The Big Picture: It Seems Today ...

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Start... watching Bob's Burgers? Is that a joke? Is that some kind awful... sick... twisted joke? I can't believe he said that to me. I can't ,fucking, believe he said that to me.

Edit: One episode was enough to turn me off of the show. Perhaps my opinion isn't valid according to some. Oh well.

OMG. An Internet personality actually said they liked Family Guy kind of. OMG. It's raining frogs. OMG. The dead walk the earth. We're so fucked.

While I don't go out of my way to watch it, I do enjoy Family Guy.
So you get no hate from me Bob, well you wouldn't get any hate from me if I hated the show either.

Would Bob like Bob's Burgers as much if it was called Steve's Burgers?

I think much of the hate for "New" Family Guy is because many people really, really liked the original first episodes. So much so that the fan support and strong DVD sales brought it back from the dead. And upon it's resurrection, they were expecting to see more of what they liked.

And instead they got shit on in favor of people like MovieBob who didn't even like the original show.

I'll be honest here, I loved the old Family Guy. And I don't like the new episodes all that much. The reasons for this tend to be pretty much the same reasons why MovieBob holds the reverse opinion. The part of Family Guy that was interesting to me WAS the lack of good characterization. Having each character be a thin and exaggerated parody of a stock sitcom trope is what made the show work at it's core. Adding to the characters to give them depth and build a "dramatic" show defeats that whole point. Especially when the "depth" often comes lock-step with lame lowbrow humor and thinly-veiled liberal pulpit-pounding. Lowbrow humor works when the whole thing is an obvious parody, the viewer isn't just laughing at the joke, they're also laughing at the sort of person who thinks that joke is original and funny. When it's played straight on the other hand, you just feel insulted that Seth McFarlane thinks his audience is made up of those very people with terrible taste. Slapping on the liberal bullshit just throws away any good will at all. And I say that as a pretty left-leaning guy.

Look, I don't WANT my animated comedy to take political stances. I don't even like the sorts of people who do that sort of thing in real life because they tend to be either naive idiots or manipulative assholes. That's what makes South Park generally funny even when they address political topics. The ability to understand that we really shouldn't take some things too seriously, and people who do that are wankers.

I didn't much like the show before it went off the air, but I watched a lot of it because... it was on and there was nothing else on at that time of night. I really loved the show after it came back, that one season, and maybe a few episodes in the next season, but once they really knew the restraints were off it wasn't really clever or interesting anymore. You need some sort of limits set on you to fight against creatively or you just stagnate... which is what happened. Seth McFarland and his teams just sorta lost that when they became so ubiquitous.

And Then There Were None was a terrible episode, sorry. I refused to watch anymore after that. And the Star Wars parodies were just so boring. Just... boring.

Family Guy is for people without a good sense of humour. Their skits miss the mark almost every time.

The friends I have that love it just so happen to be the LEAST naturally funny people I know.

Although I give you points on praising Futurama and Bob's Burgers (especially Futurama which is the best animated TV show ever).

People hate Family Guy? I got so much shit for not liking it years ago. All the newer stuff is funny as fuck though.

I must use the internet wrong, because I don't know anybody who's spent even two seconds on hating a TV show.

I used to like Family Guy. Unlike Bob I enjoyed the first three seasons, but also liked the subsequent ones. Many of the episodes you mentioned were also ones I'm particularly fond of. However, the show has been in a decline recently. It's hard to describe, but bar the odd gem of an episode the show just isn't that entertaining. I still kept up, but one of the recent episodes, Call Girl (where Peter tried to cheat on Lois with Lois) infuriated me so much I quit watching it entirely. I'm done with anything produced by McFarlane, and I don't regret it.

Worst animation on TV? Not by a long shot. There's an awful lot of crudely animated, zero-characterization, "we'll make a random comment and stare at you until you laugh" dreck out there.

I've been known to enjoy Family Guy. Some bits are little short of genius, and I have a certain affection for any show that does a shout-out to "The Great Space Coaster" and the pinball-number animation from Sesame Street.

I do wish, however, that it wouldn't so often fall back on the "we're so mean" or "we're so edgy" card. There are certainly places for it- I can definitely take a kind of joy of seeing predictable schmaltzy "aww..." moments skewered, and bits like Stewie coming after Brian for the money he owes him are so over-the-top that they transcend meanness and become a sort of surreal level of slapstick. But more than occasionally, I get the feeling that you get when you're trapped in the audience with a "laugh or everyone will think you're weak" type of comedian. "You think I'll laugh at that? How about, no." At least the jokes usually come fast enough that such off-key notes are just temporary hitches.

MovieBob admits that he likes the character of Brian, which is to say a smug, self-satisfied atheist who is always right because he says so and can't stand it when people poke holes in the fabric of his perfect logic?

Well color me surprised! *eyeroll*

Honestly Family Guy's problems can be summarized pretty easily:

1) It drags a lot of its jokes out to such an uncomfortable length of time that I can no longer laugh at them. In fact, it seems to actively want to kill its own jokes.

2) It often gets extremely preachy, arguably even extreme left-wing, when it takes a stance on anything, a reflection of its writers own beliefs and sensibilities. This is a far cry from South Park (a show you and others look down upon), which is at least honest enough to paint both sides of an issue in an incredibly poor light for the sake of mockery, thus allowing the viewer to decide what they want to believe rather than lecturing them from on-high as Family Guy tries to.

3) The characters are actually flatter now than they were in the past. Peter went from being the old "loveable goofball" to canonically retarded and doing stupid things because herp derp that's how retarded people act right? (which leads into point 4 below), and as a result his "antics" aren't nearly as forgivable and enjoyable to watch. The "haha Meg is an awkward teen" routine has been dragged out too long. Brian went from simply being a classic case of dry wit to being the pinnacle example of why "progressive" politicians piss me off just as much as conservatives. Stewie went from being the dastardly villain sort to just being gay, because homosexuality is apparently worth a few cheap laughs. And the list goes on. They didn't develop better, as Bob asserts, they became flat caricatures played up for cheap jokes.

4) The show's structure and stances on a number of issues manage to be more offensive than South Park, which is really not a good thing as South Park is a show built on being intentionally offensive. Peter, for example, is deemed "retarded" at one point in the series as a lampshade for why he does stupid things, which is horrendously offensive to the mentally retarded by virtue of casting them all in that same light. I don't find that particularly funny, having a now-decreased relative who was mentally retarded and struggled with his condition all his life, despite never showing it (in fact, he was one of the most generous and kind persons I've ever known, the sort of virtuous soul who you'd never wish ill upon). Similarly, the show's handling of domestic abuse is outright ridiculous and distasteful to such a degree that it

Hating Family Guy isn't a "thing" because it's cool, it's a "thing" because the show stopped being a general sort of comedy bit and turned into a mutated monster that its original fans didn't want to see it become. Maybe it wouldn't have been as big of a show as it's become had it stayed the way it was, but honestly, that might have been the better course of action.

As of right now, it's disliked because it's bad, not because it's "cool", Bob.

I have grown tired of Family Guy, I don't hate but I just don't find it very funny or interesting anymore. However American Dad is still excellent and I find it hilarious. I also really liked Ted so I think Seth is still a very talented guy.

Kind of sad he didn't mention Archer though, that is hands down the best animated sitcom on television.

I used to like Family Guy back in the old days, probably around 2007 is when I stopped watching. It had its moments but it lost my interest. Good thing I'm not a fan now since I've heard it's gotten more politically driven in the last few seasons, something that also happened to Simpsons in recent years to take more of the fun out of it.

However, if you like Family Guy, I don't care, lots of people would think I had no taste for the stuff I like, why should I judge someone based on the TV they watch just because I don't like it.

Never knew there was a deep hatred for Family Guy, well ok there seems to be a hatred for everything popular somewhere, but I didn't know that you're hatred for liking Family Guy. I would just put it up to "Haters gotta hate" and not care.

Personally I guess I got tired of the show. Some parts of it's great sure but I got tired of the whole "idiotic main dad that gets away with everything no matter how wrong or downright criminal, on top of being a terrible father/husband" thanks to family guy and Simpsons and then later American Dad. Slight note on I actually had high hopes for American dad since Stan seemed different from that stereotype at first, but that idea seemed like flew out the window after a season when Stan just became a Homer/Peter clone, and so did my interest for the show.

Ah yes, Family Guy, the show I love but have to wait until I'm home alone to catch up on. No one ever told me that one I became a grown married man that there would still be things I couldn't watch when I wanted to...

I don't see the problem with liking family guy.
um... I don't like bob's burgers. At all. Not a big fan of that art style wether it was dr cats, or home movies, or bob's burgers.

Not to mention i found it less enjoyable than home movies. I'm going to walk away and simply say "good episode Bob" because the more i talk about Bob's burgers is the closer i get to getting punished.
I guess that's what it boils down to.. I won't debate it, for fear of being banned or suspended,
but more the fear of if i lose the debate I might have to watch bob's burgers (brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr Jesus God no).

You actually like Bob's Burger? You're not even worth "coming at"

I think that Bob has the internet love/hate thing somewhat backwards. At least from the forums I've read.

What I have seen is that somebody makes a mild criticism (not hate), and then is barraged by Family Guy lovers who can't believe that anybody would criticize their favorite show, which can't be anything other than perfect. Even valid criticisms are met with retorts like "you just don't get it" or "it's comedy, man, lighten up" to worse.

I did quite enjoy the show up until the last couple of years. I still watch it, but for me one of the big problems is how it relies on racism for cheap gags. Again, the response is "it's not really racist, it's an ironic comedy" - but after such things get repeated over and over again, you have to wonder if the racism is really all that ironic.

But apparently I'm a "hater" for thinking about such things.

I can't stand Family Guy anymore, but some of the examples you gave (And then there were fewer, Three Kings, The Star Wars Parodies and that Mel Gibson episode) I did thoroughly enjoy. It still brings out good episodes it's just that it doesn't bring out enough good episodes.

I got bored of Family Guy around the 6th season where they went from being unique and wacky characters to being parodies of said wacky and unique characters, and the jokes soiled. The episodes all became about Peter too, more so than before. However you make some good points, Lois and Meg have definitely improved in later seasons and I'll watch an episode if somebody tells me Meg is the main plot point of it. Of course, saying Family Guy episodes have plots is a joke in itself.

Sadly I've been noticing some of Family Guy's trends leaking into American Dad! (such as long, drawn out and crap jokes to pad the run time and even a cutaway gag at one point) which makes me think that American Dad! is falling into bad habits.

I never stopped liking Family Guy, though looking back the older ones can't hold a candle to today's.

Some of the reasons why you laid out beautifully.

What I don't understand is why you love the Cleveland Show so much. I saw a few episodes and some of them had some good gags but I swear their Die Hard parody was the most unfunny thing I've even seen from Seth Macfarlane and the whole things seems like a step beneath Family Guy and American Dad on the quality scale.

Speaking of which, in terms of quality American Dad beats the crap out of Family Guy. Well except for the early ones where Stan Smith was just a 1 dimensional character who only existed to serve as a stand in for conservative beliefs so they spend the episode preaching against them. Beyond the first season or 2 it is unmatched. Their Christmas specials are especially good.

And Bob I really don't see how modern South Park lampoons anyone who takes a stand. They've taken a stand before.

They sided for tobacco companies, they side against censorship all the time, for gay marriage, for euthanizing vegetables etc.

I love Family Guy and was not aware it was a cool thing to hate it. Of course just about anything that gets very popular experiences a backlash, just look at the Simpsons.

I think there has certainly been issues with the consistency of the series when the show does a good job with an episode they really knock it out of the park.

Damn it Bob! Ugh. Fine, fine, fine. I kind of, maybe, possibly enjoy it sometimes too. Total guilty pleasure status.

TheDrunkNinja:
South Park is a show that presents a proper "big picture". Amidst all the inane humor and shear anarchy of whatever issue they're currently parodying, at some point they always present both sides of the debate in a clear and reasonable way, thereupon providing immediate levity by ending the episode on a massive joke.

No, it really doesn't. Also, talking about "both sides" of an issues is one of the major problems with South Park. There aren't always exactly two sides to every story. And South Park usually doesn't present very many arguments clearly and reasonably - just the opposite, in fact. It's quite heavy-handed in the way it presents issues.

I get that it's supposed to be over-the-top, but that usually results in less funny and less on-target satire than more subtle satires like golden-era Simpsons did. If you look at the golden-era Simpsons political satires, they usually hold up well today, but South Park's political satires seem outdated very quickly, they don't have much longevity or repeat-viewability.

The point of South Park isn't to "take a stand" on anything. The point is to show that while the people you so easily criticize can be pretty fucking stupid, you are just as capable of the same kind of stupid, only from a different stance.

But "not taking a stand" is in itself taking a stand - usually a stand of apathy and cynicism. But if you think South Park doesn't take a stand on anything, I don't think you've been watching closely enough. It makes plenty of stances.

Anyway, South Park is not the topic of this thread.

Aardvaarkman:

TheDrunkNinja:
South Park is a show that presents a proper "big picture". Amidst all the inane humor and shear anarchy of whatever issue they're currently parodying, at some point they always present both sides of the debate in a clear and reasonable way, thereupon providing immediate levity by ending the episode on a massive joke.

No, it really doesn't. Also, talking about "both sides" of an issues is one of the major problems with South Park. There aren't always exactly two sides to every story. And South Park usually doesn't present very many arguments clearly and reasonably - just the opposite, in fact. It's quite heavy-handed in the way it presents issues.

I get that it's supposed to be over-the-top, but that usually results in less funny and less on-target satire than more subtle satires like golden-era Simpsons did. If you look at the golden-era Simpsons political satires, they usually hold up well today, but South Park's political satires seem outdated very quickly, they don't have much longevity or repeat-viewability.

The point of South Park isn't to "take a stand" on anything. The point is to show that while the people you so easily criticize can be pretty fucking stupid, you are just as capable of the same kind of stupid, only from a different stance.

But "not taking a stand" is in itself taking a stand - usually a stand of apathy and cynicism. But if you think South Park doesn't take a stand on anything, I don't think you've been watching closely enough. It makes plenty of stances.

Anyway, South Park is not the topic of this thread.

See, I feel most of the issues people have with South Park, are those who don't like to see that the other side has people on it too, who aren't the horrendous monsters they're characterized as. Most of the time, they're often wrong, but there is a trend in modern society to set things in an us verses them light.

South Park is not asking you to NOT take a stand. It's asking you to see that there is another side, and it's a side filled with mostly decent people not alien monsters out to destroy everything you hold dear. At worst it's anti extremes, and taking an ideology so far that you don't see the people anymore, just furthering the ideology.

Bob's burgers seems like Home Movies with a mandatory mumblecore weirdness quota.

Meh, I prefer the earlier seasons over the later ones but its still a fun show.

I like family guy.
I like beavis and butthead.
I like king of the hill.
I like futurama.
I like some of cleveland show.
I like bob's burgers.
I like aqua teen hunger force.
I like squidbillies.
I like home movies.
I like sealab 2021.

Don't like simsons.

Like some of south park when it isn't being a circle jerk.

I like a lot of stuff, so why the hell is this an issue? We are not allowed to like what others don't like? Is "superCODplayer1995's" opinion that much of an issue? Is "Donkeypuncher12" really the king of comedy?

No, so why should one care?

I probably would have been with you a year ago, but the last year made me realize how much I'd only been watching out of habit. It's like I said when you did the Simpsons: first I see the jokes coming, then I dread them. I mean, I probably wasn't the first person to change the channel with the realization it was a Meg centric episode, but after a while, I was only getting regular laughs from Quagmire, the Brian / Stewie adventures, and the film parodies. Once Upon a Time and Game of Thrones started trumping my Sunday night, and after a few weeks of missing episodes, I realized I didn't care. Peter's hijinxs just stopped being fresh, and I didn't need to see more of Brian's failing love life and writing career.

McFarlane's a legit talent, even if his style is better suited for comedy central roast than the Oscars, and the show didn't get less funny. But I've seen the act and need new material.

Jeez, that laughing clip was fucking creepy.
I haven't seen anything of "Family Guy" since I caught a couple episodes of season 3 years ago, and I just don't find it funny. Caught a bit of "American Dad" recently and while I admit it was better than what I saw of "Family Guy," I still didn't think it was all that funny.

EDIT: Now that I think about it, I did catch one other more recent episode of "Family Guy" where Stewie and Brian were locked in a bank vault. It was one of the most horrible, unfunny, and just mean-spirited things I've ever seen.

th3dark3rsh33p:
See, I feel most of the issues people have with South Park, are those who don't like to see that the other side has people on it too, who aren't the horrendous monsters they're characterized as. Most of the time, they're often wrong, but there is a trend in modern society to set things in an us verses them light.

Well, that couldn't be more incorrect about how I see South Park. I don't care about shows representing a political opinion I disagree with in a positive light. I don't care about shows parodying opinions I do agree with. What I mostly care about is if it's funny and well-written.

The problem with South Park is exactly this fallacy of "the other side" or "two sides" of an argument, and the way it only presents the most extreme views of those sides. It's a weak form of narrative. It's easy to seem "above it all" if you only present the two extremes, rather than the nuanced arguments in the middle.

Don't get me wrong, I do mostly like South Park, and have seen every episode. It was just a lot funnier when it was about a bunch of innocent kids trying to comprehend the absurdity of the world around them, rather than trying to make political comments, or pot-shots at the celebrity du-jour.

South Park is not asking you to NOT take a stand. It's asking you to see that there is another side,

But that's such a silly and pointless argument. Who doesn't know that there is another side? That hardly needs to be pointed out.

It does take stands fairly often, though. When it's not being all about apathy and cynicism, it usually tends towards a right-leaning Libertarian politics.

At worst it's anti extremes, and taking an ideology so far that you don't see the people anymore, just furthering the ideology.

But it often becomes its own extreme of selfish Libertarianism. It frequently targets people who are passionate or care about issues for good reasons, not just extremists who irrationally believe things. There aren't just two extremes, and that's the central fallacy of much of modern South Park. It can't deal with anything more nuanced than two completely opposed sides. It often proposes Libertarianism as some kind of middle-ground between two sides, where in reality, Libertarianism can be just as extreme itself.

It's not really the "big picture" show you think it is - just look at Parker and Stone themselves, read some interviews with them. They are writing from their own (fairly narrow) perspective, and they say themselves that they grew up in a small, isolated town that was quite a miserable experience. Then they moved out of that town, and realized there was much more to the world. Meanwhile, plenty of us knew that already.

image

There really isn't much else to this post but that. Every time I talk to friends about how funny the latest episode of Family Guy was (Oh my gosh, the Valentine's Day one!), I always get odd looks of confusion and disbelief. Good for you for coming out as laughing at Family Guy, Bob!

cnaltman62:
Jeez, that laughing clip was fucking creepy.
I haven't seen anything of "Family Guy" since I caught a couple episodes of season 3 years ago, and I just don't find it funny. Caught a bit of "American Dad" recently and while I admit it was better than what I saw of "Family Guy," I still didn't think it was all that funny.

EDIT: Now that I think about it, I did catch one other more recent episode of "Family Guy" where Stewie and Brian were locked in a bank vault. It was one of the most horrible, unfunny, and just mean-spirited things I've ever seen.

Mean spirited?
How? Honestly how, I saw that episode and I can't recall anything mean spirited.

Oh and that episode is unique amongst most of family guy. It's trying to take a more serious look at Brian and Stewie or at least explore their relationship in depth.

My big confession is I never really liked the simsons that much, but love Futurama and yea guess Simsons just went on too long for me. To keep on subject I love Family Guy and its two bastard children. They're easy going gagathons time fillers of the highest standard, not as high quality as Futurama but fun.

MrMixelPixel:
Start... watching Bob's Burgers? Is that a joke? Is that some kind awful... sick... twisted joke? I can't believe he said that to me. I can't ,fucking, believe he said that to me.

(I don't like Bob's Burgers. I've only seen one episode. I did not want to see anymore.)

I'm always amazed at how many people say Bob's Burgers is terrible, and then to go on to say that they haven't rally watched it. What is it about this show (in particular) that provokes this response? In this same thread, one guy said that Bob's Burgers is "shit" after seeing half an episode. That's 11 minutes.

On another board, there was a guy arguing that Family Guy was by the best animated comedy on TV. I asked him "What about American Dad or Bob's Burgers?" His response was "Oh, I haven't watch those shows."

So, how the hell can you proclaim Family Guy to be the best, if you don't watch other the other animated shows??

This to me is so much worse than any of the other arguments about the quality of a show. I'll disagree with others about aspects of shows, but I'll respect their different opinions, because at least they have watched the shows. But these kinds of comments are just absurd.

For the record, I have seen EVERY episode of:

The Simpsons
Futurama
Family Guy
American Dad
The Cleveland Show
South Park
King of the Hill
Bob's Burgers
Beavis and Butthead

... among others. So, while we might disagree about these shows, at least I know the material, so we can have an informed discussion.

These people who are like "I really didn't watch this, and it sucks" are just the worst. I don't understand what makes people make those kind of comments. Is it just them being very immature? If you don't know the material, why are you commenting on it, for attention?

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