There are many ways, which people like to spend their time, engaging in activities that they consider as being fun. These activities range from watching television, reading, surfing the Internet, playing sports, among others. Research has found out that many people are indeed fans of various television programs. The television provides people with an opportunity to have fun, while at the same time, obtain knowledge from watching different programs. Watching comedies is a way, which people can relax easily. Currently, people are finding new ways to make comedy even better, by making it appear in the form of cartoons. An example of such a comedy show is ‘Family Guy’. It is a show that will entertain its viewers, due to its themes that reflect on everyday life.
This paper seeks to give a critical analysis concerning the reasons why ‘Family Guy’ is a unique show that deserves recognition. It will focus on Family Guy’s themes, criticism as well as its awards which make it the best comedy act.
Critical analysis of ‘Family Guy’
Seth MacFarlane is the creator of the infamous American animated sitcom known as Family Guy. It is broadcasted through the Fox Broadcasting Company. The main characters are those from the Griffins family, who are described as being entertaining, yet not normal. They include; a dog (Brian), Stewie, Chris and Meg who are the children, and their parents Lois and Peter. This show has attracted attention all over the world that even children as young as three can be found watching it. Many people were skeptic about the success that Family Guy would have since it was an animated series. Fortunately, the show proved many people wrong, as it had extremely high ratings. The show focuses mainly on the life of the Griffin Family, and in fact, the comedy show has even obtained more fame than the Simpsons. The latter was considered being the best adult cartoon to ever exist. Currently, the levels of rating of Family Guy have shot up to 19 percent. On a weekly basis, Family Guy has over 1 million viewers, and this proves that it is extremely successful.
Family Guy can proudly claim that it can appeal to various audiences both children as well as adults. The television sitcom is popular because it focuses on the American society as well as the things, which take place in it. Furthermore, the comedy is one that is quite satirical, and in turn, makes its viewers become addicted to it. The comedy portrays the various gender beliefs that exist in society. This means that the show, through the interactions of the various characters is animated to fit into various roles in society.
The use of themes that are relevant in the American society has been witnessed in family guy. In one of the scenes in Family Guy, one can view a lot concerning how the American society views and addresses the issue of sexuality. While having lunch in school, Meg and three other girls admire Craig Hoffman, one of their classmates. It seems that, from the way they admire him, they are all heterosexual. In the American society, people believe that by being heterosexual, one is normal as well as dominant. Those who are bisexual or even homosexual are often looked down upon by most Americans. It can, therefore, be claimed that the girls in the scene were portraying their true sexuality. This means that as one watches Family Guy, they are taught about ideas that concern heterosexuality. Therefore, this show is one that educates people about various things taking place in society and many cartoons are not able to do this.
Another reason why Family Guy deserves credit is because is portrays the various gender roles that exist in society. It is through the characters of Meg and Craig that this is expressed. Craig is shown as a guy who constantly puts on a leather jacket that is black. This is often associated with being rebellious and tough. Most girls, even in real life, find such males to be ‘hot’. Craig expresses his gender, by the way he acts, and this is how other people of his gender also act. There is a scene where Meg asks Craig out, but he refuses as he does not want to be seen walking around with someone with the looks of a boy. On the other hand, when Meg transforms after having a makeover, he goes after her. The show is trying to show people about how people from the two genders relate with each other.
Race is an issue that is shown in Family Guy, and it is not uncommon to hear about this issue in the American society. The black people in the comedy are only few as everyone else is white. Even in reality the most dominant race that is often viewed is that of white people. In fact, there is a lot of hate that is directed towards people who are black. For example, in Family Guy, the black boy is shown as being extremely slow, as he is uneducated. On the other hand, there are scenes where the issue of race cannot be avoided. There is a music producer known as Dr. Diddy, and he is black. Furthermore, from the way he is dressed, in bling and saggy clothes, it is evident that he is black. Also, Brian always barks when he sees Dr. Diddy. The latter is a racist action directed towards the music producer, who is black. Many cartoons would not dare to venture into such issues; instead they opt to offer meaningless entertainment that is of no significance.
The show has a lot of humor as viewed in almost all the episodes, in Family Guy. Many cultural icons and events that are modern are made reference to, and this takes the form of gags. The humor that is used in Family Guy is known as being self-referential, whereby the jokes are directed towards the audience. This is referred to as ‘breaking the fourth wall. The latter is quite rare in many cartoons as they often direct the jokes on each other’s characters. Furthermore, most secondary and primary characters use catchphrases that catch one’s attention even more. Some of the most famous catch phrases in Family Guy include; ‘Bring it on’ by Joe, ‘Freaking Sweet’ by Peter and ‘Giggity giggity goo’ by Quagmire.
There is enough positive criticism to further prove that Family Guy is indeed a show to be reckoned. Critics have had positive remarks and reviews concerning Family Guy. It has been described as being an extremely funny, but nasty cartoon, by an editor at the National Review Online, known as Catherine Seipp. Family Guy has been rated at being the top in other parts of the world, other than in the United States. For example, Family Guy was rated by the Sydney Morning Herald, in the year 2009, as being the best show. There are not many cartoons, which can achieve such success, yet alone in other parts of the continent. Moreover, many celebrities have claimed that they are fans of the show, and even so, others would like to feature in it. An example of such a star is Emily Blunt, who claims that family guy is the best series she has ever watched. It had a reached a point whereby, Family Guy was voted after Saturday Night Live as being a hit show.
Many people are especially attracted to Family Guy by the fact that they can easily laugh without having to force themselves, and think hard to find the joke. Almost everything, which other cartoon shows would look down upon, are shown in Family Guy. This means that it has many gags and jokes that people can relate. A famous TV critic known as Robin Pierson praised Family Guy as he claimed that no other cartoon had the same level of jokes. Even in the United Kingdom, there are frequent re -runs of the show because it is popular. The show is extremely popular that even Robert Downey came up with a character, as his son was a fan. Other notable celebrities that have praises for Family Guy are Britney Spears and Rihanna.
Many awards have been given to Family Guy as well as other people that are involved in it. As many as thirteen Emmy Award Nominations were given to Family Guy, and they were fortunate to win at least four of them. The cast members such as McFalane and Murphy were awarded for their outstanding music as well as performances. Also, Family Guy got nominated for the Annie Awards in the years 2006 and 2008 and won as much as three times. It even got nominated to win an Outstanding Comedy Series Emmy in the year 2009. The only other animated program that had an opportunity to reach this level was in the year 1961, when the Flintstones was nominated. The only other cartoon that almost achieved this distinguished recognition was by The Simpsons in the year 1993. Therefore, there is no reason for anyone to claim that Family Guy has not reached the ultimate levels in production, as well as concepts of humor. Other awards, which Family Guy has won after being nominated, are People’s Choice Awards and Teen Choice Awards. Family Guy has also been accorded the status of a cult show, as well as a cartoon that is above standards. The awards presented to Family Guy are credible evidence of its success, and no one has a right to refute its influence that is wide spread.
In conclusion, Family Guy has indeed proven that it is a comedy act that is famous for its message content, controversy, awards, as well as the clever paradoxes. No other cartoon comedy can compare to it as it has reached significant heights in entertainment. Those interested in coming with cartoons should follow the lead of Family Guy to come up with such concepts in order to appeal to a variety of audiences.
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