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Making a Difference One Scene at a Time >> 2003

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Good writers entertain … great writers entertain and educate. And, the shows can have a truly monumental effect by incorporating healthy sexuality into their scripts. By the time the average high school student graduates, s/he has watched about 20,000 hours of television. That's a lot of influence! Listed below are some recent shows that have taken the step to make a difference. Whether dealing with sexual abuse, contraception, or unplanned pregnancy or portraying strong parent-child communication or peer pressure resistance, the producers and writers of these programs have a right to be proud. The Media Project congratulates them! After all, great television means more than Nielsen numbers and Emmy Awards … it can change someone's life.

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December 2003

  • Oprah—December 22, 2003—ABC
    Oprah travels around South Africa and throws parties for thousands of young children affected by HIV/AIDS and poverty.
  • General Hospital—December 18, 2003—ABC
    A teen boy "comes out" as gay.
  • Primetime—December 17, 2003—ABC—13.9 million viewers
    Diane Sawyer chronicles Oprah's trip to South Africa, looking at the plight of thousands of AIDS orphans.
  • In the Line of Fire—December 16, 2003—ABC—7.4 million viewers
    A judge blackmails women to have sex with him in order to win their cases. Includes mention of a condom.
  • ER—December 11, 2003—NBC—19.7 million viewers
    Carter subsidizes AZT, an antiviral drug, for an African woman with AIDS. Also, Carter falls in love with a woman setting up an AIDS program.
  • Tru Calling—December 11, 2003—CBS—4.5 million viewers
    Tru goes back in time to help two young female lovers who try to escape their small town, fearful that their love will not be accepted.
  • My Wife & Kids—December 10, 2003—ABC—11.1 million viewers
    Michael finds a condom in his daughter's purse and suspects that she is sexually active until she sets him straight with a talk about trust.
  • Angels in America—December 7, 2003 and December 14, 2003—4.2 million and 3 million viewers, respectively—HBO
    This six hour mini-series chronicles the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic in New York in the ‘80s.
  • Boston Public—December 5, 2003—FOX—5.8 million viewers
    When a teen girl discover she is HIV-positive, Ronni begins an afterschool sex ed club which is forced to disband because of the district's abstinence-only policies.
  • Joan of Arcadia—December 5, 2003—CBS—11.0 million viewers
    When a pregnancy test is found in the trash, Joan's brother suspects that she is pregnant.
  • Tru Calling—December 4, 2003—FOX—4.7 million viewers
    Tru has to help a woman who wants to recover memories. She was sexually abused as a child.
  • A Walk in My Shoes—December 1, 2003—Noggin
    A teen boy spends a weekend with another boy who is HIV-positive, helping him raise money for the AIDS Bike-a-thon and participating in the race.
  • Nick News—December 1, 2003—Nickelodeon
    Linda Ellerbee hosts a moving look at HIV/AIDS in South Africa.
  • The Naked Truth II—December 1, 2003—BET
    A documentary focusing on the lives of several African American women living with HIV/AIDS.
  • NYU Filmakers—December 1, 2003—Showtime
    A series of student-made films about HIV/AIDS, made as part of Viacom's KNOWAIDS initiative, hosted by Alec Baldwin:
    • A Spoonful of Sugar—A teen girl who has had HIV from birth has a crush on a boy and has to come to terms with informing him of her status.
    • Dreams and Giants—An animated short about a group of infected people who are cured from an antidote made of tears.
    • The Road to Gulu—A documentary about the successful campaign to combat HIV/AIDS in Uganda.
    • The Playground—A little girl is ostracized on the playground because she is HIV-positive.
    • Brighter Days—A teen runaway gets tested for HIV but refuses to return home.
    • Say You Love Me—A female standup comic lives with AIDS and plans for her wedding.
 

Simon Baker stars as Nick Fallin in The Guardian.
Photo: Jeff Lipsky/CBS

©2003 CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Simon Baker, left, and Dabney Coleman star in The Guardian.
Photo: Jeff Lipsky/CBS

©2003 CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved.

"The Innocent" - Nick Fallin (Simon Baker) and Louisa (Lulu) Archer (Wendy Moniz) discuss a difficult case on The Guardian, scheduled to air on the CBS Television Network. Scenes from this episode of The Guardian were shot on location in Pittsburgh, PA.
Photo: Craig Blankenhorn/CBS.

©2003 CBS Worldwide Inc. All Rights Reserved.

FEATURED STORYLINE—NOVEMBER 2003

THE GUARDIAN, "BELIEVE"—CBS—TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 2003
Nick struggles to find a home for two young African American orphans whose mother died of AIDS. Etta, the four-year-old, is HIV-positive, which makes it difficult to place them. Their father, also dying of AIDS, asks family friends to adopt the children. Nick is thrilled, but he becomes suspicious when the prospective father will not agree to a routine blood test. He discovers the man is on the down low, practicing unsafe sex with men, and keeping this life secret from his wife. With reservations, Nick decides that the children will still be better off with this family than remaining in foster care.

In another storyline, Lulu discovers she's pregnant and vacillates between having an abortion or having the baby. She and Nick decide to keep the baby. In the "C" story, an AIDS foundation is bequeathed money that will keep it operating, but the will is contested. And finally, Lulu attempts to deliver condoms to a gay men's club with a reputation for high risk sexual activity between members.

NOVEMBER 2003

  • Lizzie McGuire—Disney Channel—November 30, 2003
    Lizzie suspects that Miranda is anorexic.
  • The Reagans—Showtime—November 30, 2003
    After discovering that her hairdresser has died of AIDS, Nancy Reagan attends an AIDS group meeting.  Later, she talks to the President about the importance of publicizing the epidemic.
  • Strong Medicine—Lifetime—November 30, 2003
    Crew members from a cruise ship all come down with a virus spread through sexual contact.
  • That '70s Show—Fox—November 26, 2003
    Kelso discovers that he has gotten Brooke pregnant.
  • Judging Amy—CBS—November 25, 2003
    A boy who is HIV+ comes into the ER with severed fingers, but nothing can be done until an infectious disease specialist arrives. When the doctors proceed with the surgery without the specialist present, disciplinary action against the doctors is taken.
  • Less Than Perfect—ABC—November 25, 2003
    Owen (Andy Dick) is forced to "come out" to his lesbian moms (Joanna Kerns and Valerie Harper), revealing that he is, in fact, straight, not gay.
  • Hack—CBS—November 22, 2003—9.4 million viewers
    A wealthy teenage girl turns to prostitution to make extra cash.
  • Miss Match—NBC—November 21, 2003—6.3 million viewers
    A lesbian goes to Kate (Alicia Silverstone) for a match.
  • One Tree Hill—WB—November 18, 2003—3.8 million viewers
    Haley (Bethanie Joie Lenz) warns Peyton (Hilarie Burton) that a relationship with Nathan (James Lefferty) won't work without sex.  Haley admits that she is a virgin.
  • 7th Heaven—WB—November 17, 2003—7.9 million viewers
    A brother and sister are sexually abused until the high school principal (Meredith Baxter) intervenes.
  • Everwood—WB—November 17, 2003—6.3 million viewers
    Linda Abbott (Marcia Cross) rebuffs all of Andy's (Treat Williams) romantic advances. She finally confesses to him that she is HIV positive.
  • Cold Case—CBS—November 16, 2003—13.9 million viewers
    A gay bashing hate crime murder case from 1964 is reopened.
  • ER—NBC—November 13, 2003—20.7 million viewers
    A prison inmate is gang raped. He discovers he has HIV when rape kit testing is completed.
  • I'm With Her—ABC—November 11, 2003—8.9 million viewers
    Kyle (Steven Webber) plays a superstar who hides his homosexuality until he is "outed" on national television.
  • Judging Amy—CBS—November 11, 2003—11.8 million viewers
    A teenage Russian girl is forced to perform oral sex on her foster father and contracts gonorrhea of the throat.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—November 11, 2003—13.0 million viewers
    A homophobic doctor (George Segal) researching deviant sexual behaviors murders his son's male lover.
  • One on One—UPN—November 11, 2003—3.2 million viewers
    Flex (Flex Alexander) talks to Arnez about sex and condoms.  Brianna and Spirit decide to have sex to be popular. But, they change their minds.  Spirit's boyfriend confesses to being a virgin.
  • One Tree Hill—WB—November 11, 2003—3.6 million viewers
    Peyton (Hilarie Burton) attends a college party. She is almost date raped by a guy who slips a roofie in her drink.
  • Everwood—WB—November 10, 2003—6.0 million viewers                   
    Linda (Marcia Cross) tells her mom (Debra Mooney) that she contracted HIV in Africa.
  • Carnivàle—HBO—November 9, 2003
    Sophie (Clea Duvall) walks in on a memory of her mother's rape and realizes how she was conceived.
  • The Practice—ABC—November 9, 2003—9.3 million viewers
    Jimmy (Michael Badalucco) represents an accused rapist.
  • Strong Medicine—Lifetime—November 9, 2003
    After emerging from a coma, Lu's patient doesn't remember her herpes diagnosis. It almost breaks up her engagement.
  • Grounded for Life—Fox—November 7, 2003—3.6 million viewers
    Jimmy is the recipient of an unwanted father/son talk about puberty.
  • ER—NBC—November 6, 2003—20.0 million viewers
    A woman goes into labor at 24 weeks and the hospital has to determine whether or not to attempt to save the baby's life.
  • Run of the House—WB—November 6, 2003—2.0 million viewers
    Kurt (Joseph Laurence) thinks his sister's boss will only give her a raise if she sleeps with him. Kurt discovers he is wrong when the boss admits he is gay.
  • Will & Grace—NBC—November 6, 2003—14.7 million viewers
    Karen (Megan Mullally) uses a condom in a plot to kill her nemesis with sex.
  • Without a Trace—CBS—November 6, 2003—18.5 million viewers     
    When a teenage boy goes missing and his girlfriend is found raped, it is discovered that she had been duped into taking part in sex parties.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—November 4, 2003—13.1 million viewers
    A legal battle ensues over a fetus' rights when a husband first sues his wife to prevent an abortion. He then sues to have her incarcerated for fear her alcoholism will cause fetal alcohol syndrome.
  • One Tree Hill—WB—November 4, 2003—3.6 million viewers
    One of the boys is secretly going to become a father.
  • The Young and the Restless—CBS—November 4, 2003
    Lily is told she has an STD. The episode includes discussion of doctor/patient confidentiality, emergency contraception, and STDs.
  • Two and a Half Men—CBS—November 3, 2003—16.0 million viewers
    When Charlie's (Charlie Sheen) new lady friend accidentally exposes her tattooed buttocks to his young nephew, Alan (Jon Cryer) decides to talk to his son about viewing women as sex objects.
  • Girlfriends—UPN—November 3, 2003—4.1 million viewers
    William's (Reggie Hayes) lesbian sister has a baby.
  • Still Standing—CBS—November 3, 2003—12.1 million viewers
    Taylor is self-conscious about his developing body.
 

Lily Winters (Christel Khalil) and Kevin Fisher (Greg Rikaart)  at Gina's just after the fire. Photo credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Lily Winters (Christel Khalil) and Kevin Fisher (Greg Rikaart)  at Gina's just after the fire.

photo credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Lily Winters (Christel Khalil) talking with Drucilla Winters (Victoria Rowell) on The Young and the Restless. Photo credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Lily Winters (Christel Khalil) talking with Drucilla Winters (Victoria Rowell) on The Young and the Restless.

photo credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Kevin Fisher (Greg Rikaart) with Lily Winters (Christel Khlil) on The Young and the Restless. Photo credit: Cliff Lipson/CBS

Kevin Fisher (Greg Rikaart) with Lily Winters (Christel Khlil) on The Young and the Restless.

photo credit: Cliff Lipson/CBS

FEATURED STORYLINE—OCTOBER 2003

The Young and the Restless—CBS
Feeling alone and alienated as a result of disappointments in her life, 15-year-old Lily Winters (Christel Khalil) finds consolation in time spent on the internet. She is charmed and flattered by the attentions of her new internet friend, Kevin, who calls himself "the Fisherman" and has a gift for telling her what she wants to hear. Finally, Lily suggests they meet in person. Kevin agrees, but circumstances conspire against the meeting and Lily doesn't show up. In response to being stood up, Kevin sends a testy E-mail, saying she'll be sorry for this. Lily's friends, Colleen and Sierra, immediately perceive this as a warning, but Lily cares only about how devastated she is that her meeting was foiled. She is thrilled, when, unexpectedly, Kevin contacts her again. The two arrange a meeting. Lily's friends are ill at ease about this, especially when they learn that Lily is to meet Kevin at his apartment before going out for the evening. Lily is certain it is no big deal. But when she arrives at the apartment, Kevin insists she come inside. The moment accelerates quickly, but Lily stops the encounter. Kevin is cold, out of patience, and tells her to leave. Heartsick, Lily goes, blaming herself for being too young, too immature to behave as a real woman. Again, she feels that all is lost, and she is desperate to revive her contact with this dangerous internet "friend." As the story continues, Kevin draws Lily into a sexual relationship with him, resulting in her deceiving her parents and herself and, ultimately, jeopardizing her health. When the truth comes out, Lily deals with the ramifications of having unsafe sex and forges better communication skills with her family.

This is a story of teenage alienation and the inherent dangers to young people which are posed by our modern technological world. It is a warning signal to parents about allowing the internet to become the companion of their children, and to teens about utilizing the internet to fill the empty places in their lives. It is also a warning about the dangers of having unsafe sex and the possible jeopardy when an older man has a relationship with a much younger girl.

OCTOBER 2003

  • Boston Public—FOX—October 31, 2003
    A gay student is abused by his father and turns to Danny (Michael Rapaport) and his family.
  • Joan of Arcadia—CBS—October 31, 2003
    Luke questions his sexual identity. Also, a high school girl leaves her newborn in a dumpster. Will (Joe Montegna) has to discover the teen mother's identity. Helen (Mary Steenburgen) questions why no one is looking for the teen dad.
  • It's All Relative—ABC—October 29, 2003
    A lesson is learned that sexuality doesn't determine career choice and that it has no bearing on professional competence.
  • Joan of Arcadia—October 24, 2003—10.1 million viewers
    Joan's father (Joe Montegna) investigates the case of a young rape victim. Joan's mother (Mary Steenburgen) reveals that she had been raped in college.
  • The Young and the Restless—CBS—October 24, 2003
    Lily's mother insists she see a gynecologist to get tested for pregnancy and STDs, including HIV.
  • The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H.—CBS—October 22, 2003—5.9 million viewers
    When a teenage girl disappears, it sparks discussion about the sexualization of young people. She is ultimately found but the town is shaken as it learns more about pedophiles and the law. Also, Helen (Elizabeth McGovern) tells Garrett (John Carroll Lynch) that 15-year-old Monica is sexually active and that they have been derelict in talking to their kids about sex.
  • My Wife and Kids—ABC—October 22, 2003—12.3 million viewers
    Junior (George O. Gore II) learns that being a young parent isn't easy.
  • Las Vegas—NBC—October 20, 2003—11.5 million viewers
    A serial rapist goes to Las Vegas clubs, slipping date rape drugs in women's drinks.
  • Freshman Diaries—Showtime—October 19, 2003
    Neil has a one night stand and finds out that his partner had an affair with an HIV-positive male.
  • Strong Medicine—Lifetime—October 19, 2003
    An elderly woman tests positive for HIV because she had unprotected sex and thought she wasn't at risk.
  • The District—CBS—October 18, 2003—10.2 million viewers
    Chief Jack Mannion (Craig T. Nelson) goes after an internet predator who preys on young girls.
  • Degrassi: The Next Generation—Noggin—October 17, 2003
    Marco continues to deceive his friends by playing the charade that he has a girlfriend. When he finally comes out to Spinner, Spinner reacts badly and outs him on the boys' bathroom wall. Word gets out and Marco ends up the victim of a gay bashing.
  • George Lopez—ABC—October 17, 2003—8.6 million viewers
    George's mom (Belita Moreno) thinks she's going through menopause. But, when she goes to the doctor, she discovers she has gonorrhea.
  • The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H.—CBS—October 15, 2003—6.7 million viewers
    The town's minister "comes out" and the brothers (Randy Quaid, Christopher Penn, John Carroll Lynch) all react differently, from acceptance and compassion to rage and betrayal.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—October 14, 2003
    Although Sofia Lopez's sex change operation is now complete, when she joins a yoga class, the other women walk out on her.
  • All My Children—ABC—October 13, 2003
    A condom scene is featured when JR gives Jamie a condom in preparation for him "getting lucky" at a party.
  • Carnivale—HBO—October 12, 2003
    Two young women discuss losing their virginity and using condoms.
  • Freshman Diaries—Showtime—October 12, 2003
    A college student is with his girlfriend when she gives birth to their baby. He recognizes that he isn't ready to be a father.
  • What I Like About You—WB—October 9, 2003—2.0 million viewers
    Holly (Amanda Bynes) finds out that her boyfriend is no longer a virgin. Henry (Michael McMilliam) explains that his first time was a disappointment because he was so nervous.
  • The Brotherhood of Poland, N.H.—CBS—October 8, 2003—6.8 million viewers
    Monica tells Garrett (John Carroll Lynch) and Helen (Elizabeth McGovern) that she is considering having sex with her boyfriend. She tries to convince them that she is responsible because she has all the facts about STDs, pregnancy and contraception at her fingertips.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—October 7, 2003
    Christian (Julian McMahon) finds out that he is going to be a father and is astounded because he had been wearing a condom. Sean (Dylan Walsh) informs him that putting on the condom properly would have prevented the unwanted pregnancy.
  • Still Standing—CBS—October 6, 2003—11.6 million viewers
    A father (Mark Addy) gives his son a condom. When the mom notices the condoms out on the bed, it leads her to have the sex talk with their son.
  • Luis—FOX—October 3, 2003—3.8 million viewers
    The neighborhood pharmacist tells Luis that his daughter bought a pregnancy test and he gave her a discount because she buys so many condoms. It turns out the pregnancy test was for his wife after they had enjoyed an unprotected night together.
  • Fight for Your Rights: The Social History of Virginity—MTV—October 2, 2003
    A documentary about how society traditionally views virginity.
  • 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter—ABC—October 1, 2003—15.5 million viewers
    Kate (Katey Sagal) has to teach her daughter's sex ed class.

SEPTEMBER 2003

  • One Life to Live—ABC—September 30, 2003
    A guy pulls out a condom before sex.
  • Everwood—WB—September 29, 2003
    A 13-year-old boy admits that he and his friends have been participating in sex parties. When it is discovered that he is the "snitch," he is beaten up. Episode mentions condoms, STDs, unwanted pregnancy, and patient/doctor confidentiality.
  • Coupling—NBC—September 26, 2003
    A woman stops sex until a condom can be found.
  • ER—NBC—September 26, 2003
    An HIV-positive patient comes into the ER with candidiasis. He hasn't been able to afford antiretroviral treatment and isn't eligible for Medicaid until he has AIDS. He subsequently develops thrush, an indication of AIDS. The good news is that he is finally covered by insurance.
  • What I Like About You—WB—September 26, 2003
    Holly's new friend takes a pregnancy test that turns out negative. The scare alone makes Holly decide not to have sex.
  • Life & Times—PBS—September 25, 2003
    An examination of the controversy over the construction of an AIDS memorial in northeast Los Angeles.
  • 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter—ABC—September 23, 2003
    Kate thinks she may be pregnant and when the kinds find out, they ask why she neglected to use protection. Also, the kids walk in on their parents having sex, forcing the kids to accept that parents are sexual beings.
  • General Hospital—ABC—September 23, 2003
    Georgie's dad talks with her about the consequences of unsafe sex.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—September 23, 2003
    Sofia Lopez is ready to undergo the final stages of her sex change operation. However, the night before the surgery she spends the night with Liz and questions her decision. Ultimately, Liz reinforces her lifelong desire to live as a straight woman and to complete the sex change.
  • Eve—UPN—September 22, 2003
    Eve decides against casual sex and wants to wait with her new boyfriend. Features a scene about buying condoms at Costco.
  • Everwood—WB—September 22, 2003
    A girl comes to see Dr. Brown complaining of chest pains. He discovers that her breast implants are leaking.
  • Half & Half—UPN—September 22, 2003
    DeeDee's condom broke and she has a pregnancy scare.
  • Two and Half Men—CBS—September 22, 2003
    Jon Cryer's wife tells him she is a lesbian.
  • All About the Andersons—WB—September 19, 2003
    Anthony prepares for his first date in a decade and his mother warns him "no glove, no love."
  • Boston Public—FOX—September 19, 2003
    Ronnie witnesses an attempted rape and decides to pursue justice even though the victim refuses to prosecute. Also, the school health clinic distributes emergency contraception and Scott defends their right to do so on public access television.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—September 17, 2003
    A priest undergoes plastic surgery to remove a scar that could identify him as a child molester. Also, a woman wants a nose job because her nose reminds her of her dad who abused her when she was a child. And, Christian reveals that he had been sexually abused as a child.
  • P.O.V.'s State of Denial—PBS—September 16, 2003
    A profile of six HIV-positive people in South Africa who encounter social stigma and lack of access to medication.
  • Freshman Diaries—Showtime—September 15, 2003
    Neil tells Luis that, if they want to have sex, Luis will have to take an HIV test. The camera shows Luis getting the test and the results.
  • The Young & the Restless—CBS—September 15, 2003 and continued
    A continuing storyline about a teen girl who is seduced by an older guy over the internet.
  • Reba—WB—September 13, 2003
    A flashback to the time Cheyenne discovered she was pregnant.
  • Run of the House—WB—September 12, 2003
    The older siblings debate who is going to have the "sex talk" with the youngest sibling after they catch her kissing a boy in her room.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—September 10, 2003
    After walking in on Matt having sex with two girls, his mom holds an intervention with the girls' parents. At the intervention, Matt says he used a condom he got from his dad. Also, Dr. Troy operates on a gigolo whom he test for STDs. The guy ends up testing positive for Hepatitis B and Dr. Troy tells him he will have to inform his future partners.
  • O.C.—WB—September 9, 2003
    Teens stop before having sex to make sure they have a condom.
  • Sex & the Single Mom—Lifetime—September 8, 2003
    A divorced mom finds love again. She doesn't use a condom just once and gets pregnant. Meanwhile, her teenage daughter struggles with pressures to look sexy to attract a boyfriend.
  • Freshman Diaries—Showtime—September 7, 2003
    Neil and Luis start dating.
  • Dead Like Me—Showtime—September 5, 2003
    Mason takes the souls of a committed gay couple.
  • Grounded for Life—WB—September 5, 2003
    When Sean finds out Lily is having sex with Brad, Claudia invites Brad's family over to talk about their children's relationship.
  • Nip/Tuck—FX—September 3, 2003
    In the wake of Julia's miscarriage, she and McNamara discuss a vasectomy.

AUGUST 2003

  • Freshman Diaries—Showtime—August 31, 2003
    Neal goes to college where, for the first time, he can come out as gay with other gays.
  • Dead Like MeShowtimeAugust 22, 2003
    George goes to a college to take a soul. Mason accompanies her and stops a date rape.
  • Nip/TuckFXAugust 19, 2003
    Dr. McNamara's wife has an unplanned pregnancy, which leads to a discussion of abortion. He opposes the abortion. She defies the doctor's orders to stay in bed and ends up having a miscarriage.
  • All My ChildrenABC—August 18, 2003
    Bianca gets a rape exam, including testing for sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy.
  • Degrassi: The Next Generation—Noggin—August 15, 2003
    Two boys purchase condoms after taking a sex ed class in school. Episode includes a discussion of the right time to initiate sex.
  • Nip/TuckFXAugust 12, 2003
    Dr. McNamara works on a transgender patient. In the B story, his son contracts nongonococcal urethritis from a pornography star and is encouraged to get tested for HIV. He is also lectured for not wearing a condom.
  • A Date with Darkness—Lifetime—August 11, 2003
    The true story of millionaire heir Andrew Luster raping his victims.
  • Wild CardLifetime—August 9, 2003
    Zoe's niece is hospitalized from being slipped a date rape drug.

JULY 2003

  • Special Report with Brit Hume—FOX News—July 30, 2003 and July 31, 2003
    A two-part series examining how legislative efforts, such as fetal homicide laws, have blurred the lines in the abortion debate.
  • Nip/Tuck—July 29, 2003
    A male performs a self-circumcision after his girlfriend makes fun of his penis and turns down his sexual advances.
  • Defending Our Kids: The Julie Posey Story—Lifetime—July 21, 2003
    A teen girl and her mother track down cyber predators.
  • Degrassi: The Next Generation—Noggin—July 18, 2003
    An episode entitled "Mirror on the Wall" features two kids dealing with being overweight. A boy attempts to lose weight by using laxatives and not eating in order to make the wrestling team while a girl is embarrassed that she modeled as an overweight teen for a nationally distributed poster.
  • Meeting Mandela—MTV—July 18, 2003
    Honoring Nelson Mandela on his 85th birthday, this documentary brings the world leader into a conversation among four young people, including an HIV-positive outreach worker from Uganda.
  • NewsHour with Jim Lehrer—PBS—July 15, 2003 and July 17, 2003
    A two-part series examining the success of Brazil's efforts to fight HIV/AIDS.
  • Degrassi: The Next Generation—Noggin—July 11, 2003
    A special 90-minute episode that follows ninth grader, Page, as she goes through the experience of date rape.
  • All My Children—ABC—July 8, 2003
    Bianca, a teen lesbian, is raped by a psychopath who had sexually assaulted her mother and sister. This is the first episode of an ongoing storyline.

JUNE 2003

  • Pandemic: Facing AIDS—HBO—Premiered June 15, 2003
    A documentary series of five half-hour films that takes a unique look at the worldwide AIDS epidemic.
  • ABC News—ABC—June 10, 2003
    A report on infertility.
  • He's Having a Baby—CinemaxJune 4, 2003
    A Cinemax documentary about gay Hollywood agent Jeff Danis and his efforts to adopt a child.
  • Daddy & Papa—PBS—June 3, 2003
    A PBS documentary about gay men who are making the decision to become dads.

MAY 2003

  • Soldier's Girl—ShowtimeMay 28, 2003
    The true story of the 1999 murder of Private Barry Winchell who was killed for falling in love with transsexual Calpernia Addams.
  • Buchanan & Press—MSNBCMay 20, 2003
    A debate between Judie Brown and Terry O'Neill on emergency contraception.
  • Strong Medicine—Lifetime—May 18, 2003
    A 16-year-old candy striper steals RU 486 from the clinic to give to her grandmother for Alzheimer's treatment.
  • Now With Bill Moyers—PBSMay 16, 2003
    A documentary on abortion.
  • girlfriends—UPNMay 12, 2003—4.3 million viewers
    The conclusion of the HIV storyline. The AIDS documentary is complete and we discover that Neeci has died.
  • Six Feet Under—HBOMay 11, 2003
    Claire finds out she is pregnant after having unprotected sex with Russell.
  • Grounded for Life—Fox—May 9, 20033.5 million viewers
    After much discussion, Lily loses her virginity to an unexpected lover. She and Claudia have a sex talk, including talk about condoms.
  • Student Seduction—Lifetime Original MovieMay 9, 2003
    A teacher is sexually assaulted by her student.
  • What I Like About You—WBMay 9, 20032.4 million viewers
    Val has "the talk" with Holly about sex, waiting until it's right, and contraception.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—May 9, 200313.3 million viewers
    When a girl is found murdered, her death uncovers a bizarre cult led by a gynecologist.
  • My Wife and Kids—ABCMay 7, 20039.6 million viewers
    Tony and Clair approach Claire's parents to tell them their intention to have sex for the first time. Her parents do everything they can to thwart their plans. Includes mentions of condoms.
  • Everwood—WBMay 5, 20035.1 million viewers
    An 18-year-old patient comes to Dr. Brown for an abortion. He can't do it, but Dr. Abbott performs the surgery.
  • The Practice—ABCMay 5, 200310.1 million viewers
    A pregnant woman is on trial for the murder of her husband. Her defense rests on the protection of her unborn child from his abuse. Courtroom drama includes discussion of when a fetus is entitled to legal rights.
  • Oliver Beene—FoxMay 4, 20039.2 million viewers
    Oliver blames the invention of the pill for his parents' refusal to get him a puppy. Includes a scene of his mother taking her contraception.
  • Six Feet Under—HBOMay 4, 2003
    Russell confesses to Claire that he slept with their teacher and she panics, claiming that he told her they were "safe" and that he wasn't gay. This episode marks the beginning of an unwanted pregnancy story arc.

APRIL 2003

  • Greetings from Tucson—WB—April 25, 2003—2.4 million viewers
    A teen boy decides whether to have sex for the first time. His mother talks with him about condoms, contraception, and the importance of taking responsibility for his choices.
  • The Practice—ABC—April 21, 2003—7.6 million viewers
    Jamie agrees to be a witness on a date rape case where GHB was used.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—April 18, 2003—14.8 million viewers
    A transsexual, Cheryl, murders her boyfriend's brother to prevent him from "outing" her. Provides a revealing look into the realities of growing up trapped inside the wrong gender.
  • Dawson's Creek—WB—April 16, 2003—3.1 million viewers
    Dr. Drew Pinsky and Adam Carolla guest star as themselves to answer questions about sex and relationships.
  • The Simpsons—Fox—April 13, 2003—12.0 million viewers
    When Homer and Marge separate, Homer moves in with two gay guys. He learns to be more accepting of gays and lesbians.
  • Saturday Night Live—NBC—April 12, 2003
    The sketch, What's the Rush, with Ray Romano is a comic takeoff on abstinence-only.
  • Soul Food—Showtime—April 9, 2003
    After Ahmed catches his parents having sex twice, they realize it is time to talk with him frankly about sex. A second storyline features sexual abuse.
  • er—NBC—April 3, 2003—18.9 million viewers
    A patient with Down syndrome comes in with pelvic inflammatory disease, which she contracted from unprotected sex.
  • George Lopez—ABC—April 2, 2003—8.6 million viewers
    The Lopez family takes in an ex-gang member who proves to be a bad influence on Carmen. Portrays good parent-child communication.

March 2003

  • General Hospital—ABC—March 28, 2003
    Maxi is about to have sex with her boyfriend and he brings out a condom before she changes her mind.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—March 28, 2003 - 15.8 million viewers
    A nine-year-old beauty pageant contestant is raped and murdered. Investigation uncovers a child pornography Web site, complete with instructions for tying girls up. This discovery ultimately leads to the conviction of the Web site's creator for the facilitation of rape and murder.
  • The West Wing—NBC—March 26, 2003—11.7 million viewers
    The First Lady mounts a campaign to get the President to veto the "gag" rule that accompanies his overseas aid package.
  • The Parkers—UPN—March 24, 2003—3.6 million viewers
    An episode on AIDS as part of the Viacom initiative.
  • The Practice—ABC—March 24, 2003—10.7 million viewers
    This episode explores the shame of rape survivors when an attorney sues a firm for not hiring her after she disclosed she had been raped.
  • girlfriends—UPN—March 17, 2003—4.7 million viewers
    In "The Pact," an old friend, Reesie, returns to be a bridesmaid at Toni's wedding, which reignites an old feud with Joan. But, the long grudges become insignificant when they find out that Reesie was infected with HIV from her husband.
  • Normal—HBO—March 16, 2003
    Married for 25 years, Roy and Irma Applewood's lives are changed forever when Roy decides he wants to undergo a sex change operation.
  • Grounded for Life—Fox—March 14, 2003—3 million viewers
    Mr. Finnerty lies to his wife that he has gotten a vasectomy and avoids sex with her for fear she will get pregnant. When she finds out he lied, she takes him to the doctor to discuss it. In the end, they decide to rely on condoms instead.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—March 14, 2003—17 million viewers
    A five-year-old sees his stepmother raped and beaten to death by his father and, ultimately, finds the courage to testify against his father.
  • ER—NBC—March 13, 2003—20.9 million viewers
    A young man, the secret lover of a closeted local politician, dies because Carrie treats him for an STD without obtaining his medical history.
  • JAG—CBS—March 4, 2003—10 million viewers
    A senior ranking female officer is under investigation for sexual harassment. It is discovered that she is a closeted lesbian who flirts with men as a smokescreen.
  • girlfriends—UPN—March 3, 2003—3.2 million viewers
    When Toni turns 32, she decides to get Botox and the girls explore the insecurities women experience over aging.
  • Malcolm in the Middle—Fox—March 2, 2003—11.7 million viewers
    Lois gives Malcolm a sex talk that includes all the basics. He is completely rattled until she catches his attention by talking about the emotional aspects of sexuality.

February 2003

  • Gilmore Girls—WB—February 25, 2003
    Paris confides to Rory that she had sex for the first time, leading to a conversation about how the right time is different for everyone.
  • 7th Heaven—WB—February 24, 2003
    Simon and his girlfriend have a difficult time sticking to their decision not to have sex. Includes dialogue about the choice to wait until it is right.
  • American Experience: The Pill—PBS—February 24, 2003
    A moving documentary featuring footage with Margaret Sanger, Dr. Rock, and Dr. Pinkus, the three responsible for developing the pill.
  • Boston Public—Fox—February 24, 2003
    A student is the victim of a gay hate crime and the violence inspires Scott to start a gay/straight alliance at Boston Public.
  • Judging Amy—CBS—February 18, 2003—15 million viewers
    This episode focuses on the sexualization of young girls and the importance of strong parental guidance and the ability to say "no."
  • Dawson's Creek—WB—February 12, 2003—4.2 million viewers
    Pacey won't have sex unless he buys condoms first.
  • George Lopez—ABC—February 12, 2003—11.2 million viewers
    Adam tells everyone at school that Carmen had sex with him and now the kids are calling her a "ho" and bullying her because she has the reputation of a slut. The situation deteriorates until she decides she must leave and go to a private school.
  • Judging Amy—CBS—February 11, 2003—13.9 million viewers
    A four-year-old girl is diagnosed with HPV. Maxine investigates and discovers she had been abused by another little boy who was only repeating what his own stepfather had been doing to him.
  • Boston Public—Fox—February 10, 2003—9.6 million viewers
    When Fyvush's character asks Scott's mother to dance, he tries to reassure Scott by saying, "Don't worry, I have a condom."
  • Without a Trace—CBS—February 06, 2003—15.03 million viewers
    Jack and his team investigate the disappearance of a flight attendant who may have been having a relationship with a pilot. Their investigation revolves around date rape.
  • Enterprise—UPN—February 05, 2003—4.4 million viewers
    Entitled "Stigma," this episode features an officer with a fatal Vulcan virus who hides her status for fear of personal and professional repercussions.
  • The Guardian—CBS—February 04, 2003—12.15 million viewers
    A transvestite has been a young boy's "mother" since his biological mother died. Now the boy's father has died of AIDS and his surrogate "mom's" custody is revoked.
  • Half & Half—UPN—February 03, 2003—3.3 million viewers
    This episode centers on HIV testing.
  • Becker—CBS—February 02, 2003—11.3 million viewers
    A young patient of Dr. Becker complains of strange symptoms that could be HIV. He has been having unsafe sex. Although the patient tests negative, Becker decides to give him the scare of his life.

January 2003

  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—January 31, 2003—16.1 million viewers
    When a dead one month baby is found, the police first think the murderer is a 15-year-old girl. But, after turning her life upside down unnecessarily by bending confidentiality, they find the teen had had an abortion.
  • Frasier—NBC—January 28, 2003—6.8 million viewers
    Frasier and Niles ride in the first annual KACL AIDS bikeathon.
  • All My Children—ABC Daytime—January 27, 2003
    Jake has a one night stand and Tad questions him about using protection.
  • Law & Order: Criminal Intent—NBC—January 26, 2003—8.1 million viewers
    A doctor who performs abortions is killed by an anti-abortion activist who harbors rage that his ex-girlfriend aborted their baby.
  • NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw—NBC—January 22, 2003
    The focus is on abortion issues: the vulnerability of legal abortion, the possibility of overturning of Roe vs. Wade, Bush's anti-abortion policies, so-called partial birth abortion, parental consent laws.
  • Boston Public—Fox—January 20, 2003—9.8 million viewers
    Continuing the previous week's episode,  this episode focuses on the school's policy of "you show, you go." The pregnant teen hasn't decided whether to carry to term, but the baby's father decides to accept responsibility. Scott realizes the policy is unfair and decides to go to bat to change it.
  • What's Going On—Showtime—January 19, 2003
    This show, hosted by Danny Glover, looks at HIV/AIDS. It is geared to families and children.
  • The District—CBS—January 18, 2003—10.5 million viewers
    Mannion and Ella participate in an AIDS rally as a legacy for their good friend who died of the illness.
  • Reba—WB—January 17, 2003—5.7 million viewers
    Cheyenne and Ben realize all the things they missed by having an unplanned pregnancy. Reba realizes that although young people should make responsible reproductive choices, ultimately they have to make them on their own. Brock reveals he had a vasectomy.
  • ER—NBC—January 16, 2003—21.8 million viewers
    Ethical issues abound after Kerry agrees to hide a politician's STD.
  • Ed—NBC—January 15, 2003—10 million viewers
    Ed is hired by a client whose sister wants to take an ad in the local paper "outing" him so that he can be free to find happiness in a relationship.
  • CSI Miami—CBS—January 13, 2003—12.9 million viewers
    A whole crime revolves around a condom.
  • Hunger Point—Lifetime—January 13, 2003
    This movie tells the tale of a family coping with their daughter's anorexia.
  • Nick News: Special Edition with Magic Johnson—Nickelodeon—January 13, 2003
  • Still Standing—CBS—January 13, 2003—11.6 million viewers
    This episode deals with teaching children about where babies come from.
  • Behind the Red Door—Showtime—January 12, 2003
    Kiefer Sutherland plays a gay ad exec who discovers he is infected with HIV. He not only has to cope with the diagnosis but also his heartbreak over the lover who has just left him.
  • The District—CBS—January 11, 2003—7.7 million viewers
    Temple and Debrens investigate a drug dealer who steals drugs to help his AIDS-afflicted sister.
  • Law & Order: SVU—NBC—January 10, 2003—16.6 million viewers
    A little girl is sexually abused and assaulted and is found to have gonorrhea. Ultimately, it is discovered that her sister, an adopted teenager who had been abused as a young child, is the culprit.
  • Fight for Your Life: Sex, School and Scandal—MTV—January 9, 2003
    A powerful pairing of a documentary on teens fighting for comprehensive sex ed in Lubbock, Texas with an original movie dealing with sex education.
  • Naked Truth II—BET—January 8, 2003
    African American women living with AIDS.
  • The Real … AIDS in Africa—BET—January 8, 2003
  • girlfriends—UPN—January 7, 2003—2.1 million viewers
    Todd insists that Toni get tested for HIV. She panics and resists but finally agrees to get test. The episode ends with a negative test result.
  • 7th Heaven—WB—January 6, 2003—6.8 million viewers
    A teen couple, Simon and Cecilia, discuss whether they're ready to have sex. When their parents get involved, the discussion gets heated. Meanwhile, the new minister gets hit on by a beautiful girl who asks if it's OK to have premarital sex.
  • Boston Public—Fox—January 6, 2003—9.9 million viewers
    A student gets pregnant and confides her secret to Scott. When he realizes she feels alone and intends to seek an abortion, he shows up at the clinic to persuade her to give it some more thought. There he discovers she hasn't made a decision and had only intended to get an exam.
  • girlfriends—UPN—January 6, 2003—4.4 million viewers
    A "spokenword" artist inspires Lynn to make an AIDS documentary.
  • An American Family—PBS
    An update on the Loud family's 1973 documentary. In this new film, Lance is dying from an HIV-hepatitis C coinfection.

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