May 5, 2006 MTV Pogo Pope cartoon gets court go-ahead
despite bishops' fury by Gulliver
The Pope has swopped his Popemobile for a pogo stick - in
a controversial new cartoon 'Popetown' to be shown by music
The irreverent cartoon features corrupt cardinals, a buxom
nun and an infantile pope who bounces around the Vatican on
a pogo stick.
But angry bishops in Pope Benedict's home state of Bavaria
in Germany are not amused by MTV's plan to screen the cartoon,
which has already been rejected by the BBC.
The move provoked a belt of the crozier from the outraged
bishops who filed a legal injunction to halt the first episode
However, a court in Munich, Germany, has decided the parody
was "too dumb to be insulting" and MTV has been
given the go-ahead to broadcast it.
The injunction said the cartoon was insulting to Catholics
since it showed the Pope bouncing through St. Peter's Square
in Rome on a cross-like pogo stick and satirised religious
"In this way, the Catholic Church are exposed to ridicule,
which is justified neither by the freedom of opinion, of art,
of the press nor of broadcasting," the Archdiocese of
Munich and Friesing said.
MTV which gave the world the car makeover programme 'Pimp
My Ride' and dating show 'Dismissed' plans to show one episode
and then gauge viewers' appetite for more.
The station was also attacked by German bishops for an ad
campaign showing Jesus apparently getting down from the cross
to sit in an armchair and watch the program. "Have a
laugh instead of hanging around," the advert's tagline
While MTV was prepared for resistance to 'Popetown' it admitted
it had been surprised by the extent of the opposition from
the Catholic Church.
BBC dropped 'Popetown' in 2004 after executives decided it
was not funny anough to justify the potential offence it could
cause to Christians.
'Popetown' is written by comedian Mackenzie Crook, co-star
of Ricky Gervais's highly successful series 'The Office.'