The middle 3Well, for me, it started with “Boss.” Or maybe it was “Homeland.” I can’t remember. One of those. Anyway, I got hooked on both shows.

Boss stars Kelsey Grammar and is about a political “boss” with no morals. The acting is superb, the actors and characters are compelling and the plots interesting. I blew off the sex scenes because pornography doesn’t interest me in the least and they couldn’t corrupt me that way and I fast forwarded through the violence.

Homeland, too, is superb. Clair Danes is a kick-butt actress. She plays a bi-polar CIA agent (or maybe NSA?) who’s out to get a terrorist. Enter Brody, a former POW of radical muslims, who’s been turned. Again, great acting and characters. I’m mildly dismayed at all the nakedness and portrayal of sex (I thought it was portrayal, now I think, they had to have been having actual sex) and fast forward the violence.

I kept this a secret from Bill because, well, he’s a guy, the sex scenes might be too much for him. Then I went on to Americans. Guys, great show. Keri Russell goes completely against type playing a Russian spy–a mole–living (in a conflicted fashion) an American life, two kids and a husband. Same deal with the sex and the violence.

Read a review of “Hell on Wheels” and again the same thing. Acting, not as great.

Then comes “The Bridge.” Wow. Great show. But. I watched it last week and there were four–FOUR!!–4–explicit sexual acts. Violence. I waited it out to see what happened in the actual plot, but I felt like I needed a shower after.

So, I thought about it, and I realized that they are putting things on TV that used to be rated X in the movies. They warn you, but the warnings cannot prepare one for the level of nakedness and noises made in the throes of passion. And I realized I’ve been kidding myself.

So, no, I wasn’t in the least bit tempted to go watch something pornographic. But I sold my soul for a good story (I read on the plot level, too) and I wish I could get those images out of my head.

The graphic sex in no way advanced the story in any of these TV shows. They were unnecessary. Same goes for the violence. They could have made a mature, well-acted and engrossing TV show without going into the gutter.

I think they start out with less sex and violence and a good story and hook you in, then they try to out-do each other in shocking scenes. Like gore and grinding butts are art, drama, and necessary parts of good plots.

I am born again and I believe Satan is at the heart of this. So much that’s on television nowadays seems more geared to lower us than to entertain us. It’s tricky, too, because sometimes it’s a comedy where they throw in the inevitable sex after two dates as if it’s amusing and desirable.

I’m not a prude (well, duh) and I don’t rigidly stick to that no R-rated movie rule. I’ve watched R-rated movies that were wonderful. But I’ve seen PG movies that just sucked the life out of me, soul-wise. It’s impossible to gauge the worth of a movie by the ratings. And obviously, just because something is on TV, doesn’t mean it’s not pornographic.

Patricia Heaton is my hero because she refuses to put out anything that goes contrary to her Christian faith. I like “The Middle.” think it’s pretty funny and it always exemplifies something I’ve dealt with in my life. “Everybody Loves Raymond”–same deal. There are fewer choices than there used to be when wanting to avoid graphic sex or violence, but they’re out there.

I’m not going to judge anybody who disagrees with me, but I deleted all those timers on my DVR today. I do not feel good about myself this morning. Guys, be careful.