This column may contain strong language, sexual content, adult humor, and other themes that may not be suitable for minors. Parental guidance is strongly advised.
Because we live in ironic times, the news that Mocha Uson, erstwhile sexy dancer, self-styled sex educator, and now die-hard blogging mouthpiece for a president who licks his lips lasciviously at the sight of any woman, recently threatened to resign from her position as a member of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB).
Why she was appointed to the MTRCB in the first place is rather perplexing. As a blogger, she has not quite positioned herself as any kind of authority on film or television standards. Nor can it be said with real conviction that she’s an artist with a significant body of work that could be regarded as possessing any real artistic merit, despite Communications Secretary Martin Andanar’s declarations to the contrary.
“What makes her not qualified?” he asked back in January at the time of her appointment. “Mocha is an artist; she’s one of the biggest artists we have in the country. She’s been in the show business world for more than a decade already. She’s an educated person. She’s one of the biggest bloggers we have in the Philippines; very influential.”
It’s not a terribly convincing argument in her favor. Still, as government appointees go, regardless of administration, she’s just another unqualified appointee in an endless sea of mediocrity, chosen to acknowledge a political debt more than anything else. Nevertheless, the fears of other Board members, past and present, that Mocha Uson would allow soft porn to “finally be rated PG” seem to have been unfounded; Uson, with the self-righteous zeal of a converted moral crusader, has in fact rallied against the inclusion of sexually suggestive scenes and graphic content in local broadcasting.
She has said that she accepted the MTRCB position in the hopes of eliminating soft porn and other inappropriate scenes on film and television.
Recently, she took issue with the pilot episode of ABS-CBN afternoon teleserye The Better Half, citing an alleged lengthy kissing scene that also showed a woman on top of a man, according to a report in Interaksyon, as well as a rape scene in a recent episode of the show “Ipaglaban Mo.”
Admittedly, it’s jarring to reconcile the newly reformed, turtleneck-and-trench-coat-wearing Mocha of today with the scantily clad gyrating Mocha of yore, who thought nothing of explaining sexual positions with her willing Mocha Girls co-dancer in an instructional video, or discussing dildos on radio, or indeed, asking a man in one of her live shows if he’d ever tried anal and then proceeding to put her hand inside his pants.
She had no problem pandering then to her audience’s appetite for titillation, and presumably made quite a bit of money with her previous career, which yielded such cinematic gems as Butas 2 (2012) and Seksing Masahista (2011). Yet today, claiming to have changed her ways, complete with declarations of regret for “every part of it,” including, presumably, her seven-minute clip, “Blowjob Tips and Guide,” she would prefer networks clean up their shows and refrain from what she deems to be “obscenity.”
Whether her conversion is sincere or politically expedient, she seems to have missed a great opportunity here. She has said that she sees her role in the MTRCB as that of being a catalyst for change (never mind that she allegedly was absent at board meetings), and that if she were unable to encourage her fellow board members to do the same, she may as well resign.
Granted, it’s not exactly easy for many people to take Mocha Uson seriously. Classifying what others do for free-to-air television as trash could seem to be the height of hypocrisy when one considers that her many X-rated videos are probably even more lewd and obscene.
Instead of calling the controversial scenes in “Ipaglaban Mo” and the like as “basura,” and “unfit for general viewing,” she might have instead parlayed her previously liberated stance on sexual matters, not to mention what Andanar called her influential reach, into a platform for a more open discussion about sex in our society. She might have considered the rising rates of HIV infection and agitated for more comprehensive sexual health education for the country’s youth, using television as the medium. She might have pushed for greater awareness about issues such as sexual assault and the importance of consent. She, whose video tutorials emphasized the importance of pleasure in sexual activities, might have campaigned for more balanced and enlightened sexual content in local productions—rated PG, of course. And, inasmuch as this is wishful thinking, she might have turned her focus towards the real obscenities happening around us on a daily basis: the continued slaughter of innocents in a pointless drug war; the buffoons in Congress who waste their time and taxpayers’ money arguing about whether boxing should be declared an industry and propped up with government subsidies; the crippling traffic and the pathetic state of public transportation, among others.
Perhaps the most glaring hypocrisy in Mocha’s neo-puritan stance is her rabid support of a president who demonstrates an almost childish, powered-by-id delight in obscenity of every kind—sexual, verbal, even political. Now where is the review and classification board for that?
B. Wiser is the author of Making Love in Spanish, a novel published earlier this year by Anvil Publishing and available in National Book Store and Powerbooks, as well as online. When not assuming her Sasha Fierce alter-ego, she takes on the role of serious journalist and media consultant.
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Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Preen.ph, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.
Art by Dorothy Guya