Censorship, sensitivity issues at Ashton Cup

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This year’s Ashton Cup featured a number of familiar stories, including Romeo and Juliet, shown here.
Jeffrey Richards/THE FALCON

Students crammed into Royal Brougham Pavilion on the night of March 8 for the annual Ashton Cup, a lively competition between floors. As the most populous dorm on campus, Ashton residents take pride in this tradition, bringing more and more hype on stage each year.

In fact, the Cup is notorious for being one of the most scandalous events Seattle Pacific holds.

This year did not disappoint. It featured Beyonce-esque twerking, tampons, pseudo-sex scenes and an Indiana Jones and Fifty Shades of Grey mash-up skit by 4th West.

Freshman Pete Freeman of 4th West played Indiana Jones in the floor’s raunchy mash-up skit.  Jeffrey Richards/THE FALCON

Freshman Pete Freeman of 4th West played Indiana Jones in the floor’s raunchy skit.
Jeffrey Richards/THE FALCON

“I ate a lot of popcorn,” judge and Professor of Psychology Margaret Brown said in response to 4th West’s performance. “But I don’t know if that or the skit made my stomach more sick.”
Unlike Brown, many students found the crude humor the most amusing aspect of the night.

“The inappropriate jokes are somewhat necessary for the humor,” sophomore Arnett resident Payton Bruland said. “Because that is what engages pop culture.” The sexual references were not even the most censored part of the night. This year, the judges cracked down on 5th West Ashton’s selection of props and music.

According to residents, an Ashton residence life coordinator prohibited their music list and props, citing concerns that the music was too tense and that the props, which resembled guns, might arouse thoughts and feelings of the events of June 5. According to residents, these rules had not been explicitly stated before the groups started planning for the competition. Due to the bans, 5th West made last-minute alterations to their script, music and props.

“They did not tell us all of the rules beforehand because they thought there would be a certain amount of self-discernment regarding [the events of June 5],” 5th West resident Peter Van Winkle said. “This came as a slap in the face, as many guys on the floor were very close to the events that took place.”

Van Winkle thought the rules were unclear and unjustified.

”If the RLCs still have that amount of concern regarding the impact of the events of June 5, then why hasn’t there been a more proactive and open discussion about it?” he asked.

But according to senior Ben Prinster, one of the judges of the event, the rules were a part of making Ashton Cup enjoyable for everyone.

“We talked about [banning the risqué jokes], but [they were] kind of a theme with everyone,” Prinster said. “We realized everyone did it, so we weren’t going to accuse one floor over another. We just kind of roll with the punches and tried to decide who was best.”

Sixth West took claimed first place for the second year in a row with a rendition of Jurassic Park. Their performance included a massive mobile cardboard Tyrannosaurus rex, an elaborate storyline and a dinosaur egg birth scene. Huddled in close to his floor, freshman James Potts said, “My day and night has been devoted to this [for the past three weeks], and just to see it finally pay off is great.”

Sports editor Chad Brown, shown being eaten by a Tyrannosaurus rex, did not participate in the editing of this story.  Jeffrey Richards/THE FALCON

Sports editor Chad Brown, shown being eaten by a Tyrannosaurus rex, did not participate in the editing of this story.
Jeffrey Richards/THE FALCON

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