Family Guy has just proven that Disney can not steal its edge

Family Guy often makes jokes at Disney’s expense, and their Bart Simpson gag in “The Birthday Bootlegger” proves that the edge of the series is still there.

Family guy is notorious for his risky jokes at Disney’s expense, and Bart Simpson’s gag in season 20, episode 8, “The Birthday Bootlegger,” proves that Seth MacFarlane does not intend to lose the series’ lead now that Disney owns the series. Family guy has been on TV screens for over 20 years, spanning more than 300 episodes and has made creator Seth MacFarlane a household name. Family guy has seen its fair share of criticism and controversy over the years for its offensive content, though this edge is also the series’ strength as it revel in shock value.

Although there are very few topics that are not allowed for the show to reference or satire, the authors write off Family guy be especially happy to beat their parent company. Historically, this was 20th Century Fox, though they were purchased by The Walt Disney Company in 2019. Along with Family guy, the merger also gave Disney the rights to competing animated shows The Simpsons. Family guy also has a long history of making Disney jokes, often around untrue city myths surrounding the character of Walt Disney, but now that line is changing a bit.


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Family guy season 20, episode 8, “The Birthday Bootlegger” contains a gag aimed at Disney’s authoritative control over its IP. Joken (via Twitter) has Stewie put in jail in elementary school. To his horror, his fellow prisoner is older children, and he notices that Bart Simpson is writing on the board in the style of The Simpsons’ iconic opening titles. Bart’s lines say, “It’s a pleasure working for Disney Corporation.” Stewie’s deadpan reaction is to say “oh it’s such a load of …” before his voice changes to Mickey Mouse and ends with “Truth! A wonderful charge of truth! ” By Family guy standards, the joke at Disney’s expense is not offensive, but it proves to everyone that the series’ new owners will not be safe from Family guy‘s satire or references.

Family man Bart Simpson Joke

Over the past few decades, Disney has had a voracious appetite for buying studios (20th Century Fox, Pixar, Lucasfilm and Marvel Studios) and IP (The Muppets, The Simpsons). One of the criticisms against this is that the “Disneyification” of IPs takes the edge off and cleans up what made them special in the first place. The Disney brand is very much centered around healthy, family-friendly content that is completely at odds with Family guy‘s brand of disrespectful gags. At one point, Bart Simpson was considered the face of the uprising, but even though it was still successful, The Simpsons as a show has become more and more cleansed and toothless, even before the change of ownership. At the time of the Disney / Fox acquisition, Seth MacFarlane told reporters (via Variety) that he was “remarkably untouched” by the news. It’s therefore encouraging to see that Disney is still fair game for Family guy jokes, and is a good sign that they will not fall apart with the curse of Disneyification.

In contrast to The Simpsons comforting intimacy, Family Guy’s Continued popularity over the years has not been inferior due to its ability to push the boundaries of what is acceptable to say or do in a television program. A disinfected version of Family guy without its edge would quickly become obsolete. With The Walt Disney Company now the most powerful entertainment brand in the world, it’s refreshing to see that there are still corners of its empire that find ways to undermine its pervasive dominance across popular culture, even if it’s just a tossed gag.

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