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QUIET ON SET: THE DARK SIDE OF KIDS TV

"Much Needed Expose"

What You Need To Know:

QUIET ON SET: THE DARK SIDE OF KIDS TV is an important five-part documentary exposé streaming on Max. The documentary miniseries discusses the abuse occurring on several Nickelodeon programs produced by Dan Schneider, who got his start starring on ABC-TV’s popular sitcom HEAD OF THE CLASS in the late 1980s. As he succeeded in producing hit after hit for Nickelodeon, Schneider allegedly became more volatile and abusive with the increase of his power. Episodes Three and Four focus on a case involving the dialogue and acting coach, Brian Peck, for the program DRAKE & JOSH, who was convicted of abusing the program’s star, Drake Bell.

QUIET ON SET makes clear that children between 8 and 15 are extremely vulnerable and need to be protected from exploitation. Every aspect of this series is important for exposing the underside of Hollywood. QUIET ON SET has a very clear, strong moral worldview, with a few brief mentions of prayer. Although there’s very little visual sex or violence and practically no foul language in QUIET ON SET, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution because of the subject matter.

Content:

(BBB, C, L, VV, SS, N, AA, DD, M):

Dominant Worldview and Other Worldview Content/Elements:
Very strong moral worldview exposing the psychological, moral and sexual abuse of young children on children’s television programs with a few brief mentions of prayer;

Foul Language:
One light obscenity and one light profanity in the first of four episodes;

Violence:
A lot of discussion in every episode about mental and sexual violence as well as scenes from episodes of Nickelodeon children’s programs where the slapstick violence and games copied after adult programs are very violent;

Sex:
A lot of discussion of sexual predators, three of whom were convicted, who were preying on young actors, with some strong descriptions in the court records, plus some very vivid scenes push the sexual envelope, taken from Nickelodeon programs where the sexual references is clear to adults but not clear to children, such as the pickle man, pranks where young girls are squirted in the face, or massaging potatoes or drinking water while lying down as if being sexually abused, long discussions about a pedophile dialogue coach who manipulated a young male star named Drake Bell and did some horrible sexual abuse, although nothing was shown;

Nudity:
Brief upper male nudity;

Alcohol Use:
Discussions of young actors becoming alcoholics and substance abusers because of the trauma they experienced as stars on children’s programs, some of the young actors completely self-destructed and were never able to work again;

Smoking and/or Drug Use and Abuse:
No smoking but references drug abuse by people suffering from trauma; and,

Miscellaneous Immorality:
Lying, manipulation of young actors, including separating from their parents and even suing their parents for emancipation, every episode of the series exposes the extreme mental, moral and sexual abuse of young child actors on the programs produced for Nickelodeon by Dan Schneider.

More Detail:

QUIET ON SET: THE DARK SIDE OF KIDS TV is a very important five-part exposé streaming on Max, with a very clear, strong moral worldview, which exposes not just the pedophiles on the set of several Nickelodeon children’s programs but the producers, the network executives, many famous actors who come to their defense, and the parents who lacked the courage to stand up for their children, sometimes because they didn’t want their children to lose the fame and fortune. Unlike the insane pop psychology of the left today, the QUIET ON SET miniseries makes clear that children between 8 and 15 are extremely vulnerable and need to be protected from exploitation.

The first episode of QUIET ON SET focuses on Dan Schneider, who came to Hollywood from Memphis in the 1980s with a Harvard educated father. Dan starred in ABC-TV’s popular 1980s sitcom HEAD OF THE CLASS and got involved in Nickelodeon by writing an episode of another children’s program in the 1990s.

Dan was excellent at creating very funny programs and thus started to produce the most successful programs on Nickelodeon, which became gigantic hits. However, as he succeeded, he allegedly became more volatile and abusive with the increase of his power. He also wrote and produced many gags that pushed the envelope of abuse and sexuality for young children in the show. For instance, one black star on the sketch comedy program ALL THAT was dressed up as “nose boy,” which clearly made him look like his nose and shoulders were a man’s private parts. In another instance, he invented a sketch character with a lewd last name for a young girl. Although the parents were supposed to watch their children, they were often told to stay off the set and stay out of the way. When one of the young actors spoke up or their parents spoke up, they were let go, often scarring them for life.

Episode Two talks about a Production Assistant named Jason who was a pedophile and eventually arrested. Some of the skits were extremely sketchy, such as one boy being covered in peanut butter, to be licked off by a dog. Dan Schneider was constantly asking the women and men on the show to massage him. One woman had a nervous breakdown. The PA named Jason took advantage of a 9-year-old, and the court descriptions are terrible. He was a friend of Brian Peck, an openly homosexual dialogue and acting coach on the Nickelodeon program DRAKE & JOSH, who was pen pals with John Wayne Gacy, an imprisoned serial killer who’s famous for his 11 charges of sexual abuse and murder. The program asks why are these people working on the show.

Episode Three focuses on a very talented young man named Drake Bell. Dan Schneider was not only pushing the envelope in the jokes, but he would also push the hours they worked beyond what was allowed and split salaries, which was illegal. Brian Peck slowly manipulated Drake Bell, eventually breaking off Drake’s relationship with his father/manager and then putting Drake up in his house because Drake’s mother lived in another county south of Los Angeles and hated to drive at night. As Drake Bell says, Peck’s sexual abuse was awful, and Drake had no place to turn. The court records are brutal to read. Sadly, Drake eventually had a nervous breakdown on the phone with his mother. His mother called the police, and they set up a call between Brian and Drake where Brian confessed everything, in detail.

In Episode Four, Drake discusses the sentencing of Brian Peck after he was convicted of these horrible sex crimes. When he walked into the court, Brian’s side of the courtroom was filled with powerful entertainment folks who came to support Brian. On Drake’s side, it was just Drake, his mother and his brother. As a result, Brian got a very light sentence. The reporter who instigated the QUIET ON SET series and has been explaining all these instances of abuse said they finally got the court records years later with the most incredibly outlandish letters from top Hollywood Entertainment Industry leaders supporting Bryan. A few of the people who supported Brian recanted after seeing some of this series. The end of Episode Four gives some much-needed advice for children’s programming, that networks need to create a better set, networks need to have mental health counseling, people need to speak up, and parents need to be involved.

After Episode Four, the network provided a bonus episode where several of the key issues are investigated in more detail and where there are several calls for actions to protect children acting in television programs. The bonus episode is called “Breaking the Silence.”

The episode starts out with a further interview with Drake Bell reminding viewers that, during the sentencing of the pedophile, the pedophile’s side of the courtroom was full of Hollywood folks whereas Drake’s side only had his mother and brother. His mother chastised the many Hollywood people who came to support the pedophile. After all, in Dan Schneider’s programs on Nickelodeon, three of the cast and crew members had been convicted of pedophilia, most of which was very sexually violent. For some reason, with all these convictions, there were no scandals, almost no articles, and many of these pedophiles went on to work on other kids shows. Only one person reached out to Drake to apologize for taking the wrong side. This very interview should caution the television audience and entertainment industry consumers that many of the people in the industry are not interested in truth and justice, but rather interested in standing together against truth and justice.

The rest of the bonus episode interviewed other actors on Dan Schneider’s programs. Two of them, Brian and Giovanni, are black. The program cuts in a video of Dan Schneider apologizing, but then rationalizing some of the extreme sexualization and abuse that went on in the programs themselves. The actors point out that apologies without accountability mean nothing. One of the actors, Brian, had his relationship with his mother destroyed by the program. In her interview, the mother said her job was to be involved and raise a healthy son, not to perpetuate his career. As a young boy, Brian blamed his mother for the show letting him go. When he saw the documentary, and when she saw it, they both reconciled after many years of alienation and resentment. Brian makes some of the most clear statements that there needs to be protections for children on the sets.

In the first place, these pedophiles should not have been hired again after being convicted. Secondly, there should be counseling on the sets, and when the children say they don’t like doing a particular scene, they should be listened to by the producers. In other words, real change needs to occur.

After the exposé of QUIET ON SET, there were several calls for federal involvement. Of course, we want to support freedom of speech and limit the federal government using the entertainment media for their purposes. The history of governments in Nazi Germany and Communist Russia manipulating the media must be kept in mind, because their involvement led to the persecution and slaughter of millions of people. Thus, the first line of protecting children should be the networks themselves. Unfortunately, Nickelodeon refused to comment and just gave a very vacuous reply to the producers of QUIET ON SET that they were trying to improve the atmosphere for children on these shows.

Every aspect of this series is important for exposing the underside of Hollywood. It proves the truth of the Bible, that people are fallen, and their fallen nature is magnified by the nature of Hollywood movies and entertainment, which target the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. The real solution to these problems is revival with a personal knowledge of Jesus Christ, who gives us His Holy Spirit, who then writes God’s Law on our hearts to love others and to love Him. Biblical love is giving, but lust is always taking, and this series shows viewers the power of lust. Some of the problems are not only the pedophiles, but also the people who won’t stand up, including parents, because they’re afraid of losing the income or the fame.

Although there’s very little visual sex or violence and practically no foul language in QUIET ON SET, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution because of the difficult nature of the subject. If 8-15 year olds are being manipulated on the set, we don’t want to manipulate them by showing this program to them. Many people won’t be able to watch it, but it’s clear that many people should watch it. What happened on the sets of the Nickelodeon programs has also happened in schools and many other places, which have destroyed many children. As Alexis De Tocqueville said, we need self-control or we’re going to be under the whip of tyranny.

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Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.


4000+ Faith Based Articles and Movie Reviews – Will you Support Us?

Our small team works tirelessly to provide resources to protect families from harmful media, reviewing 415 movies/shows and writing 3,626 uplifting articles this year. We believe that the gospel can transform entertainment. That’s why we emphasize positive and faith-filled articles and entertainment news, and release hundreds of Christian movie reviews to the public, for free. No paywalls, just trusted, biblically sound content to bless you and your family. Online, Movieguide is the closest thing to a biblical entertainment expert at your fingertips. As a reader-funded operation, we welcome any and all contributions – so if you can, please give something. It won’t take more than 52 seconds (we timed it for you). Thank you.

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