As expected, the event had more of a Comic Con feel to it then the normally more reserved Paley atmosphere. Obsessed fans of 'Family Guy,' 'American Dad' and 'The Cleveland Show' (or fans of all three when you consider they're all kind of the same show) packed into the lavish Saban Theatre to watch MacFarlane sip a little booze, take a few potshots and soak up the adulation.
MacFarlane was joined by Seth Green, Alex Borstein, Dan Palladino, Steve Marmel, Rich Appel, Mike Barker, Danny Smith and Kara Vallow. But MacFarlane held court as the center of attention.
Unfortunately, the presence of Bill Maher (someone who never really was that funny) as host of an event dedicated to MacFarlane (one of the industry's most influential and powerful comedic minds) steered the agenda away from discussing the shows' collective content and future to a more sociopolitical agenda.
He of all people realizes that the best shows are the ones that left people hungering for more long after they left the airwaves. You following me, Scrubs?
MacFarlane told the Edmonton Sun and TV Guide Canada's resident TV junkie Amber Dowling that he has seen the future of Family Guy's finale and hopes it will come to an end while it is still on top.
When it comes to Family Guy, I really tried. I honestly gave it my best shot. I watched the Sunday episodes, the late night reruns on Adult Swim, and even some of the DVDs from my college-aged brother's collection, including the famed feature-length Star Wars parody. I watched until my eyes started planning a prison break from my skull.
I wanted to like it. It's goofy, occasionally satirical and completely unafraid to be silly and bat#*$& crazy. Alas, I couldn't take it. I didn't find it funny or entertaining. The jumps to the pop culture flashbacks made the whole thing disjointed and screwed up the continuity. The characters are as two-dimensional as the paper the Korean sweatshop animators draw on for each episode. The way the show just drags on certain jokes is downright irritating. We get it. Peter hurt his knee jumping out of The A-Team van. A prom night dumpster baby musical number would be hilariously tragic. It's the one and only time I ever rooted for Cartman in an episode of South Park.
That doesn't mean the show's creator deserves the same contempt.
Actually, that's not really what the episode is about. It's more about Chris' pursuit of a vet intern named Anna. While Chris' pursues Anna, he gets advice from Peter and the gang (which, as the history of the show has proven, is never a good idea).
The pirate segment of the episode wasn't very good and seemed out of place. Fortunately, it was very short. Despite its use in the promos, it was kind of forgettable. I did enjoy the car chase bit involving "sugar cane, tobacco and spices". The car chase itself seemed like something of a cross between a pirate movie and a video-game.
It should be noted that this season has been shortened to 12 episodes, most likely due to the writer's strike. The season finale will be shown next week. The remaining unfinished episodes will be part of next season's broadcast.
(S06E07) This is the last new episode of Family Guy to be aired until the strike ends, whenever that is. After Meg nearly dies during the flash flood, in a change of character, Peter becomes overprotective of Meg when she starts dating a medical intern. In a B plot, Brian and Stewie buy a dilapidated house as an investment in hopes of fixing it up.
The show began with a rainstorm and some Hurricane Katrina commentary (which admittedly isn't exactly a hot topic anymore), particularly with Cleveland being shoved into the sports stadium. I also like the continued Superman references. This week had Dean Cain wearing a shirt with the emblem.
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