Family Guy: McStroke
Family Guy has such potential to be an original and funny series and so much of it is wasted. I saw hints of really good ideas in the episode but those were superseded by some hack writing and poorly executed material. Another reason to loathe the WGA Strike.
Spoilers after the jump.
To begin, this episode copied The Simpsons plot device of leading into the main story with an unrelated one. That wouldn't be so bad if the plot were good, but it wasn't.
It is interesting how none of the ancillary characters appeared in this episode. There was no Cleveland (although there was a reference to him), no Joe and no Quagmire. There was, however, a talking cow voiced by Ricardo Montalban.
The main plot of Peter suing McBurgerWorld was jumbled. It started with him growing a mustache then did a non sequitur, going to Peter having a stroke from eating thirty hamburgers (he saved the McBurgerWorld manager from a fire. The fire department let him do it because he had a mustache and apparently all firemen have mustaches. Make of that what you will). The plot then turned and Peter sued the McBurgerWorld company after his stroke was magically healed by a stem cell research lab he walks into. Then he had to save a cow from the McBurgerWorld slaughterhouse called Da-cow (very lame Holocaust joke). The whole "A" plot felt like three or four unrelated stories.
(I could make a South Park-inspired manatee joke here, but I'll leave that to you.)
The "B" plot, on the other hand, was decent. They even foreshadowed it with their One Tree Hill parody ("There's nothing that can't be fixed by staring at a lake"). I enjoy a good parody of teen-angst high school television shows. The lines were funny, such as going to Anal Point and the teen girl saying "O.M.G." Even the revenge bit at the end where Stewie has the girl arrested for kissing a baby was funny.
Funny stuff included the Monopoly Man in The Shawshank Redemption, the Wimpy joke, the Will Smith rap, and when Stewie was offered the breasts of the teenage girl with the response "No thanks. I'm stuffed." The lame stuff included the entire mustache storyline, the sudden use of the stem cell lab, the Italian joke, the Robin Williams joke, the horse leg joke and the buff hamster joke. The Monkees-themed chase scene felt weird and out of place.
Overall, other than a few high points, I'd have to say this episode was a downer. The writer's strike could be blamed. Perhaps with Seth McFarlane behind the episode, some stuff could have been made better. I just wish Family Guy more lived up to the quality it had before its cancellation.
|Yes, perhaps Seth McFarlane is working to much with American Dad.||282 (35.8%)|
|No, it's as good as it ever was.||506 (64.2%)|