As someone who watches Family Guy on a fairly regular basis, I usually resort to rolling my eyes when the show’s creator, Seth MacFarlane, incorporates a Jew joke into what has lately become every episode of the sitcom. MacFarlane, no stranger to controversy and pushing the envelope, is a masterful comedian in many ways, even if his jokes are most often vulgar to the point of no return. As a pop culture lover, my heart can only skip a beat when he pokes fun at society’s cultural trends and riffs poetically on the mundane minutia that the media throws our way every day – every nanosecond of the day.
So you see I’m already conflicted, but no longer after tonight’s episode.
Tonight marked a special event on FOX in which MacFarlane, along with Alex Borstein (voice of Lois) did a variety show act intermittently splicing episodes of Family Guy to fill in the gaps. No doubt the half-hour show was a plug for MacFarlane and Borstein’s show, which showcased at Carnegie Hall last year.
At one point in the show MacFarlane insists on singing a song about Austria. Borstein refuses and says something alongs the lines of, “You always say my people don’t fight. So I’m putting my foot down. I’m not singing.” (I’m paraphrasing mildly but you get the drift) Borstein then goes onto talk about her grandmother and mother who barely escaped Austria from the Nazis to which MacFarlane replies, “You should consider yourself lucky (again, slight paraphrasing). If the Nazis hadn’t happened, imagine how many Jewish female comedians you would have had to compete with. So instead it’s just you and Sarah Silverman.” Borstein responds with a laugh and joins in the jokes. After all, it was made at her expense. And that’s funny, right?
I think I may just have to be done with Family Guy once and for all…