I don’t think I’ve ever seen any of Seth McFarlane’s shows — we only get four TV channels & my Netflix queue is always full. So I had a vague impression that McFarlane was “controversial”, in the sense that critics use when they mean “a jerk”, but I had not realized that he’s (also) quite the crafty practical joker. Because the NYT just let us know that the controversial Downs Syndrome character on “Family Guy”, the one that had the Palinistas calling for McFarlane’s job all this week, was voiced by an actress with Downs Syndrome:
Mr. MacFarlane said in an e-mail message that “Family Guy” was proud of the way that the Ellen character was portrayed. “She is headstrong, outspoken and, at times, almost domineering,” he wrote. “The fact that she has Down syndrome was deliberately played as a secondary element to her character… ”
One person who supports the “Family Guy” staff in this latest debate is Andrea Fay Friedman, the 39-year-old actress and public speaker who provided the voice of Ellen in that episode.
In an e-mail message sent to The New York Times, Ms. Friedman wrote, “I guess former Governor Palin does not have a sense of humor.” She added that in her family, “we think laughing is good,” and that she was raised by her parents “to have a sense of humor and to live a normal life.”
Ms. Friedman continued, “My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes.”
In a telephone interview on Thursday, Ms. Friedman, who has also appeared in television shows like “Life Goes On” and “Saving Grace,” said she was perplexed by Ms. Palin’s criticism.
“I’m like, ‘I’m not Trig. This is my life,’ ” Ms. Friedman said. “I was making fun of Sarah Palin, but not her son.”
Sheer satirical genius, Mr. McFarlane!
Righteosly funny, Ms. Laurie. And what are you doing up so late?
Wow. Nice to hear from the actual voice actor. She sounds great! I love her dissing Palin’s parenting skills. I never thought the character had Downs, though. Just a speech impediment.
I almost thought this was going one joke too far even for Seth (Family Guy can be hit or miss on the humor but when it’s on it’s razor sharp) until I heard the actress was also a Down’s Syndrome person. Then I knew Seth was just baiting Palin to say some disparaging, and Bible Spice didn’t disappoint. She fell for what was the ultimate joke of the whole episode. McFarlane played her like a violin and the best part is she’ll deny it.
By the way, when I saw the title of the thread, I was expecting a quilt or something.
@asiangrrlMN: Or you’re just rubbing in that you got a fantastic one as a gift and showed off to the world. It’s all good though.
I actually thought the episode was great in that the character was, frankly, kind of a shit. McFarlane didn’t create yet another angelic disabled person, but created a character who just happened to be disabled.
@Yutsano: Yeah, something like that. Ha! YAY, me!
Right Wing Extreme
While I did not think that comedy bit was funny, even I think Palin over-reacted. -1 Palin. I also have to agree with Ms. Friedman, if anyone was picked on, it was Sarah and not Trig. By the by, is Bible Spice what you libs are calling Palin? That is freakin’ hilarious.
I love the smell of Open Thread in the morning!
You have a masterful ability to make the simplest of sentences completely amusing.
I took one of the crazy wingnut-base homophobes that Sully came across today out to the woodshed. Well, I would have metaphorically beat is ass if I didn’t suspect he’d get such a hard-on about it. Dude is scary wrong.
Hey grrl. What’s shaking?
Oh, yeah, btw freelancer +6
@freelancer: Mah booty!
I read part of your blog entry then I had to stop because that shit just drives me crazy. I like the way you write, though.
Heh. I’m looking at the pics I took of my Tunchie swag. There are some good ones. Now, to decide what I will post on Flickr and what I will not.
@chris: Seriously? Yeah, that would have messed with my head, but maybe in a good way.
Seth McFarlane trivia: He was supposed to be on one of the flights out of Boston that crashed into the World Trade Center, but missed his flight.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but I think that would mess with me hard for the rest of my life.
@chris: That would be disturbing. I don’t know how I would handle something like that honestly.
First pic evah on Flickr. You tell me if you can see!
@asiangrrlMN: TUNCH KITTEH!!
Does that mean you can see it? YAY!
Here is another one of my favorite online kitteh.
@asiangrrlMN: Yep it worked! Flickr is a little bit complicated to figure out at first (whoever designed that layout should be shot) but after that it’s amazingly easy.
My problem is that I have to keep relearning Flickr because I don’t post pics often enough to stay in the groove. But it is amazingly easy.
The next thing I need to learn is how to do photo sets available only to specific people.
@Yutsano: YAY. It’s actually fairly easy to learn (I worked on my bro’s Taiwan sets a bit). I’m uploading the, er, unmentionables, but I have the set on private view for now.
Now that I’ve said that, how do I change the front pic of a set?
@Steeplejack: There is a place where you can set it for family or friends (under private), and then you just designate who is in each category.
Above is a link to a Seth Macfarlane clip from Real Time with Bill Maher talking about, what else, Sarah Palin’s reaction to his show.
lol, I appreciate the compliment. Instead of Greenwald-esque “TL;DR”, I’d much rather opt for, “Too Aggravating;DR”.
But if that’s too depressing for you, you should see my material on Drudge or Valentine’s Day, much less my own moments of self-doubt.
@Anya: Huh? What? Where? Who? For how many cookies?
How do you designate them? By e-mail address? Or do they all have to sign up for a Flickr account just to be able to see my private stuff?
And the fall of mankind continues.
It’s late. It’s unseasonably cold (for Hawaii) and I’m cranky and burned out.
Bring on the Brawndo!
okay, 4 links is the limit between mod-hell and freedom, FYI
Again, your praise is flattering, but if you think that is depressing, look at my one-off, knee-jerk responses to things like Valentine’s Day and supposedly innocent things like Google Searches. FWIW I think the google post is the longest buildup to a punchline I’ve ever attempted.
@Steeplejack: They have to be on Flickr, unfortunately.
@freelancer: I really like your Google post–and it’s so true. The VD one is way too depressing.
@asiangrrlMN: One thing though: if you have a Yahoo account, you also can get onto Flickr that way. So if you’re already registered there you’re good to go. That’s how I use it anyway.
VD is always depressing. Wait, what? Oh, Valentine’s Day! Never mind.
(Actually, now that I think about it, “VD” is a phrase that I have not heard in forever. Weird. A good thing, definitely, but weird.)
Yeah, I get in through my Yahoo account. Just seems like a hassle to make people get a Flickr account just to look at some stupid pictures. And we all have relatives who are not the most computer-literate, so even doing something simple like getting them on Flickr is an adventure.
I’m just ranting under the stars with my herd.
I’m a freelancer with a penchant towards hero worship of iconoclasts. (Ironically, I’m still a die-hard O-bot)
O good. I guess it’s now ok to make gauche jokes and use people with Down’s Syndrome to score political points.
McFarlane is barely better than Palin. Family Guy was past its due date years ago, but moronic stoners need something to watch at 4 AM so the DVD sales keep on comin’. The show is a litany of tacky jokes loosely blanketed with the flimsiest veneer of a story. I don’t mind pushing the envelope. But Family Guy doesn’t break any new ground. It revels in its revolting banality. There’s absolutely nothing original or thoughtful about it. It’s all been done a thousand times before, and it was better then. Christ now we’ve even reached spinoff status.
@Yutsano: Oh, that’s how I do it, too.
@Steeplejack: I like it for that very reason since I like the two things about equally the same.
@freelancer: Well, I like your style, so rant on.
@freelancer: One should never rant in E minor. Or do anything else in it either. That is all.
@Yutsano: The damn link never works for me, here it is http://rackjite.com/archives/4602-Video-Bill-Maher-and-Seth-MacFarlane-disucss-Retarded-Americans-feb-19-2010.html
You can also go to gawker to view it.
That was way too many words to express that the show is just stale, and that MacFarlane is creatively bankrupt.
Against all odds, I find this newly produced skit about Wile E. Coyote to be completely hilarious.
You haven’t been around, or attentive enough to see that Billy Ray Cyrus is the worst. dad. ever?
@Anya: Lord have mercy on us all. Sarah Palin needs to fade away. We need to stop paying attention to this woman. She offers nothing to the national discourse and she needs to be stopped being treated as if she is contributing in any positive way in this country. As far as I’m concerned Alaska can secede and she can be their High Holy Empress if she wants. I just want her to go away.
I completely agree. Palin was a joke a year ago. She’s just not funny anymore. This is also why Family Guy sucks. They don’t break any new ground. They don’t tell any new jokes. They pummel on the same old tired punching bags. I can’t wait for the 2011 season when they really take it to Kanye for dissing Taylor Swift.
@Yutsano: Nah. Ganna. Happen. As long as she continues to give starbursts, she’ll be around. Ugh.
I’m out for the night. Last one gone, turn off the lights. Night, bitchez.
@Yutsano: I agree with you that she needs to fade away but she will not. She will be with us as long as the media is paying attention to her facebook entries and her incoherent comments at Fox. Everytime I see her on teevee I wonder about the people who follow her.
thank you for that.
@Anya: Best Maher clip I’ve seen in a while. Thanks for the link.
If the person with the disability (props to Seth McFarlane for having a woman with down syndrome play the part) didn’t have a problem with it, then I really don’t care how you feel. I’m sure you think it’s just fine for Rush Limbaugh for using the word “retarded” and John McCain say that Chelsea Clinton looked like a dog.
Gotta love your fake outrage.
@Nethead Jay: It would have been even better if Maher let Seth Macfarlene speak. I hate how he cuts off people.
P.S. why is everyone up this late or early? Me, I could not sleep. I am still in Europe time.
Don’t get me started on Maher hatred. I revile the guy as much as I love what comes out of his mouth.
I’m still up for reasons detailed in the previous thread–basically a weird work schedule that had me working a somewhat rare day shift. Now I’m torn between finally heading to bed or staying up to watch Kurosawa’s Ran on IFC at the top of the hour.
Snark-lovers gotta gimme some credit for this line–
We may call ourselves Iowa Liberal but our blades dice up the whole world…
Well… I was going to bring up the whole timeliness isue with Bill Maker’s show on tonight, but it seems others already have.
Bottom line – watch out Sarah Palin. Seth McFarland is gonna fuck you AND Rush Limbaugh up in an upcoming show. You just watch.
here’s the famous “Family Guy” scene linking Palin to the Nazis
Just checked out what you’re watching… “Ran” is on Sundance tight now, not IFC.
@Steeplejack: I am on prolonged jet lag and unlike you I have no teevee.
@RandyH: McFarland is a marketing genius. You can always count on a freak-out from Palin and media’s nonstop coverage. You can guarantee his show on Sunday will be a ratings hit.
@RandyH: Kurosawa is the artist of the month next month on TCM. Wheee! Ran, Rashomon, Drunken Angel, Red Beard… 21 movies in two weeks.
Yeah, saw that. The DVR is recording the right thing. Also, Miyazaki’s Spirited Away will be on IFC at 9:45 a.m. EST Sunday. Can’t wait to watch it in HD.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
If you find yourself standing outside the Hall of Fuckwits you will see that Corner Stone is proudly holding it up.
“looking for sympathy and votes”.
Except, it isn’t “votes”. Palin’s looking for money.
Damn! Got to get the add-on disk for the DVR tout de suite.
I found some information saying that if you have a Scientific Atlanta cable box with a certain version of the software (which I do) you can hook up an eSATA drive to the cable box and greatly increase your DVR storage space. Have been dithering for a while, but this could get me to pull the trigger.
McFarland pulled a genius move. Baited that crazy bitch right into the hole she found herself. The hole being having been outsmarted by a person with Down’s Syndrome. Having worked with people with such disabilities early in my career, it doesn’t surprise me. Many of those I worked with are demonstrably smarter than Sarah Serendipity. As has just been proved. Good on Seth and brilliant on Ms. Friedman.
Dangit, geg6, my comment said much the same but 40 minutes ago…and is still stuck in moderation. Now I suck and you rule.
Any good conservative like Sara Palin knows that people with Down’s syndrome should be seen and not heard.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
I thought the way she described Palin handling her kid “like a loaf of french bread” was on target. My wife thinks she hauls the kid around like a sack of potatoes. Seth didn’t have to work too hard to set Palin up for this, she’s a natural when it comes to being stupid. Still, very funny move on his part and he set it up brilliantly. She is always looking to score sympathy points with her kid and he nailed her on it.
The really sad thing is that Sarah carries her poor kid around like he’s an accessory.
Angry Space Cadet
Heh, Family Guy is a show that should have ended several seasons ago and it annoys me that Fox has basically given McFarland their entire Sunday lineup sans The Simpsons time slot (don’t get me started on The Cleveland Show). Still this was an ingenious move on his part and the episode was actually pretty good by Family Guy standards.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
@Angry Space Cadet:
His stuff can be hit or miss at times but I’m stuck with this twisted personality that enjoys a lot of the potshots he takes at different subjects. I guess I’m just not the PC-type.
I’ve never watched him on Fox, I just don’t tune in any of their channels, so unless it’s posted online I see it in ‘reruns’. Seth can take their money and I’ll watch it somewhere else.
Works for me. :)
I haven’t seen the episode in question, but the quotes here from the voice actress amused the fuck out of me.
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
My kid loves “Family Guy.” Does that mean I’ve failed as a parent?
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
I’ll watch Family Guy if I just happen to catch it on at a random time, but I don’t make it appointment TV. I’m like you, I’ve got a twisted sense of humor, so I generally am amused by it. But the frequent look-at-us-we’re-so-witty cutaways can fall flat after a while. However, this never ceases to crack me up.
I don’t mind that Sarah’s fleecing the mouth-breathers. Really, I don’t. What I hate is that she seems to regularly go out of her way to insult my intelligence. Worse still is that she believes her hype–that tricking a few million nitwits is somehow proof of her incomparable genius.
I think it’s brilliant that folks like Seth MacFarlane reveal to the multitudes how simple, predictable, and stupid former half-term governor Palin really is. Will the dupes admit it? Probably not; in fact, it’ll likely turn their outrage meters to eleven. But eventually enough of them will get tired of being played for fools.
For those of you looking for the ep online, it’s s08e12, “Extra-Large Medium” I think.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
Absolutely. Our kids love it so we’re an utter failure in parenting here. Too. ;)
If I even began to list my favorite bits on FG I would be here all day! The one where Peter and Brian land in Ireland and the runway is covered in whiskey bottles is one that always makes me laugh.
Seth ain’t the cup of tea for everyone but I enjoy him and his humor.
Seth MacFarlane is the guy I hate to love.
Wait ’til her tits start to sag. Let’s see how successful her grift is then.
@Angry Space Cadet: I disagree. Family Guy isn’t as consistently good as it was a few years back, but it’s still a better half-hour than just about any other ‘comedy’ on television. This bait and hook with Palin is brilliant- better than the episode, which wasn’t that great. Thank god Palin doesn’t have the sense to graciously disappear. It would be great watching her get into a public pissing match with Ms. Friedman.
The Simpsons, on the other hand, I rarely bother to watch anymore, except in repeats. Comparing the quality of the writing of the older shows to present episodes makes me sad for what the show’s become.
The Cleveland Show sucks- it looks like material that didn’t make the cut for Family Guy.
this is awesome. palin has gone from feuding with her young son-in-law to feuding with a cartoon. and now she’s getting called out by a woman with down’s syndrome, and you just know she’s going to take that bait as well.
this woman is the fail that keeps on failing.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
@MTiffany: “Wait ‘til her tits start to sag. Let’s see how successful her grift is then.”
After five kids I am sure she ‘has the whole fried egg hanging on a nail’ look already (thanks again Seth!). Now that she is rolling in the dough I wouldn’t be surprised a bit to hear that she is getting a boob job.
Anything to ‘boost’ her popularity, get her fans to sit up a bit straighter and launch starbursts from TV sets all across Greater Jesusland.
Ed in NJ
@Angry Space Cadet:
As others have said, Family Guy has become hit or miss, and the timeliness is probably due to the long production time. Unlike South Park, which produces its shows the same week they air.
And I agree with others that the Simpsons is well past its prime. I don’t even watch the new ones, and the Cleveland Show is horrible. But American Dad to me is the funniest of all the Sunday night comedies. And it doesn’t rely on the non-sequitor/flashback device that McFarlane employs way to much in his other shows. The recent Valentine’s episode and the one about the Rapture from a few weeks back were classics.
Contrast the way Seth McFarlane makes a point with the way James O’Keefe makes one.
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
“The really sad thing is that Sarah carries her poor kid around like he’s an accessory”
Well she has to make use of him somehow since he didn’t have the good grace to be naturally aborted like she wanted him to be. If you think I am being a douche about that look up the timeline before the birth and that she was flying around against the doctor’s advice. She was doing everything legally to get a late term natural abortion. You know if Roe v. Wade wasn’t around many Republican women like Palin would get the abortion if they felt they could keep it a secret but of course Palin or her husband is intelligent enough to realize that there is no way she can kept that a secret.
Please. If Rush Limbaugh was the animator, Palin would have given him an award for best cartoon character.
Even if the actress didn’t have downs, I had always taken this as a direct dig at Palin, not at the kid. The whole point was to have Palin flip out. Mission accomplished.
Yeah to my knowledge Seth doesn’t have a history of adding in footage to already filmed documentary footage to present a false depiction of events.
Btw why has no one commented that Sarah Palin may have named her son after the condition he has?
Trisomy G is one of the names for Down Syndrome. You can just imagine Palin being told the news and going that sounds like an excellent name for the baby with Trig being the short name.
zoe kentucky in pittsburgh
What I’d love to see is Palin realize that Family Guy is a FOX show and publicly go after Fox for running it.
It’s been a long time since we’ve had any political figures go after tv shows– complaining, trying to ban them, etc. I think Palin is the perfect person to pick that mantle up. Maybe she should start hanging out with Bill Donahue (of Perpetually Offended Catholics) or some of the other wingnutty we-hate-all-tv-that-isn’t-FoxNews-or-the-700 Club folks.
I think Limbaugh and Palin are TV starved attention hogs. No better than MacFarlane in other words. Way to leap to crass assumptions though. Nice job.
I also couldn’t care less whether a TV actor is interested in self promotion. Lots of TV stars are ok with exploiting their disadvantages. That don’t make it ok.
My distaste for Family Guy isn’t because I’m an ultra conservative. I don’t like Family Guy because it isn’t funny. It’s just outrageous for the sake of outrage.
The joke was stupid. It doesn’t magically become hysterical when the words fall out of the mouth of one with Down’s Syndrome.
But go right ahead, clap your hands and laugh when the stupid jokes are on “them.” No need to demand TV that isn’t stale and repetitive. Be satisfied with writers content to make the same jokes you read here ten months ago.
“The joke was stupid.”
It was a statement the character made that their mother was the governer of Alaska. Now since no current or former Alaskan governer has an adult daughter with Down’s Syndrome how could the joke be about palin when it seems to just be something the character said about their fictional background?
No the joke was on or rather the joke was Palin for thinking it was about her and not bothering to do any research on the show.
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
I’m not Corner Stone you fucktard. I am not being a concern troll. I do not base my approval of a TV show on the targets it takes on. I base it on whether the show is funny or not. For instance, Red Eye = not funny. It wouldn’t fucking matter if they were making fun of Palin instead of Frank every night. The show sucks balls either way. Family Guy is the same way. It’s not funny, and no amount of “I’m picking on the right target. I’m cool, right?” jokes are going to change my mind.
If I read many more stories like this, I’m going to get the impression that Sarah Palin just isn’t that bright.
Of course, faux outrage and a persecution complex are part of the core psychological makeup of her particular brand of populism, so calling her out as punk’d in the NYT is irrlevant. (As if any of her supporters read the NYT in the first place.)
@Anya: Yeah, Maher speaks too much there, he really should rein it in sometimes.
Well, now it’s later but it wasn’t so early at the time of comment since I’m in Europe at this time ;)
Hope your jetlag goes away soon.
Andrea Friedman is a good actress. She was in an episode of Law & Order SVU.
DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal)
Oh well, I got one fuckwit here confused with another. That’ll teach me to drink and read your shit!
Thanks for the laugh though, at least you’re good for that. :)
@Common Sense: Someone was obviously upset when the Lawrence Wek show went off the air.
Mike in NC
Sarah Palin does not carry her son around like a loaf of French bread. French bread is for elitists. She carries him around like a loaf of Wonder bread.
Her tee-tays will never sag; she’ll have the prayers of a nation to uplift them…
No, she has that covered. She’s been calling Fox Broadcasting “Fox Hollywood” every time she refers to it. Even though that is not and never has been its name, her fans get the picture. It’s that other Fox, you know, the one that’s run by those jews and gays in Hollywood.
Does anyone know if Larry Kudlow is still mulling over running for Senate? If so, he probably shouldn’t post hungover on Saturday morning about how he’s in Tiger Woods’ corner because he’s “been there. It’s not easy.”
WTF – http://bit.ly/aJxHYY
@Zach: Did not know about Kudlow’s history of abuse when posting that. Wups. Still probably not the best way to introduce your history of addiction to the electorate.
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
it is funny that while the story is about how palin is stepping in it by being a hypocritical fucktard, going after a cartoon show (yeah, that’s never blown up in a politician’s face) and taking on a woman with down’s syndrome, guys like that are trying to make it all about how they think family guy ‘just isn’t that funny’.
it aint concern trolling, but it’s something trolling.
licensed to kill time
I find it funny to observe La Palinista flailing away at the Hostile Humorist Hordes who are out to get her, doncha know.
I’d say she’s finally engaging on her own level (Animated Cartoon) but that would be an insult to the creators of Family Guy (which, for the record, I have never found funny enough to watch on a regular basis) who at least have stuck with their jobs and continue to produce a successful show.
This also reminds me of Dan Quayle’s epic battle with Murphy Brown. He pretty much lost that one, too.
So I am reading an article on ESPN about Myron Rolle, an All-American safety who chose to skip his senior year at Florida State and bypass the NFL to accept a Rhodes Scholarship and study at Oxford for a year. The article focus primarily an the competing pressures in his life and the apparent paradox of wanting to be an NFL player and a neurosurgeon. But I came across this quote and started chuckling at the thought of Orly Taitz’s head exploding if/when Rolle is elected President of the United States.
@MattR: Yikes. Did not realized I edited the quote in such a way that it did not state that his family is from the Bahamas.
Crafty? Oh, come now! How on earth could McFarlane know that Sarah Palin would throw a hissy fit…pffffBWAHAHAHAHA!
No, let me try it again. (Biting cheeks)
Crafty? Oh, come now! How on earth could… could… BWAHAHAHAHA!
Okay, time to hang it up.
I haz a sad…
Family Guy and Seth McFarland are not funny and never will be. That being said, this was genius. She-the actress in question-is talented and has a pretty long career in h’wood. I remember her as the quite cute girlfriend for son with down’s syndrome in Life Goes On. The line about Trig being carried like a loaf is awesome too. Also.
@DougL (frmrly: Conservatively Liberal):
Unlike McFarlane, I actually have the ability to make people laugh.
But no, y’all are dead on. Family Guy hits the target dead center everytime. They don’t repeat stale stereotypes hashed over by others years previously or anything. I can’t wait until Family Guy pulls a Stewart and starts using tired cliche criticisms of Obama (six months after TDS did the same joke, natch). I’m sure you’ll be defending McFarlane’s daring ingenuitive spirit the same way you are today, right? At least I’ll stay consistent.
It ain’t trolling to mention that a crappy sitcom is crappy. Jesus, is it that difficult a concept to grasp?
I don’t pine for Lawrence Welk. I pine for satirical sitcoms to produce satire that is actually satirical and funny. Guess I’m naive that way.
I’ll give Family Guy credit for this: Norm McDonald was funny as the grim reaper. Too bad that was three years ago. Sadly, they’ve been running on the same “Meg’s a secret Lesbian” jokes ever since.
Family Guy is the Simpsons without any intelligent or original social statement. King of the Hill is better and more accurate. I even prefer South Park, though they tend to suffer from the same obnoxious for the sake of being obnoxious disease. They did a much better job of ridiculing our obsession with giving the handicapped special treatment when Cartman joined the Special Olympics, and they also hit on exactly what was wrong with Family Guy when they did the “cartoon Mohammad” episode.
If the Simpsons is Louis Armstrong, South Park is Miles Davis. Family Guy meanwhile is Kenny G, preying on those too lazy to seek out real quality.
@Common Sense: Oh for f*ck’s sake, shut up. Seriously. You don’t like Family Guy. It’s not funny to you. Got it. No one needed 100 friggin’ comments. We are all very impressed with your commitment to arthouse/ indie crap and your devotion to A&E.
Seriously, if you like your cartoons “high brow”, go watch Phineas and Ferb.
Careful — two posts in a row and someone might make an issue of it. Seriously, if you have an issue with people leaving comments, don’t direct comments at them.
Something could be said about using your channel changer.
Is it too late to ask for a few examples from your list?
Preferably the shows you found consistently fresh/original after 39 or so episodes. I’m just curious about how you calibrate your opinion.
@Common Sense: “Unlike McFarlane, I actually have the ability to make people laugh”
Could you please provide a link to the sites where you are funny?
No, she carries him around like a football. I keep waiting for her to spike him.
Right Wing Extreme
Now now Karen, while Rush, or anyone for that matter, should not use the term retarded to refer to anyone that is not actually retarded. Saying Chelsea looks like a dog is not the same however. I rather admire the tradition that the children of politicians should be off limits unless they themselves enter politics. I wonder when that fell by the wayside. Having said that, it was wrong for McCain to take a cheap shot at Chelsea’s expense. On the other hand she is pretty fugly. I do have to agree with CS in one instance however, “The joke was stupid. It doesn’t magically become hysterical when the words fall out of the mouth of one with Down’s Syndrome.” However I fail to see it as a joke. I do not see it as an outrage either. It was just a line, and really if anything, it was only a dig at Sarah and not Trig. Seems to me Sarah is off the handle on this one and both side are making much out of nothing.
I already provided 3 animated sitcoms that blow Family Guy out of the water from the first episode on: The Simpsons, South Park, and King of the Hill. While I wouldn’t argue that they were all consistently top notch for every episode, they have not suffered anywhere near the downward plummet that Family Guy has gone through. To stay fresh I’ll list Futurama as being far better than Family Guy as well. This is of course merely restricting myself to animated TV shows on the air today. If you’d like to get into classic sitcoms, believe me, Seth don’t fare so well. See, in order for a show to stay fresh the characters have to change. The Simpsons characters are not the same as they were 20 years ago. Homer is a completely different character. Peter Griffin, not so much.
Out of curiosity why on earth did you pick the number 39 episodes? You are of course aware that Family Guy is in its ninth season, yes? they are well over 100 episodes. Fucking American Dad (which apparently isn’t has yet to be funny, as they haven’t gotten around to Palin quite yet) is at 64 episodes and counting, and I defy anyone here to repeat one joke in that abomination. Then there’s The Cleveland Show. Fresh! Hip! Featuring a sassy toddler that somehow talks! And an incompetent dad! And a talking animal! How original, Seth.
How ’bout this one?
My mother is the governor of Alaska. See? Hilarious joke. I’m just as clever as Seth MacFarlane.
@Common Sense: 39 represents about a season and a half, the point being that tv devours writing at an incredible clip. You restricted yourself to animation, not me. As for your examples, throw out The Simpsons, like All In The Family, its iconic for breakthrough work in a genre. While I personally prefer King of The Hill to Family Guy, it’s actually less original. Judge employs a tried and true formula that’s been around since radio. I’m certainly no apologist for FG but your out of hand dismissal of McFarland’s talent is absurd. His humor may not be your cup of meat, the characters or his relentless pursuit of the non sequitur may annoy you, but you would seem to be the exception. And in defending your assertions, you showed yourself to be a rather unexceptional exception at that.
There is a difference in originality of format and originality of humor. Judge takes on unconventional targets and flays them accurately and vividly. MacFarlane goes after the roadkill that has already been run over a thousand times before.
If you want half hour sitcoms that aren’t animated, I’d look in recent years towards Arrested Development and Curb Your Enthusiasm for shows that take on family life in a unique way.
Look, I already complimented one of Family Guy’s episodes. Give me enough time and I’m sure I could find another joke that made me chuckle.
There is a reason that I have to keep repeating that I think Family Guy is a bad show. Other posters keep making bizarre assumptions, among them that I must have defended Limbaugh and McCain, that I am a Lawrence Welk old fogie, that I only watch A&E and arthouse/indie crap, and that I have unexceptional mainstream taste, proven by my dislike of a conventional mainstream show. If you are sick of hearing me repeat myself, stop assuming I said things I never said.
And Cassidy, wrt your “change the channel” post: if you don’t want to read what I have to say, don’t read the post. This is a blog that allows open comments and I’m going to comment. Follow your own advice as to what you can do about viewing my opinion.
@Right Wing Extreme: @Common Sense:
“My mother is the governor of Alaska. See? Hilarious joke. I’m just as clever as Seth MacFarlane.”
Actually, you’re both about as clever as Sarah Palin, who has unwittingly played a part in the actual joke.
Some of us are actually aware there’s a difference between a joke and a publicity stunt, Bobby Boy.
Dude, Extend me the same courtesy you demand for yourself. Try not to attribute comments or assumptions to me that I clearly haven’t made. My intention wasn’t to defend Family Guy, I was genuinely curious because your dislike of McFarlane seemed incredibly over the top. I thought your assertions were bold and quite emphatic, and I think your defense of them was quite weak. I suspected that it was something personal, and your replies only added weight to that suspicion.
You offer rationalizations instead of reasons.
Really? Condescension towards me isn’t an argument, and it certainly doesn’t support your assertions.
If you actually believe that, I think we’re at the heart of the problem. I love Mike Judge, but his “targets” aren’t unconventional, they aren’t really even targets in the sense you seem to mean. Judge never “flays” his characters, his portrayals of them are deeply affectionate. He simply holds up mirrors for them and us. It’s a much different style than McFarlane’s, and one I happen to prefer, but it’s not more original or objectively better.
Arrested Development absolutely killed me, and I scheduled time to watch. Curb Your Enthusiasm doesn’t move me, I don’t find it particularly funny. What ever the reasons, they’re surely idiosyncratic to me and I wouldn’t seriously question your sensibilities or Larry David’s talent.
Again, I’d suggest it’s personal and you might want to reconsider your reaction. No big deal.
“I’m just as clever as Seth MacFarlane.”
Don’t quit your day job just yet.
so between FG and the simpsons, its FG that’s gotten stale. gotcha.
and sweet jesus, king of the hill? now that i know where you’re coming from, i can safely ignore anything you have to say about comedy.
Tell me; When do you start ignoring me? Just so you know, repeatedly directing comments at me saying I’m to be ignored isn’t the same thing as actually ignoring me. And while I like King of the Hill, I’m not going to require smelling salts if you insult it. Therein lies the difference between me and you.
Why did you ask me to repeat myself? I had already provided a few examples of shows currently on the air that I find funnier than Family Guy. I did this for a reason. Family Guy doesn’t stand up to the average TV show in 2010, much less iconic TV shows.
One can provide complete characters with flaws and full personalitites while still mocking them. I’d point to Ned Flanders for an example, if I’m allowed to reference the Simpsons. Or Cotton Hill frtom KOTH. Simply because Cotton is more than a cartoon cutout doesn’t mean he’s treated with sympathy and affection.
I’m more than a little surprised at how personally people seem to take it when I mock Family Guy. Aww I was too over the top towards a show that subsists on the crudest jokes fathomable. I think Seth’ll be ok sleeping tonight — I don’t think he needs y’all defending his honor. Jesus, I think American Idol sucks too. Doesn’t matter to me if they have someone on with Down’s singing a song mocking Palin; it’s still a terrible show that drags down the national discourse. I’m not going to apologize for pointing it out.
Seriously, you need to actually read what I’ve said, provide the specific comments or assumptions you seem to think I’ve made, or give it a rest. I haven’t asked you to repeat anything, and please point out to me what led you believe that I’ve taken anything you’ve said about McFarlane, or his show personally. You can’t, at least in th rational world.
Get it straight, I said I thought your emphatic dislike of McFarlane was way over the top.
You’ve said nothing to dissuade my opinion. In fact, your condescending and inconsistent assertions have the opposite effect.
When you said that, “Judge takes on unconventional targets and flays them accurately and vividly.” I replied his “targets” are hardly unconventional and he doesn’t “flay” anyone.
In short, you have a fundamentally flawed understanding of his work.
So how do you rebut my assertion? with bits of anecdotal nonsense like, “Simply because Cotton is more than a cartoon cutout doesn’t mean he’s treated with sympathy and affection.” Tell me, is a bitter and emotionally unavailable father what you consider just another one of the unconventional targets that Judge flays?
And now your latest bit of unadulterated b.s. “One can provide complete characters with flaws and full personalitites while still mocking them.” Really, who’d a thunk it? “Aww I was too over the top towards a show that subsists on the crudest jokes fathomable.” Again, I said your dismissal of McFarlane was way over the top. I think your claim that he doesn’t even share your ability to make people laugh is safely over the top.
But moving the goal posts, straw dogs, projection and inconsistency seem to your rhetorical tools of choice.
Here’s another example. “…a show that subsists on the crudest jokes fathomable.” Yet earlier you were offering examples of shows that were more in keeping with your refined sensibilities.
South Park? I love the show, but not because of it’s richly developed, multi-dimensional characters, it must be the way they deftly avoid crude humor. Until you have a little more rational, informed and integrated understanding of your own tastes, leave the national discourse alone.
Upon rereading your first question I think you are entirely correct. I read this quote
as “can you provide shows that you prefer to FG?” Upon rereading it I think I was initially wrong and this is not what you were asking. Were you are asking me for specific episodes from 39 onwards in the shows I already listed? If so, I did already provide an example of an episode I found superior: the SP episode where they took on Comedy Central and Family Guy concerning the Mohammad flap. There’s also the episode of SP where Eric pretends to be retarded in order to win the Spoecial Olympics (that Jimmy ‘roids up in order to win), which was a far more biting take on our coddling of the handicapped than Family Guy’s knockoff years later. I’m not looking up episode numbers because I am not at home. These are just the first two I thought of that differintiate South Park’s satire from Family Guy’s. Like I said, Family Guy is banal. The tangenital random insults would work as a series of five minute skits. It doesn’t work when the writers are as lazy about creating an environment for their characters as FG’s are. There’s no continuity.
Sure The Simpsons is a pale shadow of its former self. It’s also been around 2 decades. In its tenth season it was still producing biting relevant commentary. Family Guy wasn’t nearly as good at the start and has fallen faster. In my opinion of course. Wouldn’t want anyone being offended if I offered my opinion using offensive words and such on a blog. It’s particularly amusing when I’m simultaneously over the top (regarding a show that once featured characters vomiting on each other for two minutes straight) and a concern trolling Welk fan in the same thread.
Yes, I was over the top. I’ll keep being over the top. That’s not exactly banned speech on this blog, if you haven’t noticed. We get colorful sometimes.
Unless you are seriously that upset that I snidely dismissed MacFarlane’s “joke” about Palin by repeating it and claiming it’s funnier when I do it (the same thing he does with every joke he tells). Maybe I was subtly poking fun at Family Guy’s serious lack of creativity by being uncreative myself? Sheer satirical genius, Mr Sense!
Sure the masses love Family Guy (or more likely a subset of hardore fans buy every season on DVD and thus force the rest of us to watch it). The masses also just can’t get enough of Two and a Half Men or Cougar Town. I’d tell you my feelings on those two piles, but I don’t want to offend anyone else and was naively attempting to restrict my criticism to the show that is the thread topic. I wasn’t expecting to write a college thesis on the history of the sitcom in defense of my claim that Family Guy fails to meet even the very low bar set by modern TV . Still, it does make for an interesting diversion while I take care of other chores to have you disavow taking personal offense while you rail away at me for my lack of taste rather than my point (which you basically agreed with in every response you’ve made — the other shows I listed are better).
Family Guy’s a terrible, terrible show, but you have to give the man credit. Well played, Seth MacFarlane. Well played.
Rinse and repeat.
Again you insist on arguing straw dogs. I was not defending FG
or questioning your perfectly legitimate right to loathe it. I challenged the absurdity of your blanket dismissal of McFarlane as a talent. As you began to wander on to more serious turf , I was challenging your condescension and misguided assertions. You made an some axiomatic statement about character development, then referenced to Judge, revealing a real misunderstanding of his work. Your defense was an irrelevant and anecdotal assertion about Cotton. And even that was uselessly simplistic.
Do you not realize how insufferably arrogant you sound?
Do you somehow imagine I’m sitting here waiting for your next post?
Again, with the changing field size. If you’ll recall, you’d previously stated that I’d had somehow taken your comments about McFarlane personally, I challenged you to show me where… crickets
You’ve now changed that to my railing about your lack of taste as evidence of my taking it personally, show me where. Of course you can’t- because I didn’t.
I said, judging by your own pronouncements (and I included specifics) that your understanding of your own tastes is underdeveloped. See the difference?
Okay, this is important; that I happen to prefer the shows you mentioned over FG is meaningless here. Try and remember that I never made any claims about the merits or lack of merits found in Family Guy. Can we keep that much straight? Had you simply copped to your comments regarding McFarlane as blog hyperbole, I would have accepted that and been done with it. But that explanation came last, long after you began self justify a simple difference of opinion with a veneer of bs. and when you began deriding the taste of others, the wheels came off.
How is it meaningless? You asked for examples of chose I prefer to FG because you are “just curious about how (I) calibrate (my) opinion,” despite the fact that I’d already listed several. When I repeated them and added a few others, you indicated you prefer the shows I listed as well, though you sandwiched it around comments like “you are an unexceptional exception.” Yeah, no personal assault there. Why resort to personal attacks (which I never did to you) if you didn’t take personal offense? Please show where I criticized you prior to your demanding my bona fides to comment on a show’s quality. I may have criticized MacFarlane, but I am assuming that you are not Seth MacFarlane. Fuck, I’m still pondering how you can ridicule my taste when we basically have the same taste — you just like the same shows I do for different reasons. I did not use Cotton Hill as an example of an unconventional target btw. He was used as an example of a well created character, which sort of helps your show to grow over the course of a decade. You can tell this was my intent because I expressly said so before bringing him up, as well as using Flanders for another example.
For an example of KOTH’s unconventional targets, there was the episode where Hank became the token white member at an all Asian Country Club. Or the episode (in the midst of the Afghanistan War) where Bill finds out the Army was performing secret tests on him.
I’m not changing any goalpoasts. I’ve said why I don’t like Family Guy. I’ve listed shows that I like better. I’ve explained why I like them better. I’ve listed specific episodes, as per your request past the 39th produced show since apparently TV shows just stop being original after two and a half seasons or so. At this point, there’s not much else that I can do to help you grasp my position on the quality of MacFarlane’s opus. It would be like me saying Justin Timberlake is a talentless hack only to have some brave white knight demanding a list of other artists that I think are more talented, then merrily marching into irrelevant disputes as to why I prefer them despite accepting the choices as legit. Then they lose their mind because I issued a blanket dismissal of JT’s talent. Then as icing on the cake I get absurd accusations of arrrogance (I never called you unexceptional — only just like me) and indignant wails from the accuser that they never questioned my perfectly legitimate right to loathe Timberlake. Only my qualifications, apparently.
It’s amusing as anything to get such contradictory thoughts as “you have unexceptional taste” and “you are arrogant and condescending of others” in the span of a few posts. Is it not considered arrogant to call other’s taste pedantic? Only when you do it, apparently.
Make fun of my taste all you want, but you sound really silly when you are simultaneously reaming me for mocking other’s tastes.
How exactly is it insufferably arrogant to call our conversation an interesting diversion, anyway? I didn’t even intimate that you were hanging on every word I write. I’m not sure how you read that from that sentence. Sounds suspiciously like you were a bit over the top. It’s ok, though. I don’t get my panties in a bunch over such small potatoes.
Okay, one more time from the top, then rinse and repeat.
#106 me – a straightforward inquiry, shows (not episodes) that have been renewed at least twice. Not a question about your bona fides, or your judgement of FG, just to get a feel for where your apparent enmity for McFarlane was coming from.
#110 – you “I already provided 3 animated sitcoms that blow Family Guy out of the water from the first episode on: The Simpsons, South Park, and King of the Hill.” Okay fine, but McFarlane himself is incapable of humor?
“See, in order for a show to stay fresh the characters have to change.” See? See here’s were you start to piss me off.
#111- me “While I personally prefer King of The Hill to Family Guy, it’s actually less original. Judge employs a tried and true formula…” Ino apologist for FG but, your out of hand dismissal of McFarland’s talent is absurd.”
“…but you would seem to be the exception. And in defending your assertions, you showed yourself to be a rather unexceptional exception at that.”
#124 -you “It’s amusing as anything to get such contradictory thoughts as “you have unexceptional taste” and “you are arrogant and condescending of others” in the span of a few posts. Is it not considered arrogant to call other’s taste pedantic? ”
Get that, I said you were unexceptional in your arguments. I didn’t say your taste was unexceptional, pedantic? or even pedestrian. After all, as you pointed out, I agreed with your preferences while trying repeatedly to point out how I was disagreeing with your sweeping conclusions about McFarlane. And then I took issue your inconsistent attempts to justify with it ill-informed comparisons of FG with other shows. what can’t you grasp about the idea that FG isn’t the sum total McFarlane?
His Opus? WTF? Maybe pedantic fits here.
#124- you “Is it not considered arrogant to call other’s taste pedantic? Only when you do it, apparently.”
Yes, I did indeed actually say your were arrogant and condescending toward others. However, I wasn’t being contradictory or hypocritical. I based that judgement on things you actually said, whereas you continue to critique things you’ve only imagined.
#124- you “Please show where I criticized you prior to your demanding my bona fides to comment on a show’s quality.”
WTF? Demanding? It was my first post asking for a few examples! It was hardly demanding or even slightly snarky.
#124 you- “I did not use Cotton Hill as an example of an unconventional target btw. He was used as an example of a well created character, which sort of helps your show to grow over the course of a decade.”
The f#@%k you say! You used him in response to my assertion that you didn’t actually understand Judge’s work.
His targets weren’t original and he doesn’t “flay”. You responded that just because Cotton was multi-dimensional (again something I didn’t even speak to) didn’t mean Judge had affection for him. It was anecdotal and irrelevant to my statement. You didn’t say squat about his personal growth and it wouldn’t have mattered, it’s bs. Now you decide to address my actual statement with some nonsense about a few episodes with unconventional targets. Just stop it. New or unique isn’t unconventional and Judge still doesn’t flay.
#124 – “At this point, there’s not much else that I can do to help you grasp my position on the quality of MacFarlane’s opus. It would be like me saying Justin Timberlake is a talentless hack only to have some brave white knight demanding a list of other artists that I think are more talented, then merrily marching into irrelevant disputes as to why I prefer them despite accepting the choices as legit”
Are you simple? I have yet to challenge the legitimacy of your preferences, that you willfully ignore that can’t be helped. I was only observing your merry march and pointing out that your reasoning was full of crap, and it’s not improving. Your taste is fine, your preferences are legitimate. But while you possess a swell grasp of the language, your attempts to intellectualize those tastes preferences have been sophomoric crap. Your pronouncement of McFarlane as humorless is laughable.
And your arrogance remains insufferable. Lay off the projection, and lay low on the national discourse when it come to the arts. Good night and best of luck.
And see, if you had come out of the gate taking exception solely to my characterizing McFarlane as devoid of humor, I would have patiently explained that I was exaggerating, the way I did when you DID accuse me of it (multiple posts in). But you didn’t. You asked for a list that I’d already given you, made particularly odd since you prefaced this by asking if it was too late to ask for “examples from my list,”which at least hints that you were aware I had already made one. This would be why upon rereading it I thought you were actually asking for examples from those shows. I guess I was wrong and I’m not misreading you — you just don’t know how to phrase yourself properly (while calling me simple and sophomoric). Yes it was too late to ask for examples — I had already provided what you asked for.
Yet you accuse me of not reading and comprehending your mishmash of posts. Your own attempts to intellectualize baseless pointless insults continue to fall flat. You are no better than those you arrogantly dismiss as arrogant. Amazing how you continue to ignore my points as to why multiple shows are better. You just dismiss it as irrelevant after asking for it and hide behind some claptrap about not challenging my preferences by asking I provide shows past a particular show date, later amended to exclude those considered too iconic or otherwise unworthy because I don’t understand them properly. Do you disagree with my claim that every one of the shows I listed has more fully developed main characters (as well as the bit players that critical to a long running sitcom, incidentally) than Family Guy or not? Do you find that to be a sophomoric and simple reason to prefer one long running sitcom to another? It’s not like I came up with this point halfway through the thread. I explained from the start that I don’t like Seth’s style of poorly realized primary characters surrounded with irrelevant tangenital flashbacks (a style that is not unique to Family Guy, btw).
Don’t pretend that I’m being unreasonable here. I’ve explained every choice I made. You are constantly shifting your passive-aggressive-turned-straight-up-asshole “requests” as I answer them, one by one. Amazing how as I become more patient you become more belligerent.
BTW people who erroneously use the basic logical fallacy of Argumentum ad populum should probably refrain from accusing others of faulty reasoning. Just a helpful word of advice.
An inevitable by product of your relentless prevarications.
Okay, perhaps I should reevaluate my accusations that you’re arrogant, condescending, and intellectually disingenuous. I’m now willing to consider the possibility of some unknown pathology being in the mix.
Sadly, when you’re not completely fabricating comments for me, you continue to mischaracterize and exaggerate the comments I’ve actually made. When I’ve offered accurate excerpts as evidence of my claim, you’ve consistently ignored it. In each instance, you have instead, offered up yet another red herring. It isn’t as if I haven’t asked you repeatedly to provide specific examples. Examples that are accurate and actually support your accusations. You also continue exaggerate and misrepresent your own comments.
So either start using some specific examples in a reality based chronology, or give it a rest. If you want to make an accusation about something I’ve said, show me.
Having time on my hands, I’ve carefully reviewed each comment that I’ve directed to you, and your replies, and in order.
1) “And see, if you had come out of the gate taking exception solely to my characterizing McFarlane as devoid of humor, I would have patiently explained that I was exaggerating”, 2) the way I did when you DID accuse me of it (multiple posts in). 3) But you didn’t. You asked for a list that I’d already given you 3.) made particularly odd since you prefaced this by asking if it was too late to ask for “examples from my list,”which at least hints that you were aware I had already made one. “
Tough to break down this mess but here we go.
1) That’s exactly what I did, but we can’t get there without first deconstructing the rest.
2) Okay, my very first comment (#106 @ 5:27p) asking for examples, doesn’t present a premise, yet you still insist it was an accusation. Apparently, this impossibility is based on your erroneous claim that you’d previously provided me with a list. At the point where I’d made my first comment, you had only mentioned two other shows. #101 @ 3:22p “…King of the Hill is better and more accurate. I even prefer South Park,” That didn’t strike me as personally defining list. In the context of your longer criticism of FG, the reference appeared to be made only in passing. Of course, in your later responses to me you began to grossly revise this small reference, and in increasingly strident terms. Okay, are we clear so far? I made no request for anything you’d already provided, No? Show me. My first post (misquoted by you above) was an inquiry, not a statement, so it can’t be an accusation.
3) I made my very first comment @ 5:27p – over an hour after you had last commented in the thread. Hence, my asking “Is it too late to ask for a few examples from your list” as in, is anyone still around? I’m pretty sure that was obvious to anyone who’s not paranoid or clutching at straw men.
Okay, back to “And see, if you had come out of the gate taking exception solely to my characterizing McFarlane as devoid of humor, I would have patiently explained that I was exaggerating”
Okay, now that I’ve carefully explained how you willfully and grossly misinterpreted my first comment/inquiry as a statement, let’s examine my second comment. #111 made @ 2:13a –
It actually contains assertions that I actually made. Here, the directly relevant assertion I made was, and I quote – “I’m certainly no apologist for FG but your out of hand dismissal of McFarland’s talent is absurd.”
So, can you now see how I did “…come out of the gate taking exception solely to my your characterizing McFarlane as devoid of humor,”
Unfortunately, I then engaged in addressing your irrelevant, misguided, self-contradicting, fallacious and condescending gas. Did I mention your pathetic penchant for fabrication? Oh well, a mildly diverting waste of time, but as I mentioned, I have some on my hands. In the spirit of your closing comment, let me offer you some helpful advice, consider an MRI.