Originally published June 1, 2023 12:00 pm PDT
Disney+ announced its production of a provocative German original series, “Pauline,” causing a stir due to its controversial plot that involves a pregnant teenager falling in love with the devil.
The show, penned by the creative team behind Netflix’s hit “How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast),” intertwines elements of supernatural drama and young love, raising concerns over the potential influence of such themes.
The series reportedly focuses on the eponymous character Pauline, an 18-year-old grappling with the reality of an unplanned pregnancy stemming from a one-night stand.
As she contends with the overwhelming pressures of school, the so-called “climate crisis,” and societal decay, she becomes emotionally entangled with Lukas, her mysterious one-night stand, who is later revealed to be the devil himself.
This depiction of the devil in a romantic role has prompted significant discussion and apprehension.
Philipp Käßbohrer and Matthias Murmann, who have previously worked together on “How to Sell Drugs Online (Fast),” are serving as the executive producers.
They remain firmly committed to the project despite its contentious subject matter.
“For a long time, the series has been and still remains a project very close to our hearts,” the pair shared, demonstrating their belief in the story.
While Käßbohrer and Murmann express excitement at the prospect of bringing this controversial series to life, stating, “We’re thrilled that Disney+ loves this coming-of-age story as much as we do and that we’ve now been able to begin filming with such an amazing cast and crew”, concerns persist around the appropriateness of such supernatural and dark themes, especially in a series aimed at younger audiences.
The series, which stars up-and-coming actors like Sira-Anna Faal, Ludger Bökelmann, and Lukas von Horbatschewsky, has definitely placed Disney+ in the limelight, although not without raising eyebrows for its choice of content.
This situation marks a significant departure from the usual family-oriented content that Disney+ is well-known for, leaving viewers and critics eager to see how it handles this unusual and challenging narrative.
Founder and chairman of Movieguide, Ted Baehr, is leading a call to action against the controversial new series, “Pauline”, on Disney+.
Movieguide is a website that offers comprehensive movie reviews from a Christian standpoint, specifically catering to families.
Baehr urges parents to join in petitioning Disney+ to halt the release of the show due to its disturbing content.
Baehr expressed grave concerns about the potential impact of the show on young audiences.
“We can’t let this twisted and disturbing content corrupt our children’s values and beliefs,” he cautioned.
He continued to underline the potential dangers posed by the series, adding, “Horrifically, this series even portrays Satan as a romantic partner! By normalizing and promoting such a relationship, Pauline sends a dangerous message to young viewers that associating with demons, Satan, and evil is acceptable and even desirable!”
Baehr minced no words when discussing the nature of the series.
“Let me be clear. Pauline is not just another piece of entertainment,” he affirmed, emphasizing the potentially harmful influence the show could have.
He warned about the potential repercussions if the show were to air.
“If released, there will be millions of young viewers who may perceive this twisted and disturbing story as desirable and exciting,” he cautioned.
He further criticized the show’s attempt to normalize demonic associations, calling it a clear effort to blur moral boundaries and glamorize evil.
Baehr urges swift action, calling on people to petition Disney to reassess their decision to host the show.
“We must act now to petition Disney to reconsider their decision to platform this evil show. We need to inform the studios that there are still discerning viewers and parents who won’t allow this content be viewed by our children,” he asserted.
With a strong sense of urgency, Baehr concluded, “Pauline has not been released yet, and we can still STOP this show from progressing any further…we need to act fast.”
It remains to be seen how Disney+ will respond to these concerns, as the debate around this controversial series continues to intensify.