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Shannen Doherty Died For Your Sins

Open a newspaper lately and it's more likely than not you will find the Reverend Jerry Falwell and his minions condemning something-or-other for promoting evil in the world. In Jerry's America, nobody is safe from the hordes of demons ready to prick us with their pitchforks and heap our souls onto the burning hellfires of, uh, Hell. Not even fetus-like children's mascots.

Jerry's latest crusade is an attempt to explain to the slack-jawed, unwittingly-pagan people of America that Sarah McLachlan's Lilith Fair festival is based on a "pagan symbol". That symbol, for those of you playing along at home, is Lilith, a figure in Jewish folk tales. (Fairs still have his approval, though that may change as this article goes live.)

According to the female-empowerment spin on this story, Lilith, Adam's first wife, decided that she didn't want to be subservient to a man and booked it out of Eden. At this point, God created Eve out of Adam's rib as a new, properly quiet and domesticated mate.

(You may wonder what the Christian-fundamentalist spin on the Lilith story is. As far as I've been able to tell, it's the above paragraph, except you're scowling during the first sentence, not the second one.)

But I'm not just here to mock Jerry Falwell. I'm here to make his job easier. Obviously, the problem that Jerry faces is that evil is everywhere. I can't offer a solution for estrogen-loaded outdoor concerts, but I do have a modest proposal for television. Television executives, now that they're all responsible citizens, should clean up the airwaves and make television watching safe for all good Christians.

Except, of course, for one network that will be the designated scapegoat. This one network will broadcast all the unholy filth that no other network will touch, making it highly convenient for the Rev to find the latest outrage against Christendom.

That network, of course, is The WB.

Think about it: The WB offers you everything you need for evil in one convenient package -- disrespectful youth, underage sex, violence, occultism, and Shannen Doherty. Plus, we've never actually learned what "WB" stands for. We've just assumed that it stands for Warner Bros. I think it'd be great if Jamie Kellner held a press conference to inform us that it actually stood for Witch's Brew, or Withhold Baptism, or my personal favorite, Wiccan Broadcasting.

Admittedly, there are a few problems to be worked out. For one thing, Sabrina The Teenage Witch is on ABC, and "Anything But Christianity" is damned catchy. But given their reputation as a family-friendly company (fundamentalist Christian protesters notwithstanding), Disney would probably decide against competing in the filth-and-unholiness market. They'd be happy to unload Sabrina on the WB for a song, and go back to casting Tony Danza in made-for-TV movies based on Bible stories.

WB execs could then put Sabrina in a programming block with Charmed, giving the under-35 demographic a one-stop shopping-for-witches-in-tank-tops experience. The extra half hour could be filled with videos by Lilith Fair performers.

I don't know what sort of mental image you get when you combine Melissa Joan Hart, Alyssa Milano, and Sarah McLachlan, but I do know that if I now say the word "naked" this article's hit count will triple.

And let's face it, I haven't even mentioned Buffy The Vampire Slayer and Angel. Right there, we've got enough quality television to fuel editorials by Falwell's publishing empire for the next two years.

I can't see how this plan could possibly fail. If you can't win them with occult cuties in skimpy clothes on Wednesdays, you'll lure them with vampire-killing cuties in skimpy clothes on Tuesdays. Or maybe you'll just promise to kill Jen on a very special episode of Dawson's Creek. The lost souls will be fixated, and the rest of the airwaves will be safe for the God-fearing.

Well, except for Fox. Damn the bastards. Okay, back to the drawing board.


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