"The Secret Life of the American Teenager," a coming cable drama, opens with a 15-year-old getting pregnant at band camp. Subsequent scenes depict two teenagers, each asking adults for free condoms.
And those are the nice kids. To rebuff an invitation to a church dance, the school's resident party girl wraps her arm around a boy and sneers, "My mom is out of town, so we're going over to my house to drink beer and have sex." She's not joking, as a later scene emphasizes.
A new offering from MTV? Not even close. "American Teenager" is the latest from ABC Family, the Walt Disney Company's cable channel aimed at older teenagers and young adults.
ABC Family hopes the show, along with the established teenage soap opera "Greek" and a coming mini-series called "Samurai Girl," will complete its makeover into a year-round, top-rated channel, something it has long sought but never quite accomplished.