly different from its run-of-the-mill counterparts. His recurrent dream impelled him to mastermind the Flying Spot on the screen. It took no less than a generation for this programme to evolve into the Ping-Pong game! The man made history. This man was none other than Ralph Boer, the indomitable father of videogames.

In the 1970s and 80s, fierce competition raged between players in the gaming industry. These wars churned out four major companies- Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft, and SEGA. The stupendous advancements of these corporations in the late 1990s continue into the early 2000s, swelling the ranks of astounding invasions of satellite communications, mobile technologies and media convergence. [The article goes on to detail the various currently popular games, pricing, stockists, etc.]
3D. Video games can make children fat, aggressive Economic Times March 3, 2004, Peter Starck EXTRACT:

Stockholm, March 2: Video games can make children fat, and in the case of violent games popular among teenage and younger boys, aggressive and even criminal, Swedish experts said. The games industry… is dominated on the hardware side by Microsoft’s Xbox, Sony’s PlayStation, and Nintendo’s GameBoy and GameCube consoles. Electronic Arts, Nintendo, Activision, and Take-Two Interactive Software are among leading games title publishers.

Take-Two’s Rockstar unit’s Grand Theft Auto*- a game condemned as “horrendous” by former US Democratic presidential hopeful Joseph Lieberman- is among titles mentioned by a Swedish television documentary “Deadly Game” in connection with violent youth crimes. “It’s concerning because they (video game players) are rehearsing scripts of behaviour that will possibly play themselves out in real life,” Michael Rich, a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics who has studied the effects of the entertainment media on the physical and mental health of children, was quoted as saying in the 45-minute documentary. *Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, see article on RPGs, page 32.

3E. Monitor children’s computer games New Indian Express, December 13, 2005 EXTRACT:

Cologne, Dec. 12: Parents need to keep a close eye on how their children play computer games, according to researchers in Germany. Intervention is advised if the parents sense that their children are excessively fascinated with computer games in general, or where there is strong preference for violent titles. This kind of monitoring is more important than youth protection legislation or government bans of individual computer games. The recommendations came from Juergen Fritz, director of the research focus group at the Technical College of Cologne… [He] personally views excessive computer gaming as much more problematic than playing so-called “Shoot ‘em up” games. In the former case, “the computer gamer remains in the virtual world,” Fritz explains. This comes at the detriment of real life social contacts and can lead to sloughing off duties and tasks like schoolwork, he says… “It should be remembered that the triggers are not always immediately recognized: “Excessive gaming or playing of violent games are only symptoms of social difficulties that lie behind it.” Children often select this path as part of a yearning for success, particularly when success is elusive for them in real life. If the gaming behaviour takes on an addictive shape, the only way out is a clear break, says Fritz. Parents should set time limits or come to terms on forgoing the games completely…
3F. Internet games a spell on teenagers M. Aaarthi Latha, Deccan Chronicle February 6, 2006 EXTRACT:

Recently, a list of the top ten Internet games was released, which goes to prove how much teenagers are addicted to these games. Every teen who has a computer at home is sure to be glued to the machine playing these games, or at a friend’s place or an Internet centre. But what makes these games so addictive? “Most of these games give you a high, especially the Helicopter and other battle games where you have obstacles which you need to overcome. Once you get started, you don’t feel like quitting and keep going. After some time you master the game and challenge others to play against you,” says D. Thilak, a school student.

The Top 10 addictive Internet games:

Mini Putt 2; Bejewelled 1 and 2; Text Twist; Gold Miner; Pinball; Boneless Girl [“watch her tumble, watch her fall…”]; Helicopter; Soccer Ball; Kitten Cannon [“a little violent, a little bloody, but irresistible. You’ll be on your knees hoping the next trampoline takes your kitten another 100 feet”]; Spank the Monkey [“tops the list with its game winning music”].

If I don’t play a game on the Net once a day, I go crazy. My hand starts itching. I make sure I play one game as soon as I come back from my tuition,” says 15-year-old Bharani Kumar. So for all those who feel left out and want to join the band-wagon, go ahead and log on to to find which game suits you.

3G. Students find new ways to score marks Avanthi Krishnan, Deccan Chronicle March 1, 2006 EXTRACT:

It appears that Gen X is seeking a little help from unorthodox sources to give them an edge… It may shock a few cynics but word is out that the new buzzword is magic. Spells are being cast to conjure up question papers, crosses are selling like hot cakes, and websites that deal with witchcraft have almost doubled in the last four months.

About 76% of visitors to these sites are said to be students in the age group of 16, who are seeking to improve their concentration and memory power, and are buying amulets and accessories convinced that they will help. A few teens even admitted going so far as to consult spirits through a Ouija board to find out if they will pass or fail. A popular website reported 78 students from the 10th and 12th standards alone asked for spells to improve concentration, memory power, and show them “the white light”. Shambhavi Loraine, a noted yoga and tantra practitioner and author of Yogini says, “Kids today are aping the West. They watch their parents turn to witch doctors, shamans, spells and charms to improve their personal lives, so one really can’t blame the children if they follow suit. The Internet is another culprit.”

3H. Online adult games a hit with Gen X players Deepika Sriraman, Deccan Chronicle May 5, 2006 EXTRACT:

Welcome to the world of free online porn games which are currently doing the rounds among the city youth. Earlier, people used to spend hours playing Carmegadon and Age of Empires, but now they play Gypsy Glasses- a game where you have to buy funky goggles from the gypsy so that you can see people naked!

This concept is relatively new to India, and the craze is picking up fast. Some of the most popular games are Pussy or Meat, Hot Sex Puzzle, Wet T-Shirt, Chumps, Silicon Challenge, and Solitaire Bodies. Hentai Park is a favourite with older teens and people in their early 20s.

However the most commonly played are Tiki Party, where you have to move your canoe around, collecting guitars and avoiding obstacles like bugs and piranha to get the ultimate prize- a hot graphic of a naked girl; and adult jigsaw puzzles, which when put together become pictures of naked or fornicating people. Rahul, 22, a student, says, “These games are currently making waves in my circle. Solitaire Body and Strip Poker are my favourites…” The games are easy to play, and all the themes revolve around sex and nudity. Praveen, 20, a tax analyst and hardcore gamer, says, “I love playing online games, and I am a game addict.” As all these games are in the form of cartoons, parents have no idea about the adult nature of these games and many do not realise what their children are up to. These games are easily accessible on the Internet. Though the websites have a disclaimer and discourage warn under-aged people from entering, children might chance upon them and access them out of curiosity as they are advertised as pop ups on other sites. S. Alakappan, 21, a businessman, says, “Such games make perverts out of people. These sites should be definitely out of bounds for children. There should be strict Internet protocols governing these sites, and these games should not be free.”

3I. Online game testers earn more than Rs. 400 an hour Deepika Sriraman, Deccan Chronicle June 15, 2006 EXTRACT: With various gaming and software companies coming to India for research and development, the opportunity for gamers to earn mega bucks by being game testers for these companies is big. Clifford Perry, 20, a game tester, says, “The life span of a game is even shorter than the life span of a newspaper. There is a new game introduced in the market every minute, and it takes the same amount of time for games to go out of fashion. More than a thousand games are being tested every day, but there are very few gamers to do the job. That is why we get paid a lot to test these games.” Clifford gets an average of seven Euros (Rs. 400) per hour. “I play games for at least 5 hours a day and 25 days a month,” he says.

Companies like Phillips, UB Soft, Microsoft Gaming and the like, formulate games, test them in India, and only then release them in the international market. Many BPOs like Sutherland Technologies and Change Pod Technology also design games.

Basically these companies require gamers to test five major aspects of the games- sound, animation and graphics, special effects, game play, and design. They do not require the game testers to be highly qualified, but they have to be pros- in other words, hard core gamers. The job requires the gamer to play newly-formulated games until, they complete all levels.

Clifford participated in the Gamer’s World Cup that took place at Paris in 2001. Around 116 countries had participated in the competition and India stood 15th. When it comes to popularity, Europe is the main market for games, followed by Japan, Philippines and China. India is in the transition stage when it comes to gaming. Pune, Chennai, Bangalore and Ahmedabad are the top four gaming cities in India.

3J. Indian players will dominate gaming market Pallavi Priyadarshini, Deccan Chronicle June 15, 2006 EXTRACT:

Online gaming is at its nascent stage in India, but with the introduction of newer technologies and café culture catching up with youngsters, Indian players are soon going to be a dominant force in the global online gaming market. Level Up Games, distributor of the immensely popular Asian MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game), Ragnarok, has launched their latest offering, Gunz- The Duel for online gaming enthusiasts. Venkat Mallik, managing director Level Up Games, India talks about it: “Gunz- The Duel brings to life fast-paced gun-fighting, swordsmanship and intense combat that one has seen in their favourite action flicks. You can create your avatar and jump into the arena to battle with thousands of opponents online. Through this we are also planning to create an online national gaming community which will also include many activities online and players will be ranked nationally… Though this interactive entertainment is growing exponentially in India, it is currently facing challenges in terms of infrastructure. MMORPG games are expected to… grow at an accelerated rate once PC and broadband Internet penetration levels increase… It sidesteps the problem of piracy. We don’t make money by selling CDs. It is an online game, and the player can play the game only by accessing our server, where they pay for the services provided, not the game.”
3K. Game Icon – The Under-20s Play Serious Cyber Business Economic Times, October 15, 2006 EXTRACT:

At 19, Dhruv Mody quit his B.Sc. studies in college to become a full-time professional gamer. That was last year after he won the India round of the World Cyber Games [WCG].

It took him to the world championships in Singapore where some 70 nations were participating… At this year’s WCG India, Dhruv lost to Arun Singh Ravi who’s studying for his third year B.Sc. Dhruv didn’t get worse. Arun was just a lot better. Arun is the “Need for Speed - Most Wanted Champ” [NFS] in India… and is off to Monza, Italy, for the world championships… Dhruv and Arun are part of what Reliance World CEO Sarup Chowdhary calls “power gamers” who are keenly looking to make a living out of what they started off having fun doing. Take Ben Varghese, who is part of WCG India’s CounterStrike team headed for Italy. Ben’s practising 5-6 hours everyday at a cyber café- that’s about Rs. 150 a day, but he doesn’t need to borrow from his mother. As a first year B.Com under-grad, he’s already earning from gaming- he organizes game events, and also earns when he wins a ‘tourney’…

Ben played CounterStrike at the Electronic Sports World Club in Paris a few months back, and then at the Code 5 event in China. After college, Ben will be taking up an animation course and setting up a gaming event company.

Gaming’s getting serious with the under-20s group, and they think nothing about bunking college or giving up studies for it. Though earnings aren’t even a tiny fraction of what international gamers earn, it has a future, gamers aver.

What’s more, there are new kids coming into the gaming arena and toppling some of the old ones. Sagar Vaishnav, second year BMS, bunked college to play 16 hours a day till his “eyes were bleeding”. It paid off. He beat two times WarCraft champion Nikunj Bansal, who’s been an icon of sorts among WarCraft players…

Samsung, which sponsors WCG, feels gamers are getting smarter… Other companies targetting gamers also report a rise in interest. Says Naveen H., national manager, gaming, Sify, “Gaming’s definitely becoming very popular. The numbers for our MMORPG [see 3J] game A3 are going up daily- from 100 people registering daily in the first quarter, the numbers have gone up to 200 per day. This is without promotion, and through pure word of mouth… About 65,000 people are paying Rs 250 per month to access A3. Many of them practise about 4-5 hours in a day to achieve Knighthood, which you can achieve only after you reach the 50th level, that’s roughly about 50-75 gaming hours spent for sure.” If you need more proof that gaming’s caught on, here’s one more. A CounterStrike national contest held by Sify recently saw 300 teams reach league level, that’s 1,500 gamers in all. It’s still just the beginning in gaming. Mr. Naveen notes that the number of gaming hours is increasing steadily compared to the browsing hours in Sify’s internet cafés. Which is why Reliance World, with cyber cafés or Web Worlds in 105 cities and 240 stores has all its 5,000 PCs equipped with high quality RAM and graphics cards for gaming. Not quite content with that, they’ve partitioned off some sections, since gamers do tend to get rather noisy… and could disturb the browsers. Now even that’s not enough. “We’re now planning standalone gaming zones for this growing community,” says Reliance World’s Chowdhary. Their target is the beginner. So if you’re one, you better watch out.

4A. Neo Realism Outlook magazine, July 14, 2003

Cyberpunk postmodernism, classicism, Judaeo-Christian messianism, Zen, False Consciousness, leather.

That’s THE MATRICES. By Sandipan Deb [The three films of the MATRIX* trilogy, directed by Andy and Larry Wachowski were released in 1999, 2001 (The Matrix Reloaded), and 2003 (The Matrix Revolutions)] EXTRACT:

Rarely has any film been studied and analysed, its meaning and subtext debated, as much as… the Matrix movies… with their many-layered meanings, their slippery allusions to everything from Zen to Alice in Wonderland, they have displaced 2001: A Space Odyssey [Stanley Kubrick, 1968] and Blade Runner [Ridley Scott, 1982] as the ultimate cult films for sci-fi fans, wannabe philosophers, and of course, computer geeks. They have been subjected to every sort of analysis possible: Christian, Marxist, nihilist, postmodern, and of course, fashion…” *see also pages 33, 34

To supplement Father Alfonso Aguilar’s analysis [see pages 32-35], I reproduce here some information from this article:

The films purport to answer questions concerning “free will and destiny, the nature of reality, the purpose of life, the meaning of all creation, faith and salvation”. Intelligent man-created machines enslave all mankind “except for one secret human settlement, Zion” [one of the female characters is named “Trinity”] in “the Matrix, a computer-generated virtual world (which looks just like ours”. A few rebels escape, and “make it their mission to destroy the matrix, defeat the machines and return humanity to real life. They believe a prophecy that a man, The One, will come and liberate humankind. So they find Neo (Latin for New, anagram of One) and open his eyes to the actual state of affairs. At the end of the first film, Neo achieves enlightenment, that is, he understands the structure of the matrix (the nature of reality), and as a result develops certain superhuman skills inside the dream world, like the ability to fly. The second film takes Neo deeper into the purpose of the matrix and ends with Zion and the machines poised for a final war that could wipe out all human life… By cracking the Creation Code, man can exert free will as Neo seems increasingly capable of… [But] Neo is destined to be the Messiah. He has no choice about that. And as the conversation between Neo and the Architect (the human projection of the software that built the matrix) at the end of Reloaded makes it clear, their destiny was written into the matrix’s computer code… Neo is a bug in the system, but a bug that the Architect deliberately put in.

The first matrix the Architect built was… a perfect world ‘where none suffered’. [But since] ‘human beings define their reality through suffering and misery’ …the matrix was redesigned to reflect this. There seems to be a Garden of Eden allusion here… Is Neo then Lucifer since his mission is to bring ‘knowledge’ to mankind and subvert the Architect, the God figure? But the films abound with allusions that link Neo to Christ. Plus the Wachowskis have admitted their Buddhist influence, so with his monk-like look and expertise in Oriental martial arts, Neo could also be Bodhisattva. The films revel in these riddles and paradoxes. Morpheus is named after the Greek god of dreams [there is Oracle who dispenses mystic advice] but is the one who wakes Neo from his dream. The traitor Cypher’s real name is Reagan. The evil Merovingian is named after a French dynasty which claimed to be descended from Christ… The current Neo is the sixth Neo, the current Zion is Zion 6.0! Reincarnation, avatars, cycles of creation… endlessly debatable allusions…”

4B. Matrix trilogy on Imax draws huge crowd Sunil Rajanala in Economic Times, November 7, 2003. Hyderabad

While the war between man and machine reaches a crescendo in the final explosive chapter of the Wachowski brothers’ trilogy “The Matrix Revolutions”, it is the Imax experience blended with the Indianness in music that is drawing crowds to Prasad’s Imax, South India’s only Imax movie theatre. Though “Spirits of the Universe” and “Navras” are centrepieces of the music score, it is the prayer for enlightenment in Sanskrit choral chants that spells the essential message of the movie- Let peace prevail everywhere. As the credits roll out at the end of the movie, the Sanskrit chants Asatoma sadgamaya, Tamasoma Jyothirgamaya, Mrithyorma Amrutangamaya [from the Brihadaranayaka Upanishad] reverberate.

The Indian contribution does not end with the music alone. When Neo is caught in a crisis, he turns to one little kid Sati (played by Tanveer Atwal) for help. In fact, the core plot involves Neo taking philosophical advice from Sati’s Indian parents, Ramachandra and Kamala, on how Karma and love score over evil. [EXTRACT] [The Chennai edition of Economic Times [Madras Plus], November 8, 2003 carried an article, Can’t follow the Matrix by Brahmma Samanth]

This article was snail-mailed to me from Australia in Dec. 2004 by The Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary

Witches, sorcerers and ghosts from the world of legends and fairy tales have always belonged to a sinister realm. Dragons and monsters used to be symbols of evil. In spite of the thrill and fascination with the eerie plots, everyone cheered when the fictitious hero had escaped from evil’s grip and, in the end, good had overcome evil. Sadly, those days are in the past.

The battle between light and darkness has been waged throughout the centuries in individuals’ lives and on the stage of world history. But, in recent decades, we have witnessed a growing inability to distinguish between light and darkness, good and evil. This deception continues today in ever new variations and is now aimed at our children in the once safe havens of their homes and schools.

Witches, sorcerers and devils have become a part of many children’s parties. The monsters that would once have inspired fear have become favourite toys.

A museum extended invitations to young and old alike for a witches’ party: “Myths, Fairy Tales and Moonlight – the public is invited to participate in a witches’ dance… hikes under the full moon will be followed by a witches’ banquet… no inhibitions …great new ideas for company parties.” Hell has lost its dread and become entertainment

[This four-page pamphlet deals with Halloween and Harry Potter, subjects of other articles from this ministry]


While researching my articles I had surveyed Chennai toy stores, and I came across this Harry Potter computer game called “Be Harry Potter” [price, Rs. 1299]. The blurb on the cover reads, “As you learn to ride your broomstick, play Quidditch and participate in exciting spell challenges, become skilled at magic spells, and prepare yourself to face ‘you-know-who’.” Fantasy to the extent of getting ‘into the skin’ of the character.

There was “Levitating Challenge” [price, Rs. 3999]; and Hogwart’s 3-D game, “the ultimate in spell casting and magic” [again for Rs. 3999] would get your child his very own magic wands, flying brooms, owls, potion cauldrons, etc.

A Hogwart’s Wizard Gear Dressup set comes with “pointed wizard hat and magically expanding wand” for Rs. 999.

And you could pick up a Coloring Kit for Rs. 350, a “starter” set for Rs. 499, 550-piece jigsaw puzzles for Rs. 599, a “monstrous 3-headed dog” for Rs. 799, and a Slime Chamber Playset with “a giant slime-oozing snake” for Rs. 1499.

Prisoner of Azkaban, the third novel in the Potter series, was the winner of the 1999 Whitbread Children’s Book of the Year award. And, this is what reputed newspapers had to say about the book(s):

“Children gripped by… JK Rowling’s books will undoubtedly be hooked again.” The Daily Mail

“JK Rowling has woken up a whole generation to reality.” The Times

“Spell-binding, enchanting, bewitching stuff.” The Mirror

Tie-in books were aplenty, for example:

The Sorcerer’s Companion- A Guide to the Magical World of Harry Potter by Allen Zola and Elizabeth Kronzek [price, Rs 600+]. It introduced you to everything from Astrology to Zombies- Banshees, Dark Arts, Trolls, Werewolves, Vampires…

Says the pamphlet of The Evangelical Sisterhood of Mary, “It is common knowledge that whoever wins the kids, wins the future… Each of the films based on the [Potter] books has been a box office success. For the generation of children who are being influenced, it is very sad news! …Although we are led to believe that the magic formulas and proclamations in the Harry Potter books are fantasy, their constant repetition is a cause for concern. This indoctrination leads to deeper involvement with the occult. Children’s hearts are easily captured…

There is a real battle going on in the spiritual realm. Mother Basilea Schlink Ph. D. [late founder of The Evangelical Sister-hood of Mary] addressed this subject in her publication New Age- From a Biblical Viewpoint, ‘New Age philosophy aims at reconciling all opposites: science and occultism are placed on a par. All ethical values collapse. Good and evil no longer exist. All is one.” …In the old fairy tales, good triumphed over evil. Not so with Harry Potter where evil is overcome by evil. Good and evil are so subtly mixed-up, that they no longer can be distinguished and all absolutes are done away with…

Harry Potter is in the school of the one whom Jesus described as a liar and murderer from the beginning (John 8:44). Should our children attend this school? …We know of specific cases where the Harry Potter books and films have cause serious harm to children. One child wrote to Harry Potter with his own blood; another heard voices giving him evil commands. Is it any surprise that anxiety, sleep disturbance and behaviour disorders are increasing among our children?”

Harry Potter is just one of many popular occult and New Age subjects in the toy store. For example, I also found the Diagon Alley Board Game, “A magical race of spending, scheming and spell-casting. Use wizarding money to fill your trunk and win. Wreak havoc with spell cards along the way”, [price Rs. 1399].

Deprogramming Your Kids by Taffi L. Dollar, Changing Your World magazine, October 2003

Don’t wait until your children “come of age” before you program them with God’s standards, says Taffi, wife of televangelist Creflo Dollar. My husband and I have three daughters, Jordan, Alex and Lauren… We have to be on guard all of the time to ensure that nothing ungodly creeps in and ruins what Creflo and I have invested into our kids’ lives… Hellish children are not born; they are developed. Creflo says that kids are like computers- what you allow to be input into their lives will determine their output or lifestyles… You can also think of children as human televisions. Just as a television can be programmed with a remote, kids can be ‘programmed’ by influences- good and bad. Whatever is seen on the ‘screen’ of their lives is a reflection of what has been programmed in them. It makes you wonder who or what is holding the remote that is programming and controlling your children… I make it a point not to expose Jordan, Alex and Lauren to all of the junk that is in the world. No demon-possessed person or system is going to control these kids. That’s why I don’t base my parenting on what other parents are doing or on what they allow in their homes…

In today’s culture, television, radio, magazines, movies, the Internet and other media have a tremendous effect on young people. The toys they like, the video games they play, the movies they watch, the clothes they wear and the way they speak and act are a result of influences… Make no mistake. The media is out to influence your children. From cartoons to movies, advertising agencies get paid big bucks to shape the mindset of this generation… Comic books and video games are not like they used to be 20 years ago. Some cartoons are full of violence, profanity, rebellion and nudity. What do you expect from popular culture? Something is wrong when a cartoon is as raunchy as an adult pornographic video or magazine.

Even secular music videos encourage fornication, drug use and rebellion… A passive parent’s attitude is ‘Anything goes just as long as no one gets hurt’. That’s not godly… Your job is to de-program him of the world’s ungodly influences before it is too late. Keep in mind what Proverbs 22: 6 says, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

THE LAST WORD: Sexually Suggestive Star Wars Candy To Be Marketed To Children

The new Star Wars movie isn't even in theaters yet, and already George Lucas is up to his usual hijinks. Our lone Christian mole (who has been working undercover at the Skywalker Ranch in California) informed us that Lucas is planning to re-release the disgusting Jar Jar Binks candy sex tongue toy he created a few years ago in his secret laboratory. The self-contained private laboratory where Lucas performs evil experiments with miniature characters from his Star Wars films is located one mile below the surface of the earth, directly under his Skywalker Ranch. "When that pervert unleashes those demonic candies on this world again, expect a public outcry so loud that Christ in Heaven will drop a handful of sinners He was about to toss into Hellfire to cover His ears for the noise! Glory to God!" said Pastor Deacon Fred. "We intend to stop this depraved atheist maniac before he turns everyone in America into a homosexual!" The Jar Jar Binks candy sex toys contain a 10 inch push-up tongue made of strawberry flavored candy. "The tongue is shaped like a male sex organ," reports one Pastor. "It is hard, and has a flushed red color, suggesting a youngster wrap his or her mouth around a fully aroused genital. Parents across the country are once again going to start purchasing this 'innocent' novelty for their youngsters, completely unaware of it's demonic nature."

After the first Star Wars film was released, one innocent Christian mother brought the toy home for her 3 year old son. She had no idea what it was, because the demon's mouth was closed when she purchased it. She turned her head for an instant and when she looked back and saw her young son sucking on Jar Jar's tongue, she fainted on the spot. It took a team of four paramedics to bring her round. The boy was punished, and the candy destroyed.

"This toy was created for one purpose, and one purpose alone!" says Pastor Deacon Fred, "That is to train a generation of children in the ways of carnality! One need only glance at the toy to see it's true intent! If you can't see it, then you are just as perverted as this so-called director, George Lucas, who is really nothing more than a mad-scientist! As an institution ordained by God it is our responsibility to expose this Christian Nation to the absolute truth!"

As we intend to do with the release of each Star Wars film, we ask you to please use the list below to contact National toy stores, and toy distributors. Tell them that you will no longer shop in their sickening, disgusting, perverted stores until the abomination is removed from the shelves! Tell them they have push-up candy sex tongues for sale and you won't shop there until they take them off the shelves!

Update: Glory To God! Because of our Christ-Like efforts, Wal Mart has decided to remove the demon from store shelves! We would like to thank concerned Christians everywhere for joining us in this campaign against pornography! See the letter our Pastor received: “Dear Sir, I am sending you this letter in regards to the email we got about the Jar Jar Binks Candy tongues. I am very sorry you feel this way about this product & I would like to know the store location that you shop at. If you could provide me with the address, city & state of the store I will call the store & have them pull the product. Thank you for your time.” Carolynn Hayes, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Impulse Merchandising, 501-XXX-XXXX

The Landover Baptist Church would like to thank Mrs. Hayes and Wal-Mart for taking a stand against George Lucas and his Demonic attempt to corrupt youthful innocence. As of this day, all Wal-Mart stores in Iowa have had the candy sex tongues removed. Mrs. Hayes' number is available to any bold Christian who would like to call her -upon request.
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