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October 20, 2014

sundays with seth

'Family Guy' Closes Out Its Take on the 'Star Wars' Trilogy With 'It's a Trap!' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted May 23rd 2011 7:31AM
'Family Guy' - 'It's a Trap!'Hardcore fans of 'Family Guy' (Sun., 9PM ET on FOX) have already seen the concluding chapter of Seth MacFarlane's take on the original 'Star Wars' trilogy. (It was released on Blu-Ray and DVD way back on December 21, 2010.) Now, however, everyone got a chance to experience the fun.

While these take place in the 'Family Guy' series, MacFarlane reaches through all of his shows to bring in characters to fill out the vast 'Star Wars' cast. Rallo from 'The Cleveland Show' appears as Nien Nunb while Tim the Bear is the obvious choice for Wicket, the Eewok. From 'American Dad' we get Roger as Moff Jerjerrod and, the obvious choice for Admiral Ackbar, Klaus.

Fans of the first two installments will find more to enjoy here, as MacFarlane continues to show his love for the source material, while still finding plenty to mock. But that's what true fans of 'Star Wars' do.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Apr 4th 2011 10:30AM
Lizzy Caplan as Patty, 'The Cleveland Show'['American Dad' - 'School Lies']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'The Essence of Cleveland']


You have to give Seth MacFarlane credit for one thing: At least he's aware of how many times he's taken the easy way out on 'The Cleveland Show' by just having Kendra show up and throwing out a fat joke.

As she wasn't the butt of any of them this week, she scooted by like a crawler on the bottom of the screen to announce the 100th fat joke of the season. I haven't been keeping track, but as Kendra has been featured more this year, I wouldn't be surprised if it was at least that.

The rest of the episode was actually pretty clever, with Cleveland reconnecting with a girl who had a crush on him in high school (voiced by Lizzy Caplan). There was no B-story to this episode, and yet the episode never seemed to meander too far from entertaining.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad' Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 28th 2011 8:45AM
'American Dad' - 'I Am the Walrus'['American Dad' - 'I Am the Walrus']

In case you were missing the Smith family on Sundays, FOX wanted to make sure you noticed them by airing a special episode at a special time right after 'Family Guy.' No, not a new episode of 'Family Guy,' but a repeat.

Maybe they thought they'd catch the people tuning in hoping to find a new 'Cleveland Show.'

Honestly, I can't figure out FOX's strategy with the way they schedule and air these shows on their Sunday night lineup. They mix-and-match repeats and new airings like crazy. I guess they're hoping people will tune in each week for the ones that are new and malaise will set in and they'll stay through the repeats?

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Sundays With Seth: 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 21st 2011 8:30AM
'The Cleveland Show' - 'To Live and Die in VA'['Family Guy' - 'Trading Places']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'To Live and Die in VA']


This week was about stepping outside of your life. Sometimes, doing so can give you a whole new respect for what you have, while other times it can spotlight what you've maybe missed out on.

Our two Seth MacFarlane entries this week took that premise and ran with it, one in each direction.

'Family Guy' went down the fairly cliché route of having the parents switch family roles with the kids. Then, on 'The Cleveland Show,' it was Lester's turn to explore what his life could have been like had he not settled down with Kendra.

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Sundays With Seth: 'The Cleveland Show' Recap

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 14th 2011 8:45AM
'The Cleveland Show' - 'The Way the Cookie Crumbles'['The Cleveland Show' - 'The Way the Cookie Crumbles']

Things were lonely on Seth MacFarlane watch this week, with only 'Cleveland' turning in a new episode. I guess Cleveland was missing his friends from Quahog as well because the episode featured far more cutaways than its usual average.

'Cleveland' is usually a show that relies heavily on its plots and stories, and yet in this installment the cutaways offered perhaps the biggest laughs.

Maybe the writers had an inkling that this story, while well told and emotionally well balanced, was lacking in the yucks department so they fell back on the old tried and true.

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Sundays With Seth: 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Mar 7th 2011 9:15AM
'Family Guy' - 'The Hand That Rocks the Wheelchair'['Family Guy' - 'The Hand That Rocks the Wheelchair']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'The Blue, the Gray and the Brown']


Stan Smith must have been called away on some big-time CIA mission because 'American Dad' is off the schedule until the end of the month. Luckily, we still got a solid hour of Uncle Seth's special brand of humor. That meant yet another original song on 'The Cleveland Show' and yet another drawn-out fight on 'Family Guy.'

Still, I thought these were a couple of pretty solid installments. 'Cleveland' took an intelligent look at the issue of slavery and Civil War re-enactments, while 'Family Guy' showed us what would happen if Stewie had no conscience at all. It's not pretty.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad,' 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Feb 21st 2011 8:05AM
'American Dad' - 'You Debt Your Life'['American Dad' - 'You Debt Your Life']
['Family Guy' - 'German Guy']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'Terry Unmarried']


While 'Cleveland' seemed to tackle the most serious issues, 'Dad' had the most laugh-out-loud moments and 'Family Guy' just came together as an all-around excellent episode. It was one of the new brand of 'Guy' episodes that featured a tighter plot and fewer cut-away gags. What that means is, more jokes that are organic to the actual storyline.

'American Dad,' on the other hand, managed to be brilliant with one very simple joke: Andy Dick is Roger.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad,' 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Feb 14th 2011 8:50AM
'American Dad' - 'A Pinata Named Desire'['American Dad' - 'A Pinata Named Desire']
['Family Guy' - 'Friends of Peter G.']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'A Short Story and a Tall Tale']


The gang reuinted this week, with all three Seth MacFarlane series back in new episodes. Apparently, FOX wasn't afraid of the Grammys at all, as they scheduled a full night of "Animation Domination."

The night started out with Stan and Roger competing over an acting position, moved through Peter and Brian coming to terms with their alcoholism, and wrapped with Cleveland's alcoholism getting him into trouble with the NBA. If only booze was factored into 'American Dad,' we would have had a cohesive theme.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 24th 2011 7:15AM
'American Dad' - 'Stanny Boy and Frantastic'['American Dad' - 'Stanny Boy and Frantastic']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'Like a Boss']


Growing up and growing older. With 'Family Guy' taking the week off, these were the themes explored in the other two Seth MacFarlane comedies.

I like when a comedy speaks to me on something I can relate to. And I think 'American Dad' was clever enough in approaching how our lives change as we get older in a way that both sides of the situation can relate to.

Those of us in the older demographics can feel for Stan and Francine wanting so desperately to be able to keep up with their young friends, while the youth among us can laugh about how lame old people are.

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Sundays With Seth: 'American Dad,' 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 17th 2011 8:15AM
'American Dad' - 'Fart-Break Hotel']['American Dad' - 'Fart-Break Hotel']
['Family Guy' - 'And I'm Joyce Kinney']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'How Do You Solve a Problem Like Roberta?']


Well, things have certainly changed on the FOX Sunday lineup, and it looks like 'American Dad' is getting the short end of this particular stick. To make room for 'Bob's Burgers' in the post-'Simpsons' slot, FOX has shifted 'The Cleveland Show' to 9:30 PM ET, after 'Family Guy.' That move booted 'American Dad' to the top of the night, so to speak, at 7:30 PM ET.

Unfortunately, that's kind of before primetime even starts, and ratings history has shown that shows airing before 8 PM ET don't do so well in the ratings.

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Sundays With Seth: 'Family Guy' and 'Cleveland Show' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Jan 10th 2011 6:40AM
Drew Carey, 'Family Guy'['Family Guy' - 'New Kidney in Town']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'Ain't Nothing but Mutton Bustin'']


'American Dad' always seems to be the unloved stepchild of the FOX Sunday lineup. It gets pre-empted and bumped around more than anything, and this week was no exception.

With 'Bob's Burgers' premiering this week at 8:30PM ET, 'Cleveland' jumped to 9:30PM and 'American Dad' got the night off. When it comes back next week, it'll be in its new unfriendly 7:30PM timeslot.

That's where shows like ''Til Death' and 'King of the Hill' went when FOX didn't know what else to do with them but wasn't ready to put them down yet. Of course, if 'Bob' doesn't click with audiences, 'Dad' may be called back up to the big leagues before we know it.

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Sundays With Seth: 'Family Guy' and 'American Dad' Recaps (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Dec 13th 2010 6:30AM
'Family Guy' - 'Road to the North Pole'['Family Guy' - 'Road to the North Pole']
['American Dad' - 'For Whom the Sleigh Bell Tolls']

This week, it was Cleveland's turn to take a break, aside from a quick cameo in the double-length 'Family Guy' Christmas special. I guess creator Seth MacFarlane is pretty excited to be in hi-def for this season of 'Family Guy,' because this is the second hour-long "epic" saga he's told in less than ten episodes this season.

The holiday special was the sixth installment in the 'Road to...' series of episodes that feature Brian and Stewie leaving Quahog to get into trouble, with musical numbers, in an ongoing homage to the classic 'Road to...' movies featuring Bob Hope and Bing Crosby.

Their misadventures takes them to one of the most disturbing depictions of Santa Claus and the North Pole possibly ever seen on-screen. And yet, MacFarlane had an entirely different take on the jolly old elf ready in time for 'American Dad,' wherein the Smith family adopted a dangerous new holiday tradition.

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Sundays with Seth: 'Cleveland Show' and 'American Dad' Recaps (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Dec 6th 2010 7:00AM
'The Cleveland Show' - 'Murray Christmas'['The Cleveland Show' - 'Murray Christmas']
['The Cleveland Show' - 'Beer Walk!']
['American Dad' - 'The People vs. Martin Sugar']

For the second week in a row, 'Family Guy' took a break from the Seth MacFarlane line-up. Instead, we got a double-shot of'The Cleveland Show' so 'Family Guy' can air its hour-long Christmas episode next week. But, as we got surprise guest appearances from the cast of 'Family Guy' in both 'Cleveland' and 'Dad' this week, so it almost felt like they were right here where they belong.

Because it's been bumped from next week's holiday Seth-travaganza, 'Cleveland' had to air its holiday-themed episode tonight. It had a rather sweet message about love and family, so MacFarlane had to hurry up and get it out of the way so he could move on to more serious fare like the roles of men and women in the household, the importance of our justice system, and the tragedy surrounding the condition known as HLS.

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Sundays With Seth: 'The Cleveland Show' and 'American Dad' Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Nov 29th 2010 7:00AM
'American Dad' - 'There Will Be Bad Blood'['The Cleveland Show' - 'Another Bad Thanksgiving']
['American Dad' - 'There Will Be Bad Blood']


Oddly, 'Family Guy' decided to skip the Thanksgiving festivities this year, instead airing a repeat. That left 'The Cleveland Show' and 'American Dad' to hold down the fort on their own in the Sunday Seth MacFarlane empire. Unfortunately, they dropped the ball in a major way, with two of the weakest installments yet for either series.

Both series took on the holiday, though 'Cleveland' only tangentially dealt with it. The episode was more of an exploration of the struggles in keeping the peace with extended family. 'Dad' was basically covering the same material, though to far more outrageous results.

In both shows, the siblings were completely different from one another, and apparently didn't communicate much. Donna's sister Janet is a wild child party girl who laughs at responsibility. Meanwhile, Stan learns that his brother isn't the poor half-Cherokee he's been assuming all these years. Instead, Stan's the poor one.

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Sundays With Seth: 'The Cleveland Show,' 'Family Guy' and 'American Dad Recaps

by Jason Hughes, posted Nov 22nd 2010 6:30AM
'Family Guy' - 'Brian Writes a Bestseller'['The Cleveland Show' - 'Fat and Wet']
['Family Guy' - 'Brian Writes a Bestseller']
['American Dad' - 'White Rice']


When you're thinking about a show that deals in such crude toilet humor like Seth MacFarlane's FOX triumvirate, I find they're at their best when dealing in satire and exploring genuine messages that relate to our lives. More significantly, they work because they can use the cover of being a silly cartoon to push buttons and make us face things that may otherwise be a little uncomfortable.

That's why I was so pleased to see that Uncle Seth imbued all three episodes with valid and controversial messages this week. Through the characters of Cleveland, Jr. and Kendra Krinklesac, MacFarlane had the perfect venue to explore the exploding obesity epidemic in America. 'Family Guy' dove headfirst into exploring these so-called inspirational self-help books that seem to dominate the sales charts.

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