Much has been written about streaming networks secretly censoring old movies and TV shows and hoping we don’t notice. Viewers recently caught a magazine cover missing from Netflix’s version of Back to the Future Part II though and Disney+ unconvincingly CGI’d some hair over Daryl Hannah’s butt in Splash!
Now, viewers have noticed another strange edit, this time to that ever-controversial hotbed of vice and immorality, Wizards of Waverly Place. The episode in question sees star Maria Canals-Barrera wearing a top that shows a centimeter or two of cleavage. Disney have no doubt concluded that this merest hint of a woman’s chest would irreversibly corrupt the show’s young female target audience and to protect them from the fact that women have breasts, they’ve put a blur over the offending area, which has the reverse effect of drawing your eye to the spot.
Here’s how it looks on Disney+ and how people are reacting to it online:
So Disney+ is blurring out the tiniest hint of a cleavage now?! Seriously?! pic.twitter.com/d9YB1ASA4e
— Danielle Owen (@lovelychubly) May 18, 2020
DISNEY+ EDITED OUT CLEAVAGE???
— romuigi ✿ (@thunderquacks) May 24, 2020
People are noticing more now because of the giant blur. If it wasn't blurred no one (but the extreme far right and Disney) would notice. It's just a lame way of them censoring silly things that really shouldn't be censored.
— The Traveling Shintoist (@TravelingShinto) May 24, 2020
imagine disney hiring you as an editor and the first thing they tell you to do is put censors over women’s cleavage https://t.co/K8fWWEBxNS
— sam (@samthagawd) May 24, 2020
Lmao all the blood in s4 agents of shield is there but cleavage is a no no? Disney tf https://t.co/tg8rnJlC0A
— r͞͞ei | 3 days (@natsarmy) May 24, 2020
The morality police takes down another booby-bandit. Thank god Disney is here to save. Hildren from the horrors of network sitcom cleavage.
— *NotThePopularOpinion (@Only_Grey) May 24, 2020
Seriously @Disney @disneyplus Really Disney! Boobs Are A Thing! People are gonna see cleavage! Not A Big Deal, Even Kids See It, It’s not gonna corrupt them, it’s not like they are popping out #StopCensoring #Disney #DisneyPlus https://t.co/lROpvS8BoR
— Nema (@SuperNema108) May 24, 2020
Haha blurring cleavages doesn’t change the fact they exist ,bloody Disney and their conflicting liberal/conservative agenda yeah hell no DP3 is done .
— Bekou Movies (@bekoumovies) May 24, 2020
Disney+: Anakin Skywalker killing a bunch of kids? Bart Simpson's uncensored duck? Totally family friendly!
Also Disney+: Censors cleavage and unintentionally makes it even more conspicuous https://t.co/I8jxWHAsj6
— Donut (TTTE & SPOP Spoilers) (@WDonut04) May 24, 2020
I can’t believe Disney is legit censoring cleavages now in their streaming app. This is like what 4Kids would do with yugioh
— Hardy (@Kyte2227) May 24, 2020
I hope they start blurring everything,makes it look like y’all are watching porn on Disney+
— Jerry Chen (@jerryasleep) May 24, 2020
That’s really crazy, what are they even trying to do, it’s like saying women have no right to look how they look lol
— RTSC Craig (@Release_ZSJL) May 24, 2020
It has an age rating content listed. If the parent allows the child to watch it, is that Disney’s fault?
— Matt ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (@mheath182) May 24, 2020
I’m not an expert, but I’m positive making sure the smudging of the cleavage doesn’t blur the edge of the dress is one of an editor’s top priorities in terms of making sure viewers don’t notice the edit easily.
— Waddle Viper (Somewhat Grey) ワドルバイパー (@WaddleViper) May 21, 2020
However, a twist in the tale came when one reply noted that this particular bit of censorship has been in place long before Disney+ launched. They posted a screen capture showing that the blurring was there from at least 2009, meaning that this particular bit of puritanism was imposed over a decade ago.
Crying @ this being from 09 just because it has the logo
My sister watched this show all the time and I’ve never noticed them do this lol. Like she been watching this for 10-12 years and I never saw this on there or any other show
— 🍼 (@liltittyslurp) May 24, 2020
The mind boggles why Disney would bother to edit an image of a perfectly normal-looking woman that no one sane would bat an eyelid at. Theories range from this being done in response to a specific complaint by an individual prude or perhaps to make the episode suitable for airing in countries with strict dress codes like Saudi Arabia.
Whatever the reason, if Disney wanted to stop people gawping at Maria Canals-Barrera’s boobs, then their efforts have backfired. And, as many replies on Twitter point out, I shudder to think what this means for characters like Scarlet Witch and She-Hulk.