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The Gay Kiss In Katy Perry’s ‘Firework’ Is Too Hot For British Television

The music video for “Firework,” where Katy Perry’s breasts serve as the launching pad for explosions coming out of her ta-tas, was censored on British television for her cleavage and the kiss between two boys. Pixelation stands in where lip locking once did.

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  • scott ny'er

    that’s not what the article states. It states that both the kiss and her chest fireworks was pixelated.

  • chpinnlr

    I watched this video once (not a fan of KP) and I thought the fireworks were supposed to be coming out of her/their hearts not her/their tits! But still not cool to censor the kiss!

  • merkin

    im confused–ive seen actual nudity and gay sex on British tv. maybe it was the record label’s decision?

  • Josh

    WHAT!? I thought British TV standards were supposed to be super liberal.

  • ron

    I watched the video, and yes, the fireworks are supposed to be coming out of their hearts. I don’t follow KP but I thought the message of the video was uplifting. Shame on the British for editing a gay kiss. It was sweet.

  • Lefty

    Who is supposed to have censored it exactly?
    The report doesn’t stipulate.
    There have been far more graphic gay kisses in music videos (Christina Aguilera’s “You’re Beautiful”, for instance) and none of those were ever censored in the UK.
    Also, there are various reports on the DS forum of people in the UK watching the video for this on TV today and it wasn’t censored.
    Sounds like a bit of a PR stunt, to me.
    Shameful if so.

  • Lefty

    ^ I meant “Beautiful”, obviously… not rhe James Blunt one *vomits*

  • tallskin2

    Sounds like it was self censorship to me, from reading the article and the video WASN’T censored by british TV, but was censored before it was issued to British TV channels.

  • Lefty

    They probably issued two versions; one censored for shows who might not feel comfortable showing a gay kiss and one uncut.
    Isn’t this supposed to be dedicated to the victims of gay bullying or something???
    Shame they aren’t overly concerned about homophobia when it might affect their profit margin.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah this doesn’t sound right to me, UK television is much more liberal than the US. I’m not there right now so I can’t confirm this, but why would they lie? PR stunt? With something as serious as this? I mean this video was dedicated to It Gets Better Project…

  • McMike

    Seems like there’d be a much bigger uproar if the censorship wasn’t self inflicted.

  • Michael

    I doubt this was censored at all. Me thinks KP is trying to stir up some buzz to get people to visit her site for a “private viewing” of a not all that great video and/or song.

  • jason

    The British are very homophobic when it comes to the marketing of same-sex relationships to young people. They censor it, basically. The key here is that the British consider same-sex relationships – especially if it’s two men – to be “dangerous” for young people.

    Fuck the British. They haven’t produced a decent musical act in at least 20 years.

  • James Davis

    I doubt it is being censored on British television. And as far as it being censored in general, look at the original video for a more offensive censor. Just as the gay kiss is about to happen the camera cuts away telling me the record label and Katy weren’t comfortable showing an actual kiss.

    So no kudos from me for the “inclusion” of a gay kiss, since there actually wasn’t one in the video.

  • cyberdoogi

    So the British are homophobic?

    From a British point of view the US is extremely homophobic full of fundamentalist christian loonies who happen to share one brain cell between them but only on odd numbered days of the week!

    TV programmes aimed (Hollyoakes, Coronation Street, Eastenders, Shameless etc) at young people have lots of gay relationships in them. If any censoring has gone on them it is probably US owned TV stations (MTV) with their fundamentalist and heterosexist opinions.

    The US hasn’t produced anything decently musically since RocknRoll. The formulaic crap that spews out of the US is truly mindnumbing!

  • Pip

    quick, someone call carson daily! get real people. nobody watches music videos on tv anymore.

  • Samuel Robles

    They should have kept the video focused on the gay guy and the fat girl. I didn’t really get how the “let your light shine” message could save a kid from cancer or spare you from a street mugging. And what was going on with that boy and that little girl with her hands over her ears?

  • Lawrence


    Agreed – didnt everyone have fireworks coming out of their chest? It makes more sense having it come from the heart…

    And that is a super lame kiss to censor…

    WTF England?

  • hans

    This doesn;t make sense. Look at Hollyoaks, Torchwood, Skins and so on and they all have a fair amount of guy on guy kissing.

  • TheInsider

    I can’t stand her or her husband. They’re trash.

  • Alexa

    @jason you are as ignorant and uninformed about the British as you are about women. Get out of your parents’ basement and try living in the real world for a change.

  • jason


    I don’t care about your opinion.

    Some of you don’t like it when I speak the truth on female sexuality, such as their use of their sexuality as a marketing ploy. I’ve exposed to the world the phony nature of female sexuality in general and the bisexual double standard which women exploit in order to get privileges.

  • jason

    As for British music, it’s like a toilet. Honestly, there hasn’t been anything decent come out of the UK for probably 27 years when the New Romantic scene was at its zenith.

    Crap like Oasis (Beatles wannabes) and James Blunt had me reaching for ear block balls. Face it – British music is in the toilet and has been for a long time.

    Oh, and let’s not forget the crap in the form of Spice Girls and Cheryl Cole. not to mention Take That, Robbie Williams etc etc.

  • Will

    @jason: It makes me much more prone to thinking that you haven’t been listening to the right British music when you say that. There is a tonne of popularist, trashy pop that also comes out of America and that has it’s place but both countries have vibrant, diverse music scenes. While it may be true that the British pop music is the most likely to make it over to America that should not be a basis for discarding all British music. It is not my place to inform you, you can do that for yourself if you want to, I would suggest looking at something like the Mercury Prize Album of the Year nominees to hear some fairly mainstream good, diverse British music that has been produced in just the last year

  • emb

    I’d love to get all worked up about censorship and stuff here, but it’s a pretty insipid and dreadful song, and neither it nor the video offer anything original or unique (see, e.g., Christina Aguilera’s vastly superior “Beautiful”) so, meh.

  • Nick Farben

    Doesn’t sound like British TV at all. If anything, there seems to be a rush to the left with most British TV; and not just with the English fare, but also the Scots, Irish and Welsh TV shows.

    My suspicion is that the video was delivered to them censored. Why, I don’t know.

    American Classifications: G, PG, PG-13, R(18), NC-17
    British Classifications: U, PG(8), 12, 15, 18, R-18
    Australian Classifications: G, PG(13), M(15), MA-15, R-18

    American classifications are severely missing any options between ages 13 and 18; and American public TV generally sticks to PG-13 or lower, which when given to other markets, seems very conservative. PG-13 stuff given to British TV tends to be censored even more if they are trying to meet PG standards (which is strict since it’s for 8 year olds). The thing they forget though, is that British TV will show up to Rated-15 at primetime.

    In Australia, we too have this issue with content delivered from the US. A lot of it is sent across as PG; but our PG rating is quite a bit more conservative than the US PG and so the media is censored before delivery. What they forget is that we do not require stuff to be PG rated since we have M and MA-15, which can be showed during primetime.

  • Nick Farben

    @jason: British music and British music-that-you-get-in-America are two very different things.

    There are very different marketing philosophies when it comes to the American music industry and other countries. There is no doubt that the US entertainment industry is, by far, the most resource-rich. To gain worldwide fame, you almost have no choice but to move your career to the USA. But the US music industry is also the most expensive. Marketing, PR and advertising in the US market is so exorbitant that even the “rich-and-famous” can go bankrupt just trying to stay famous.

    Many artists worldwide do not consider the risky US music industry to be worthwhile… Unfortunately, these are also usually the ‘true artists’, the one’s doing it for the music and cannot care less about fame. Occasionally, some will ‘accidentally’ make it in the US, but otherwise, you don’t hear about it in the States. They make all their money touring Europe, Southeast Asia and Australia.

    No doubt, some of their shine does reach the US, but to you, they seem like small-timers, not superstars. In many parts of the world though, they are the bees knees.

    In Australia, British artists like M.I.A, Florence + The Machine, Mumford & Sons, Dizzee Rascal, Lily Allen, etc, would sell out stadiums.

  • Jon B

    Jason is a crazy person… why is anyone talking to him?

  • Max

    Jon B you are stupid conformist!!!

    Jason totally agree with you!

    Stop bisexual double standarts!

  • Max

    Stupid fags suppress male bisexuality, but it is VERY BIG MISTAKE.

    It is necessary to advance male bisexuality at all possible levels!

    It is our chance to make FREE male homosexual behaviour!

  • ~R~

    @jason: The musical acts you mention (with exception of Oasis) I like… so, clearly this is a matter of preference and not fact. Just because you think it’s terrible doesn’t make it so.



  • Topher

    You know I love seeing how KP is trying to pander to the gay community after her great song “you’re so gay and you don’t even like boys”… KP. and quit trying to take our money because you realize you can’t survive purely on the coin of heterosexuals.

  • Benjamin

    It’s a wonderful song and great video.

  • andrew

    I love that people are making comments about British music from a country that produced Justin Bieber

  • Beau

    It’s been a few days. But so far there’s nothing about this story on any uk glbt news site or any big uk news site. No offence, but is there a confirmation that this story is true?

  • Soupy

    Hmmm, Canada produced Bieber, and Celine Dion. But don’t hold it against us.

  • regulargayguy

    The Firework video was produced under a cross-promotional deal with Deutsche Telekom, which recruited fans from all over Europe to appear in the video in Budapest. Hence family values prevail. In any case the “gay kiss” is over in a flash – you’ve really got to freeze-frame the vid to see it! Like so many “controversial” gay kisses in pop videos, this one was pretty damn token, as this recent list shows –
    Only a couple are lingering full-on smackers

  • anonymous

    More like too ugly for British television. They have beauty standards over there.

  • Mordain

    The music video difinately isn’t cencored in South Africa. I just watched it and there is no unwanted pixelation. I think should it be anything, it is the bbc probably cencoring it. Katy would not have requested to have it cencored, that’s silly, why put it there in the first place then.
    P!nk also has two guys kissing in her music video raise your glass, although muck much more brisk, is that censored as well?
    If katy wanted it pixelated and wanted it in the music video, the whole worlds’ one would have been pixelated. Not just the poor sad brits. I think your government might have some anti gay thing going on there. Didn’t the british queer as folk only last like what, one season? Think about it.
    Makes you think… Is a supposed 3rd world african country more liberal and accepting than britian?? -gasp-

  • Jake

    One, the song is about expressing individuality. Two, the fireworks came from the heart, not the “ta-tas.” That is obvious. It’s expressing your “colors” or your inner self that has always been there. I would hate to say this, but anyone who doesn’t understand that can’t open their eyes apparently.

  • Wildthyme


    Just seen the full video with the gay kiss uncensored on a UK TV channel at 11am on a Sunday morning.

    Given how often we see male/male kisses on Sunday morning shows here like the Hollyoaks omnibus or As If from a few years back, this really isn’t an issue here.

  • Jason

    You know what. You’re all just gay little pussies who can’t admit that they are wrong.

  • Wildthyme


    Hmmmm. Do you mean with regards to British “TV homophobia”? I don’t claim for a second there’s no homophobia here in the UK but from what you’re saying I assume you’re an American. I’m fairly sure, therefore that I have a better grasp of UK TV than you.

    Off the top of my head…

    – Gay kiss on Byker Grove, a children’s show on Children’s BBC broadcast at 5.10pm around 1993.
    – A year or so later, one of the teachers on Grange Hill – another show on Children’s BBC – is revealed to be gay.
    – Around 1995: Baz is revealed as first gay character on major teen soap Hollyoaks. Hollyoaks later goes on to feature gay kisses, gay sex, male and female nudity and gay, lesbian and even at the moment transgendered school-age characters. Oh, and this is all at 6.30 on Channel 4 or its 10am Sunday omnibus repeat.
    – Around 2001: gay kisses, gay sex, bisexual relationships and crusing in the showers all at either weekday nights 6pm on mainstream Channel 4 or around 11am on the Sunday morning repeats.
    – Around 2004: the most popular programme on UK TV by miles, Coronation Street, begins major gay plotlines and onscreen gay kisses. This is almost a decade after the introduction of its first (and now happily married transgendered) character. Broadcast times between 7-8.30pm depending on day, plus Saturday morning omnibus.
    – 2005: Doctor Who returns after a lengthy absence. Many gay kisses, characters, etc and the introduction of future Torchwood lead character, “omnisexual” Captain Jack Harkness. Generally broadcast around 7pm to a family audience on Saturday evenings.

    So there we go. Off the top of my head and ALL pre-watershed (ie – before 9pm and therefore designated “all family viewing”). So yeah, clearly British TV is homophobic and I am just a “gay pussy” for claiming otherwise.

  • Kiki

    Hm, of course gay kisses and small bits of cleavage should be edited out. Muggings and children with cancer are clearly better things to focus on, because Katy Perry is obviously some sort of high-priced “escort” and homosexuality is a sign of the devil. Please note the sarcasm and derision.

  • OutnProud

    The kiss was simple and tender. Seriously, I don’t know what some cultures have against or get their briefs in a bunch over an innocent display of public affection.

  • Mike UK

    @OutnProud: you’re commenting on a story from 18 months ago that has absolutely no foundation! I very very much doubt that this video was censored in any way shape or form and if you read the comments above you will see why!

Comments are closed.