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American Dad Does Riggo



So last Sunday night on American Dad, we met a special guest character named Tank Bates. Tank was a former Pro-Bowl fullback and accomplished ball carrier for the Washington Redskins, a stocky white guy, beloved by fans, who wore the No. 44. Uhhhh, ok.

"The persons in this film are fictitious," read the closing credits. "Any similarity to actual persons or events is unintentional." Uhhhh, ok.

"Listen, I'd do anything to have Tank's voice," said John Riggins, when I asked him today about the possible resemblance. "And the blond hair wasn't bad either, although I could probably do something about that if I wanted to. Let's face it, Tank is fleshed out a bit more than J.R. I don't think there's any physical resemblance between Tank and the big guy. And Tank doesn't look like, in his prime, he could have broke 5-flat in the 40. I mean, right now we're looking at 50 seconds the way that guy was put together. He was a tank. if they were trying to mock me, the creators completely missed it. But I'll give them a second chance."


Generous guy, Riggo. Especially because the Tank pictured in this episode, called "Daddy Queerest," was something of a cretin. If you're not familiar with the show, it features the midadventures of a (Redskins-loving) CIA agent and his family. Their neighbors include a gay couple raising a baby; one of the men, we learn in this show, is the son of 'Skins star Tank Bates, who is coming back to D.C. to get his uniform retired.

Tank drives a yellow Hummer, watches Skinemax, drinks canned beer, is "a notorious womanizer" who "slept with all the cheerleaders [and] the coach's daughter," and happens to be a raginig homophobe. He also doesn't know that his son is gay, and before the big reveal, issues all sorts of dramatically ironic slurs, including "fairy," "drag queen" and "fruit loop." Once he finds out, he says his son's choice life "sickens me," that "it's wrong and I want nothing to do with it."

"No, I don't think that would be a major issue with me," said Riggins, who watched the entire episode on the Internet this afternoon and judged it hilarious. "I would hope I'd be a little more open-minded than Tank."

He didn't know this "tribute" was coming, didn't hear about it from any friends, and hadn't known it existed until Reader Jonathan sent me the link, and I sent it to Riggo's people. And being the sort of guy that he is, he didn't take offense at this particular portrayal of his uniform--nor at the story of Tank being stopped at the one after taking a hand-off from Theismann.

"I found it completely innocuous, and actually quite funny, to be honest with you," he said. "You know, it's art. And it's funny, it really is, and it's really well-done."

Anyhow, if there's anyone who should be insulted by this episode, it would be Redskins' fans. For one thing, their animated stadium crowd includes just 50,000 people. For another, Tank dismisses them like so: "You think I care what these drunken slobs think? They'll cheer for anything."

Well, that's an awful cynical description. Fortunately, it's just art.


By Dan Steinberg  |  May 14, 2009; 5:43 PM ET
Categories:  Media , Redskins  
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Next: Cerrato, Bowden, D-Hall on the Caps

Comments

Speechless

Posted by: Barno1 | May 14, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

CP>Riggo

Posted by: jonthefisherman | May 14, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

None of this changes that the show sucks and never should have seen a full first season if it was to even make the air.

Posted by: sitruc | May 14, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

fisherman...your naivety is laughable. Please take a 20 second timeout and stop commenting til Monday. I pray you are 25yo or younger and can use that as an excuse.

Posted by: fushezzi | May 15, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

"You think I care what these drunken slobs think? They'll cheer for anything."

this is sadly true...and we'll pay an arm and a leg ta boot.

Posted by: rtramonte5500 | May 15, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Once he finds out, he says his son's choice "sickens me," that "it's wrong and I want nothing to do with it."

Shouldn't the word "choice" also be in quotes?

Posted by: Incredulous2 | May 15, 2009 12:48 PM | Report abuse

@jonthefisherman

CP > Riggo???? Surely you jest.

Posted by: chombie13 | May 15, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

I'm w/ you, sitruc - I think the show sux and is completely overrated.

Personally, I'm a South Park fan, and would LOVE to see Matt and Trey lampoon Snyderatto's ownership-mngmnt "style," such as it is... But pls don't disparage our great "characters" like Riggo that brought glory to the franchise.


-------------------------------------

None of this changes that the show sucks and never should have seen a full first season if it was to even make the air.

Posted by: sitruc | May 14, 2009 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: hogmeister | May 15, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Forrest Gump in a # 44 jersey and a Sonny "J" maroon and white stripe helment.... Priceless. Go Riggo, you will live in lore forever!

Posted by: JOHN20878 | May 15, 2009 10:51 PM | Report abuse

I don't know what you fools are talking about, American Dad is a hilarious show. Some of you guys take things a little too seriously

Posted by: layinwood247 | May 16, 2009 10:30 AM | Report abuse

I don't take offense at any of this, but I do agree that American Dad is an awful show. Family Guy is bad enough, but American Dad is a pure clunker by every definition of the word. It's lasted well past its welcome. It probably shouldn't have been welcomed to begin with.

Posted by: CDon | May 16, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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