Unless a last-minute decision comes from the CW network, Knoxville's WBXX, Channel 20, plans to run tonight's controversial episode of "Gossip Girl."
As word about its content leaked out, the episode of CW's "Gossip Girl," airing at 8 p.m., caused quite a stir weeks before its premiere. Titled "3Some," the episode will involve a sexual encounter among three characters.
Conservative watchdog group The Parents Television Council has lodged complaints, and some affiliates are considering not broadcasting the episode.
According to an Associated Press report, the PTC's president, Tim Winter, says airing the story line on the teen-oriented soap is "reckless and irresponsible."
Winter is quoted as saying he has urged every CW affiliate not to air the episode. The PTC calls itself a nonpartisan education group that supports and works toward responsible entertainment.
WBXX, the CW affiliate in Knoxville, plans to run the episode if it passes "standards and practices" guidelines set forth by the Federal Commun-ications Commission.
"Although I have some concerns about it, we know (the episode) will be far less offensive than most of which is on cable," says Dan Phillippi, the vice president and general manager of WBXX.
"Gossip Girl" co-stars Sevierville native Matthew Settle, who plays Rufus Humphrey.
Since its premiere two years ago, "Gossip Girl" has walked on the edge with many viewers and critics. The show depicts teen drinking, smoking and sexual activity in many episodes.
'Diaries' scores. In other local CW news, "Vampire Diaries" had its best ratings of the season in the Knoxville market on Nov. 5.
The Knoxville station's Thursday night lineup attracts some of its largest audiences in the nation.
On Nov. 5, "Diaries," which airs at 8 p.m., managed a 6.1 rating, good enough for second in its time period. "Diaries" drew a bigger audience than NBC's comedies and ABC's newest hit "FlashFoward."
Terry Morrow may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 865-342-6445.
© 2009, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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