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October 4, 2015

Family Guy goes on without creator Seth MacFarlane

by Jason Hughes, posted Nov 18th 2007 1:23PM

Family Guy PicnicAs reported last week, production on new episodes of Family Guy didn't stop when it's creator Seth MacFarlane, who also voices the three main male characters Peter, Stewie and Brian, stopped working to support the Writers Guild of America strike, and refused to come back to work. While MacFarlane officially gave his blessing for the studio to continue production of the series without him, according to EW.com he expressed that he hoped they wouldn't, and that doing so would be damaging to his relationship with the network, adding that "it would just be a colossal dick move if they did."

The last pre-strike produced episode aired last Sunday which left the studio with the option to continue without MacFarlane and the writing staff, or go immediately into reruns. With November Sweeps upon us and most of their live action compatriots being forced into repeats soon, network brass decided that the hopes of one creator; who you might recall they've already fired once so they could certainly do it again; paled in comparison to the hopes and dreams of beating Desperate Housewives during sweeps month and being able to jack up ad rates to Super Bowl levels (I know these are the kinds of things TV Execs dream of because I watch 30 Rock). And so, tonight will mark the premiere of the first episode ever completed without its creator's blessing.

While the episodes in question were begun with MacFarlane and the writers in place, considering the long lead time animated series must work under (except for South Park who can knock one out in twelve minutes), there are always late changes and edits that are made before each one goes to air, and this portion is what the networks are doing without their showrunner. If the strike continues, however, they may have to get even more hands on.

My question is what will Family Guy look and sound like without its showrunner, head writer and principal male voice talent? With the opportunity to run their own show that reaches big numbers in the coveted demographic opposite a slate of reruns and hack specials, the execs would probably opt to pen the series themselves to get the "right" message across. For voice actors, they'd have to look beyond anyone who might be sympathetic to the writer's strike and reach for those out of work actors desperate for any sort of paycheck.

Peter (sitting in a lawn chair, voiced by Tony Danza): Yo, Lois. Maybe we could sit and just, you know, talk for awhile.

Lois: No, no, no, no, no! Nobody likes it when you sit and talk to other people. Just shut up, make your funny noises and smile.

Peter: Ohw-woe-ayye-oooowwwwe!

Fonzie (cutting in): Hey, that's my thing! [Rides by on a motorcycle holding both thumbs up and jumps a shark swimming in Stewie's wading pool] Aaaaaaaaayyyyy!

Stewie (in the pool, voiced by Gary Coleman): D'jou see that! Shark just came out this water! Da's messed up is what that is!

Brian (holding a martini, voiced by Dudley Moore): I'll tell you whatsh go-guh-goin' on. It'sh those damned shtoopid writersshhh and their sshhtoopid sht-(hiccup), sht-(hiccup), walkout! They should just akshept the fair and reasonable offer the netwurksch--

Chris: Wait, you sound like Dudley Moore. I thought Dudley Moore was dead.

Brian: It turnsh out dead, drunk, embalmed, pickled, nobody can really tell the diffrinssshhh (burp)!

Meg (walking on-scene): What's going on out here? I heard strange voices. [Shark comes out of the pool and swallows Meg whole before resubmerging.]

Lois. Oh my god! ... I think she was wearing my blouse!

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... seriously? because there's really nothing original about the
show. i wouldn't call it refreshing at all, and there's certainly no
subtlety or much clever humour. half the episodes contain about a
good 5 minutes of peter fighting a chicken or wincing over a stubbed
toe. and who was complaining about clip shows? family guy IS a
clips show. it's just, the clips portray something that never
happened in the storyline of the show. "hey, remember that time
that--" give it a rest.
also, i'm annoyed that the creators feel it necessary to explain
every joke to me, as though i'm some kind of idiot.
the show is a blatant rip-off of the simpsons that steals humour NOT
ONLY from the simpsons, but several other shows i've seen including
south park and seinfeld.

but hey, don't get me wrong! family guy could be a GREAT show... if
there wasn't so much wrong with it, and maybe the writers came up
with their own jokes. and the flashbacks can be entertaining, but we
really don't need 18 per episode. and what's with creating a separate
tv show with similar humour, animation, and voice actors? sounds
and maybe stop cutting up on Seinfeld so much. that show was more
original than any of the creators will ever be.

also, FUCK seth green.
fuck that guy so much.
what a douche.

December 28 2007 at 11:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Everytime someone fires a gun up into the air I would like to see a duck, goose, pigeon, endangered spotted owl, and even an eagle, drop dead at the feet of the character firing the weapon.

I'm going on 64 and I think FAMILY GUY is the most brilliant and refreshing piece of television in years. Seth's team is pure comic genius.

December 15 2007 at 4:27 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It's not like it matters if they pasted a bunch of clips together anyway...the show's plot is picked out by manatees using giant idea balls.

November 19 2007 at 11:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This post shouldn't be in the TV Squad Daily category

November 19 2007 at 2:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

not clip shows just random clips put together just because

November 19 2007 at 1:32 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"It would be really funny if they just started to make new episodes by cut and pasting old episodes together."

Actually they do it from time to time, at least in other shows (i.e. the Simpsons) where they call them "Clip Shows" and are used like "easy-to-do fillers" along the season when they have production time issues. In my personal opinion I don't like them at all. They are like express cheaply composed reruns.

November 18 2007 at 7:18 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"When ITS creator..." not "when it's creator."
Basic English...

November 18 2007 at 6:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Thanks for clearing that up, David. I thought I had heard that there were three episodes that were close to done but that Seth hadn't "signed off" on. I think the strike will have to continue a lot longer before they start voicing new episodes without Seth.

For further clarification, Seth has been working for Fox without a contract since they couldn't come to an agreement. So before anyone thinks Fox should sue him for breech of contract, he currently has no contract to breech.

November 18 2007 at 5:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It would be really funny if they just started to make new episodes by cut and pasting old episodes together.

November 18 2007 at 4:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
David R

To clarify - they're likely just continuing post production, final animation and sound work on episodes that have already been written and had their vocal parts recorded. Although animated shows are known for being rewritten in post production to make their jokes more timely, it's not like they're going to be creating new shows from scratch without his help.

November 18 2007 at 3:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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