Tuesday, January 11, 2005


By Stockton

NBC's 'Fear Factor' Sued for Rat-Eating Episode
Thu Jan 6, 2005

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Watching contestants eat dead rats on NBC's gross-out stunt show "Fear Factor" so disgusted a Cleveland man that he has sued NBC for $2.5 million, saying he could not stomach what he saw.

In a handwritten four-page lawsuit filed in federal court in Cleveland on Tuesday, paralegal Austin Aitken said, "To have the individuals on the show eat (yes) and drink dead rats was crazy and from a viewer's point of view made me throw-up as well an another in the house at the same time."

His suit added, "NBC is sending the wrong message to its TV watchers that cash can make or have people do just about anything beyond reasoning (sic) and in most cases against their will."
He said the show caused his blood pressure to rise so high that he became dizzy and light-headed, and when he ran away to his room, he bumped his head into the doorway.

In a brief telephone interview with Reuters, Aitken said, "I am not at liberty to discuss the complaint unless it is a paid-interview situation."
Aitken's suit has caused television manufacturers to invest a greater percentage of their profits into new research and development programs. "We're very excited about a new development that's just months away," said Sony spokesman John Chui. "It's a device that allows a viewer to change the channel even when they're not near the television. It should be available in just a few short months. A year at the most."

The lawsuit has also sent shockwaves through the television industry, causing many to brace for an onslaught of new lawsuits. Producers of such shows as The 700 Club and Who's My Daddy are particularly concerned about lawsuits. Even television series seen only in syndication are paying attention. "What's the Statute of Limitations on these cases," wonders Rod Hall, producer of 'Joni Loves Chachi. Is that dog going to haunt me until I die?"


Match the television show with its medically verified side-effects.*

1. Joni Loves Chachi
2. My Two Dads
3. The 700 Club
4. Blossom
5. Manimal
6. Planet of the Apes
7. The Love Boat
8. Mr. Belvedere
9. The Dukes of Hazard
10. Chico and the Man

a. Anal Leakage
b. Chronic Anal Leakage
c. Juicy Anal Leakage
d. Cold Sores
e. Goiters
f. Halitosis
g. Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Anal Leakage
h. Munchhausens (without Anal Leakage)
i. Priapism
j. Cooties

* Answers
1. d 2. f 3. a, b & c 4. h 5. e 6. i & a 7. i & b 8. j 9. g & f 10. j

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