Thursday, July 10, 2008

Family Guy - Democracy Kicks In

Family Guy
Saving Private Brian
Original Air Date:5 November 2006 (Season 5, Episode 4)

We chose this particular clip because we felt it reflected policies that we have in our nation like the do not ask do not tell gay policy in the army and how it was so controversial at the time. For example, it shows how homophobic the military appeared to be at the time but also exploited the fact that the people who were saying “don’t ask do not tell” were homosexuals themselves.
Stewie and Brian shot themselves in the foot to try to get out of serving their term. However, being injured is not enough to leave. We see two dead people watching the ammunition. In the segment, they hint at the fact that we cannot afford to send people home because we do not have enough that want to go over there to serve. We also thought that serving as a function of the media, Family Guy was opposite of how the news portrays our troops being over there, they portray it as a patriotic act as opposed to having no choice, and they want to come home.
In addition, towards the end of the clip when “democracy kicks in” we see how our presence in the Middle East is really to try to Americanize them more than it is about weapons of mass destruction. It criticizes the “American way” and the government by showing us that they had faulty reasoning to go over there. Therefore, by showing the women in traditional Muslim dress versus American girls kissing in a car wash it is criticizing American culture by portraying us as being wild and not as fundamental as the women in traditional religious dress.
Looking at this clip altogether we see how Family Guy gives us a different perspective than the more realistic media and we can draw the connection between the segments that the overall theme is not only are we trying to say we’re better, but our troops do not really want to be there.
When we compare Family Guy to The Simpsons, we see that The Simpsons more often states their views as just jokes while as Family Guy gives off a more sarcastic view. In addition, to watch Family Guy you have to be more up on current events because they do not explain the news, they just make a joke about it, whereas The Simpsons give you more background on the news and then makes the joke, as if trying to explain it first.


Ethan Thompson said...


Rollie said...

This is really funny!!! Family guy really pushing the line a bit more than the Simpsons. I've never seen the Simpsons but I here Family Guy is more conterversial.

But what I think is that people don't pay much attention to conterversial issues on cartoon shows than "real" sitcoms. Imagine a sitcom doing this episode of Family Guy on their show. How conterversial would that be???

Good job!!

Tracy said...

I looove Family Guy! I try watching it as often as possible, but I've never even seen this episode. Did Bush see this? Maybe we should post it on the US Government website! :)

Katelyn said...

I love family guy!! They are so good at making fun of the stupid things the government does!

dreamcrusher said...

Personally, Iam not very familar with these type of tv programing.It seems to be somewhat amusing at first, then the message it tries to convey is of a serious nature that applies to social issues at hand.Its a very brief moment of sending across their view point when its being portrayed as idiotic and senseless that it fails to keep me interested long enough to formulate any type of objective reasoning.

wtm said...

Good choice of video. I liked the bit about the gays because it is more to real life than you think. Back in my old navy days there was this guy that everyone knew was a massive flamer, but no one cared. He would jog around on the ship in a skin tight black and yellow full body spandex track suit in the most stereotypical gay manner of all times. He even spoke in a gay manner, but it was never an issue- just funnier than hell. Everyone called him the Bumble Bee. Don't ask don't tell was in effect at the time, but it was not a factor as long as the Bumble Bee did not make advances on anyone and he never did. As far as I know he is still in the navy. In short, I think the gays in the military thing is more of an ongoing culture war outside the military than anything going on inside. Also the bit about the manpower shortage is something I think many people would like to be true based more on their own political view point than reality. Reenlistments, for example, are very high- even in the war zone. Great video-love the show.