10/23/2013 04:37 pm ET

CW Cuts 'Reign' Scene Featuring Masturbation, But Why Is It So Taboo On TV? (VIDEO)

Sex and violence are becoming more and more common on television, but it seems networks draw the line at self-pleasure.

The pilot of "Reign," a new series on The CW, originally contained a scene in which a woman masturbates after becoming aroused during a "bedding ceremony" that was traditional during the 16th Century. But the scene was toned down and edited before it hit the air -- even though, as Time Magazine critic James Poniewozik pointed out on HuffPost Live, there were sex scenes before and after the scene in question.

"The scene was cut down in the version that aired so that it was still present but it was the merest suggestion rather than the more explicit hand movements that we saw in the original," Poniewozik said.

HuffPost Live's Ricky Camilleri hosted Poniewozik and artist Sophia Wallace for a discussion on artistic depictions of masturbation and why it's considered more taboo than sex between couples. As Poniewozik pointed out, masturbation typically only makes it into cable shows were censorship is a non-issue.

"When I tried to come up with recent examples of where it's been depicted in television, it's shows like 'Girls' on HBO and 'Masters of Sex' on Showtime, a new show which is very good and very interesting because it is very much about the study of how sex works and sex not just as an object of titillation," Poniewozik said.

Catch the full discussion from HuffPost Live in the video above.


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