'Family Guy' and its abortion episode: Should Fox air it?


So according to Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane, Fox isn’t likely to air a new episode about abortion to which 20th Century Fox initially gave a green light. Why? Quoth MacFarlane this weekend at Comic-Con, “20th Century Fox…allowed us to produce this episode and then said, ‘You know what? We’re scared to f—ing death of this.'”

I say, let’s all write to Fox and petition them to air this episode. I have no idea of its content. (No details about the episode have been released.) I have no idea whether I would be outraged, exhilarated, amused, or baffled by what MacFarlane and the Griffin family would do with this highly charged subject.

But I do know that you can never predict what side of any argument the Emmy-nominated Family Guy will come down on. I may not laugh at a lot of its jokes, but I would completely support the show’s right to say whatever it wanted. It’s not as though MacFarlane and his writers don’t know how to work within network standards. Why should we wait until the episode is tucked away inside a future DVD collection?

What do you think?

Comments (176 total) Add your comment
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  • Jack

    I never watch Family Guy as it airs. I always wait for their Half Season Volume Sets for the Uncut epsiodes. I am sure it would appear on a DVD set witha sticker stating it contains the too controversial for TV unaired episode. It will help sell more sets.

  • Wojo

    Does aborting a TV episode about abortion count as irony? Or would someone have to destroy the footage by prodding it with a coat hanger for the term to truly be applicable?

    • paige

      haha how bout a vac & sac?

    • Hilarious

      I can’t stop laughing! Well said.

    • Hilarious

      My comment is to Jagbuster.

    • Angus E. Parvo

      What the hell is a “pseudo-intellectuai?” Is that a group of two or more pseudo-intellectuals?

    • Wojo

      If you’re going to insult my intelligence, it would help for you to actually spell “pseudo-intellectual” right. And Hilarious, if Jagbuster’s comment really made you laugh that much, I have a Tickle-Me Elmo doll that you’d just love. His comment didn’t even make sense. I never really thought making abortion jokes was a scholarly endeavor, and I certainly wasn’t trying to act smart by making one.

    • Yogurt

      Despite Jag’s clumsy typos, he’s exactly right about Wojo.
      First Wojo attempts to make a joke. Then Wojo actually comes back to thread in hopes of basking in the glory of a good reaction. When he realizes that his “joke” bombed and he sounded like a twat, he tries to deflect the attention onto others.
      What a PATHETIC fool.

    • Adrian

      I have to say that Wojo’s comment was indeed pretty funny. And all of you getting offended by his comment is sort of ridiculous. How can you read comments on an article about Family Guy and expect it to be politically correct? Keep on rocking Wojo

    • Wojo

      Yogurt, yes, I admit I check back to see what responses my comments get on this site. I don’t see the point in posting at all if I don’t care to see what other comments are made about the topic in general or what responses my specific comments generate. I could care less if my “jokes” bomb. I only care when people insult me because of something I say. Those are the moments when I defend myself. I guess I should simply peruse the site and attack other commenters and the writers themselves, like you regularly do. That seems like a much better use of time.

    • Emily

      Are you guys kidding? This is hilarious. Wojo – you just made me laugh out loud. Everyone else – get a sense of humor!

      • Wojo

        Thanks, Emily and Adrian. I don’t think that they’re offended by my joke as much as they’re just annoyed by me in general…oh well.

    • Ed

      Wojo, Funny as hell! But you should know, you don’t need a coat hanger anymore, there’s a pill you can take, to make the video footage just disappear. Or you could throw it down the stairs like Stewie did to Lois.

    • gremmie

      this is why networks don’t air controversial crap…because they are too worried about some moron’s bad joke and the reactions/rebuttals that ensue in an effort to prove whose more clever.

    • luckyjean22

      I like the joke, wojo.
      Hopefully they’ll air the show but I almost expect to get grossed out by it somehow. (But I’d watch anyway…)

    • Stephanie

      Wojo, for the record, I thought your comment was funny. :)

    • Vel

      Angus E. Parvo
      “Is that a group of two or more pseudo-intellectuals?”–Now THAT was funny!!!!

  • Jon

    Let them air it. This show no longer has any relevancy anymore anyway. Their jokes are repetitive and stale. They’ll do something “outrageous” and gratuitous with the subject and that’ll be it. “Family Guy” is the anti-“South Park” when it comes to issues because Trey Parker is actually able to take any subject — no matter how hot or controversial — and make a funny and thoughtful show about it.

    • Cameron

      I totally diagree South Park is soooooooooo boring. It hasn’t been relevant since the year 2002 or so. It hasn’t even got a giggle out of me since 2000.

      • Still watching though?

        You must be, to know how bad it is. Why would you watch a show that hasn’t been funny for seven years?

    • Siri

      Right, you must be one of those conservative cons whose only doses of humor come from people you consider politically correct!

      • What?

        How in hell does disliking Family Guy make someone a neocon?!

        Incidentally, South Park has takled abortion repeatedly. I probably can’t post a link here, but Google “south park abortion” (not in quotes).

      • PC

        By the way, political correctness is the domain of the liberals.

      • Roflcopter

        Siri, are you seriously going to accuse someone who watches South Park as being a conservative con who watches it b/c its politically correct? You DO know South Park is that highly-offensive, anti-PC cartoon that comes on Comedy Central, right? I’d like to see someone try to make a good argument that South Park is both Conservative and PC, rofl. As for Cameron, South Park has never made me “giggle” but it makes me lmao regularly. And I agree with Jon, SP is far more relevant and satirical than Family Guy could ever hope to be. I guess this is the whole Star Trek/Star Wars thing, eh? South Park is your “smart man’s humor”? Give me a break. It’s a flipping cartoon, show the damn episode.

    • Siri

      You must have really loved that politically incorrect Christmas ep. SP did several years ago! (sarcasm)

  • Black Button

    It’s nominated for an emmy. Give the show a break. There’s no problem as long as it’s family guy.

  • caitisully

    They have made several abortion jokes in the past. Peter’s mom tried to have one with him in Mexico, and Lois almost had one but the abortionist had one hand. Then, of course, there is the “Prom night dumpster baby.” The point is, Seth has never been known for being shy, so I’m gonna trust Fox on this one. I think fg has been getting way too political lately anyway, relying on shock value. I prefer their early episodes.

  • Sonny

    Family Guy has been doing controversial episodes for years. They’ve done episodes about people with mental and physical disabilities, they’ve done episodes about race, homosexuality, etc etc. I get that abortion is a touchy subject, but really, I doubt Family Guy would present us with anything worse than what South Park has already done. Case in point: the Christopher Reeve episode of South Park with the stem cells and baby fetuses. nothing will ever come close to being as offensive and terrible as that 22 minutes of television. So I say let them air this episode of Family Guy.

    • Siri

      Agreed, but SouthPark is aired on cable, while Fox is network.

      • mnm

        Network or not, that episode was horrible. SP is offensive instead of funny.

  • Al

    This is just a publicity stunt. If Fox airs it, this will increase ratings. If they don’t, it will increase DVD sales.

    • Jagbuster

      Exactly! Kudos.

  • ws

    Seeing as how Family Guy is a show that frequently mistakes tastelessness for edginess, I can’t say that I’d ever want to watch that show deal with the abortion issue. A South Park episode about abortion might be pretty sweet though. (Haven’t they already done that?)

    • Roflcopter

      WS, they’ve done more than one. The funniest one was where Cartman was buying aborted babies so he could wholesale them to medical research labs studying stem cells. And then seeing him outside, randomly flagging down pregnant women to sell them on abortion? ROFL

      You’re busting my balls, Tim. xD

  • Leo

    I suppose so long as it only aired late at night I would be okay with it. I would not want it to be part of the syndication which can be watched after school or early evening when young children are watching. I don’t allow my grade 7 child to watch the show but most of his friends watch it and I hear about the episodes all the time. They are adult in content and disturbing at that. I can only imagine how they’d portray abortion. Adults should have the right to view as they choose but not children, we have to make those choices for them.

    • Pekay

      From what I see, the 7th grade audiences are the ones that should be especially targeted. Every year the age of unplanned mother-and-fatherhood goes down. When I was teaching, 12% of the 7th grade class females were pregnant by the 9th grade. That was 27 girls in one school (large school but still!) Anyway, the more infor we can give our kids the better.

      My son (at 17) filmed over my oldest daughters shoulder the birth of her daughter. You can hear him sniffling and coughing on the tape. He later said that was the best example of the need for GOOD birth control that he ever knew. He’s now 31 and has no children – by choice – but is ready to PLAN a family now. Neither he nor his wife have had any “close calls” thanks to sane and sound birth control discussions and examples.

  • wakeforce

    Knowing what these animated series do I imagine they would make fun of the close-mindness and hypocrisy of both sides of the abortion issue.

  • Bull

    “20th Century Fox… allowed us to produce this episode and then said, ‘You know what? We’re scared to f—ing death of this.’”

    Oh please. That line sounds like total hype on the part of Seth MacFarlane. I’d bet this is all fabricated for the sake of selling the episode on DVD with the tagline “the episode FOX doesn’t want you to see!!!” but it will be the same unfunny, cut-and-paste garbage they usually air. I mean, isn’t the fact that FOX spent money to produce the episode enough of a tip-off? Networks only spend money to make money.

    • Billy

      Well said!

    • netminder29

      You’re dead wrong Bull. It’s not some calculated piece of hype by MacFarlane or Fox. This isn’t the first time that Fox has let MacFarlane produce an entire episode, then decided afterward that they don’t want to air it because of their fear of the content.

  • Ben

    Just cancel the show. It hasn’t been funny since it came back from the dead.

    • the hairball

      i think it’s a very funny show

  • Wojo

    Wow, I think that’s the first time one of my comments was ever deleted on this site. I thought my joke was rather tame for a post about “The Family Guy” and abortion. I guess if they ever do air this episode, this won’t be the site to visit to repeat any of the jokes.

    • Wojo

      Oh, maybe it wasn’t deleted. It wasn’t on there for the longest time, but now I can see it again. However, the comment count still says 2, and this should be the 5th comment. The new format must still be glitchy.

      • Roflcopter

        They’re out to get you!

  • RhiBoy

    Please, Family Guy is KNOWN for pushing buttons and making people feel awkward when watching. I don’t know HOW many time my husband and I stop and look at each other to say “No way! They did NOT just say that!” while watching. Just show it.

  • jeannie

    I seem to recall back in the mid-70’s when “Maude” aired their “controversial” abortion episode. While I am not pro-abortion, I find it hard to believe that after all these years FOX would be afraid to air something like this. Besides, wasn’t there a Family Guy episode a few years back where Peter told the story of how he and Lois went to Vermont to get an abortion, but decided against it, “and three months later Meg was born”….Wasn’t there another episode where Peter found out he was born in Mexico? Peter’s mother said she had gone there to get an abortion, and the clip showed her letting the local children use her as a pinata…how is this “new” episode any different from those?

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