EXCLUSIVE: MTV will not be going with a second season of its racy teen drama Skins. The news is not particularly surprising as it’s been almost three months since the series ended its freshman run. “Skins is a global television phenomenon that, unfortunately, didn’t connect with a US audience as much as we had hoped,” MTV said in a statement. “We admire the work that the series’ creator Bryan Elsley did in adapting the show for MTV, and appreciate the core audience that embraced it.”
Skins, an adaptation of the praised British series, became one of MTV’s most talked-about shows ever when TV watchdog the Parents Television Council characterized it as possibly “the most dangerous television show for children that we have ever seen.” It called on the Feds to open an investigation for possible child pornography and exploitation on the show, which, in keeping with the British original, employed (often underage) teen actors to play the characters of the same age. That led to a number of advertisers pulling from the show, but MTV stuck with it and aired the entire first season with small editing of the more explicit content. Ratings-wise, Skins was solid while not spectacular. It opened with 3.3 million viewers for its premiere, which followed Jersey Shore, dropping half of it in its second episode. After several weeks of declines, the show’s numbers picked up toward the end of its freshman run, which wrapped with 1.2 million viewers for the finale. Skins’ ratings are comparable with those for MTV’s other scripted series, The Hard Times Of RJ Berger, which is back for a second season, and recent entry Teen Wolf. However, because of it MA rating, Skins could not be repeated throughout MTV’s schedule like the other shows, putting more pressure on the premiere telecast to perform very well so the network can get enough bang for its buck. In addition to Teen Wolf, MTV has six more new scripted series in the pipeline to launch in the next year.
UPDATE: Last night’s Saturday Night Live hosted by SNL alum Dana Carvey with musical guest Linkin Park drew a 5.6 household metered-market rating, up 4% from the same telecast last year. It was the second highest-rated SNL this season behind the Jan. 8 telecast, which was boosted by a highly-rated NFL primetime game.
PREVIOUS: Saturday Night Live host Dana Carvey dusted off his trademark Church Lady SNL character last night to opine about “all of the evil shows” on TV: MTV’s controversial teen drama Skins (SportsCenter for pedophiles), Two and a Half Men (One and a Half Men and a Whore Monger) and Jersey Shore (Jersey Whore). Her guests included the 3 Kardashian sisters (the holy trinity of sluts) as well as Justin Bieber who also did a spoof of new movie The Roommate with SNL‘s Andy Samberg. Here are the videos: Read More »
Company Pictures, the Brit production company which makes Skins for MTV, is “extremely surprised” by the show’s U.S. furor. Especially as the first three seasons of the raunchier Brit version aired on BBC America virtually without controversy — albeit with nudity pixillated and swearing dipped. The Brit version has just started its 5th season. The UK original has also been freely available on the Internet. Execs has been scratching their heads because the first U.S. episode of Skins was almost a shot-for-shot remake of the UK original – but with the bad language and drugs references toned down from the British version which was far stronger in its depiction of drugs, sex, abortion, and self-harm. The show has never been that controversial here. A psychiatric charity complained about the depiction of a counsellor beating one teenager to death with a baseball bat. But Channel 4 only received 11 complaints. Not the show itself but the promos for the show have caused a little consternation. The UK broadcaster showed a pub brawl in a promo that sparked criticism. And the advertising watchdog Advertising Standards Authority banned a poster promoting the show, showing teenagers taking part in an orgy. The ASA said the image “could cause serious or widespread offence” and shouldn’t be seen by children. Read More »
Skins co-creator Bryan Elsley today addressed the growing controversy surrounding the racy British series’ MTV version, which he is shepherding, in a lengthy statement:
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. The show is written from the perspective of teenagers, reflects their world view, and this has caused a degree of controversy both in the U.K. and the USA.
Read More »
UPDATE, MONDAY: The fast-food restaurant chain, which on Saturday became PTC’s new main target, has pulled its ads from MTV’s Skins.
UPDATE, SATURDAY: Today, the Parents Television Council praised another advertiser, Wrigley, for suspending advertisements on MTV’s Skins. Another company, H&R Block, also has asked that its MTV ads don’t run on Skins. PTC is still going after other advertisers for endorsing a program with such “extreme” content. Just this morning, PTC activists began contacting Subway directly. Read More »
Last Monday was supposed to be a big day for Liz Gateley. As SVP series development at MTV, she had spent the past two and a half years working on a passion project – bringing the raunchy British series Skins … Read More »
Tonight, MTV and co-creator Bryan Elsley launch the Americanized version of the UK hit TV show Skins by pushing boundaries for casual sex and recreational drugs. What makes this unusual is that the cast is comprised of teens — not the twentysomethings … Read More »
The ex-president of the CBS Network Television Group who’s now a CBS Inc consultant has become a non-executive director of the UK’s largest group of independent production companies. Tellem joins All3Media at an interesting time. The company is the last big independent … Read More »