Penn and Teller to debunk game myths

For the past six years, the magic comedy duo of Penn Jilette and Raymond Teller, aka Penn & Teller, have viciously debunked social myths and fraudulent scams on their Showtime series Bullsh**!. Now, it appears an episode on the late-night-cable show's upcoming season will target a new subject:...

For the past six years, the magic comedy duo of Penn Jilette and Raymond Teller, aka Penn & Teller, have viciously debunked social myths and fraudulent scams on their Showtime series Bullsh**!. Now, it appears an episode on the late-night-cable show's upcoming season will target a new subject: games.

Showtime, which is owned by GameSpot parent company CBS Corp., has posted a profane teaser (viewer discretion advised) for Bullsh**!'s seventh season, which starts Thursday, June 25 at 10 p.m. EDT/PDT. Amidst a flurry of clips mocking lie detectors, stress, and astrology, the subject of games is raised via brief shots of the Electronic Entertainment Expo--and a statement from anti-game activist Jack Thompson.

"Grand Theft Auto is the worst assault on children since polio," says the former attorney, who was permanently disbarred in Florida last year.

Thompson's comparison of GTA and polio will raise more than a few eyebrows. Until it was eradicated domestically in the mid-20th century, polio was a scourge in the US, paralyzing thousands, including President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. However, its primary sufferers were children, many of whom saw their lower limbs debilitated by summer and autumnal epidemics each year. In 1952, over 21,000 Americans were paralyzed by the disease, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

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Discussion

165 comments
LScollard
LScollard

Jack Thompson is an idiot. Pensonally, seeing him bad mouthing video games makes me want to club him with my 360, my Xbox and my Wii (What a waste, though) then crush him with copies of GTA IV. (oh, the hilarious irony)

Alex_09
Alex_09

I find a connection between violence and video games. I want to bash Jack Thompson's head in with every game system ever created. How the hell did someone so opinionated and narrow-minded become a lawyer?

GnomeGrown
GnomeGrown

i just watched this episode and i have to say, that if you've been following this crap about the link between violence in games and shooting massacres, then you already know that the entire argument is, in fact, bullsh**....if your a fan of the show, penn and teller do a great job of making jack thompson look like a douche (which he is) which is priceless to watch. all in all, they honestly and earnestly prove that games do not cause violent behavior. thank you penn and teller; your bullsh** smells great

DoctorTanaka
DoctorTanaka

Twenty years ago people were saying the same thing about cartoons. I got a feeling all these anti-violent media people just had crappy childhoods.

joenez
joenez

@Shinkada Sorry dude, clicked thumbs down. Meant thumbs up!!!

thorsen-ink
thorsen-ink

Raykuza Posted Jun 24, 2009 2:16 pm PT I did not know CBS owned GameSpot.... So this is a plug. _________ It's called full disclosure. Every news outlet worth its salt does it when referring to a story involving their parent company. This is not a plug or a paid advert, just letting our readers know about a show which might be of interest.

Gogfreak21
Gogfreak21

Thompson never was and never will be a threat to anything other than his own reputation. Laughter, not hostility, take me over every time he opens his mouth. Thank you, Jack.

makeuser
makeuser

there's a lotta things that can influence kids out there, are we going to try to regulate their exposure to all of them? good luck! i think a better approach would to try to be a little more honest w/kids (and adults) about how things work in life. If you can't differentiate between media and reality, yes, you need some help. This extends to kids and adults. Offer to educate yourself and others w/facts before you offer to regulate everyone w/your opinion.

brendanhunt1
brendanhunt1

Jack Thompson was in gta4, the guy you kill in the office

Raykuza
Raykuza

I did not know CBS owned GameSpot.... So this is a plug.

darklight4
darklight4

my imaginations worse than what any video game could do anyway its bout time jack thompson gets on the receiving end

geoff-uk123
geoff-uk123

Well well, it seems Jack got disbarred. Serves him right for being a paroniod jerk.

Mr_Fujiv1
Mr_Fujiv1

theres only so much a parent can do.

pidow
pidow

I am a parent and have always refuesed to concern myself with the ranting of fools and people who have no idea what parenting is about...My children has and still play games of all type and are normal to the extend, they have not killed any person, both were taught to respect firearms at an young which carried on to adulthood. The problem is not parenting, it is others trying to tell us we should and should not be doing with our children. Teach your children for the beginning right and wrong and for them to think for themselves and you wil not have any problem with them.

ImprezaS13ANE
ImprezaS13ANE

I've been playing violent games and watching violent films since I was a child and I'm pretty sure I havent killed many people in the real world. but I have lost track of what's real and what's not recently. coming to think of it that creature I killed the other day was asking me for spare change. but it could all be in my head. I'm not sure?

BlueFlameBat
BlueFlameBat

Because we all know parents should be watching their teenage kids 24/7, right? Seriously, if you smother your kids with over-intense supervision, they might crack and kill people anyway. The human race is pretty ****ed up in that way.

QuatrixJ
QuatrixJ

GTA is already rated "M". If irresponsible parents are letting their kids play it or stupid kids are playing it anyway, it's their own fault.

Shinkada
Shinkada

I can already hear Penn's deliciously self-righteous rant about parental responsibility to conclude the episode.

BlueFlameBat
BlueFlameBat

Comic books used to come under fire like this.

EmptySkin
EmptySkin

hahahh. even though penn is just as much an establishment whore as Katie Couric...

SicklySunStorm
SicklySunStorm

Man, I love Penn & Teller.... the first thing I ever saw them do was swing Teller around some progressively more intimidating bear and animal traps holding a sandwich ingredient.... so he's swinging around and whipping his hand in and out of the traps to pick up the sandwich filling, the trap goes off and he's got the prize in his hand, and more importantly, still his hand(!) and on he goes, until he's got a whole sandwich and he eats it. Whilst still swinging around, upside down. I was sold forever after that...... ha ha

AiKago
AiKago

Jack Thompson trolls all you fanboys and you don't even know it. This guy's hilarious.

nurse_tsunami
nurse_tsunami

Thompson is like a really bad videogame boss you keep defeating but he just keeps crawling back for more.

Xgear455
Xgear455

The mental hospital is up the street Penn and Teller! They just can´t see the lies that they´re saying... :s

saraphin
saraphin

J Thompson needs to be eradicated from public memory. Let us start forgetting him.

crimped
crimped

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Zloth2
Zloth2

"Hahaha, Penn & Teller are so gonna rip Thompson apart." Yeah, rather easily. What's next on the list? The Flat Earth Society? Now, if they get into all those studies about games making kids more "violent" - that would get interesting!

ldonyo
ldonyo

Penn and Teller are freakin hysterical!

lucien86
lucien86

Your totally wrong to put Jack Thompson in kids games like Sonic or GTA :;), only the darker depths of somewhere like 'Doom' or a Strog reprocessing plant or Prey something. Actually putting him on Bull***t might come close.

BladeTrinity114
BladeTrinity114

If people are taking these games seriously, it isn't the games but their minds that are wrong. I have been playing GTA since the PlayStaion days, and I haven't gone on a killing spree. Jack Thompson is a complete half-wit. He will never make an effect on the games industry as everyone knows how much of a dick he is.

Azwethinkweiz89
Azwethinkweiz89

If you folks have netflix and have never seen Penn & Teller:Bullsh*t. Season 4&5 is available for instant-q so you know that those two rip into any subject they get into regardless if you agree or disagree with them. A bit of warning this isn't show for the kids, then again every show on Showtime isn't for kids.

BloodMist
BloodMist

Hahaha, Penn & Teller are so gonna rip Thompson apart.

brendanhunt1
brendanhunt1

jack thompson should be proud to star in mortal kombat

l33tek
l33tek

You gotta be a complete @$$ to compare something so aweful with something so awesome. Maybe he said that in "satire" too.

Glokwerk
Glokwerk

Ive been playing the so called "bad" games since I was a kind. (of course back then the worst you could find was Total Recall for NES) My first favorite movie was Bram Stokers Dracula, I've always listened to Metal, and I never flipped out and killed people, and I do still have the use of my legs, so I don't see what the issue is. Games, movies and music are entertainment and nothing more.

SPYDER0416
SPYDER0416

Even though Thompson had already been humiliated about his insane claims, at least Penn & Teller will allow non gamers to laugh with us as we all laugh at JT.

ianbradley26
ianbradley26

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Skullzak69
Skullzak69

I've played M rated games since I was 5, it's just a game, anyone who thinks differently and thinks that games are reality and it's fine to copy those actions into the real world deserve to be locked up in an insane asylum. Stop blaming video games, for god sakes take a look AT DISNEY they're sending bad messages to kids, brainwashing them into becoming addicted to their shows and buying their products, and THAT'S JUST 1 EXAMPLE, video games are not the problem, the PROBLEM IS BAD PARENTS AND MONEY HUNGRY CORPORATIONS!!! A childs parents are the ones who are supposed to be teaching them the difference between right and wrong, they aren't just supposed to let TV and video games raise them.

kickass106
kickass106

You cant blame the game. Thats why theres a rating. Especially when parents blame the game when they should be blaming themselves for not realizing what they just bought.

richboy101
richboy101

oohh wow. they really think that games is the problem? i am pretty sure if you go on your kids computer you would find things worse than games.

GenkaiSIX
GenkaiSIX

This is great, I hope it receives a lot of attention.

Articfox6
Articfox6

You never hear stories of how a child saw Fast and Furious and decided to steal his neighbors car and speed down the road in it, now do you? People blame Video Games because they don't accept them as something everyone does. Everyone watches T.V. and movies (well at least all who can afford it), and yet no controversy about them(At least not as much as games).

ScarabSwarm
ScarabSwarm

Wow you guys play video games you guys think video games and now your excited about a teleavison show describing video games? I think outside has changed since you got out of your house you know now theres something called a sun. And I think game re-tailer need to be more strict on those games I mean Halos fine but selling GTAIV to minors, that's the reason we have so many load-mounth annoying as hell 8- year olds in our community.

pas10484
pas10484

I played M rated games when I was a kid. My mom bought me Mortal Kombat when it came out. I was like 8 or 9 years old and I turned out just fine. Speaking as a parent, other parents need to take responsibility for their own bad parenting and stop blaming video games.