Wildmon objects to ABC ‘Blue’

The Rev. Donald Wildmon’s American Family Assn. said it will take out newspaper ads Sunday encouraging stations not to clear the new ABC series “NYPD Blue.”

The Tupelo, Miss.-based pressure group said in a statement that the effort, with ads in 100 newspapers, is “designed to bring about changes in the soft-core porn series.” The AFA also said it’s polling national advertisers to see if they’ll support the program.

ABC screened the Steven Bochco Prods. drama for affiliates last month, at which time more than a third of the stations indicated they might be reluctant to clear the pilot in its present form.

The show, which was designated to carry a viewer discretion advisory even before the networks’ recent labeling proposal, features stronger language than most network fare and partial nudity.

Reached Wednesday, Bochco said Wildmon’s campaign is “typical of him, (but) he’s got every right to do it.”

He added that he wished Wildmon and those opposing the show would familiarize themselves with it before making a judgment, and he feels the furor will die down once the program airs. “Beyond that, thanks for the ink,” Bochco said.

ABC officials have stood behind the show but also expressed an openness to discuss changes, telling affiliates that they welcomed their opinions and calling the pilot “a work in progress.” Bochco has also made himself available to station exex to hear their concerns.

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