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'Peppa Pig' episode banned in Australia

An episode of the popular children’s show “Peppa Pig” was pulled off the air for a second time in Australia as some viewers complained it encouraged children to play with dangerous spiders, The Guardian reported.

>> Read more trending news

“Mister Skinny Legs,” a 2004 episode, was removed from online publication by the national public broadcaster, the ABC, in 2012 for sending the “inappropriate” message that spiders were friendly and not to be feared.

In the offending episode, Daddy Pig tells a frightened Peppa that spiders are “very, very small” and “can’t hurt you” after a spider enters her room.

That was considered “inappropriate for Australian audiences,” and the ABC banned it.

On Aug. 25, the episode was aired again on Nick Jr, a children’s channel affiliated with Nickelodeon and available on the Australian pay TV service Foxtel.

A Sydney woman identified as Jess told Fairfax Media she complained to Nick Jr. The channel initially refused to pull the episode, saying Mister Skinny Legs “did not look real.”

Australia’s dangerous spider species include the venomous redback spider, the funnel-web spider, white-tailed spider and wolf-spider, according to the Australian Museum. An estimated 2,000 people are bitten each year by redback spiders, and 40 by funnel webs. 

The five-minute episode shows the two children discovering the spider in the bathroom sink and befriending it. At the end of the episode, the children pour it a cup of tea alongside a set of dolls. “We are all going to have tea with Mister Skinny Legs,” Peppa says. “Peppa likes Mister Skinny Legs, everyone likes Mister Skinny Legs,” the narrator says.

Fox News hires Tomi Lahren, the pundit fired by Glenn Beck’s The Blaze

Tomi Lahren, the outspoken commentator fired by Glenn Beck’s The Blaze after her comments on “The View,” has a new gig at Fox News. She’ll debut during Sean Hannity’s show.

>> Read more trending news

“Lahren will have a signature role on an FNC digital product currently in development and will also offer political commentary to the network’s opinion programming, primarily ‘Hannity.’ She will make her debut as a contributor on tonight’s edition of ‘Hannity’ at 10 p.m.,” a Fox release sent on Wednesday said. “Prior to joining FNC, Lahren served in a communications role at Great America Alliance (GAA), a Super PAC supporting President Donald Trump’s 2020 re-election bid. Previously, she hosted ‘Tomi’ on The Blaze and ‘On Point with Tomi Lahren’ on One America News Network. With more than 4.4 million Facebook followers, Lahren is well-known for her ‘Final Thoughts’ videos, where she offers commentary on everything from politics to pop culture.”

Beck fired Lahren after she appeared on “The View” in March and said conservatives who champion limited government were “hypocritical” if they approve of government restrictions on abortion. She later settled a lawsuit with The Blaze.

“The Blaze is pleased to announce that the relationship with Tomi Lahren has concluded,” a statement from The Blaze said at the time.

The Blaze announced in May that Bill O’Reilly, let go from Fox amid a sea of allegations of sexual misconduct, had joined the network.

“O’Reilly and Beck were both let go from Fox under controversial circumstances,” Cox Media Group writer Brianna Chambers reported at the time. “O’Reilly was ousted from “The O’Reilly Factor” in April after accusations of sexual harassment. Beck was released by the Fox network in 2011 after advertisers began pulling their spots in response to Beck’s increased use of inflammatory rhetoric.”

'Supernatural' star Jensen Ackles' brewery raising funds for Hurricane Harvey relief

The brewery from “Supernatural” star Jensen Ackles – who plays Dean Winchester on the show – and his family isn’t open yet, but Family Business Beer Co. is already getting philanthropic.

>> Hurricane Harvey: How you can help

On Sunday, the Texas Hill Country beer business organized a fundraiser for Hurricane Harvey relief. People responded quickly — so quickly, in fact, that the campaign has already surpassed its $100,000 goal, raising more than $128,000 (and that number is rising at a viral level).

>> Donate to the fundraiser here

“We are partnering with Random Acts to make sure 100% of this drive goes to families impacted by this tragedy,” Family Business Beer Co. wrote on the fundraising page at crowdrise.com.

>> Hurricane Harvey: Diaper bank seeking donations for storm evacuees

Random Acts is a nonprofit that, according to its mission statement, focuses on big and little acts of kindness to change the world. It’s no accident Family Business Beer chose Random Acts to help with its Harvey philanthropy: Random Acts was founded by another “Supernatural” cast member, Misha Collins, who plays the angel Castiel on the CW show.

>> Complete Harvey coverage from the Austin American-Statesman

Ackles is opening Family Business Beer Co. on Hamilton Pool Road with his family, including brother-in-law Gino Graul and wife Danneel. Heading up the brewing program is Nate Seale, formerly of Austin’s (512) Brewing. The project appears to be under construction still, despite a planned opening at the end of this summer, but will be a destination brewery with live music, outdoor games and food trucks once completed.

>> Hurricane Harvey: Celebs pledge help to those affected by storms

Family Business Beer Co.’s fundraiser will keep people updated on their “charity dollars at work.” There are a lot of causes the money could be donated to — much of Houston has flooded to catastrophic levels, with many people reeling from the loss of their homes.

>> Read more trending news

To donate, visit crowdrise.com/o/en/team/texas-flood-relief/familybusinessbeercompany.

Rev. Robert Lee IV, Gen. Robert E. Lee's descendant, denounces racism at VMAs

The Rev. Robert Lee IV, great-great-great-great nephew of Gen. Robert E. Lee, spoke during Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards to denounce racist violence.

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“We have made my ancestor an idol of white supremacy, racism and hate,” he said. “As a pastor, it is my moral duty to speak out against racism, America’s original sin. Today, I call on all of us with privilege and power to answer God’s call to confront racism and white supremacy head on.”

>> 2017 MTV Video Music Awards: Complete list of winners

Lee graduated from Duke University’s Divinity School with a master’s in theology, the Grand Haven Tribune reported. A statue of Gen. Lee was removed from Duke Chapel recently after protesters damaged it.

Rev. Lee, who served as a pastoral intern at Edenton Street United Methodist Church in Raleigh, is an adjunct professor at Appalachian State University and is pastor at a United Church of Christ in Winston-Salem, the Tribune reported.

>> MTV VMAs: Jared Leto gives emotional tribute to Chester Bennington, Chris Cornell

He saluted the Black Lives Matter Movement and the Women’s March on Washington before introducing Susan Bro, whose daughter Heather Heyer died when a car plowed through a group of pedestrians during the recent Charlottesville, Va. protests.

“Only 15 days ago, my daughter Heather was killed as she protested racism. I miss her, but I know she’s here tonight,” Bro said. “I’ve been deeply moved to see people across the world find inspiration in her courage.”

>> MTV VMAs: Transgender service members walk red carpet, speak out about military ban

She has launched a foundation in her daughter’s memory. The nonprofit will provide scholarships to those seeking a degree or certification in, but not limited to, law, paralegal studies, social work, social justice and education, the foundation site says. It’s online here.

“I want people to know that Heather never marched alone. She was always joined by people of every race and every background in this country,” Bro said. In that spirit, she announced, all six nominees in the “Best Fight Against the System” category had been declared winners.

>> MTV VMAs: Paris Jackson slams Nazis, white supremacists in Charlottesville's wake

Watch the clip here:

MTV VMAs: Transgender service members walk red carpet, speak out about military ban

Just days after President Donald Trump issued guidance on his transgender military ban, trans service members walked the red carpet Sunday at the MTV Video Music Awards.

>> PHOTOS: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs

According to Billboard, MTV invited Air Force Airman 1st Class Sterling James Crutcher, Air Force Staff Sgt. Logan B. Ireland, Army Capt. Jennifer Peace, Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Akira Wyatt, Army veteran Laila Ireland and former Navy Lt. Cmdr. Brynn Tannehill to the awards show. They joined Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD.

>> PHOTOS: 2017 MTV VMAs

"Any patriot who is putting their own life at risk to fight for our freedom and stand for equality is a hero at MTV and to young people everywhere," MTV President Chris McCarthy said in a statement, Billboard reported.

In a pre-show interview with MTV, Peace offered some advice to young trans people pursuing a military career in the wake of Trump's ban.

>> Read more trending news

"It doesn't matter who you are; our nation is only safe if we have the best and brightest in our country serving the military," Peace said. "There was a time where blacks couldn't serve, where women couldn't serve, where gays and lesbians couldn't serve, and there was a time when trans people couldn't serve. But today, the Armed Forces are open to everyone, regardless of your race, gender, religion or anything else. If you're willing to serve our country and you're among the most qualified in the nation, you should be welcome in the United States Armed Forces just like everyone else."

>> Watch the clip here

Tannehill spoke to CNN about what's next for the trans service members.

"Our people are naturally concerned about what's going to happen next, but we're going to continue to do our jobs day-in, day-out, the way we've done before and the way we'll continue to do."

>> Watch the clip here

MTV VMAs: Paris Jackson slams Nazis, white supremacists in Charlottesville's wake

The daughter of the late Michael Jackson took her moment in the spotlight at the MTV Video Music Awards to make a strong political statement.

>> PHOTOS: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs

On Sunday night, Paris Jackson presented at the VMAs and during her time onstage, she called out “Nazi white supremacist jerks” and rallied other young people to join her in standing up against the violence.

>> PHOTOS: 2017 MTV VMAs

Before going in on the haters, Jackson mimicked President Donald Trump, assuring the audience that if everyone came together, it would be “yuuuge.”

>> Read more trending news

“We must show these Nazi white supremacist jerks in Charlottesville and all over the country that as a nation with liberty as our slogan, we have zero tolerance for their violence, their hatred and their discrimination,” she said as the audience cheered. “We must resist!”

>> Watch the clip here

Fans on social media were quick to applaud the aspiring model on social media.

MTV VMAs: Miley Cyrus' retro 'Younger Now' performance features dancers of all ages

Miley Cyrus brought the glam and talent back to the MTV VMAs.

>> PHOTOS: 2017 MTV VMAs

On Sunday night, Cyrus, who has been a troublemaker in VMAs of yesteryear, put the twerking away and gave fans the raw talent they had been missing.

>> PHOTOS: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs

Singing her original tune, “Younger Now,” Cyrus belted it out in a chic hot pink short jumpsuit and matching coordinating retro sunglasses. Fans were absolutely loving her use of both young and old background dancers as she pranced around the stage.

>> Watch the clip here

Cyrus hit every note and reminded everyone that she truly is a talented singer. In the middle of the performance, she did a quick costume change into a poodle skirt as her parents, Billy Ray Cyrus and Tish Cyrus, rocked on from the audience.

>> Read more trending news

Ahead of the performance, Cyrus poked fun at her previous VMAs appearance with a photo of herself twerking with Robin Thicke.

“Sorry Dad…. I’ll be good tonight I promise … @vmas,” she wrote.

MTV VMAs: Jared Leto gives emotional tribute to Chester Bennington, Chris Cornell

Jared Leto shared some kind words about his late friends, Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell, two rock musicians who took their own lives within weeks of each other earlier this year.

>> Watch the video here

“MTV asked me to come here to say a few words about Chester and the late, great Chris Cornell — two artists that I had the absolute pleasure of touring with. They were close friends with one another, Chester even singing the cover of ‘Hallelujah’ at Chris’ funeral. Chester said of Chris: ‘Your voice was joy and pain and anger and forgiveness, love and heartache all wrapped into one,'” Leto began.

>> PHOTOS: 2017 MTV VMAs

“Just weeks later, Chester was gone. Chester was my friend, as he was to many. When I think about him, Chester, I see his face, which was always smiling. I think about his heart, which he wore on his sleeve,” Leto said. “I think how kindly he treated me, my brother and my band. I think about his wife and his six incredible children. I think about his family. I think about his band, who were his brothers. And I remember his voice, at once ferocious and delicate. That voice will live forever.”

>> PHOTOS: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs

Leto encouraged others in despair to reach out if they felt like giving up.

“The absolute biggest breakthroughs in life lie just beyond the darkest days," he said.

>> 2017 MTV Video Music Awards: Complete list of winners

Leto asked everyone in the audience and everyone at home to stand up and cheer as Linkin Park was welcomed back on the VMA stage for the first time since Bennington’s death.

>> Read more trending news

Cornell died in May, taking his own life in a hotel room following a Detroit concert. Bennington died in July on what would have been Cornell’s 56th birthday.

'We don't change': Pink shares uplifting message to daughter in VMA acceptance speech

Singer Pink shared an emotional story about her daughter, Willow, and the meaning of beauty as she accepted the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at Sunday night’s MTV Video Music Awards.

>> Read more trending news

Ahead of her acceptance speech, Pink blew the audience away with a mash-up performance of her hit songs. The high-energy routine brought down the house, earning her a standing ovation.

>> 2017 MTV Video Music Awards: Complete list of winners

Afterward, actress and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres presented Pink with the award. She said that Pink asked her to present her with the award because Cher was unavailable.

>> Photos: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs“It makes sense that Cher would give the award, because Cher got the Vanguard award last year, and I have not received the Vanguard award. I have received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama,” DeGeneres joked.

She praised Pink, a friend, as “the most incredible performer,” and said she was honored to have been asked to present the singer with the award.

>> Taylor Swift debuts video for 'Look What You Made Me Do’ at MTV VMAs

“Then I realized it was the season finale of ‘Game of Thrones’ so I hope we are recording it,” DeGeneres said before listing Pink’s achievements, both in and out of the recording studio.

DeGeneres welcomed Pink onstage, where the singer promptly broke her Moon Person.

Pink started her speech by sharing a moment from her daughter Willow’s life. Her daughter recently told her that she felt like “the ugliest girl at school” because “she looked like a boy with long hair,” she said.

The singer told the audience that she explained to Willow that she has also been told she looks like a boy, but that hasn’t stopped her from selling out arenas and having amazing success.

>> Photos: 2017 MTV VMAs

“So, baby girl, we don’t change. We take the gravel in the shell and we make a pearl, and we help other people change so they can see all kinds of beauty,” Pink said before thanking fellow artists. “Keep shining for the rest of us to see. And, you, my darling little girl, are beautiful.”

The Cox Media Group National Content Desk contributed to this report.

2017 MTV Video Music Awards: Complete list of winners

The MTV Video Music Awards were held Sunday night in California.

>> Read more trending news

Here’s a complete list of the night’s winners:

Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award: P!nk

Video of the Year: “HUMBLE.” Kendrick Lamar

Artist of the Year: Ed Sheeran

Best New Artist: Khalid

Song of Summer: “XO Tour Llif3,” Lil Uzi Vert

>> Related: Taylor Swift debuts video for 'Look What You Made Me Do’ at MTV VMAs

Best Collaboration: “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever (Fifty Shades Darker),” Zayn and Taylor Swift

Best Pop Video: “Down,” Fifth Harmony feat. Gucci Mane

Best Hip Hop Video: "HUMBLE." Kendrick Lamar

Best Dance Video: “Stay,” Zedd and Alessia Cara

>> Photos: 2017 MTV VMAs

Best Rock Video: "Heavydirtysoul," Twenty One Pilots

Best Fight Against the System: “Black SpiderMan,” Logic Feat. Damian Lemar Hudson; “Immigrants (We Get the Job Done),” The Hamilton Mixtape; “Light,” Big Sean; “Scars To Your Beautiful,” Alessia Cara; “Stand Up/Stand N Rock #NoDAPL,” Taboo feat. Shailene Woodley; “Surefire,” John Legend

Best Cinematography: “HUMBLE.” Kendrick Lamar

Best Direction: “HUMBLE.” Kendrick Lamar

>> Photos: Stars arrive for the 2017 MTV VMAs

Best Art Direction: “HUMBLE.” Kendrick Lamar (Production Designer: Spencer Graves)

Best Visual Effects: “HUMBLE.” Kendrick Lamar (Company: Timber/Lead: Jonah Hall)

Best Choreography: “Fade,” Kanye West (Choreographers: Jae Blaze, Guapo, Matthew Pasterisa, Teyana Taylor & Derek Watkins)

Best Editing: “Wyclef Jean,” Young Thug (Editors: Ryan Staake, Eric Degliomini)

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