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Life of Larry
December 6, 2005 9:15 AM   Subscribe

The Life of Larry is a 1995 short film of both animation and live-action by Seth MacFarlane that became the basis for Family Guy. (more inside)
posted by XQUZYPHYR (87 comments total)

 
Okay, so I'm sure the first reaction after watching it (other than the video quality) is that this isn't anywhere near as good as the current show. Well, yeah.

But as a former animation student, this is really a fun find. You can see from the live-action parts that MacFarlane was always a gag-oriented writer and didn't know yet how to mesh all the little gags together. There are also a lot of bits in it that later found their way into the current show. It's a really interesting look at how far MacFarlane came from his original concept, and how much detail and new ideas really were put into the series compared to his own short film.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:18 AM on December 6, 2005


Great post.
posted by about_time at 9:35 AM on December 6, 2005


Am I the only one in the world that doesn't think Family Guy is funny? This short wasn't funny either. Am I all alone out here?
posted by eperker at 9:40 AM on December 6, 2005


Thanks for that, Unpronounceable guy!
It's definitely raw but it's always interesting to watch the progression of an idea like that.
And man, it creeps me out how much Seth sounds like Brian.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 9:43 AM on December 6, 2005


Nope, you're not the only one. It's not funny.
posted by mcstayinskool at 9:43 AM on December 6, 2005


yes
posted by howling fantods at 9:43 AM on December 6, 2005


or no
posted by howling fantods at 9:43 AM on December 6, 2005


Its not funny....
posted by kenaman at 9:46 AM on December 6, 2005


Ditto on the un-funny....
posted by Floydd at 9:48 AM on December 6, 2005


Metafilter: yes

or no
posted by sveskemus at 9:48 AM on December 6, 2005


Cool, thanks for this. Coincidentally, I just watched all the FG Vol.3 commentary episodes while laid up with a demi-flu this weekend.

Psst. Guys, the Playa Hatas called and said you're late for the ball.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 9:50 AM on December 6, 2005


My wife and I share very similar senses of humor on most fronts, but I love FG and she dislikes it. She finds the voices annoying, among other things. I only get to watch it when she is busy with something else. This show has narrow appeal, but for those of us who enjoy it, it's a riot.

Great link, thanks!
posted by brain_drain at 9:53 AM on December 6, 2005


I'm going to post a comment to let everybody know that I don't find the content of the post to be enjoyable to me and for that fact I feel it is important to let everybody else know my personal opinion.

Tell me I'm not the only one!!
posted by billysumday at 9:58 AM on December 6, 2005


Also: thanks for the post, XUPAAKNSKHJDHWLALO or whatever your name is.
posted by billysumday at 9:58 AM on December 6, 2005


I am living proof that it is physically possible to love both Family Guy and Futurama.

That said, FG has gotten considerably grosser since it came back on the air. Doesn't offend me, but I wonder how long it'll last.

And man, that really is some shitty video quality on Google there.
posted by Gator at 10:01 AM on December 6, 2005


I for one think you have every right to your personal opinion, billysunday, and don't you let anyone tell you otherwise.
Okay?
posted by Jody Tresidder at 10:04 AM on December 6, 2005


I’m with gator - FG & Futurama fan.
But I f’ing DARE Family Guy to try to offend me.

And billysumday , you’re way out of line. I know for a fact you’re not being sarcastic; that it happens to be the tone you always write in. Ooooh I’m sooo angry!
*clenches fist amongst other things*

XQUZYPHYR ...umm...decisions, decisions...
-Every single one of your comics except that one about drugs sucks ass. And good post here.
posted by Smedleyman at 10:14 AM on December 6, 2005


FG has supplanted The Simpsons as my current favorite. I have, quite simply, given up on new Simpsons: not a single good episode in what, 3 or 4 years?
posted by davidmsc at 10:16 AM on December 6, 2005


I too love FG and Futurama. Although Futurama was much spottier.
As for being offended- nothing offends me, but that guy on FG, the old guy who lives down the street and lusts after Chris- his voice and face are so viscerally off-putting that I have to squinch my eyes shut and hum loudly everytime he comes on. Which I assume is exactly what they were going for, so well done. In a world where Cartman can crawl across a table and lick the tears off the face of the boy who has just eaten his own parents, it takes some subtlety to really skeeve me out.
And god- is Googlevideo produced underwater? Or by some species whose eyes see a different spectrum of visible light? Christ.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 10:21 AM on December 6, 2005


Another vote here for Family Guy being totally unfunny. Seth McFarlane's three gags were funny the first time, but after recycling them an infinite number of times and without injecting any sort of heart or emotion into his characters, I totally fail to see the appeal.
posted by Robot Johnny at 10:25 AM on December 6, 2005


...I totally fail to see the appeal.

Have you seen the way people fall on that show? Straight down flat onto their faces in about a millisecond? That will be funny after the brazillionth time, I'm sorry.
And "five minute irrelevant chicken fight" > "characters with heart" any day of the week.
posted by Dormant Gorilla at 10:30 AM on December 6, 2005


"Narrow appeal"??? Wasn't it the overwhelming appeal of the DVDs that made FOX decide to order new episodes? Or was it the overwhelming appeal of the show when it started re-airing on Cartoon Network?
posted by sublivious at 10:42 AM on December 6, 2005


I also think FG does the "special guest voice" thing much better than the Simpsons. Rather than coming up with an excuse for whoever's on the cover of Entertainment Weekly to show up as themselves to deliver a few stilted lines, FG has people like James Woods, Adam West, KISS, Mark Hamill, Lee Majors, Erik Estrada, and many other "hey, I remember them" types coming on board and acting insane. It's gold, yo.
posted by Gator at 10:43 AM on December 6, 2005


Thanks for this link, it provides some context to the development of the series and his other works.

For me, Family Guy has its moments and I don't hold them against it wether they be cheap, silly or a combination of both. There just doesn't seem to be any glue holding it all together. It's like they formulate the characters and their one liners to the Nth degree, but pass on adding any particularly compelling motivations for their interactions.

Take the Stewie movie, for instance. Funny instances, but as a whole it was nothing more than a 2 hour episode of random divergence.

Stewie: "Remember that one time..." Flashback
So-and-So: "Oh yeah, kind of like that other time?" Flashback
/Loop
posted by prostyle at 10:45 AM on December 6, 2005


Personally I find the those same three gags funny every time. However, I also enjoyed the motorcycle-car merge photos from the other thread, so maybe my vote shouldn't count
posted by poppo at 10:48 AM on December 6, 2005


FG is for people who are exactly Seth's age (give or take 5 years). All the gags are about growing up in the 80s. The man is a genius.

I've memorized the following just in case anyone calls me the weakest link (note, it's all in the delivery; never seen it, probably not funny):

Olivia: You *are* the weakest link. Goodbye.
Stewie Griffin: Aha ha ha. Oh, gosh that's funny. That's really funny. Do you write your own material? Do you? Because that is so fresh. You are the weakest link goodbye. You know, I've never heard anyone make that joke before. Mmm. You're the first. I've never heard anyone reference, reference that outside the program before. Because that's what she says on the show right? Isn't it? You are the weakest link goodbye. And yet, you have taken that and used it out of context, to insult me in this everyday situation. God what a clever, smart girl you must be, to come up with a joke like that all by yourself. Mmm, that's so fresh too. Any titanic jokes you want to throw at me while we're hitting these at the height of their popularity? Hmm? Cause... I'm here. God you're SO funny.
posted by about_time at 10:57 AM on December 6, 2005


"Narrow appeal"??? Wasn't it the overwhelming appeal of the DVDs that made FOX decide to order new episodes? Or was it the overwhelming appeal of the show when it started re-airing on Cartoon Network?

"Narrow appeal" doesn't mean "lacks fan support." The show has a vocal, loyal, and energetic fan base, and that's why the DVDs and Cartoon Network reruns were so popular. But I seriously doubt anyone at FOX or anywhere else expects the show to become widely popular like, say, the Simpsons. It is too vulgar, random, and weird to become a mainstream hit. Back when The Simpsons was good, pretty much everyone liked or loved it. FG isn't like that, and probably never will be. That's what I mean by "narrow appeal."
posted by brain_drain at 10:57 AM on December 6, 2005


Adam West coming on board? He has been in the series forever. And trust me, I'm a man who loves his Family Guy. Mmmmmm.... mmmmmmm.... mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.... mmmmmm.... mmmm, mmmm....
posted by SirOmega at 11:11 AM on December 6, 2005


But the Simpsons was never canceled. That could be the hallmark to The Family Guy's fame. And The Family Guy is nailing the ideal prime time audience. If FOX doesn't screw with its time slot (like when it was on originally... at one point against Friends), it could very well be as widely popular as The Simpsons.

No one ever saw South Park becoming as popular as it did, but now it's nearly as popular as The Simpsons was in its heyday.
posted by sublivious at 11:19 AM on December 6, 2005


Why Family Guy sucks. Excellent articulation of what I dislike about the show, put better than I ever could.
posted by jcruelty at 11:21 AM on December 6, 2005


Well, Adam West didn't show up until Season Two. He's a recurring special guest voice, like Adam Carolla as Death.
posted by Gator at 11:24 AM on December 6, 2005


about_time- when I first saw that clip from "From Method to Madness," my jaw dropped and I had all I could do to hold back my laughter so I could hear the full force of Stewie's sarcasm. Never have I been so inspired: the ultimate in sarcasm. I, too, have it memorized.

And Dormant Gorilla- you managed to pick out my favorite SP episode as well. Cartman's pure evil in "Scott Tenorman Must Die" is unparalleled.

This episode is unique (and somewhat controversial) in the show's history in that Cartman gets his way in the end. In most other episodes, a Cartman plan will backfire horribly, but this time it instead succeeds horribly, producing one of the most grotesque results in South Park history.

posted by mikeweeney at 11:31 AM on December 6, 2005


I'm glad that everyone who is "too cool for school" is taking the time to come into this thread and patiently explain to us why they dislike the show.

You know, cause for me it's not enough to just hear that they hate it... I really need long posts explaining WHY.

All of you make sure to go here and elaborate to them why you hate that show, too.

Gotta make yourself heard! Your opinion REALLY counts this time!
posted by BobFrapples at 11:37 AM on December 6, 2005


Aha ha ha. Oh, gosh that's funny. That's really funny. Does McFarlane write his own material? Does he? Because that is so fresh. Gags about 80s pop culture. You know, I've never heard anyone make references to that decade before. Mmm. He's the first. I've never heard anyone reference, reference these things outside the programs themselves before. Because these shows are so retro? Aren't they? The A-Team!! And yet, he has taken that and used it out of context in his own cartoon. God what a clever, smart boy he must be, to come up with a joke like that all by himself. Mmm, that's so fresh too. Any Transformers jokes he wants to throw at me while we're hitting these at the height of their popularity? Hmm? Cause... I'm here. God he's SO funny.
posted by Robot Johnny at 11:46 AM on December 6, 2005


I just wonder where the "I don't like [x]" thing stops. Do you stop people when they mention a band you don't like and explain to them why? When they mention a food you don't like? Or is it just animated television shows? The same thing happened in the Simpsons thread, although even worse.

What is the motivation here? If there is a comedy show on television, some people will find it funny and others will not. Who cares? Listing the reasons why "Family Guy" isn't a good show is just arbitrary. Hey, now I'll list reasons why I like it, and whoever has the most reasons on their side wins!!
posted by billysumday at 11:46 AM on December 6, 2005


Cool find, XQUZYPHYR. Another piece of ur-Family Guy work is Seth's seven minute short, Larry and Steve, produced for Cartoon Network in 1997. Commentary and a 30-sec segment at this Slate article. The artwork is much closer to Family Guy's style, but Larry doesn't have a wife or son and he's the only one who can understand his dog (although you don't get this from the segment).
posted by The Hidden Life of Lint at 11:55 AM on December 6, 2005


Some people are just honestly trying to have a conversation when they say things like that, billysumday. "Oh, you like that [show, band, food]? I never really got into it, I think..." Others are just hoping to stir a few people up, like that "Reasons Why Family Guy Sucks" guy linked upthread, who admitted that he was hoping to get some hate mail. Either way I don't think it's a big deal.

I once participated in a South Park thread on a messageboard elsewhere, and one day some new person popped in and wanted to know what the heck was so funny about the show, he couldn't see anything innovative or groundbreaking or anything interesting about it. Some people got pissed off and "What are you even posting here for" and so forth, and I just replied that "It's funny, to us. Diff'rent strokes and all that," and went on to make a few comments about how I didn't think SP was trying to be particularly groundbreaking when they showed Christopher Reeve sucking stem cells out of fetuses. It went on from there into an interesting discussion about what different people think is funny, cartoons through the ages, yadda. It can be good stuff, differing opinions.
posted by Gator at 11:57 AM on December 6, 2005


Maybe I'm just grumpy today or something, Gator. Still, though, I think these "discussions" seem to be exclusive to mindless drivel like TV shows and bands and movies and so forth. Like, if I were in that South Park thread, I'd be a bit pissed, too. Nobody goes into a thread about advanced physics and goes, "Hey, I don't get what the big deal about physics is. Could someone tell me? It just seems like numbers and angles and diagrams." Differing opinions aren't bad, but good conversation and discussion tends to occur in person. I may not like "Serenity," but if someone wants to post something here on Metafilter about it, I don't feel like I have to insert myself in the thread and say so and ask the poster to justify his appreciation for the material.
posted by billysumday at 12:07 PM on December 6, 2005


I love Family Guy, The Simpsons, and Futurama, but I like Family Guy most of all.

Futurama often falls into the same trap that the Simpsons falls into - they use manipulative tactics to make you sympathize with the characters.

You know what I'm talking about. There will be an obvious break in "the funny" to show something sad or heartwarming happening to a character, and there will be no good punchline to redeem the scene. I call these scenes "Awww moments," as in, "Awwwww... How sad/heartwarming."

Futurama had considerably more "Awww moments" then the Simpsons. Family Guy almost never has them, which is why it is the superior show.
posted by Afroblanco at 12:08 PM on December 6, 2005


Does McFarlane write his own material? Does he? Because that is so fresh.

Hmm... after a quick browse, I can say that Family Guy is definitely funnier than your blog.

Your last post smacks of jealousy, dude.
posted by BobFrapples at 12:09 PM on December 6, 2005


Your last post smacks of jealousy, dude.

Why is it when someone doesn't like something, someone else assumes it's out of jealousy? That argument is about as well thought out as saying, "oh, you don't like it because you don't understand it." Please.
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:19 PM on December 6, 2005


Peter Griffin. When he get's hurt, and you see him suffer and moan for minute after minute. Funny.

Love the falling on face bit.

And Aunt Jemima selling syrup like Jehovah's Witnesses or drug dealers.

Or the references to Cleveland Steamers.

Funny.

Others may find it not funny. Just like say, Everybody Loves Raymond or Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Such things are subjective it seems.
posted by juiceCake at 12:22 PM on December 6, 2005


“Why Family Guy sucks. Excellent articulation of what I dislike about the show, put better than I ever could.”-posted by jcruelty

Man. I’m totally convinced. Ok, I’ll stop liking it now. I’ll just stop watching if it irritates y’all so much.
So....what do YOU like?
*baited breath*

Actually, I think the Simpsons are still solid. They got into this whole “listening to people who criticize them like the comic shop guy” and responding to it. Bad move. Just bring the funny. Make the people laugh. Put on the show. Have fun. It’s why Monty Python worked.
I think that’s pretty obvious with Family Guy too.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:24 PM on December 6, 2005


Why is it when someone doesn't like something, someone else assumes it's out of jealousy? That argument is about as well thought out as saying, "oh, you don't like it because you don't understand it." Please.
posted by Robot Johnny at 3:19 PM EST on December 6 [!]


Topped only by the absurd "you're attacking me because of my politics" tact.
posted by juiceCake at 12:24 PM on December 6, 2005


“In matters of taste swim with the current, in matters of principle stand like a rock” - Thomas Jefferson.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:25 PM on December 6, 2005


Yeah billysumday, like I said, some people just like to stir up shit, and I do think the South Park poster was one of those people, but instead of hissing and spitting at him, I just pointed out how subjective the whole thing was, and it just burst his little bubble. (And it's really not limited to frivolous things, either -- just look at any MeFi thread about politics or religion, though there's a paucity of threads about physics.)

If that "Why Family Guy Sucks" guy were to come in here with his point-by-point list, I'd probably pretty much respond the same way because when you get right down to it, it's all subjective. His Point 8: "The characters are so boring." That's his opinion and he's welcome to it. I don't agree, but whatever. Point 7: "It uses references as a substitute for humor." Another perspective might be that the references are the humor. Point 6: "Seth MacFarlane's voice acting is quite poor." Opinion. And so on. No biggie, really.
posted by Gator at 12:26 PM on December 6, 2005


I kinda like Family Guy, but not enough to be emotionally vested in arguing for or against it! Who's with me!?
posted by furiousthought at 12:57 PM on December 6, 2005


Y'all jus' jellus, furiousthought.
posted by Gator at 1:01 PM on December 6, 2005


Why is it when someone doesn't like something, someone else assumes it's out of jealousy? That argument is about as well thought out as saying, "oh, you don't like it because you don't understand it." Please.
posted by Robot Johnny at 3:19 PM EST on December 6 [!]


Why is it when someone likes something, someone else has to barge in and shit all over said thing and proclaim how they're too cool to like it?

You brought it on yourself, Cap'n...
posted by BobFrapples at 1:07 PM on December 6, 2005


You know what show I really like; Newsradio. When it still had Phil Hartman it was a very good show. Family Guy is OK I guess, but it's no Newsradio.
posted by I Foody at 1:17 PM on December 6, 2005


"...[Stewie's] design and personality are ripped off from Jimmy Corrigan..."
-Jaime J. Weinman's 10 Reasons Why FG Sucks


Design, maybe, Personality? Um, no. No way. Not even close.
And that was just the first entry.

But that's okay, Jaime. Keep on writing that blog. Yeah? Y'know, that, that blog you've been writing for three years? Hm? Posting your insights on this culture we call pop, yeah? Hm? Gotta, gotta amusing anecdote you simply must share with the world? Yeah? Hm?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:23 PM on December 6, 2005


BobFrapples: "...someone else has to barge in and shit all over said thing and proclaim how they're too cool to like it?"

Chill, Frapples. Most people didn't "shit all over" said thing, they simply noted why they did or did not like the show.

The article linked later in the thread extensively analyzed the setup and digression of the show and explained why certain things did or did not appeal to them. I found that discourse as justified or useful as comments like "ROFL 3 frame faceplant animation - love it every time".

Alvy Ampersand: "...[Stewie's] design and personality are ripped off from Jimmy Corrigan..."
-Jaime J. Weinman's 10 Reasons Why FG Sucks


Design, maybe, Personality? Um, no. No way. Not even close.
And that was just the first entry."


I suppose reading the entire paragraph was too tough for you, so I'll clue you in again by highlighting something from the first sentence: Stewie, the most popular character, is a double ripoff.

Also, how did all of this negative attention get turned onto Robot Johnny and his personal blog simply because of his quote-masking? I'd say that's more childish and offensive than anything else in this thread.
posted by prostyle at 1:29 PM on December 6, 2005


I thought Stewie was based on Rex Harrison?

At first I didn't care for Family Guy, but it has grown on me since and is now one of my favorites. Whether that says more about the show or about me, I dunno. It feels like it took a while to really kick in.

And it's got Quagmire; really, who can hate Quagmire? Giggity giggity.
posted by First Post at 1:36 PM on December 6, 2005


Chill, Frapples. Most people didn't "shit all over" said thing, they simply noted why they did or did not like the show.

But the thread wasn't asking for anyone's personal opinions on the show, was it? It was a link to an early Seth McFarlane short, presumably for the benefit of those who appreciate his work or are fans.

Why someone would see the thread and think, "Hey, Family Guy... I really dislike that show. I'm gonna jump in there and tell everyone why the show is so unfunny and why they're stupid for liking it!", is beyond me. It seems the most logical explanation for that behavior is that they either crave attention, or they want to stir shit up.

As for robot johnny... he seemed to be the most obsessed with pointing out how much he disliked the show, so I chose to respond to him. My publicly stated opinion of his blog is just like his opinion of Family Guy... completely pointless and unnecessary to the thread.

It was kinda my point, see?
posted by BobFrapples at 1:44 PM on December 6, 2005


Prostyle, I'll say this one more time, and I'll type it slow so you can understand: While there is a physical resemblance, and the Corrigan character predates him, there is no other similarity between the two personality-wise. Stewie is an evil, matricidal genius, while Jimmy is a passive nobody. Ergo, Stewie is not a double ripoff (emphasized and italicized for your pleasure), and that allegation that he is leads me to believe that the blogger doesn't know what he's talking about.

And that wasn't Robot Johnny's blog, so why are you bringing him up?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 1:45 PM on December 6, 2005


BobFrapples: "But the thread wasn't asking for anyone's personal opinions on the show, was it? "

The initial post did not ask for anything one way or another. The ensuing discourse was fairly amicable, and I don't see it as being completely aggregious. I probably agree with you when it comes to people deriding things for the sake of derision as being entirely pointless - it just didn't seem like the case to me here. If the author of the post doesn't feel a need to moderate, I think it's pretty ridiculous for other members to "step up to the plate" and "tell us how it is" due to the conversation not being to their liking.

Alvy Ampersand: "Prostyle, I'll say this one more time, and I'll type it slow so you can understand: While there is a physical resemblance, and the Corrigan character predates him, there is no other similarity between the two personality-wise.

Heh... type it slow. You're so fucking clever! Too bad you still can't read a paragraph: His world-domination ambitions and dictatorial rhetoric are ripped off from the Brain of Pinky and the Brain. And his design and personality are ripped off from Jimmy Corrigan

And that wasn't Robot Johnny's blog, so why are you bringing him up?"

I brought it up because you and Frapples seemed to have a hard-on for offending him on a personal level as some sort of logical recourse to him providing his opinion.
posted by prostyle at 1:58 PM on December 6, 2005


Bob & Alvy, while I support you in the theory that it's stupid for people to show up in a discussion for the sole purpose of shitting in it, Robot Johnny only made two comments to the thread before he was accused of "jealousy," and neither of his comments were particularly shitty or "obsessed."
posted by Gator at 2:02 PM on December 6, 2005


I brought it up because you and Frapples seemed to have a hard-on for offending him on a personal level as some sort of logical recourse to him providing his opinion.

Umm... Alvy hasn't mention RJ at all, dude.

It was me and me alone.
posted by BobFrapples at 2:04 PM on December 6, 2005


Robot Johnny only made two comments to the thread before he was accused of "jealousy," and neither of his comments were particularly shitty or "obsessed."

He was just one of several, and I admittedly singled him out. I think it was his rewrite of the Stewie monologue to slam Seth Macfarlane that struck me as... well... asshole-ish.
posted by BobFrapples at 2:10 PM on December 6, 2005


I don't know how I got singled out either, as I was hardly the first person to say anything bad about the show. My second comment could have been taken as over the top, but only if you didn't read the entire thread to see that I was paraphrasing a previously-quoted Stewie comment (a comment in which Stewie chides someone for thinking pop culture references are clever.).. Yuk yuk, aren't I ironic and clever?

Ah well... one bad frapple always spoils the bunch.

On preview: Only as asshole-ish as Stewie, Bob.
posted by Robot Johnny at 2:12 PM on December 6, 2005


Heh. I actually thought that was kinda funny. Diff'rent strokes, indeed.
posted by Gator at 2:14 PM on December 6, 2005


So, RJ... me being a jerk to you aside... why did you want to tell us all that you don't think the show is funny? Did you want to change our minds? Does it bug you that some folks DO find it funny? Why?

I just don't understand the motivation there...

Ah well... one bad frapple always spoils the bunch.

Heh... fair enough!
posted by BobFrapples at 2:17 PM on December 6, 2005


You know what? You're right.
In my quest to prove my brilliance, I completely missed the Pinky & the Brain (A show I've never watched, which is probably why I focused on Jimmy Corrigan) thing twice. Twice. The same number of times you mention Robot Johnny, in an attempt to defend him from... what, exactly? What did I say about him?
I didn't say anything rude regarding Robot Johnny (Actually, I'm reading his blog right now and enjoying it immensely.), so please stop trying to start shit.

Anyhow, I think the fact that FG's writers are willing to spend two minutes on a character rubbing his injured leg and gasping says a lot about its audience, and why a lot of people have crossed over from The Simpsons.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:22 PM on December 6, 2005


So, Stewie's asethtic is ripped off from Jimmy Corrigan. Corrigan of the perfect circle head, while Stewie's is football shaped? And the Brain was the first character set on taking over the world? Wouldn't it be easier to say Stewie is a rip off of every 1 year old villian ever?
posted by dial-tone at 2:33 PM on December 6, 2005


Thank you for pointing that out, Bob. It's comforting to know I'm not losing my mind or have some deep-seated hatred of Robot Johnny that is apparent to all but me.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 2:34 PM on December 6, 2005


why did you want to tell us all that you don't think the show is funny?

For the same reason I suppose that people slag Coldplay in Coldplay threads, or Apple in Apple threads, or anything really. I understand Family Guy has its audience, but I admit to being dumbfounded by the scope of its popularity. I think it's a cruel and unfunny show, and for the same reason you thought my paraphrasing Stewie was asshole-ish -- that's how I feel about the show itself. It's a jocky frat boy of a show.

But your question is best directed to the first person who told the thread they thought the show was unfunny. By the time I added my comment, there were already several people who had done the same, so I was merely joining in an already-in-progress discussion. I didn't just hop in and yell, "your favourite tv show sucks!"
posted by Robot Johnny at 2:35 PM on December 6, 2005


I didn't just hop in and yell, "your favourite tv show sucks!"

No, that's true... you didn't. Though, you were the only person to post twice about disliking it. I guess that's why I singled you out for my vitriol.

Anyway... now I know why you dislike the show, and you know why I got cranky. Agree to disagree...

My apologies for the shitty remark about your blog earlier... un-called for and also not true.
posted by BobFrapples at 2:50 PM on December 6, 2005


Anyway... now I know why you dislike the show, and you know why I got cranky. Agree to disagree...

Agreed! (or is that disagreed?)

My apologies for the shitty remark about your blog earlier...

Thanks, and no problem... like water off a robot's back.
So now that we've put an end to this, and with such civility, what else can we argue about?

How about that War in Iraq, huh? Boy, was that awesome or what?
posted by Robot Johnny at 3:01 PM on December 6, 2005


“I kinda like Family Guy, but not enough to be emotionally vested in arguing for or against it! Who's with me!?” -posted by furiousthought

Let’s hear it for the neutrals!
Issue a beige alert. Tell my wife I said hello.
posted by Smedleyman at 3:21 PM on December 6, 2005


Wow, here I was thinking that sense of humor was an entirely arbitrary concept and varied wildly from person to person. Now I read these posts and find in fact there's specific, logical reasons why things are or are not funny. Tell you what? Since you guys have all seemingly unlocked all the secrets of what does and doesn't make people laugh you ought to go take your ideas to the network and make a supershow that will please everyone and make billions of dollars.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 3:55 PM on December 6, 2005


Anyone know the outcome of Chris Ware's suing re: the Stewie character? I recall reading about it as it bagan, but I never heard how it turned out.
posted by thirteen at 4:04 PM on December 6, 2005


I never heard of such a suit; it's not mentioned on Wikipedia for either Ware or MacFarlane; nothing turning up on Google. Got a link?
posted by Gator at 4:20 PM on December 6, 2005


My wife and I share very similar senses of humor on most fronts, but I love FG and she dislikes it. She finds the voices annoying, among other things...

Great link, thanks!
posted by brain_drain at 9:53 AM PST on December 6 [!]


That's how I feel about Southpark; I can't get past my dislike of the (also hard to understand) voices to give it a chance.

FG grew on me when I ran into a particularly funny rerun last year. There are some great episodes and some mediocre ones. A lot the criticisms of the show are valid, but what one finds funny is a visceral reaction.

Ok, I have spoken so it's been decided. Move along.
posted by Devils Slide at 4:50 PM on December 6, 2005


Handy Google video tip: Lower right side of player, hit the little triangle, select "original size".
GV always fits to screen until you tell it different, and then it remembers.
posted by Slap Incognito at 4:51 PM on December 6, 2005


Oi, sorry about that, Alvy. Got a little confused there!
posted by prostyle at 5:44 PM on December 6, 2005


I want to see this, but Google Video is not available in my country.
posted by Joseph Gurl at 5:57 PM on December 6, 2005


Try here, Joseph (embedded .wmv).
posted by Gator at 6:02 PM on December 6, 2005



I never heard of such a suit; it's not mentioned on Wikipedia for either Ware or MacFarlane; nothing turning up on Google. Got a link?


I read about it in Entertainment Weekly during Family Guy's first season. I did not have Google luck either, so I hoped someone here would know.
posted by thirteen at 6:18 PM on December 6, 2005


Ah, EW. Here's a reference to what you read, presumably. But it says that Ware was just going to "shrug it off," not sue.
posted by Gator at 6:26 PM on December 6, 2005


Stewie: "Remember that one time..." Flashback
So-and-So: "Oh yeah, kind of like that other time?" Flashback


I've read that the reason they rely heavily on these flashback jokes is because they are shot and recorded out of sequence, then later put into the episodes as time permits.

I personally hated the Family Guy until I actually sat down and watched it. All I knew of it was from clips of upcoming episodes, and the voices really rubbed me the wrong way (but not in that FG Old Man-rubbed-me-the-wrong-way). By Season 2, FG was the funniest show on TV, hands-down. It's the only show besides South Park where I've reacted to a completely tasteless joke with complete awe. Like, "No. fucking. way. did they just say that."

The new episodes don't do as much for me, sadly. It still has its moments, though (at least a couple each episode) which is why I continue to watch it. I had almost lost hope and they they pulled that Naked Gun opening montage that was fucking great.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:37 PM on December 6, 2005


That is exactly the passage I was (mis)remembering. Excellent detective work Gator.
posted by thirteen at 6:47 PM on December 6, 2005


It is too vulgar, random, and weird ...
God bless Seth.
posted by uni verse at 8:14 PM on December 6, 2005


Prostyle: S'alright, I wasn't exactly being all that pleasant anyway. Now let's all gather 'round the tube and enjoy an episode or two of Family Guy!
OW! Who threw that?!?
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:40 PM on December 6, 2005


I think Stewie is based on Alan Watts.

No really. Ever listen to them talk side by side?

(Hi August. We went to school together and ran into each other at MOCCA last year. Good link!)
posted by SmileyChewtrain at 8:58 PM on December 6, 2005


Hi August.

*Gasp* We don't call each other by name around here. It's a major breach of etiquette. We don't abbreviate or shorten another's handle either, as that can get you banned for a week. I just hope XQUZYPHYR forgives you.
posted by Devils Slide at 9:45 PM on December 6, 2005


I'm curious as to what the "these are the 10 reasons why Family Guy sucks" blog guy thinks now that the show is back on the air (since that entry was written in September 2004". He admitted that the last season had shown some improvement, so I wonder what he thinks of the new episodes? Ok... when I say "I wonder" it's more of a rhetorical thing, because I couldn't even be bothered reading all of his reasons. Anybody who goes that far to analyse a bloody TV show really is taking life entirely too seriously. :)
posted by antifuse at 1:28 AM on December 7, 2005


Methinks this explains why Meg is always treated as an outcast in the family. I wouldn't be surprised if it was a corporate idea to have her added to the family.
posted by furtive at 4:51 AM on December 7, 2005


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