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Family Guy: One Big Dysfunctional Family

1680 words - 7 pages

Family Guy, an animated sitcom about a New England family and their everyday dilemmas, is a way for viewers to see the comedic side of a dysfunctional family. The Griffins consist of Peter and Lois, the patriarch and matriarch, and Meg, Chris, and Stewie are the children(Family Guy). Every character is different from the next character. They are also weird in their own way. The television show itself displays feminism, structuralism, and gay and lesbian criticism. Each character in the show also displays those criticisms in a certain fashion. Family Guy can be offensive to viewers with its satire, and the way the show delivers its message can make the family and the other characters in the show seem dysfunctional.
Peter Griffin, who is the main character and protagonist in the sitcom, is lazy, idiotic, and alcoholic. He is always ruining something or is always over doing something, but he always has his family in mind). Jean Piaget states," A structure is any conceptual system that has three properties: wholeness, transformation, and self regulation" (Piaget, 5). Peter transforms from a idiotic misogynist to just an idiotic. In earlier an episode like " I Am Peter, Hear Me Roar" where Peter tells a sexist joke and is forced to go to a women's retreat camp is a reminder of how misogynist Peter could be (I Am Peter, Hear Me Roar). That is the second property of structuralism, transformation. Being misogynist the feminist criticism follows behind the transformation of structuralism. Feminism is the belief in the social, economic, and political equality of women and men(Feminism). Feminists are committed to activity on behalf of women’s rights and interests. In earlier episodes Peter lives life always judging women, and telling people how women are beneath men. Peter even goes about saying that women are nothing more than space occupier(Family Guy). Peter stops criticizing women but, but he never stops being an idiot. Peter also represents wholeness. Wholeness means a system functions as a unit. Without one part the whole system is useless. That is how Peter is. Without Peter, there is no Family Guy. Peter's antics and slanderous comments are what keep the television show afloat. Mark Lilly states," the homophobic critic will resort to raw abuse, with a vehemence that is normally uncharacteristic of the writers I will cite" (Lilly,7).Peter can also be offensive gay, lesbian, and transgender people. He is impulsive, and he does not think his thoughts all the way through. In episodes like "You May Now Kiss the... Uh... Guy Who Receives" and " Quagmire's Dad" Peter criticizes Jasper for trying to marry the same sex, and criticizes Quagmire's Dad for getting a sex change. He constantly harasses them, and causes them pain and hurt.
In American Feminism: New Issues for a Mature Movement Janet K. Boles states that, "women who fought for equal rights in movements the most were predominantly white, middle class, middle aged —over 30— college educated...

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