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Choose Your Own Adventure: Now with more boobs.

In an attempt to reach out to at-risk partiers, the newest public service announcement from the National Health Service is reaching back to our youth for help. It’s not just the subject matter (use condoms) that makes it more fun and controversial than American ads, nor is it the Euro-chic nonchalance toward sex. The best part about it is that it’s essentially a Choose Your Own Adventure. With boobs.

In the vaguely-NSFW interactive video series, which is viewable on YouTube, you play as an unseen male character who is getting ready to go to a party with some friends, and have to make some tough choices about condoms: mostly whether to buy/use them. Depending which choices you make, you might totally get some, bro. Watch out though! Danger lurks around every corner and you might end up in the STD clinic.

The shaky Handycam saves the videos from being titillating, but they’re racy enough that British government officials can’t watch them at work due to porn filters. Predictably, moral-centric organizations like the Family and Educational Trust are complaining that the videos send a bad message to kids, because just saying no isn’t an option.

Norman Wells, the director of the Family and Education Trust, said the NHS should not be sending out the message that casual sex ‘leaves no regrets’.

He said: “It is grossly irresponsible of the NHS to present a graphic portrayal of unbridled lust in which a young woman is depicted as no more that a sex object and then to tell young men that they have ‘made the right choices’ simply because they have used a condom.”

Whether the objectification factor outweighs the message is debatable, but it’s not all sex and glamor. I’m not sure that sitting in an STD clinic being told you have AIDS/crabs/gonorrhea/etc. is really a regret-free outcome, and he leaves out the fact that — as I discovered — it’s entirely possible to cock-block yourself in the video.

Either way, though, if these stand any chance of getting the attention of the at-risk, they should be supported whole-heartedly. And if you disagree, turn to page 69, and a boulder will fall on your head.

  1. Ellie Macallan says:

    These might actually be more effective and amusing if it didn’t take 30 minutes to run through a scenario. Furthermore, most people don’t get to pick their STD’s, so having that option is not only a waste of time, it lessens the reality and overall impact of the video. Also, abstinence education is amusing at best since most people lose their virginity by the time that they die, but hey if you want to be married and practice abstinence, who am I to judge you?

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