Family Guy, Vol. 2 (Season 3)
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Family Guy Volume 2 sees the return of America's most outrageous animated family with all 21 Season Three episodes, plus one never-before-seen episode - "When You Wish Upon A Weinstein" banned from TV, and only available in this collection!
In this hilarious final volume, the Griffin family faces all-new dilemmas, including Brian's unintentional foray into directing porn, Stewie's rants on national TV, Meg's date with a nudist and Lois' Yuletide insanity.
Meanwhile, Peter is surprised to discover Lois was once a groupie, and his son, Chris, is more "endowed" than he is.
- Amazon Sales Rank: #3105 in DVD
- Brand: Fox
- Released on: 2003-09-09
- Rating: Unrated
- Aspect ratio: 1.33:1
- Number of discs: 3
- Formats: Animated, NTSC
- Original language: English, Spanish
- Subtitled in: English, Spanish
- Dubbed in: French
- Number of discs: 3
- Dimensions: .72 pounds
- Running time: 22 minutes
The third and final season of Seth MacFarlane's late, lamented Family Guy finds television's most dysfunctional cartoon family even more animated than usual. As MacFarlane notes in a bonus segment about the controversial series' censorship battles, he was inspired to go for broke, thinking that the series, already juggled like a hot potato in the schedule (at one point, it aired opposite the mighty Friends), had been cancelled. Just as Spinal Tap walked the fine line between "clever and stupid," so did Family Guy gleefully mock the line between "edgy and offensive." Case in point is this set's holy grail: "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein," not aired during the series' original run, in which clueless Rhode Island patriarch Peter Griffin is convinced that if his lumpen son is to be rich and successful, he must become Jewish.
Like The Simpsons, Family Guy lends itself to multiple viewings to catch each densely packed episode's way-inside "one-percenter" gags (so-called by the creators because that is the percent of the audience who will get them), scattershot pop-culture references, surreal leaps, and gratuitous pot shots at everyone from, predictably, Oprah, Kevin Costner, and Bill Cosby to, unpredictably, Rita Rudner. Also like their Springfield counterparts, this series benefits from a great ensemble voice cast, with surprising contributions from a no-less-stellar roster of guest stars. Yes, that's actually Kelly Ripa as her "real" self, a heart-devouring alien in "Family Guy Viewer Mail #1," and June Foray popping in as Rocky the Flying Squirrel in "Brian Does Hollywood." Family Guy's stock has recently risen with its addition to Cartoon Network's "Adult Swim" lineup, a much better fit than prime time. To see Peter invite Charles Manson to a party for Sharon Tate ("but only if you don't embarrass me") is to marvel how much of this ever got on the air. Happily, it is on DVD. --Donald Liebenson
Why on earth was this show cancelled?
It is an unfortunate fact that in the politically correct age we live in that edgy comedy is categorized as offensive when it is really just being silly. That is exactly what happened to "Family Guy" a series that laid siege to every one of our sacred cows (religion, sex, violence, race relations, etc.), but did so in such a matter of fact manner, I find it hard to believe that anyone could have taken issue with it. Nonetheless, the series is no more; fortunately, we have the DVD compilations featuring every episode in its uncut hilariousness.
Season Three comprises twenty-one episodes, one of which was never aired on television. Actually, "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein" exemplifies my point about political correctness, as its silly, even complimentary view of Judaism could offend only the most supremely sensitive person. But enough with the negative, as there are some genuinely hilarious episodes on these discs. Moreover, since Fox aired them somewhat sporadically during the final season, it's likely there are one or two episodes that will be new to the viewer. For example, I had never seen "A Very Special Family Guy Freakin' Christmas" or "Road to Europe" both of which feature some of the best parody in the set. Other highlights include "A Fish Out of Water" which features a spectacularly fat Peter, "To Love and Die in Dixie" which is the best "Family Guy" tribute to a TV series with its "Dukes of Hazard" inspired storyline, and "Family Guy Viewer Mail #1" which features three shorts that abandon all pretense of a basis in reality and produce some the best sight gags ever seen during the show's run.
That said, anyone who buys this set probably already knows how funny this show is, but what makes this collection really impressive is the quality of the extras. First off is the packaging itself which features an episode guide on the back of each case, which makes it easy to find that specific episode you're looking for. Or, if you've got more time, the ability to play every episode on the disc consecutively is a great feature. In addition, the commentary which is available on five of the episodes ranges from informative to hysterical. However, the true highlights are to be found on Disc 3, which contains animatics (pencil drawings) of several deleted scenes, complete with dialogue. These are nice not only because they contain new material, but also because they offer some insight into how the episodes evolved into their finished form. Next are two short documentaries, which offer a funny, interesting look into the series' development, the voice talent, how the characters evolved, and ultimately, why the show didn't last. Finally, there is the "Family Guy" pilot that was pitched to the network; again it's interesting to see how these relatively crudely drawn (but well voiced) characters evolved into the show that become such a cult hit.
Ultimately, if you are a big fan of the show, you need this collection, and nothing I say here is going to make you more likely to buy it. However, if you're sitting on the fence, I can't emphasize enough what a great show "Family Guy" is. It is literally funnier than anything on TV today, and over time, I expect it will be even more broadly appreciated for its comic genius. If you want to laugh until it hurts, and aren't offended by humor on the edge, this is definitely a show for you. Finally, I would just like to point out that Seth MacFarlane alludes to a line written for Stewie in an episode that never aired, so let's all hope that there may be yet more to come!
"How ruthlessly absurd"---Stewie
I have all the Simpsons series DVD releases as well as King of the Hill, South Park and, heck, even God, the Devil and Bob. The DVDs I play the most, though, are Family Guy. Every time I watch them, I appreciate something new. There are absolute absurd moments like when Peter is in the soundproof box so he can ignore Brian in "Screwed the Pooch" or when a hurricane blows away Asian reporter Trisha Takwanawa in "One if by Clam, Two if By Sea," hilarious lines like Peter proudly announcing that he's invited to a "polio" match with Lois' father, or sailors singing in Stewie's fantasy that he's "a worldclass poof" in "The Thin White Line," and cool references like Richard Simmons' `Sweatin' to Books on Tape' or Peter painting his car like the General Lee in "To Live & Die in Dixie" and then forgetting to roll the window down when Brian attempts to jump in like Luke Duke. There is just too much good stuff to mention. That is why these episodes do not get old. Contrary to what a previous review wrote, you CANNOT watch these episodes once. Now here's what you get:
The Thin White Line: A listless Brian gets a job as a police dog due to his uncanny ability to sniff out drugs. Actually, he becomes too good at his job and ends up at a rehab clinic where Peter decides to join him: "I'm on vacation. Oh, and if they ask, I'm also on smack."
Brian Does Hollywood: The second part of Thin White Line. Brian goes to LA to find his calling and ends up directing porn. His flamboyant cousin Jasper is hilarious.
Mr. Griffin Goes to Washington: Peter's employer is taken over by a cigarette conglomerate and they make him president of the company. Includes an "appearance" by Martha Stewart.
One if by Clam, Two if By Sea: The Brits get it in this episode when they turn the Drunken Clam into a British pub. Great Peter line: "We kicked your ass in WWII & we can do it again."
And the Wiener Is: Peter brags about being better than his son at everything, until he sees Chris' extra large manhood.
Death Lives: Peter has Lois go on a scavenger hunt for their wedding anniversary so he can go golfing (great idea!). Features a return of "Death."
Lethal Weapons: Lois fears her karate is bringing violence into her home which is a different take from the usual husband is jealous when his wife kicks someone's butt for him storyline.
The Kiss Seen Around the World: Meg becomes an intern at the news station alongside nerdy Neil Goldman. The "phony"guy was way over used in this one.
Mr. Saturday Knight: With Mr. Weed dead and the toy factory destroyed per his will, Peter pursues his dream of being a jouster at the Renaissance fair. Includes a reference to the Electric Company and Peter as a prostitute is hilarious.
A Fish Out of Water: Peter becomes a fisherman and must kill a legendary man-eating fish to pay off a loan.
Emission Impossible: One of my favorites. Lois & Peter want to have another baby and Stewie sets out to spoil their plans.
To Live & Die in Dixie: Chris identifies a convenience store robber and the family is put in the witness protection program in the Deep South where Chris finds a girlfriend and Stewie discovers a hankering for bluegrass.
Screwed the Pooch: Hilarious episode! Brian impregnates Lois' father's prized race dog and Peter must choose between his best friend and the newly established tolerance his father-in-law shows towards him.
Peter Griffin: Husband, Father...Brother?: Another favorite. Peter discovers a black ancestor who was enslaved by Lois' family and tries to get in touch with his black roots.
Ready, Willing, and Disabled: Joe loses a robber and contemplates leaving the police force until Peter convinces him to enter the Special Person's Games and, like with South Park's take, steroids enter the picture. Great reference to `Touched By an Angel' ("Now where did the angel touch you.").
A Very Special Family Guy Freakin' Christmas: After several unfortunate events, Lois goes off the deep end. Hey, let's see an entire KISS Saves Santa!
Brian Wallows and Peter Swallows: As part of his community service, Brian takes care of a mean old hag who ends up having a lot in common with him. This episode is almost touching.
From Method to Madness: The Griffins meet up with a nudist family.
Stuck Together, Torn Apart: Peter's jealousy almost ends his marriage while Stewie and Brian are glued together.
Road to Europe: Stewie is mesmerized by a public television children's show and sets off to England to join it. Meanwhile, Lois and Peter go to Kisstock and Peter is appalled (as would any KISS fan) that Lois does know the words to "Rock and Roll All Nite."
Family Guy Viewer Mail #1: Here's hoping there will be a #2. Three tales about Peter becoming a gelatinous blob (its hard to tell the difference...just kidding), the Griffins having superhuman abilities and a "Little Rascals" take-off.
When You Wish Upon a Weinstein: Controversial, never-aired episode where Peter hopes to make his son Jewish so he will be successful.
It's just.. wow. Sometimes I'm amazed this show was aired, but I#m even more saddened that it was canceled. This show has an edge. It's politically incorrect humor at its best. With almost every episode, I would think "Oh my Goddess, he did NOT just say that!", and I would rewind it, and I would laugh.. This show picks on everyone... However, it does it with such an innocent smile and genuinely funny joke that it forces you to actually step back and laugh at yourself.
The show also has a way of saying things that will make your jaw drop, and then the conversation continues and what they said was totally innocent, relying on your own sick and dirty mind for the humor.
My only major complaint about this, which also holds true of the first boxed set, is the quality of the mpeg encoding. One would think that since the image is animated, with thick black lines and almost-no to no shading, they could have used a better encoding rate and the file size would still be small. As it is, if there is too much movement on the screen, and sometimes I don't know what triggers it, the image will "stutter".
If you are easily offended, just stay away from this show. If you can laugh at yourself (no matter what group you're in, they'll find a way to make fun of you), you'll like this show.
Stewie and Brian are my heros.