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Worst TV Show of the Week

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Family Guy on Fox


No one in their right minds would ever confuse Peter and Lois Griffin for good parents.  But in the March 14th episode of Family Guy they are borderline criminal.  In this episode, program creator Seth MacFarlane sunk to nauseating new lows as the episode flirted with incest and statutory rape – and, for good measure, possibly created a whole new crime of bestial pedophilia. (Don’t worry, it will be explained later…or rather, do worry).  For making light of despicable crimes, Fox’s Family Guy (Sundays, 9:00 p.m. ET) has been named Worst TV Show of the Week.


The central plot of the episode involves the Griffin’s teenage daughter, Meg, and her new boyfriend, Anthony.  Constantly denigrated, Meg can’t catch a break from her family or the opposite sex.  So to everyone’s surprise, they discover that Anthony is actually normal.  Suddenly, Meg doesn’t look like such a loser.  Peter proclaims to Lois, “I can honestly say for the first time that I am attracted to our daughter.  This must be what other fathers feel like.”  If Lois was creeped out by this comment, she sure didn’t show it.  Later, Lois tries to get Peter to leave the living room so that Meg and Anthony can be alone.


LOIS:  “C'mon, Peter, I think Anthony wants some time alone with Meg.” 


PETER:  “Who doesn't want some time alone with Meg these days?  Right, Meg?”


He winks at Meg.


ANTHONY:  “Has anyone ever told you you're pretty enough to be a movie star, Mrs. Griffin?”


LOIS:  “Oh, my goodness, well, I don't know about that...”


PETER:  “Look, Anthony, trust me.  She ain’t what she used to be, alright?  Once you get those pants off, it's like two sagging pressed hams and a slice of pizza.”


LOIS:  “Oh, thank you, Peter.  That makes me feel terrific.  Anyway, good night, kids.” 


MEG:  “Good night, mom.  Good night, dad.” 


Meg leans in to kiss Peter on the cheek.


PETER:  “Eh, eh.  On the lips.” 


She kisses Peter on the lips. 


PETER: “Yes!”


Creepy? Disturbing?  Sadly, this episode was just getting warmed up.  As it turns out, Lois is even creepier than Peter. 


After Peter repeatedly insults Lois about her declining looks, she finds herself attracted to Anthony and his flattering words.  When Lois catches Meg and Anthony making out on the sofa, she gets turned on.  “Oh my god,” Lois whispers to herself, “That’s kind of hot.”  She covers the sight of Meg with a hand-drawn picture of herself to help her visualize kissing Anthony.  “Mmm, I bet you taste like Mountain Dew and Starburst,” Lois fantasizes.  Determined to find out, Lois begins seducing Anthony, going so far as to give him a “welcome-to-the-family” present: Peter’s work and poker game schedule.  Lois adds, “My menstrual cycle is on there, too.  But I don’t mind if you don’t!”  Eventually, Lois sends Meg on an errand to be alone with Anthony and finally tells him outright:


LOIS:  “Let's not play games.  The other day you said I was attractive. Now, what are we gonna do about it?”


ANTHONY:  “Oh my God.  Wow!  This is so cool.  I've never had a MILF come on to me before.  Can I kiss you?” 


LOIS:  “Let me ask you this: do my gray hairs bother you?”


ANTHONY:  “What gray hairs?” 


LOIS:  “Kiss me!”


Lois jumps on Anthony as they kiss passionately.  She rips off her top.


Meg walks in on them.


LOIS:  “Um…rape?” 


Lois attempts to smooth things over with Meg, but the scene manages to be even more unsettling than the previous one.  Lois and Meg start arguing over who Anthony desires more.


LOIS:  “I do know a few things, Meg.  And clearly, if I wanted him, I could have him.”


MEG:  “You really think you stand a chance?  Look at you. You're old!  You're nothing!  You couldn't even imagine the things I do for him.  And this isn't about making out.  This is about power tools.  Yeah, I go to places you couldn't get back from.  I'll do anything.  You don't know me!”


Meg pulls out her own tooth to prove how crazy she is.


MEG:  “He hangs me from the showers with your old bras. Then we laugh at you!  Now get out of my room!”


The conflict resolves itself abruptly after Peter reaffirms his attraction for Lois.  Peter, as one might expect, doesn’t mind all that much that Lois almost committed statutory rape. 


If only this episode could have stopped there – but, no.  Like a bout of salmonella, the emetic “humor” just kept running its course. 


The episode’s secondary storyline involved Stewie dressing in drag to audition for his favorite children’s show.  Disguised as a little girl named Karina, he lands the part and decides to play a prank on Brian, the family dog, who is drinking at a hotel bar.


STEWIE:  “I'm new in town and I'm awfully lonely.  I'm wondering if you wouldn't mind buying me a drink.” 


BRIAN:  “Well, that'd be my pleasure.  Maybe I could show you some of the local points of interest.  There's one right below the table.”


STEWIE:  “Oh, my.  You're very bold.” 


BRIAN:  “Well, when you're life span is 13 years you gotta be direct.” 


STEWIE:  “Lucky for you, I like bold men.  Karina. Karina Smirnov.” 


BRIAN:  “Brian. Brian Steele.”


He kisses her hand.


STEWIE:  “Oh, good heavens!”


BRIAN:  “Man, your accent is sexy.”


STEWIE:  “Oh, this is all moving very quickly.  I'm afraid I'm a little light-headed.  You must think I'm a fool.”


BRIAN:  “I'm sorry.  I didn't mean to come on too strong.”


STEWIE:  “Oh, that's alright.  I've been missing a man's touch, lo, these many months.”


BRIAN:  “And I've been missing a woman's touch.” 


Brian caresses Stewie's hand and pulls it down toward his crotch.


STEWIE:  “Brian, Brian!  It's me!  Stewie!  Oh my god, that was hilarious.  You really fell for it!”


Stewie tells Brian that he's the new little girl on the program Jolly Farm.  When Brian threatens to tell Lois, Stewie forces him to keep it a secret and insists that Brian becomes his on-set guardian.


STEWIE:  “Brian, we both know I touched it.  Now, if you'd like to keep that just between us, I suggest you sit back down and order me some chicken fingers.” 


A dog molesting a little boy, dressed as a little girl.  Before anyone complains, the PTC does realize that this is a cartoon.  Talking dogs do not exist.  Granted. 


Yet, when a two-dimensional baby deer lost its mother in a forest fire, we cried.  When a computer-generated robot character combed the planet alone, we sympathized with its loneliness.  And when a widower and young boy strapped balloons to a house, we cheered their journey.


Cartoons aren’t real --but the emotions they evoke are.


Seth MacFarlane wants to provoke, and no subject matter is out of bounds in his quest to do that.

In this case, he chose incest and molestation – frequent topics on his shows – as the means to his end.  But instead of laughs, he elicited disgust.  Comedy is supposed to be gut-busting, not gut-wrenching.  And this episode would make any decent human being sick to their stomach.  


For strong sexual content, Family Guy has been named Worst TV Show of the Week.


Worst TV Show of the Week

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