Family Guy religion wise cracks
Saturday, March 31, 2007
My collage includes some of the funniest images found in the show Family Guy. The pictures include guys on a raft of blow up sex dolls, a nudist pumping up a super soaker, and a man bending over in front of Pinnoccio. These images represent just part of the reason why Family Guy is such a popular show. At the same time, these images show why there are many people who cant stand the show because of its crude and controversial sense of humor.
Family Guy is one of, if not the most, controversial shows on television. Its constant wise cracks about women, religion, politics, sex, and other issues bring it ridicule and scolding on an almost daily basis. But no matter how edgy or controversial the show gets it still is a great way to analyze gender in popular culture because of those very same “hot” topics. I started watching Family Guy about 2 years ago and never thought too much of any of the jokes. They weren’t shaping the person I was nor were they making me hate women or changing my religious beliefs. To me it’s a television show. It’s a show that makes me crack up every time I watch it because of its ridiculous characters and outrageous jokes. But unfortunately not everyone agrees with me and looks to pick on Family Guy and its jokes.
Here is a list of the shows characters so when I talk about them in my other posts you know who I am talking about if you are not a view of the show.
Peter Griffin – Main character
Lois – Peter’s wife
Chris – Peter’s son
Meg – Peter’s daughter
Stewie – Peter’s son
Brian – Family Dog (who can talk)
Family Guy is constantly under fire from all sorts of different people because of its content. One reason for this is the fact that the writers are constantly promoting existing stereotypes and making fun of controversial issues. Because of their constant reaffirmation of common stereotypes and poking fun of other issues, they contribute to many of the social understandings that pop culture provides us with. One such example is in a recent episode entitled “You may now kiss the… uh… guy who receives.” The episode centers around a gay (talking) dog and the towns recent ban on gay marriage. Throughout the episode, any of the gay characters are not displayed as normal people in society but as blatantly homosexual with the typical “gay voice.”
The main theme of the episode is whether or not gay marriage should be allowed or not. The influence of the heterosexual on homosexuals is extremely relevant throughout the show. Chris burns a petition that was made by Brian to try and convince the mayor to change his mind on a gay marriage ban, Peter asks ridiculous questions about gays (if being in a locker room is “like supermarket sweep” for gay men), and Lois leaves the house to live with her parents in protest of Brian’s gay cousin Jasper wanting to get married in the Griffin house.
While Family Guy does poke fun at all sorts of controversial issues including gay marriage, it is for this reason that the show has not only gained popularity but power as well. The reason the Family Guy writers are able to continue to push the envelope with their content is because they have done it so frequently and so much.
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
I’ll admit up front that I’ve never liked Family Guy. Now, don’t mistake this for a lack of appreciation for animated comedy series in general or for not having a sense of humour. I enjoy the cultural relevance of “The Simpsons”. I get off on a good “Futurama” geek joke. And anyone who doesn’t think “Weeds” is the funniest fuckin’ show to go on the air since … well, since I can’t even remember because I’m not sure at this moment if there ever has been a funnier show … ok, let’s not go any further on that!
I just never appreciated the way “Family Guy” always plays for the easy laugh at the expense of its female characters, (sexist) stereotypes of women, stereotypes of gender relations and violence against women. It always left this bad taste in my mouth, like it was trying to front as a satire of misogyny, when really the joke was on us (girls) who were laughing along.
I happen to be a huge fan of Family Guy and I watch the show religiously because I think it is hands down the funniest show on television. While I agree with some of the things you had to say on its portrayal of women in certain jokes you need to remember that these jokes do not make up any sort of majority of the shows jokes. The most common type of joke on the show is celebrity bashing and other little random tidbits. The reason people love the show so much is for these random jokes and references to other television shows and current events.
It is true that they do go overboard with many jokes and many times these jokes are in reference to women but you are forgetting the most popular part of the shows humor. This would be its main character, Peter. I find myself laughing the most at his stupidity and hilarious mannerisms. In every single episode of family guy I have ever seen (which is all of them), the sex that is getting bashed on the most is the males. Peter’s character is an idiot and is constantly saying and doing stupid things and making himself look as such. Furthermore, when he gets into a pickle or does something retarded, his smart, independent and caring wife is there to rectify his mistakes. Even though there are plenty of jokes directed toward women, this theme of the stupid male and the intelligent female is prominent in just about every episode of Family Guy. One such example that makes men look stupid is when Peter accidentally dumps a bucket of hot cooking oil on Lois and hospitalizes her for a few months. From there they show what life is like when a man is left in charge. The house becomes a wreck and Peter has no idea how to do anything to keep the family in tact.
It is true that the Family Guy writers do degrade women at times, but women certainly are not singled out anymore than other groups, and they certainly are not the most popular joke victims in the show.