Social Question

poisonedantidote's avatar

(NSFW): Why would any letter ever mean that?

Asked by poisonedantidote (21549 points ) August 16th, 2012

If I say to you “XXX Movie”, you instantly know what I’m talking about.

Why would the letter X represent porn or adult content? and why tripple X?

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15 Answers

poisonedantidote's avatar

Never has the term “observing members” been more adequate than in the NSFW questions.

ucme's avatar

I immediately thought of this movie though.

poisonedantidote's avatar

@ucme I’m sure you did.

Ponderer983's avatar

Helpful History I remember I was reading an article about a movie coming out that criics felt received an unfair NC17 rating, therefore people wouldn’t go see it, and the whole article turned into a lesson on the ratings system. I’ll have to find it because it’s better than the Wiki page.

ucme's avatar

@poisonedantidote I suspect that to be a lie of sorts.

MilkyWay's avatar

Well, because X means kiss, right?
And a kiss is seen to be a sexual thing sometimes…

poisonedantidote's avatar

@MilkyWay Maybe X marks the spot, I can think of 3 of them.

mazingerz88's avatar

Four is too much, two is too few. XXX is just right. Or maybe single X is soft porn. Double has penetration and triple is hardcore-?

MilkyWay's avatar

Good question I have to say @poisonedantidote… I’m really not sure about the triplet thing.

Bellatrix's avatar

XXXX means beer here.

The ratings for films in the UK from 1951 through to 1982 included the letter X when classified as adult content. These were the classifications from the early 1970–1980s.

X – Suitable only for those over the age of 18
A – 5 and older admitted but not recommended for those under 14 years of age
AA – Suitable for those aged 14 and older
Universal or U – Suitable for children.

The Exorcist, Carrie and The Omen were classified X when released.

Films such as Emmanuelle which is soft porn would have been an X I would think.

So the XXX suggested hard core porn or content. There were cinemas that specifically showed this type of content when I was younger.

zenvelo's avatar

The MPAA rating system when it first came out was:

G – General
M – Mature
R- Restricted
X -No one under 17

M was changed to GP after a few years, and then that was changed to PG. PG 13 was added for films like Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom that was a Spielberg but had a live human heart being extracted.

By 1990, any X rated movie was assumed to be porn. The porn industry had adopted “Rated X” in the 1970s, so the MPAA came up with NC 17 for adult “artistic” films that were not porn.

By the late 70s/early 80s, with all adult films called Rated X, “XXX” was adopted by porn makers as an advertising gimmick to mean a flick was even raunchier and more explicit than just any old X movie.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@Ponderer983 Was it Blue Valentine, over the cunnilingus scene?

Ponderer983's avatar

@Aethelflaed Nope it was Killer Joe. That’s the article I was originally looking for.

FutureMemory's avatar

@zenvelo Has the correct answer.

Shippy's avatar

They have their eyes crossed and legs open. No wait that’s wrong?

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