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The Producers Predicted Columbine

Alittlegrim

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#1
In addition to making direct reference to the University of Texas shooting in 1966 which involved a gunman in the school's clock tower, there is a scene in "Earshot" that is quite creepy in retrospect. In the scene in the newspaper office there is what seems like a brief, throw-away discussion about school killings, particularly shootings, becoming more prevelant in the States and Oz saying that it is "bordering on trendy". "Earshot" first aired on April 21st, 1999. The day after the Columbine shootings. A situation which saw the editors at Vertigo pull a Hellblazer storyline written by Warren Ellis called Shoot. Apparently the program directors at the WB had no such qualms.
 

Alittlegrim

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#3

Blaze

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#4
Easy to predict something when there's a school shooting every couple months in the States.
 
Joan the Vampire Slayer
Joan the Vampire Slayer
That wasn't always the case though and certainly wasn't in the 90s.

Grace

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#5
Odd, the episode listing I have must be incorrect. Seriously, that's not sarcasm, it is listed as April 21st. Still though it is at least odd timing co spidering the episode was written and recorded long before.
Yeah, it must just be a mistake. Earshot was supposed to air on Tuesday, April 27, 1999. April 21 would have been a Wednesday. But the episode did air on September 21, 1999, so maybe that's the source of the 21st.

The timing was pretty eerie, though.
 

Mrs Gordo

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#6
Odd, the episode listing I have must be incorrect. Seriously, that's not sarcasm, it is listed as April 21st. Still though it is at least odd timing co spidering the episode was written and recorded long before.
If I recall correctly (although my memory is vague and my laziness to look it up is plentiful) the episode aired as scheduled in some other countries outside the US.
 

Alittlegrim

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#7
If I recall correctly (although my memory is vague and my laziness to look it up is plentiful) the episode aired as scheduled in some other countries outside the US.
That could be it. I live in Canada.
 
Easy to predict something when there's a school shooting every couple months in the States.
Point.
 

Grace

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#8
That could be it. I live in Canada.
According to this, YTV pulled Earshot too: Buffy Slayed by School Massacre (Sorry, don't meant to be annoying, this is just interesting to me.)

But the WB pulled Graduation Day 2 too late to affect its airing in Canada, according to Amy Pascale's Joss Whedon bio. So that aired on schedule there. And she also says that a bootleg of Earshot was available in mid-June of that year.
 
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Alittlegrim

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#9
According to this, YTV pulled Earshot too: Buffy Slayed by School Massacre (Sorry, don't meant to be annoying, this is just interesting to me.)

But the WB pulled Graduation Day 2 too late to affect its airing in Canada, according to Amy Pascale's Joss Whedon bio. So that aired on schedule there. And she also says that a bootleg of Earshot was available in mid-June of that year.
Oh no, not annoying. I can be as pedantic as the next geek.
I never really noticed when it was on originally, only noticing the connection recently.
 
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#11
@Joan the Vampire Slayer According to google there was 30 school shootings (although not all deadly) between 1995 and 1999.

I just think there is even more than that now, and they are more deadly.
Understand them shooting the teachers if they were like the one's I had , but random kids ......I understood Sarah was against it being pulled
 
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#12
I understand why everyone is a target, even when it's not just someone who merely wants everyone talking about him. Sorry to go long, something I'm trying to cut back on, but if you really don't know why everyone is a target in such a case then it's necessary.

I had a principal that had an attitude toward the jocks very much like Snyder (though if he mocked their intellectual capabilities then I'm not aware of it). It was all about school spirit. I wish I'd recorded him the time he actually tried to make me feel guilty when my classmates beat the jock who punched me (so I couldn't walk right after as I was dizzy and by the next morning I was talking funny as my jaw was swollen) was forced to miss the next games. I just don't understand the worship of jocks (though I've researched it later and found the area of the brain that loves sports is distressingly close to the religious parts of the brain, which makes a lot of disturbing sense, but that's another topic).

However, I've read in the news of schools far worse, from covering up sexual hazing by jocks (in a Bible Belt town no less) to adults providing kegs to vicious initiation parties by girls who flung feces on other girls as well as beating them (though when some girls wound up hospitalized then that got exposed), and one principal even tried to destroy evidence of a school sports team gang raping a mentally disabled girl with one dumb enough to record it on his phone (and might've worked, but the teacher of the girl who was raped refused instructions to cover it up and exposed it).

That is to say this is not an isolated problem, though the examples from the news are the problem taken to an extreme (and where there's a failure to cover it up).


A year before Columbine happened a boy was the current sacrifice. Better him than them. I didn't do anything either, but at least I didn't laugh, let alone in joining the tormenting of that boy by people who recognized him as the sacrifice and wanted to stay on the good side of the jocks so they weren't next. One time when a jock knocked his tray out of his hand (rather mild considering the other things they did) I turned straight to the principal who happened to be in the cafeteria and he was watching...to make sure the boy didn't retaliate. He knew, of course. (Just before the game the jocks would commandeer tables to make one big one to sit around, and woe to any kid that resisted at the hands of the jock AND the faculty.)

So in the eyes of that boy there were those, kids and adults, that tormented him, and those that let the torment happened--even enjoyed watching it.

If he'd brought a gun I'm sure we'd all have been targets. Why not? We left him as a sacrifice. I'm not going to pretend we were all innocent and that it was a few bad apples, and he'd be even less inclined to. Hell, I remember how furious I was as an adult when a carload of men threatened me and I turned around to see everyone pointedly turning away to ignore me, but he put up with that day after day, and enduring far worse than threats. On top of that, not everyone turned away, many LAUGHED. In retrospect, if he'd brought a gun and opened fired on all of us I wouldn't have blamed him, even if I got shot myself.

As it is, he just brought a knife and stabbed the lead jock (who survived, but wasn't playing anymore games that year). The victim that finally brought a knife got sent to juvie, and I saw the principal on the news saying if the boy had been bullied then he should've told someone (I brought up his lie the following year, and he said something about school spirit and how it could make the entire school look bad, not just the few directly involved).

Of course people worry about the death tolls of school shootings...but not the many caused by the slow deaths of this sort of bullying, which anyone can be a target of. Unfortunately some people don't want to ban guns because bad people use them, but because many are bad people who know they deserve to be shot, and a great many know what's going on and choose to do nothing, yet fear the day when someone finally has had enough and breaks out the weapons. And right after Columbine my school held a school assembly in which we were urged to turn in the names of anyone who might be angry or upset enough to do the same in which a friend turned to us and says, "Dude, that's everyone I know!"


That said, the Columbine holds other factors, and the Jonathan story doesn't really relate.
 
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